Quick Tips: Looking Put Together @ School

As I stood in a packed VIC Building elevator this morning, I overheard a girl say:

“Oh my goodness, I was up until 3am last night – that essay was killer.”

My eyes shifted to the only voice in the crowd & I couldn’t believe my eyes. Since I’d just finished a class that started earlier that day, I figured this girl was leaving an equally early class. But could you tell? Absolutely not. She had the perfect hair, quite the put together outfit & pretty makeup. All I could think was – did I hear that right? She was up til 3am writing an essay, slept only a few hours & then made it in time for her morning class looking SO GOOD?! Unidentified girl in the elevator, you’re an inspiration to all. Keep doing you.

We all know what season this is – not Autumn, but the Up All Night season. Unlike Daft Punk and Pharrell, you’re not up all night to get lucky though. And unlike One Direction, you’re not interested in staying up all night until you see the sun. You’re just up all night, doing all the work you can – until you can’t feel your fingers cause you’ve typed so much, your bum is numb from sitting down for so long, and your eyes are blurry from reading your textbook.

When you get up in the morning, you likely feel crummy; almost like you’re hungover, from schoolwork. This feeling is the worst. When I feel like this, I just want to crawl back into bed, snuggle up in my sweatpants and bun and disappear into a dream. Unfortunately however, that’s not exactly an option. School is still happening, despite my homework hangover.

Here are my quick tips for looking put together at school….especially when you’ve been up all night writing, studying, or you know, justĀ procrastinating & watching YouTube.


Miss Miley Cyrus has been rocking the red lip this month – and she might be a bit crazy with her other actions, but she has this one right. I have this theory that lipstick can make anyone look put together. If you’re in a pair of sweatpants and messy hair, lipstick makes it look like you’veĀ intentionallyĀ picked that outfit. It also adds some brightness to a tired face. Pick up a cheap stick from Shoppers! My favourite is Kate Moss’ line for Rimmel London; it’s no more than $8 a tube and has the pigment of a MAC lipstick.

*Lipstick Tips

  • Lipstick rubs off & you will need to reapply – bring the tube with you to school.
  • Hydrate lips with a chapstick before applying – you don’t want that crackly lipstick look.
  • Pop a straw into your morning coffee or afternoon tea to avoid the cup/lipstick mess.

Statement Necklace

A statement necklace seriously makes it look like you know what you’re doing. If you’re in a rush and can’t bother to throw on anything other than that plain black long sleeve or simple grey t-shirt, a statement necklace is bound to do the trick. This is a great tip if you’re looking for a job as well. Winter break is soon and interview season is upon us. A lot of uni students work retail – and adding this quick accessory will prove that you’re a put together individual, perfect to work that 9-5 cashier position all holiday season long!

*Statement Necklace Tips

  • You can find these anywhere! If you’re looking for something on the less expensive side, check out Forever 21. If you’re looking for something a little more dazzling, perhaps something you can wear to your family holiday dinner – check out Anthropologie; it’s a bit pricier, but you’ll be able to find something more unique.


I can’t even tell you the amount of compliments I get when I braid my hair. This sounds silly right? Braids are what I used to wear to rugby practice in high school; or how I sleep so my hair is slightly tamed; it was my JK go-to. But I realized this year that braids can also be quite fancy. Purchase some bobby pins, a few hair elastics & play around with different braid styles. Don’t worry if you can’t fishtail or french braid – throw a quick braid in your side bangs, pin a regular braid into a bun, tie some ribbon in a side braid. My personal favourite is the milk maid braid – it’s ever so simple! I do this at least once a week. It takes about 15 minutes and is the perfect cure to “I slept on wet hair,” & “I woke up 30 mins late.”

*Braid Tips

  • Braids aren’t always easy – check out YouTube for easy braid tutorials.
  • Avoid the simple Pippi LongstockingĀ two braids – while I love them at home, they’re not quite as put together as something else.

Buns & Earrings

My last tip is buns & earrings. If you can’t bother to tame your hair or put on any makeup, this is a perfect look for you. I often rock this in the summer, but it can no doubt be used during this awful cold as well. Throw your hair in a quick & simple bun, toss on some hangy/chuncky earrings and you’re set! If you’re going to a midterm, lecture or library – let your bun be as messy as can be; the earring will distract. If you’re going to work however, I would suggest perhaps slicking back your hair and creating a wonderfully gorgeous sock bun. When the sock bun started to popularize, I had just chopped my locks – but since my hair is growing out, I may attempt to do this!

*Buns & Earrings Tips

  • My favourite earrings are always from markets – check out Kensington!
  • To help perfect the sock bun – pop into H&M or Forever 21 and purchase a sock bun styling donut (I don’t know if that’s its given name, but it’s that round sponge-like donut that you usually see near the cash register).

I find that when I look put together, I feel put together. For whatever reason, I can’t bring myself to wear sweatpants outside of my house – I think it might partially be because our school is right in the middle of downtown Toronto & everyone always seems full of style.

When I’m rocking a nice little outfit, some lipstick or my favourite piece of jewellery I feel more confident and therefore am able to get more done. It’s sort of silly really – I mean I get a lot done while I’m in a hoodie, sans makeup, in bed. But when I leave the house, I like to add a little extra effort – dressing up is honestly fun!

But, since we’re students we can’t always spend the most time on ourselves – so I hope these quick tips work. Let me know in the comments below if you have a special secret to looking put together & feel free to tweet me @evesharabi with any questions.