Minimal Mountain Beauty Hacks: What I Learned From a Summer in the Rockies

Hey Broke Babes! Guess who’s home?

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Well Babes, it was a long hot summer in the mountains. I feel like I could probably write 10,000 words telling you guys everything but let’s get real– this is a beauty and style blog.

But here’s the thing about beauty and style in the mountains: there isn’t a whole lot of it. I rolled into Kananaskis with one suitcase full of push up bras and another full of 20 different shades of red lipstick and let me tell you– I didn’t wear either of them.

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Yes, I know. Shocker.

In many ways mountain beauty is the most minimal form of style I’ve ever experienced. Women up there still want to look and feel beautiful, but the fact of the matter is that there’s only so much time you can spend looking in a mirror before you start missing out on campfires, early morning hikes, and midnight skinny dipping. Beauty and style in the mountains is done to a minimum, with importance placed on products that are durable, long lasting, and offer a whole range of uses.

Let’s face it, I’m always going to be a bit of a city girl. But after a whole summer of immersing myself in what can only be called “dirty mountain livin'” I’ve emerged with some of the most genius beauty hacks I’ve ever encountered. And even better? I’m going to share them with you.


Minimal Mountain Hack #1: Setting Spray and Powder

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If you aren’t already using setting spray, you’re doing your makeup wrong. Much like hairspray, one spritz from this little magic bottle will keep your face in place and fresh throughout a whole day of wear. While back home I would spray my face with matte setting spray and then apply translucent setting powder to my oilier areas (tip of the nose, between my brows, chin) my mountain babes taught me better.

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There is a lot of setting spray holding us together.

After finishing a full face of makeup, spray your face with dewy setting spray and allow to dry. Then, gently pat translucent setting powder onto areas where makeup is most likely to run (under the eyes, around the lips and nose, etc.) Then spritz matte setting spray over the entire face, allow to dry, and finish with another round of setting powder.

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My faves are the NYX Professional Makeup Dewy Finish Setting Spray and the NYX Professional Makeup Matte Finish Setting Spray. Click the affiliate links to shop!


Minimal Mountain Hack #2: Vaseline

If we are talking about wonder products, Vaseline might just take the cake as one of the best to have in your makeup bag.

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This was a 6 hour hike. Inside my bag is 3 litres of water, a cliff bar, and Vaseline.

Basically, Vaseline is awesome. It can be used to smooth ragged cuticles, soften callouses, and quench dry hands; it can be swiped over lips as a gloss, and rubbed on the ends of hair to camouflage split ends; it can be dabbed on cheeks, collar bones, and the inner corners of eyes as a highlight; it can be rubbed on lashes to imitate mascara, swiped on brows to tame them, and dabbed over the entire face to remove makeup; it can be scoured on shoes to polish them, mixed with sugar to create a body scrub, and swiped over the blades of your razor to prevent rusting. And that’s just the few I can remember off the top of my head.

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Long story short: this is a product you will want in your bag in the event of a global apocalypse.


Minimal Mountain Hack #3: Braids

More than once during my time in Kananaskis I was faced with the following challenge: I worked the 9-5 shift, but we were driving into the city at 6.

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More often than not it was a 1 hour drive for McDonalds, but still. You gotta look good for those city boys.

Rather than face a night of flat hair, my mountain babes and I rehashed this old trick of my mothers: shower in the morning (or hey, even the night before if you’re extra lazy) and braid your hair before continuing on your way. Then, simply unwrap your braids and finger comb before teasing your roots. Voila!

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I know, pretty basic. The trick? To keep my waves beachy rather than scrunchy, I sprayed salt spray into both the ends and roots of my hair prior to braiding. I also unwrapped my braids when my hair was about 80% dry (read: the outsides of the braids were dry, but the pieces woven together were still barely damp) and gave them a final spritz of salt spray before driving off into the sunset.

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Check out some of my favourite Beach and Salt Sprays: Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray, Bumble and Bumble Foam Blow Dry Spray, and Got 2 B Kinkier Gloss n’ Define Curling Spray Gel! Click the affiliate links to shop!


Mountain Hack #4: Lip Stains

Let’s face it: between all the sweat and smudging, lipstick has no place in the mountains.

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This might have normally been blasphemy for me, but this summer I discovered the joys of lip stains. Unlike traditional lipsticks that need product built up on the surface to show pigment, lip stains actually stick to skin and stay intact for up to 8 hours, regardless of reapplication.

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Two girls, one lip stain.

(P.S– Worried about dryness? Swipe some Vaseline on before you apply!)


Mountain Hack #5: DIY Dry Shampoo

Mountain babes get dirty and sweaty on their best days, and between work and hiking there wasn’t always time for a shower before going out. Even worse, I was in a fix when I realized I was out of my favourite dry-shampoo before the summer was even half over.

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Luckily for me I was surrounded by a bunch of women who were more resourceful and fearless than I had thus far dared to be, which meant some pretty creative fixes for my greasy strands.

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Low and behold: the weirdest thing I am now taking with me everywhere. Click the affiliate link to shop!

It was a trial and error process but we discovered something: depending on your hair colour, almost any powdered product in your pantry can revive your hair in a matter of seconds. For blondes, I recommend baby powder or corn starch, and for brunettes coco powder. Simple sprinkle on your scalp, massage in, and go!

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Yeah, whatever, I know it’s weird. But you gotta do what you gotta do!


What do you think, Broke Babes? Love it? Hate it? Have some minimal beauty hacks you want to share?

Hit like, Leave me a comment and hey– don’t forget to share with your friends!