The Power of a Go To Makeup Switchup

Let’s face it, we’re busy people.  My generation, the beloved millennials, are probably the busiest people I know.  Whether it’s forming a startup or climbing the corporate ladder faster than anyone’s ever heard of, we get it done!  This is why we simply don’t have the extra time to spend on things like elaborate hair, makeup, and outfit changes.  Having a reliable transition makeup routine from day to night is a major key for time management and living more practically.

I remember when I first heard about how Steve Jobs wore the same outfit everyday.  It kinda rocked my world a little bit.  Then I heard his interview on why he made this lifestyle decision.  It totally made sense!  Check it out here if you’ve never heard it.  Anyway, I realized a similar concept can apply for women and their makeup routines.

day to night transition makeup steps

I have pals who are executive producers for TV shows, directors of small films, clothing designers, interns, graphic designers, and so much more.  These women, like myself, don’t have a lot of time in their day, yet still, want to squeeze in some after work funners when they can!  How do we do that, when there’s only 24 hours in a day?  Well we cut back time in as many areas as possible.

If you have formulated a very natural everyday makeup look, you’re halfway there.  Now all you have to do is compose your perfect switch up!  AKA your day to night transition look.  Let’s discuss how!

Transition Makeup Do’s & Don’ts


  • Keep the transition to as few products as possible, preferably 3-5.
  • Pack the items into a small makeup touch up bag, for easy access on the commute.
  • Pack a spray bottle with water, or something like Avene thermal spring water spray, to lightly refresh your foundation.


  • Apply waterproof mascara during your day look routine, we’ll be layering more later.
  • Pack your entire day look products into the touch up bag–just translucent powder.
  • Try to make this a whole new “look”, we’re simply building onto the already established day look.

The Day Look Basics

minimalist makeup for black women

This is a very basic day look.  It’s perfect for class, your 9-5, or just running errands.  When you go to do your day look, you wan to keep it very clean and minimal.  Apply mostly creams, and set only in the areas where you get oily, for most people, this is the nose, forehead, and chin.  When applying mascara, use only 1 layer of non waterproof formula.  Apply everything with a light hand, and aim for that “no makeup, makeup” look.  It will look different for everyone, so don’t compare!  Simply play up the features that need the most help, and leave your stellar features as untouched as possible.

day to night makeup transition

Shop the Look

This post may contain affiliate links; please se my disclosure for details.

day look makeup


Make Up For Ever Water Blend; 520

Dior Skin Nude Concealer; 004, 005

***this is comparable, shade 050 & 060 would work if you’re my skin tone***

Glossier Haloscope; Topaz


NYX Tame & Frame Brow Pomade; Espresso


Chanel Illusion D’Ombre; 95 Mirage
MAC Cosmetics Molasses Pearlglide Eyeliner

***comparable substitute***

L’Oreal Voluminous Carbon Black Mascara


MAC Cosmetics Lipstick; Chintz

***comparable substitute***

Elizabeth Arden 8 hour cream

Key components of a Day to Night Transition Look

how to transition your makeup from day to night

I don’t want you to overthink this process.  We’re just going from our normal work day look–a very natural, clean makeup, to a makeup look that can carry us into the night for an evening of socializing.  I’m going to share with you now the 4 easiest, fastest, most efficient makeup changes to do just that!

Upgrade Your Pout

Break out a classic bold lip for your night time transition look!  Most women opt for a beautiful red or bright, fun pink!  However, with fall here, you can totally go for a deep, wine colored lipstick.  Try something vampy and full bodied, like the lip I’m wearing below.  A dark lip look STUNNING at night, and is so perfect with a cozy scarf and knee high boots!  Try to go for a chubby stick lip product, so that it fits well in your touch up bag.

Contour Your Cheeks

Use a powder brush to apply either a bronzer or contour powder into the hollows of your cheeks.  You can use a small kabuki brush for this, as it will fit perfectly into your touch up bag!  Be sure the formula doesn’t have any glitter in it, and that it’s about 2 shades darker than your natural powder color.  In this look, I’ve used the Covergirl Queen Collection Bronzer, in Ebony!

Layer On Mascara

Whip out the mascara you used earlier and apply a 2nd layer.  If your lashes aren’t a little perkier by now, add a 3rd layer, careful not to let the layer clump.  Pro tip:  apply this 3rd layer to just the tips of the lashes, to prevent serious clumping!

Deepen Your Crease

Use your cheek contour from earlier, and a small fluffy brush to darken your crease.  You’re going to take the color from the outer corner of your eye, right into the inner corner of your crease.  This will provide some dimension and depth, which translates into a bit more drama, but not too much!

The Finished Night Look

minimalist night makeup

There you have it loves!  Here’s my completed day to night transition look.  I kept it super simple and clean, while still adding enough drama to show I’m here for a good time!  This kind of transition is perfect for a from the office to cocktails with the girls,  or a from the office to date night with the boo; it’s truly a universal switch up.

By using as minimal products as possible, you’re sure to have enough time to complete the look, and spend that extra time on the commute or changing your clothes & hair.  As a super busy millennial, trust me I get it, there just never seems to be enough time!  However, I  hope that with small changes like this to your day to day life, you’re able to find more pockets of time to spend doing what you love!

natural makeup nighttime look

As crazy girl-bosses out here on our grind daily, having a signature switch up look is clutch!  It saves time and energy that we can use towards our work, nurturing our relationships, and practicing better self care.  Tell me, what are some of your favorite day to night transition makeup products?  Would love to hear you guys’ techniques!  Also, be sure to subscribe to my Youtube channel, to see more makeup looks and tutorials from me!

day to night transition makeup for millennials

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Hi, I’m Alexis,
Most days you can find me glued to my computer, or creating beautiful content! I’m mostly known for my work as a 10 yr professional makeup artist, but nowadays I focus more on my lifestyle brand, Alexis Loves. I love serving the world by: dishing out all my knowledge on natural/wearable makeup, giving tons of tips on beauty, sharing my journey with Christ & encouraging others along theirs, and inspiring women all around the world to seek self improvement through living more minimally. If you crave a community full of artistic visuals, spiritual growth, and witty real talk, you definitely will love it here :-)

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