Organize the Chaos with April

Bags within bags, hand-washing delicates and getting enough sleep—simply brilliant tips

Name: April Greaves

Occupation: Makeup artist; creator of “Belle du Jour” collection for Bloom Cosmetics

Current Location: New York City

April! We have serious life envy. How do you keep yours in order?
I tend to enter everything into my Blackberry. I try to add addresses with alarms directly into my calendar so that I’m not scrambling at the last minute in a cab trying to search for emails. I also am a little old school in that I like to actually use a pen (!) when making lengthy notes, so carrying a pad helps keep everything in the one place. At least until I
default and have Siri instruct me!
My secret: Getting enough sleep!

Do you have a system to clean your apartment? Any favorite cleaning products? I just try to stay on top of the cleaning all the time. I find that nice organic products make me feel more inspired to clean! I’m really into fresh and real smelling fragrant products and I think Seventh Generation products do it well without being too overpowering. I also love Dr. Bronner Castille Lavender Liquid Soap—I use it to hand-wash my makeup brushes each time and it is just a great general product to have in the house.
My least favorite thing to clean: The floor!

Is your fridge always this amazing?
Thank you, I kind of like to stock it like a hotel suite mini-bar!
Essentials: Well-stocked condiments and no forgotten mystery items! Plus, coffee beans, organic milk, organic berries and breakfast items, greens and various supplements. And champagne!

When it comes to clothes, how do you keep them clean?
Well, a lot of my wardrobe is very high-maintenance silk, so dry cleaning is essential but it means a lot of pieces are often out of commission until I actually get to the cleaners, but at least I can then successfully avoid ironing—I don’t own an ironing board. Hand-washing items is essential, too, as I like to care for my things but this would be the thing I detest and delay the most!
My mother taught me: To hand-wash delicates and learn how to care for specific fabrics.

Explain to me your “bag within a bag” system—it’s genius.
I carry a clutch-size bag inside my purse or handbag. This way I don’t have things floating around in the bottom of my purse, and I’m not rummaging around looking for makeup, or a pen, or whatever. This is revelatory. It is so easy to then switch out purses and you also have a casual clutch option for the night at the same time. I like the soft, structured leather of the zippered Comme des Garçons, Baggu or American Apparel bags. I also now finally figured out to carry one for receipts instead of overloading my wallet.
I can’t stand: Finding loose change and receipts in the bottom of my bag.

Where did you get the plastic containers for shoes?
The Container Store. I love acrylic storage. I have friends that have inspired me over the years with their imitable style and unattainable methods of organization.
I’m obsessive about: Editing, and not hoarding. Anything that I don’t need for my life to function at a certain time or season goes upstate, or out completely.

Why do you keep your lipsticks in plastic?
Well I’ve learned the hard way—so if I lose a lid for my favorite lipstick there doesn’t have to be a disaster in my purse. Also, being a makeup artist I’m overly zealous about clear vinyl zip bags!
I couldn’t live without: Lip balm. I cannot go without constant reapplication!

How do you store your makeup?
I just have so so much makeup and buckets of products to store, that I have
to be quite disciplined, or I will never find or remember what I have. So I have separate compartments for each category—a drawer just for bronzing liquids and powders, cases of eyeshadow compacts, for example; lipsticks, glosses, mountains of stuff that i could never take on every shoot, or new products that I have been sent to try.
My makeup routine: Is pretty much determined by the length of the car-ride.