What's the first thing you do when you get out of bed in the morning? A well-rounded morning routine sets the tone for the day and gets you prepped—both mentally and physically—before you dive into a packed schedule filled with emails, chores, happy hours, workouts, and more. Our series Morning Person profiles those who have mastered the art of the morning routine.
Tune in every week here and on our Instagram to learn exactly how the pros get it all done before the sun comes up, from their go-to breakfasts to their a.m. workouts.
Celebrity makeup artist Monika Blunder is known for creating some of the most memorable red carpet glam and considers Gemma Chan, Amanda Seyfried, and Jennifer Garner among her list of A-list clientele. These days, Blunder's schedule is busier than ever, as she is balancing doing makeup for photo shoots and virtual events, creating content for her personal YouTube channel, and working on her eponymous clean-makeup line, Monika Blunder Beauty, which launched last year.
We caught up with Blunder to see how she maintains and prioritizes a self-care routine amid a jam-packed workday. Keep scrolling to see how this sought-after makeup artist and founder spends a typical morning in L.A.
I'm up and ready to go around this time on most days, and I'll try really hard to stay off my phone in the mornings. The first thing I do to start the day is something my mother taught me, and it's always stuck with me. I'll drink a lukewarm glass of water with lemon in it, which helps alkalize your system and start your day with some hydration.
One of the most sacred times in my whole day is the half hour I take for myself every morning. I leave my phone at home and take my adorable pups, Gracie and Ollie, for a walk around my neighborhood. I use this time to be really present with my thoughts, and I like to future-self plan and self-reflect during this time. I notice a huge difference on days where I make my walk a priority and really take my time.
After my walk with the dogs, I'll make myself a cup of coffee! I love the ritual of it since I grew up in Europe, so it's something my parents made a part of their morning routine as well. The smell reminds me of home. My favorite coffee machine is from Sweden, and it's called the Moccamaster. It makes a beautiful cup every time, and I personally love a very hot cup of coffee, and this machine does it best. While my coffee is brewing, I make sure my kids (who are 13 and 17) are awake and getting ready for Zoom school (the new normal).
I like to sit outside and enjoy my coffee, and this is usually when I’ll first glance at my phone. I don't let myself go on Instagram yet. I just check texts and calls to make sure there's nothing urgent. I've been really into handmade pottery lately, and one of my favorite mugs is made by a local L.A. potter called Earth + Element. They make the most stunning pieces.
Before the pandemic, I used to take in-person workout classes, but since things are different now, I’ve started exercising at home. We converted half of our garage into a mini gym. A couple of days a week, I will do some mild CrossFit and do some weight lifting. On every other day of the week, I'll do a four-mile run. Running is such an endorphin boost. It really helps me de-stress, and I find myself getting inspired and coming up with new ideas on my runs.
A few times a week, I will also do an ice bath. I found the Wim Hof Method a few years ago and did a deep dive into him and his story. I really connected with him and his philosophies, and I started doing his breathing and cold-plunge techniques, and I really feel like it has boosted my immune system, and I always feel accomplished after I do it. It's not easy, but it's been really rewarding.
After my workout for the day, I’ll make myself a quick and easy green juice. I’ve been loving fresh celery juice lately. This Breville Juicer makes it easy and so quick!
Then, it's off to a quick shower before starting breakfast for me and my kids. My son is really into indulgent and heavy breakfasts like egg burritos or pancakes, whereas my daughter and I tend to gravitate to overnight oats or chia seed pudding. This means I usually end up making two breakfasts, but I like knowing that we've all started the day with what our bodies want.
This is about the time I sit down and get ready for the day ahead. I love to use this time to pamper myself and do my skincare routine for the day. If I have to be on Zoom or create content, I will put my makeup on. It usually only takes about 10 minutes to do my basic face, and I usually start with good skincare like a serum and moisturizer.
Lately, I’ve been loving the Summer Fridays Cloud Dew, Aime Simple Cream, and Carasoin Cold Fusion Moisturizer. I follow that up with a facial massage with my Shani Darden Facial Sculpting Wand and then go into my makeup application.