Career Advice

Found: the Best Time-Saving Hacks of 2018 (and They’ll Only Take, Like, 5 Minutes to Read)

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Like opening a fresh pack of pens (ah) or finally crawling into bed after a grueling day, discovering a new, time-saving hack is one of life's small—but significant—satisfactions. This year, we've accumulated a whole bunch of solid tips for making everything from making your bed to making your email game almost as seamless as your leggings.

*Fingers crossed* that 2019 will outshine 2018. But consider the below time-savers your head-start for making all your boss-babe dreams come true next year. Because, yes, you can totally crush your day without a genius shortcut for packing your gym bag. But you totally shouldn't have to.

Keep reading for the 2018 productivity hacks that deserve to carry over to January 1, 2019.

Dry shampoo tip for sweaty post-workout hair
Photo: Stocksy/Jessica Sharmin

1. When in doubt, dry shampoo before bed (or anytime, really)

"Honestly, I feel like excessive use of dry shampoo is my biggest daily time-saver (does that count?!). Lol, not lol," one Well+Good staff member Slacked me while I was compiling this list. It's true. While I can't beta test the known universe to see how long the average shampoo-conditioning sesh actually takes, I'm willing to bet it's long enough that you could journal, read half a chapter, or squeeze in a micro-workout instead.

2. Rather than haphazardly flinging your activewear into your gym bag, try the burrito method.

3. There's a burrito method for making your bed, too

The lesson here is that everything (okay, many things) become easier if you shape them like a burrito. In this case, you'll no longer have to combat your duvet next time you're *just* trying to switch out your bed linens.

4. Cardio weightlifting can cut your gym time in half—without losing the benefits of a longer sesh

Listen up, cardio queens: You do not (I repeat, do not) have to face off with the treadmill for an uninterrupted 5K to feel good about your workout. Three-minute cardio reps mixed with cardio weightlifting does the trick, too.

5. Exfoliate your bod with magical K-beauty towels

You could spend 20 minutes scrubbing from head-to-toe with an exfoliant. Or, you could just slough off dead skin with an "Italy Towel" in, like, one minute. "As I [rub the towel over myself], skin balls up and pills off like nothing I’ve ever seen before—or rather like nothing I’ve ever seen before on a human. Because like a snake shedding its skin, I feel like I’m molting," senior beauty editor Ali Finney says. Bonus: They're only $4.

writing tip
Photo: Getty Images/valentinrussanov

6. Chop your greens (read: kale) with scissors—not a knife

While a bunch of fresh greens look pretty and promising in your grocery cart, actually prepping them to be salad-ready can be an ordeal. Skip the drama of finding a super sharp knife, and put those untouched kitchen scissors to good use instead.

7. To prompt your boss to answer your email in five minutes or less, use this template

Rather than sending a series of follow-up emails to your boss after "inbox zero" begins to haunt your work flow, front-load your email with a yes or no question that they can quickly answer.

8. Speed clean your home in less time than it takes to watch a Parks and Rec episode

Indeed! It's possible! Using these four tiny tweaks to your routine, you can spruce up your home without wasting a precious Sunday you could be using to, say, or organize your yoga outfits for the week ahead. Or, even better: to linger in a hot bath.

Ahhh. Now you have time for the finer things in life, like getting buried in volcanic sand and waterfall-chasing

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