Smart Starts

20 multi-tasking products and tips
to improve your daily routine

Beauty

  • Time Saver

    Look Wide Awake
    (Even at 6 a.m.)

    Need to look alert and have only two minutes to spare? Use two or three eyedrops to brighten your peepers. Then add a few of those drops straight into your mascara tube to de-clump it. Coat your lashes (don’t forget the bottom ones). Hello, doll face.

  • Money Saver

    Preserve Your Hair Color

    Run out of shampoo? Did you know that baking soda does the trick just fine without stripping away your precious natural oils (and not-so-natural color)?

  • Genius Tip

    Get a Serum That
    Does It All

    Sponsored

    If you can do four things at once, shouldn’t your anti-aging treatment work the same way? Thankfully, Clinique’s Smart Custom-Repair Serum tackles four of your skin’s main pain points to diminish lines and wrinkles, firm and lift, reduce dark spots, and improve radiance and texture. Kind of no brainer, huh?

  • Genius Tip

    Add Volume to Limp Roots

    Woke up to a deflated mane? Use a (clean) toothbrush to lightly tease and texturize your locks. (This is where those dentist freebies come in handy.) You can also add even more volume by dabbing the toothbrush into some eye shadow--in a shade that matches your hair color--and then working it along the hairline and continuing to tease.

  • Money Saver

    Fill Your Brows

    Speaking of eye shadow, you know that taupe shade you wear every day? Well, it can double as brow filler. Just put some on an eyeliner brush and apply it in short strokes (see a mini tutorial here).

  • Money Saver

    Improve Your Posture

    Why splurge on a fancy fitness tracker if it just monitors your steps and heart rate? This is precisely why we’re on board with Lumo Lift. This device tracks steps, distance and calories and it vibrates when you slouch so you can keep your posture in check. Not to mention it’s cheaper than most of its competitors, ringing in at $80.

  • Time Saver

    Workout At Your Desk

    So you didn’t run for 30 minutes on the treadmill today. Don’t beat yourself up. In fact, studies show that short bursts of exercise throughout the day can be just as effective. Check out these six (non-embarrassing) moves you can do at your desk without even standing up.

  • Time Saver

    Cure Your Black Thumb

    You love your little vegetable garden (even if it is just herbs). But you can’t seem to maintain it (killing five basil plants in just two months is a little ridiculous). Luckily, there’s Edyn, a Wi-Fi-enabled, solar-powered soil monitor that tracks and analyzes data in real time, then sends you push notifications to let you know what your garden needs. Think of it as the Fitbit of the gardening world.

  • Genius Tip

    Whisk Away Pet Hair

    You know that squeegee you bought to wipe down your glass shower door? Well, turns out it’s actually an excellent way to clean up Fido’s furry remnants. Just drag the squeegee right across the carpet or hardwood floor. The rubber blade will collect fur in a flash.

  • Genius Tip

    Clean Your Garbage Disposal

    You love lemon water. You also love a fresh-smelling kitchen. Kill two birds with one stone by cutting up the rind of one lemon and placing a piece into each slot of an ice-cube tray. Once frozen, toss the ice cubes into the garbage disposal to break up grease, keep it clean and ward off odors. (Just turn on the disposal and run the cold water for two minutes.) Toss any leftover cubes into your water glass.

  • Genius Tip

    Refresh Your Refrigerator

    Use your morning pick-me-up to eliminate odors in your fridge. Simply place coffee grinds (new or used) in a bowl on the top shelf (or check out this cool device). Replace them every two months for a fresh, slightly caffeinated smell. Sure beats the average box of baking soda.

  • Time Saver

    Bust Out Your Slow Cooker

    Your slow cooker can be used all year, and now is the ideal time to take full advantage. Make it easy on yourself by following these simple recipes that riff on three quintessential dishes, including an ingenious version of cherry cobbler. Just set the ingredients to cook before you leave for work and come home to a fully prepared meal.

  • Time Saver

    Get Out Of The House Faster

    You may think that checking email first thing in the morning makes you more productive… until 45 minutes have passed and you’re in a wormhole and late. Don’t believe us? There’s a whole book about it. Here’s a tip: Load up all of your emails just before you leave the house and use your mass-transit commute to catch up. The easiest form of multitasking yet.

Fashion

  • Genius Tip

    Learn How To Wash Your Lingerie

    So you bought a salad spinner when you first moved into your home, but let’s be real, the thing has barely seen a single leaf of lettuce. Well, it turns out that baby is actually the key to washing your bras. (Yep, your bras.) Watch this video to see how it’s done.

  • Time Saver

    Iron Without An Iron

    Did you know you can usually zap wrinkles away with concentrated bursts of hot air from a blow-dryer? Just after you’ve styled your hair (when your dryer is nice and toasty), hold it about two inches from the garment (to avoid scorching the fabric), blast it and then be on your way. Note: This works best on cotton fabrics.

  • Genius Tip

    Keep Your Strapless Bra In Place

    All you wanted to do was wear your cute summer sundress, but you ended up spending the whole day tugging your stupid strapless bra up from around your waist. Next time, just grab a spare bra strap and try this trick.

  • Money Saver

    Get The Dress You Can Wear Anywhere

    Do you have this problem? You want a dress that’s appropriate at the office, on weekends and after-hours. Not too short, but not too long. Not too fitted, but not too loose. Not too trendy, but definitely not too boring. Enter the shirtdress.Wear it alone or over skinny jeans. Under a sweater or over a long-sleeved tee. With booties or sneakers. The possibilities are endless.

  • Genius Tip

    Untangle Your Jewelry

    Sponsored

    You’re meticulous about moisturizing with your Clinique Deep Comfort Body Oil every morning. But did you know that same oil could also help you untangle your dainty little necklaces? Just grab a needle, pour a few drops onto said piece (over a flat surface, of course) and watch as it miraculously unravels.

  • Time Saver

    Break Up With Your Dry Cleaner

    We need to talk about dry cleaning. A major time and money suck, right? Enter the Swash,, the first-ever at-home dry-cleaning machine. About the size of a large garment bag, it fits snugly in your closet or bedroom and cleans soiled clothes in only ten minutes. Ten. Minutes.

  • Genius Tip

    Spray Your Jeans With Vodka

    You’ve heard before that you should never really wash your jeans. But what about when they start to, um, stink? One popular trick is to put them in a bag and stick them in the freezer overnight. The cold kills off the bacteria (the thing that makes them smell). You can also spray your jeans with a bit of vodka for the same odor-absorbing effect.