‘Silly Season’ is officially underway and good lord, is it already taking it’s toll. If you’re anything like us, you’ve been hitting up multiple Christmas shindigs/office parties/events per week, where the alcohol is flowing and the hours of sleep are dwindling. Rocking up to work with a hangover is pretty much inevitable at least every few days.

Thing is, sometimes we have to look like we aren’t knocking on death’s door. Sometimes we have to conduct meetings, go to job interviews, face clients or simply just look, well, alive for the sake of humanity. That’s where a bit of bullshit comes in. Yep, I’m talking about sneaky makeup.

The beauty of makeup – and this goes for people who don’t generally touch the stuff, because this is the time of year to change that, even briefly – is that it can truly transform you. You might wake up looking like you slept with your face in your front yard flowerbed (or maybe you did, no judgement), and within 15 minutes you look fresh-faced and not at all like you’re going to vomit into your handbag on the bus.

There are loads of complicated tricks to fix the problems alcohol consumption/lack of sleep can bring to your face, but these are a) easy and b) can be done in record time.

BUY A CREAM CONCEALER

Creamy concealers hide a multitude of shit – dark under-eye circles, pimples, redness… you name it. They’re thick, but easier to blend than waxy solid concealers – perfect for when you’re struggling simply to stand up. If you’re more of a waxy concealer gal, try something in stick form – the By Terry Stylo-Expert Click Stick has changed my damn life due to it’s precision tip and insane, heavy-yet-natural coverage. On the cheaper end of things, Maybelline New York’s Fit Me Concealer repeatedly gets rave reviews.

Go HAM on your under-eyes. The Kardashian’s do it all the time – it’s a long-known trick to making you look more awake. Work concealer in an upside-down triangle shape to blend it in well by ‘tapping’ it into skin, not rubbing. Also -add concealer after foundation, so you don’t end up moving it all over your face.

USE A ‘WAKE ME UP’ STYLE PRIMER

Something zingy and tightening – hangover skin is usually dull and puffy. Primers are even great if you don’t wear a full face of makeup – they’re usually designed to prep the skin for makeup, therefore they help even out skin tone, tighten and brighten skin, and even out skin texture. So you’re not exempt from this step, foundation-haters. Too Faced literally have one called Hangover Primer, and it gets voted as primo by bloggers all the time. L’Oreal Paris’ Lumi Magique Primer is also A+ for hangovers, because it gently illuminates the skin.

EYELASH CURLERS ARE LORD

Sounds insane given your state, but if you can manage using the scary contraption you’ll find you look EONS more “with it”. Lash curlers open your eyes big-time, making you look infinitely more awake. If you just cannot fathom a world in which you clamp anything between some metal in your hungover fugue, a good curling mascara can get you there somewhat – Benefit Roller Lash is a good bet, or Maybelline New York Falsies Mascara has a ‘U’ shaped wand to catch and lift lashes.

ILLUMINATING FINISHING POWDER WILL SAVE YOU

Setting your foundation with an illuminating finishing powder will wake you right up. Hell, even if you’re not a foundation wearer, invest in one of these to wake up dull hangover skin. The absolute MVP when it comes to a natural ‘lit from within’ finish that isn’t remotely weird/sparkly is Hourglass Cosmetics Ambient Lighting Powder. It’s made to mimic flattering lighting, and it bloody works. ‘Dim Light’ is the cult fave, but ‘Ethereal Light’ is great for pale skin, and ‘Mood Light’ works on practically everyone. On the cheaper end, NYX Professional Radiant Finishing Powder colour corrects and gives a gentle glow.

SKIP THE EYELINER

Eyeliner can be a killer look, but if you’re hungover it’s likely to just make you look more tired and dead. The less stuff going on around your eyes (besides some nifty concealer and major lashes), the fresher you’re gonna look. If you must use eyeliner – some of us won’t leave the house without it – definitely don’t line your inner rims. It makes eyes look smaller, and enhances any redness.

On the flip side though, if you have a white or nude, or champagne coloured eyeliner pencil on hand – use that on the inner rims. It helps cancel out redness, which can really up your “I’m fully present and definitely not dreaming of nuggets” vibe. Nude By Nature make a good metallic-beige version.

Image: Parks and Recreation