Dunk your hands in a bowl of ice-cold water. "The cold water freeze-dries polish, sealing and hardening it quickly," says Belinda Rivera, a nail specialist in Austin, Texas. Allow nails to air-dry for two minutes, then submerge in ice-cold water for three minutes, which is enough time for the polish to harden completely.
Another option: Blast nails with cool air from a hair dryer in between coats. This helps each layer of color dry as you go.
Quick tip: Old nail polish can take forever to dry, since time can turn polish gooey and thick. Toss bottles when the polish begins to change color or separate. At that point, the lacquer has probably thickened and become unusable.
The Fastest Way to Smooth Away Pillow Creases on Your Face
Splash warm water on your skin, then massage in a moisturizer. Skin cells contain fluid that acts as a cushion to keep the skin plump. When you're lying with your face smushed into a pillow for eight hours, that fluid seeps out of cells and is absorbed by your body. "This leads to creases," says Lydia Evans, a dermatologist in Chappaqua, New York.
Once you get out of bed, skin cells will gradually plump up with fluid. The warm water speeds this along by enhancing blood flow to the area, and moisturizer rehydrates it. Massaging the moisturizer in helps to smooth creases away manually.
Quick tip: Sleep on a smooth-fitting satin pillowcase instead of a cotton one. Satin won’t bunch up under your skin, so you may be spared morning creases. (It will not, however, eliminate long-term wrinkles.)
Speed-Dry Your Hair
Wrap your freshly washed hair in a towel (preferably a super-absorbent one, like the Microfiber Hair Towel, $20, at sephora.com) and let it partly dry naturally while you go about getting dressed and having a quick breakfast. Not only will this cut drying time but it will also give your steamy bathroom time to clear out. Humidity is the enemy of a quick—and smooth—blow-out: Imagine drying your hair in a steam room.
Cut Nonessential Beauty Items From Your Routine
First tip: You don’t need to use a toner. Ever. Toners help moisturizer seep into your skin, but leaving a little water on your face after washing facilitates absorption equally well. Also, skip the eye cream. These treatments are wonderful to use at night, when skin is repairing itself (and when there’s no sunlight around to break down the eye cream’s active ingredients). But it’s smarter and quicker to just use your face lotion around your eyes during the day. Better yet, apply one with SPF to save more time by avoiding that additional sunscreen step (see The Best Face Moisturizers with SPF.)