6 Ways to Speed Up Your Morning Routine

Running late? This guide reveals six ways to speed up your morning routine (without sacrificing your appearance).

Speed up your morning routine

Note: Big thanks to Wahl for supporting The Modest Man by sponsoring this post! Their new line of shavers were built for speed, comfort and reliability. I love the Smart Shave, but you can check out all three right here.

Have you ever had a morning where you're running late for work?

I have, and I think that even the most disciplined men have made the mistake of forgetting to set their alarm, hitting the snooze button one too many times, or just accidentally sleeping in.

Running late and feeling rushed in the morning sucks. It's just a bad feeling. But it happens, and you have to be prepared to handle this situation.

You can't sacrifice your appearance, and can't show up late to work, school, the airport or wherever you're going.

So what do you do?

You move fast. You take shortcuts. You innovate like the handsome, intelligent man you are!

So in this post and video, I'm going to show you six simple ways to speed up your morning routine without breaking a sweat.

The first two tips actually happen before you go to to bed at night…

If you prefer reading, read on!

Tip #1: Lay your clothes out before you go to bed.

I know, I know…just like your mom used to do for you in kindergarten. But it worked, right?

And it still works as an adult. Why waste your precious morning minutes figuring out what to wear when you can have it all ready to go the night before?

Lay out your clothes

I do this every time I have an early morning flight. My packed bags ready to go and my “travel outfit” is laid out on my dresser, right down to the socks, belt and watch.

Laying out your clothes before bed is one of the simplest things you can do to speed up your morning routine.

Tip #2: Prep your coffee maker.

This only applies to us who appreciate the magical, 100% legal drug known as caffeine, but it's a great little tip that anyone with an electric coffee maker can do.

Most coffee makers have a timer that you can set to make them start brewing automatically at a specific time.

Prep coffee maker

Bonavita coffee maker

If yours doesn't have a timer, you can still get it ready by loading up the coffee and water, so all you have to do is hit the “start” button right after you wake up.

There's nothing like taking a nice hot shower and knowing that fresh coffee is brewing in the kitchen. Mmm…

Tip #3: Defog your mirror fast.

Cold showers might be all the rage right now, but most of us prefer hot showers in the morning, which means your bathroom is going to get steamy, and the mirror is going to fog up.

The problem is that you usually need your mirror right when you get out of the shower – to shave and get on with your routine morning.

So before you jump in the shower, open a window (if you have one) and crack open the door. This will help let the steam out while you're showering.

Open the window Open the door

But if your mirror is still foggy, use your blow dryer to clear it up in seconds. Trust me: this works like a charm!

Blow dry the mirror

Speaking of shaving…

Tip #4: Use an electric shaver

Everyone has a preferred method of shaving, and I'm not trying to tell you that one method is better than another.

But no one can argue with the speed of an electric shaver.

Wahl 7061 shaver

Wahl 7061-900

Plus, electronic shaving technology has come so far that you can actually get a close, comfortable shave in minutes.

Use an electric shaver

I actually haven't used shaving cream or a cartridge razor in months, and my skin looks and feels better than ever.

At the very least, I think it's good to have one of these shavers as a backup and for travel. I can definitely recommend the Wahl 7061 series.

I especially love the fact that you can get these shavers wet without frying their motors, and I love the nifty little slide out trimmers (perfect for cleaning up sideburns).

Tip #5: Master the “faux” shower

When there's just no time for a shower, but your hair is a mess, do this instead:

Use a spray bottle or stick your head under the sink to wet your hair. Try to soak it down to the roots, then work it with your fingers as if you were washing out shampoo.

Try to soak your face too, which helps get the sleep out of your eyes and prepares your skin for moisturizer.

Faux shower

Then towel dry or blow dry your hair, comb it into place and style as usual.

For your body, you can use a scented wipe (like Niche for Men) to clean under your arms and anywhere else that might need a little sprucing.

Niche for Men wipes

I promise: this method works almost as well as taking a shower, and it takes half the time. Just try it next time you're running late!

Tip #6: Keep a “grooming go bag”

You know how special agents like Jason Bourne and James Bond always have a duffel bag filled with guns, ammo, a cell phone, some passports and loads of cash ready to go at all times, just in case they need to make a quick exit?

I kind of do the same thing, except with grooming supplies.

I keep a small Dopp kit with travel sized deodorant, a toothbrush, some floss, face moisturizer, comb and a travel size shaver/trimmer ready to go at all times.

Emergency grooming kit

Dopp kit (similar) | moisturizer | trimmer | deodorant | comb

This way, if I'm really running late and don't even have time for a shower, I can just grab the kit and go, and I can finish my grooming routine when I get to wherever I'm going.

I consider the grooming go bag an essential weapon in every man's arsenal.

It goes without saying that you should try to avoid running late and having rushed, chaotic mornings, but when it does happen, I hope these tips help.

Got any morning routine life hacks? Share them in the comments below!

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  1. Good tips. I’ve found that leaving my bathroom door open works well to reduce fog on the mirror, but the next step I also take is letting the fan run in my bedroom, which helps to keep the air moving and not let humidity get trapped in the bathroom. It actually helps add some moisture to the air in the winters so I skip out on using the exhaust in the bathroom too.

  2. Mustabeen Ahmad says:

    That was a really good post, helpful and fun to read.

  3. A couple additional pro-tips.

    I actually switched to green tea in the morning – GASP – for these reasons. My morning coffee routine, no matter how much I tiddy’d it up, still took at least 10-15 minutes out of my day: boiling the water, grinding (or not) the beans, brewing/FP’ing the grind, drinking the coffee, cleaning the equipment. Even if you don’t clean the equipment in the morning, it’s at least 5 minutes out of your evening to clean everything and get it ready for the next day. And if you don’t make it, you’re wasting time and money buying it somewhere else.

    Now, I just keep bags of green tea and honey at my desk at work, and make that at work. I only waste my employer’s time, not mine. Win-win! I’ll save the coffee for the weekends.

    On shaving, I shave in the shower. Family habit and it works for me. Not sure it’s saving me much time, but it’s closer than I can get with a razor out of the shower.

  4. Shahed Chowdhury says:

    Great tips, I always lay clothes out the night before it really give me mental time extra 10-15 min in bed that is priceless. I am very interested in the WAHL unit, any price point you can share?

  5. For an electric shaver I recommend the Norelco OneBlade. Small, easy to use, close shave. $35

  6. Great tips! The one related to laying your clothes the night before is extremely useful. It seems silly, but helps a ton. In, fact, whenever is possible, I set aside every piece I’ll be wearing through the week. I think that by simply knowing I don’t have to worry about what to wear until next week bring peace of mind!

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