The Nightly Routines of 15 Successful Women
We love reading about how our female role models fill their days. Anything we can do to perfect and get inspiration for our morning routines is seriously appreciated. But most of the time the evening routines of successful women stay in the dark while their morning routines take center stage. Not anymore! We’ve put together a collection of evening routines from 15 outstanding women in a variety of fields—everything from tech to Hollywood, wellness to fashion, food delivery to digital media and all that is in between. Scroll through to learn the secrets of our favourite women’s nightly rituals.
Janice Turner for The Times
Arianna Huffington is an advocate for sleep. But she definitely learned the importance of those REM cycles the hard way. Talking at TEDWomen in 2010, Huffington explained how she fainted from exhaustion. “I hit my head on my desk. I broke my cheekbone. I had five stitches on my right eye. So I began the journey of rediscovering the value of sleep,” she says. In order to preserve the sanctity of her snooze, Huffington makes sure to keep her bedroom a screen-free zone. Before bed, she leaves her electronics out of the bedroom and opts to read an actual book before dozing off into a restful slumber. Huffington encourages other women to do the same. She even goes so far as to call getting enough sleep a feminist issue. “We’re going to sleep our way to the top,” says Huffington.
If you count starring in a show, having a modelling career, and being close enough with Taylor Swift to ask her to be your child’s godmother as success, then Jaime King definitely falls into the highly successful category. So what does King do to unwind every night and keep her famous self looking beautiful every morning? After she puts her babies to bed, King takes a little skincare time for herself, and she made it clear to Into the Gloss that all women should do the same: “Always wash your face before bed, even if you don’t want to. Don’t be lazy. I don’t care what you’ve consumed that evening—just do it.” We love how this mama sticks to her disciplined lifestyle even after hours. Now if only we could do the same…
Have you ever wondered how Gwyneth Paltrow stays so calm, cool, and collected despite the fact that she has a family, a movie career, Goop, a business partnership with Tracy Anderson, countless other engagements, and a lot of criticism thrown her way? We certainly have. After some investigating, we concluded that Paltrow achieves her sense of calm from her nightly bathing ritual. “I take an Epsom salt bath every night to wind down,” Gwyneth Paltrow tells Elle. “I use a lot of organic essential oils on my pressure points.” A pressure-point massage and a bath sound like the perfect antidote to a full day.
Sheryl Sandberg leaves work at 5:30 p.m. every night. “I walk out of this office every day at 5:30 p.m. so I’m home for dinner with my kids at 6:00 p.m.,” Sandberg tells Makers. While it took Sandberg a while to stop feeling guilty for leaving the office while it was still light out, prioritising dinner time with her children is well worth staying up late on email. Even though checking her email on her phone is the last thing Sandberg does, she makes sure to turn off her device before bed so she can have uninterrupted sleep.
via Chic City Style
We wish we could live a life as fit, beautiful, and Insta-perfect as Hannah Bronfman. “Any night that I don’t have something to do I’m cooking,” says Bronfman to Bonberi. “Right now I’m really into plating. I’m such a freak though. I’ll literally pause after every second and take photos to put on Instagram.” Most nights, however, Bronfman is out being her fabulous self. Unfortunately, her regular nightly routine isn’t something we can entirely emulate. “I’m really lucky that I’m able to DJ corporate events because they keep it in the hours of 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. I’m not playing at one in the morning. I’m lucky if I’m playing at cocktail hour, then I can come home and either make dinner or go out and be in bed by midnight. I try for midnight but lately I’m just up on Instagram.” We love that Bronfman is just as Instagram-crazed as we are!
Vera Wang is one of the most successful designers of all time. So what does she do at night to keep her impressive momentum going? She relaxes. “My bedroom is my sanctuary,” Wang told Fortune. “It’s like a refuge, and it’s where I do a fair amount of designing—at least conceptually if not literally.” We the idea of an uninterrupted nightly think-session before sleep. Those silent moments when we can be alone with our thoughts often give us the space to have our best ideas.
Blake Lively looks like a fairy princess and has a smile that can brighten anyone’s day. That’s why we think it’s only natural that chocolate is a part of both her morning and evening routines. “I can’t start my day without a cup of hot milk chocolate or finish without crunching a few dark chocolate squares. It’s good for my morale," Lively tells Marie Claire.
You may know Mariska Hargitay best as Detective Olivia Benson (or, most recently, one of the stars in Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood” video). Hargitay has an incredibly busy schedule between her show, her foundation, and her wonderful family. "I'm so madly in love and married to my show," Hargitay tells People. "This foundation [the Joyful Heart Foundation] has come out of it." But evenings when she's not filming or making new friends like T.Swift are spent with her family. Hargitay tells People how she Detective Benson "got a little promotion" so that she could spend more much needed time with her children and husband.
Ellen DeGeneres practices transcendental meditation as much as she can, especially before bed. Transcendental meditation is defined as “a technique for detaching oneself from anxiety and promoting harmony and self-realisation by mediation, repetition of a mantra, and other yogic practices, promulgated by an international organisation founded by the Indian guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.” According to WebMD, it “can reduce chronic pain, anxiety, high blood pressure, cholesterol, and the use of healthcare services.” We think DeGeneres is onto something.
One of our favourite things about Emma Roberts, besides her acting skills, is her love for reading. Her Instagram posts function as our go-to reading list, but Roberts also loves falling asleep to magazines. Roberts also talked to WebMD about her advocacy for the national “Drop Everything and Read” program. “I love reading,” says Roberts. “There is nothing better than having a good book that you can’t put down.” To see what Roberts is currently devouring before bed, head over to her Instagram feed.
Like her pal Ellen DeGeneres, Jennifer Aniston also practices meditation in the morning and evening. The transcendental mediation website quotes Aniston as saying the following: “I’d say a little over a year ago I started doing TM (transcendental mediation), and that’s really changed everything. Starting your day off with that and ending with that is pretty powerful. Twenty minutes, you just notice the difference! When I get lazy and don’t get it in, I can feel a difference in the day.”
Courtesy of Sakara Life
We love the clean eating food delivery service Sakara Life founded by Whitney Tingle and Danielle Duboise, so we had to see how these #girlbosses organised their nightly routine. On a perfect day, after a well-planned Sakara dinner, Tingle and Duboise practice journaling and conscious reflection before sipping Sakara Night Water and falling into a deep, healing sleep for eight hours. Ahh… Doesn’t that sound delightful?
courtesy of Kate White
A rare breed, Kate White is one of those people who can function with less than five to six hours of sleep. Her nightly routine involves what the former EIC refers to as tending “the idea bar” until midnight or 1 a.m. “My craziest trick is that I regularly do my work standing up at a rolling butcher-block counter in my kitchen. If I were to work sitting down, I’d fall asleep,” White tells Fast Company. “I know it sounds awful, but I think of it as if I’m tending bar in the evening—a bar of ideas. And I always keep the kitchen TV on so it doesn’t seem too lonely. I drink several espressos at night, which really helps.” While we love the idea of the “idea bar,” we’re not sure how we could wake up at 5:30 a.m. like White does if we guzzled espressos all night.
We look to Lauren Conrad for advice about everything from fashion and home décor to cooking and entertaining. But the designer, blogger, and The Hills alum is also a valuable pot of wisdom for career women looking to get ahead but still maintain a well-balanced life. On her eponymous website, Conrad stresses the importance of making time for yourself, setting measurable goals, and keeping a to-do list by your bed. We think Conrad must live what she preaches, because her life seems pretty well kept!
What do you do before you fall asleep? Post a nighttime selfie like @RobertsEmma does, and share your handle in the comments!