Beauty Around the Clock: Kristin Cavallari

The Uncommon Beauty founder on the hair oil that saved her from breakage, tarot card reader TikTok, and the retinol alternative that got her off Retin-A.

kristin cavallari beauty routine
(Image credit: Future)

Welcome to Beauty Around the Clock, Marie Claire's weekly peek into the daily lives of some of the most game-changing men and women in their industries. Ever wonder how they get it all done in a day? Here's your answer.

Kristin Cavallari’s definition of beauty is “very different” than it used to be. “I’ve realized beauty is so much more than just your appearance,” she exclusively tells Marie Claire. “Look, it’s not like all of a sudden I’ve stopped caring—I would be lying if I said that were the case. But now I know that beauty really starts within and it’s about inner peace and harmony. When you have that, it radiates throughout your being.” That all being said, the Laguna Beach alum and mom of three’s routine has changed a little (well, a lot) over the past decade. 

Sure, she still loves her makeup and skincare. In fact, she even launched her own brand Uncommon Beauty to make her personal product wishlist—including Bronzing Drops which *just* launched—a reality. But she’s placed a bigger daily focus on meditation (in her at-home infrared sauna), time with her kids, and staying off of social media (with the exception of before-bed scrolls). She’s added green juices *before* coffee and discovered the workout regimen that works for her body. That’s just the start of the "Back to the Beach With Kristin and Stephen" host's beauty routine. To get her entire breakdown, the scoop on her favorite products, and find out how she winds down at night, scroll ahead. 

Rise & Shine

It’s summer, so I’m not setting an alarm and it’s very nice. My kids are sleeping in and we’re having lazy mornings. However…on a normal morning I set an alarm for 6:30. I have to get up, brush my teeth, wash my face, and make breakfast for three kids. This is the one meal where I’ll actually make something different for all of them. It’s easy stuff like eggs and waffles. I also like to make myself a green juice because it helps me set the tone for the day. Typically I’ll do apple, lemon, cucumber, ginger, cilantro, and celery. It gives me energy, but I’m really such a coffee girl. I will forever drink coffee and I usually make a latte of some sort with homemade nut milk. Right now I'm on a Brazil nut milk kick. I have a legit espresso maker and froth the whole thing up. I take coffee very seriously. 

Fitness Fix

I work out with a trainer once a week, on Thursdays for an hour. He has me lifting really heavy weights. What I've learned over the years is that you just have to do what works for you—everybody’s body is different. I’ll also do one day of 30 minutes of cardio. 

Morning Maintenance 

After my workout, I will take a shower. I still don’t wash my face in the morning though; I’ll just use my toner P50 by Biologique Recherche. I use the Uncommon Beauty Pineapple Peptide Serum and Daily Water Cream. Then I have this big acne patch that I’ll cut up into little acne patches and use as a spot treatment if I’m getting any sort of blemish. I leave it there throughout the day and it takes it away pretty quickly.  

Power Start 

Once I drop off the kids at school or camp, I'll probably eat eggs. I have a chicken coop, so I always have eggs, which is awesome. We have eight chickens and they each lay one egg a day. If we don't eat eggs one day, they start to really pile up. I'm always giving them away to friends who come over or just literally to whoever. The kids will take them into school and give them to their teachers. 

Signature Look 

I don't wear any makeup on my face during the day. I do mascara and I fill in my brows—that's it. But I feel like I have split personalities because that's me in my day-to-day life, but then I love getting dolled up and going to an event or even just going to a dinner. I actually just discovered Jones Road and I am obsessed with their mascara. It’s a clean brand too, which I love. For brows I’ve always used the Anastasia Brow Wizz pencil—it’s been in my routine for years. I also love adding in the Uncommon Beauty Bronzing Drops into my routine for a subtle glow.

Self-Care Ritual 

I have an infrared sauna in my home. It’s a luxury and I am truly thankful for it every time I use it. It’s the best when I just want to take a minute for myself. I really love to meditate when I do it in the sauna. It's kind of like killing two birds with one stone. The heat obviously helps with the relaxation and I find that when I meditate I can get to a deeper state. 

Signature Scent 

People always ask me what perfume I'm wearing, so I'm gonna give you my secret. It’s Maison Louis Marie number four. It's a roll on oil and I've been wearing it for years. 

Hair Help 

My biggest tip is to not style your hair when you don't have to. I live and die by that. I have this oil, it’s by Kevin Murphy and called Young Again, and I swear by it. When I’m not doing anything, I put it all over my hair. I actually had a lot of breakage and this oil has completely saved my hair. It’s back to how it used to be, but it was rough getting here. It took a full year. You can put in a lot or even just a little on your ends and to slick down flyaways. It hydrates your hair in the perfect way. 


I’ll always get the classic blue Neutrogena makeup wipes. I have not found a clean makeup remover that even comes close. I’ll also get the little individual fake eyelashes and glue. If I’m filming or going to an event where my picture is going to be taken, I’ll definitely put those on. 

Daily Playlist 

I actually have a playlist called Latest Faves and I just put random stuff on it. I have everything from The Weekend to Post Malone to Dua Lipa—I’m all over the place. 

Beauty Icon 

My mom is an inspiration for me. My mom is 70 and she looks amazing and she's never done Botox. She's never done fillers. She's never messed with her face and she looks really good. People think she's 55 years old. Anyone that is aging gracefully though is my icon. We live in a world now where that’s so not the norm, and I think you really have to be brave to just embrace it. It says you have a lot of self-confidence, and for me that is what beauty is. 

Backup Career 

I’d be an interior decorator. I need a creative outlet and I think that would be so much fun. 

P.M. Routine 

I selfishly design products that I love and want to use. I truly use these products, I’m not just trying to promote them—I stand by these products. So, I wash my face with the Uncommon Beauty Powder-to-Foam Cleanser. I’ll use my P50 Toner again and then I’ll do our new Retinol Alternative. I was on prescription Retin-A for a while—I thought I would have to be on it for the rest of my life. It was just really harsh and dried out my skin and once I was able to get off of it, my skin became so much better. 

Lights Out 

My nights are crazy because my kids are a little bit older now, so they stay up until nine o’clock. I’m so tired once I get them to bed that I pretty much go to my bed right away. I would be lying if I didn’t admit that I scroll TikTok and Instagram for a few minutes. I just joined TikTok three weeks ago and I’m getting a lot of tarot card readers. I hate that that’s even part of my routine. I want to get to a place where I don’t do it and read instead. 

Then, before I fall asleep I really try to think of all the things that I’m grateful for. I really believe in the law of attraction and that if you think and feel good things, then good things will come back to you. I try to focus on all the positives. 

Samantha Holender
Beauty Editor

Samantha Holender is the Beauty Editor at Marie Claire, where she reports on the best new launches, dives into the science behind skincare, and shares the breakdown on the latest and greatest trends in the beauty space. She's studied up on every ingredient you'll find on INCI list and is constantly in search of the world's glowiest makeup products. Prior to joining the team, she worked as Us Weekly’s Beauty and Style Editor, where she stayed on the pulse of pop culture and broke down celebrity beauty routines, hair transformations, and red carpet looks. Her words have also appeared on Popsugar,,,, and Philadelphia Wedding. Samantha also serves as a board member for the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME). She first joined the organization in 2018, when she worked as an editorial intern at Food Network Magazine and Pioneer Woman Magazine. Samantha has a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from The George Washington University’s School of Media and Public Affairs. While at GWU, she was a founding member of the school’s HerCampus chapter and served as its President for four years. When she’s not deep in the beauty closet or swatching eyeshadows, you can find her obsessing over Real Housewives and all things Bravo. Keep up with her on Instagram @samholender.