Beauty boosters for nurses


All Eyes on You

The eyes may be the windows to the soul, but when you’re working with patients, that window necessitates minimal dressing. Time-pressed pros, like hospice nurse Kelly Warshofsky from Bushkill, Pa., skip mascara and liner altogether, and focus instead on professional brow services and soft eye shadow. “There’s always a chance I may cry with my patients and I have no time for touch-ups,” she says. Adds Los Angeles-based NICU nurse Susie Egami, “When I have my eyebrows shaped and my brows and lashes tinted, it really frames my face and defines my eyes without my having to wear any other makeup.” Tinting, offered at salons across the country, costs about $30 and lasts for approximately four weeks. If regular salon visits aren’t in your budget, you can easily groom your brows on your own and keep them looking precise and professional from sunup to sundown. Glass recommendsthis long-lasting technique that adds mere seconds to your beauty routine: Use a creamy pencil to fill in sparse areas, then apply brow powder over so color stays put all day long.

Hot Product Alert!Christi Harris Precision Brow Planing System makes plucking, tweezing and waxing obsolete. This kit combines brow powder, cream and a defining highlighter with three brushes and a unique “planer” that allows you to shape your own arches in minutes. Check out the online video for easy instructions ($40;

Quick Wake-Up Trick

Out of bed for work but feel like your looks are still sleeping? Here’s the go-to three-step strategy that Barose uses on actresses who have worked all day, then have to walk the red carpet that night—which is not all that different from nurses who work the 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. shift. “Eyes show fatigue first,” he explains. “You may not feel awake, but you’ll look awake and your mood will instantly improve.”

Step 1: Dab a little moisturizer around your eyes.

Step 2: Blot the excess; touch a bit of concealer to dark spots only.

Step 3: Pump up the lashes with an eyelash curler and a coat of lengthening mascara.

Nailing It!

Nurses know better than anyone that washing your hands constantly makes it tough to keep polish looking…well…polished, not to mention chip-free. What’s more, “in most settings, we’re forbidden to have acrylic nails for infection-control purposes,” adds Walsh. So how do you achieve nails that you’re happy to show to patients? Skip polish altogether and apply cuticle oil; it does a good job of combating dryness from overzealous hand washing, and the subtle sheen gives nails a neat, manicured appearance.  A nice one to try: Sally Hansen Vitamin E Moisturizing Nail & Cuticle Oil ($6). Or consider Creative Nail Design (CND) “Shellac” Manicure, a brand-new in-salon service that paints on like polish, but is finished under a UV light so nails stay mirror-shiny and completely chip-free for two full weeks (no fills, sanding, drying time or soaking needed). Shellac, which costs about $35, comes in more than a dozen shades—including a natural French Pink called Romantique.

Instant Hair Makeovers 

Here, some quickie ideas from Robert Ramos, co-owner of Estilo Salon in Los Angeles and on-set stylist to actress Jessica Alba:

  • Trade a plain pony for a great pony. To add some sass to a classic, go-to style, braid one tiny strip of hair that frames your face and pull it back into the rest of your ponytail.
  • Combine a headband with a top knot or bun. Knots and buns are undeniably functional on their own, keeping hair off your face and out of the way of patients. But pair them with a headband and you’re rocking something a little sleeker for a change.
  • Try a faux-hair elastic.Elevate the tired scrunchie or rubber band with something that looks like your very own hair. Find a match from Tonytail ($6).

Give short hair some texture.A cropped ’do is easy, but it doesn’t always hold up through a long, hard day. Step it up a notch by spraying a small amount of volumizer into hair, lifting from the roots to add volume. A good one to try: Pantene Pro-V Fine Hair Style RootLifter Spray Gel ($3.99).

Hillary Quinn
Hillary Quinn is a lifestyle writer and blogger whose work has been published in many national magazines, including Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Self and Redbook. You can visit her at

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