20 minutes (to a gorgeous mum)

When I found out that Baby Budgeting was focusing on Mum’s and how they can look and feel fabulous throughout July I had to ask Becky if I could join in and guest post.

I wrote the following tips on my blog a few months ago and found them to be well received, particularly by my fellow busy Mums. I have re-jigged it a bit for Baby Budgeting but I hope you enjoy and find it useful.

From the day our babies are born we are encouraged by many to have a routine.  Many of us take this on board and swiftly develop a routine that works for us in terms of how we care for our children but so often we neglect to add ourselves into that routine. I recently had some huge ups and downs in my life but I found that a routine for me that takes just 20 minutes of my day worked wonders in getting me back on track and feeling better about myself.


To make anything work it has to become part of your routine, be quick and workable.  After a couple of weeks of making yourself do something it will become second nature and just part of your daily routine that needs no thinking about or extra effort. I’ll tell you my morning routine which I now have down to less than twenty minutes:

  • I have a daily shower – you must find the time to shower daily.  In today’s society a daily shower/bath is a must.
  • I don’t use shower gels as I have sensitive skin so I use aqueous cream and one of those fluffy round body polishers.  The body polisher makes the cream lather up and it is a great cleanser with huge moisturising properties.  I never have dry patches of skin on elbows or feet since I ditched the shower gel.  It doesn’t have a smell but it does cleanse properly! I use smelly stuff if I’m going out but on a day to day basis this is enough.  It also means you don’t have to moisturise afterwards.  I do, I use more aqueous cream to moisturise but that’s only because it’s a habit I formed from  the age of fourteen that I can’t break. If you don’t have a body moisturising routine then using aqueous cream to wash with will make all the difference to your skin – try it! It is also lots cheaper than buying shower gel.  Just ask at your local pharmacy and they’ll dig out their tubs!
  • I shave my armpits! Not a pleasant thing to discuss but seriously ladies, hairy arm pits will do nothing for your sex life or self confidence.  It takes ten seconds to run a razor over them so you have no excuse.  If you get in the habit of doing it daily then it will become second nature. In the summer this is imperative!
  • I cleanse my face with a mild face cleanser. I tend to use baby wipes to remove my make-up in the evening, cheap and easy, no faffing and us Mums always have baby wipes lying around.  You can buy wipes specifically for the purpose but they’re no different and cost twice as much.

My shower takes me about 4 minutes.  I wash my hair every two-three days.  I used to wash it everyday but it’s far easier to wear up if it’s not washed daily and washing daily just dries it out.  I have now invested in a shower cap which my husband thinks is hilarious but I love it! It makes me feel like one of those pin up girls  

  • When I leave the shower I moisturise my face with Oil of Olay with a touch of foundation.  It’s not the cheapest moisturiser out there but means that I moisturise and wear foundation with no effort whatsoever, skin looks glossy and I look and feel great.  It also has the very important factor 15 sun protection which each of us should wear daily, even in winter, to protect our skin. Every other part of your body can be covered up if needs be but unless you intend to go around with a bag over your face when you’re older you need to take care of your face now.  If your under 30 just use an ordinary moisturiser with sun protection.  If you’re over 30 start to use an anti wrinkle cream as they have ingredients that help retain elasticity blah blah blah.
  • Now the summer is here I will be slapping on Piz Buin Factor 30 all day sun cream which although expensive at £19.08 a bottle, is amazing as you need only apply it once in the morning and it last all day. I normally pick it up in Boots’ regularly sales, two bottles for the price of one. I can’t stand reapplying sun screen, awful stuff.  This is non greasy and soaks into the skin.  It doesn’t stain my clothes either.  I also use it on my boys so that they don’t have to reapply their cream at school. It really is worth the money, there’s no other sun cream as nice and it lasts a while as they’re big bottles and one application a day is all that’s needed.
  • Put some deodorant on.  I use roll on as it dries better and doesn’t leave white marks on my clothes.  Always check for white marks and just rub off with your damp towel.  Deodorant marks are not a good look.
  • Later on I brush my teeth, including flossing and using mouthwash.  I confess I have only flossed for the last year and it took a while to get into a routine with it but now it adds about 20 seconds to my routine and it’s done.  These things don’t take as long as you think but they make a huge difference to your long term health and looks.
  • I then get dressed and add make up.  My make up takes 2 minutes.  Concealer, blusher (I’m very pale), a cream coloured eye shadow, black eye liner and black mascara. If you really are short of time and energy just use the moisturiser with a touch of foundation and apply a coat of mascara.  You don’t need much but you will feel and look better for it.

I have my entire routine from washing to dressing down to 20 minutes or less.

I can hear so many of you shouting ‘I don’t have 20 minutes’.  Of course you do.  Get up earlier or drag the kids into the bathroom with you, stick them on the floor with some toys and ignore them whilst you get on.  It’s not easy but it is worth it and you WILL feel better for it.

I go through this routine no matter what. Being clean and looking after your skin/hair/teeth is important, it’s not a luxury. Some people take better care of their cars and houses than they do of their own bodies.  That is ridiculous.  Make 20 minutes a day to take care of your bodies, they need it and you need it.  By taking care of what’s on the outside you can make a huge difference to what’s on the inside. You DO deserve that and you DO need it. FIND 20 MINUTES!

I hope you all find the time to take a little but of care of yourselves today.

Lottie -x-

A bit about me….

I am a 34 year old Stay at Home Mum of two boys, Brogan 6 and Willem 4.  I have long been obsessed with the 1940’s and 1950’s from the history of these times to the clothes they wore and the values with which they lived their lives.  I believe that modern women can learn a lot from women from these eras and my blog http://lottieloves.com/ endeavours to show you how.

Thank so much Lottie, fantastic advice!



  1. Fiona Erlandsen
    July 25, 2010 / 5:13 pm

    I have to say I totally agree with this. I spent 3 months after I had my twin girls in state of pyjama mess and it’s no good for morale. I live in Lanzarote where people feel the fresh faced just off the beach thing looks good. It’s fine if you’re young. Under 30, but if not, you need a little bit of maintenance to achieve that fresh faced look. Just like mentioned above. 🙂

  2. Becky
    July 25, 2010 / 6:02 pm

    As an almost 40 i totally agrree!

  3. July 25, 2010 / 8:53 pm

    I always have aqueous cream around the house as I have kids with eczema but I never thought of using on me until now – thanks for the tip! I always make sure I get a quick shower every day, I just feel awful if not. As my little ones aren’t old enough to be trusted on their own while I have a shower I put them both in their cots with some books and toys. They are used to it and now play quietly for ten minutes or so – I did have some complaints at first, but I’m glad I stuck with it!

  4. Becky
    July 25, 2010 / 10:47 pm

    Love aqueous cream so brilliant and gentle on sensitive skin

  5. Mangla
    July 26, 2010 / 11:12 pm

    Wow! I really needed to read this… Now I need this author to give me tips on choosing a new career once kids are in school!

  6. Becky
    July 26, 2010 / 11:19 pm

    Brilliant it helped you so much x Next month this is all going to be about jobs you can do when you have little ones and ways to earn money!

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