9 Easy Tricks for Looking Less Tired

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Lack of sleep is real, and so is the frustration when no amount of concealer will conceal all the tossing and turning you did last night. Luckily, with the right tools and tips in tow, waking up your face is an easier fix than you’d think. 

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Rethink your highlighter.

The glow-boosting product is known for making the high points of your face shine, but Sona Gasparian, makeup maven and founder of Pérsona Cosmetics, says a little bit of highlighter around your eyes can really go a long way. “Adding some shimmer to the inner corners of your eyes, the middle of your lids and on your brow bone will instantly brighten up your whole eye area and make you look younger and more awake.”

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Don’t skip skin care. 

“Face massages will help relax your face in the morning,” says Maki Ryoke, makeup artist for Streeters, adding that it’s the best first step to any skin care regimen. Next, she recommends using a face mask in the morning (even a quick one!), making sure to prep your skin with a warm towel beforehand. “Keep your masks in the fridge and use them to energize and de-puff a tired complexion.”

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Watch how you sleep.

If you’ve ever woken up with lines across your face, you know the way you sleep can affect how you look when you wake up. Dr. Purvisha Patel, dermatologist and founder of Visha Skincare, says we should avoid sleeping on our faces, as it causes swelling and puffiness (aka looking much more tired than we may be) come morning. “Avoiding caffeine after 3 p.m. is also a good idea, as it disrupts the sleep cycle.” 

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Use two shades of liner. 

If a chic black rim around your eyes is your signature look, you may want to reconsider when you missed out on some zzz’s. Instead of reaching for a black eyeliner, try using a nude or white shade for your lower lash line. “The light color makes eyes appear bigger, while black can shrink the look of your eyes when you’re exhausted,” explains Gasparian.

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Get moving.

Exercise may be the last option on your mind when you’re tired, but Ryoke says moving your body to get blood pumping will get the oxygen rushing through your body, including your face. Not to mention you won’t just look more awake, you’ll feel it, too. 

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Up your water consumption.

When it comes to water, we know more is always better, but did you know it can also help you look more awake? Dr. Patel says to aim for six glasses of water a day for a naturally dewy complexion. “Fruits and vegetables should also be scattered throughout the day, along with a multivitamin to keep your skin looking its best.”

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Don’t forget mascara. 

Even if you’re going for a natural look, Gasparian says a swipe of mascara will help you look wide-awake in seconds. “It makes a dramatic difference to your face and really opens up your eyes to help you look less tired.” For a more dramatic, wide-eyed look, consider falsies, “and don’t forget an eyelash curler.”

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Get the right tools.

If you can’t get away from puffiness in the morning, look into cool compresses, which Dr. Patel says are helpful to both wake you up and de-puff, and jade rollers, which also help with inflammation. “Skin care that contains caffeine (I like my Visha Advanced Bright Eye Booster) also helps energize tired skin by vasoconstricting blood vessels.”

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Use bronzer for an instant “lift.”

Gasparian says that using bronzer as an eye shadow (particularly on your crease) will give your eyes an extra “lift” and cause them to look more open. “You can also use bronzer as blush, to make your look more cohesive; just brush some on the apples of your cheeks for extra warmth.”

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