Rising at 2.45am and 3 minutes to eat: Natalie Barr's daily routine of the last 20 years.

Natalie Barr has been a staple on our television screens for over 20 years now. And throughout those two decades, her alarm has gone off around 2.45am each weekday morning

"Everyone's hung up on the 2.45am or 3am alarm," Barr notes. 

"I get up before my alarm usually, typically stirring around 1.30am to 2am. There's so many people who do shift work in cities and towns across Australia. But people are hellbent on talking to us about it because we're public. There's a lot of us out there," she shares this week on Mamamia's No Filter

She arrives to the Sunrise studio around 3.30am, brings a coffee from home with her, and gets to prepping for the morning's show, as well as getting into the hair and makeup chair just after 4am. 

When it comes to working in television, there are plenty of hair and makeup resources available to breakfast TV anchors like Barr and her Sunrise co-host Matt Shirvington.

Watch: You Beauty tests diamond lips. Post continues below. 

Video via Mamamia.

"We have professional hair and makeup artists spend an hour on us [every day]. If you have someone spend an hour on you every day, then you will look your best," she explains.


Barr says how she looks off-camera is "very different" - she loves taking out her hair clip pieces, removing the TV makeup and fake eyelashes. But as of whether she feels any pressure to look a certain way on television, she said she's more of a "realist".

"I'm fine. I think yeah it would be great I guess if I didn't have as many wrinkles or if I didn't have squishy bits everywhere. But I'm not the type of person who would lose sleep over it. I honestly don't lose sleep over it."

The next hurdle in the morning after makeup is wardrobe.

 And a lot of that comes down to relying on the team of brilliant stylists at the network Barr works for. They plan everything from the clothes right down to the pieces of jewellery she will wear, which are stored in snap lock bags. 


Sunrise then broadcasts typically between 5:30am to 9:30am, meaning she gets home around mid morning.

As for what those four and a half hours look like - every single day is different in terms of the stories covered. But there's always light and shade.

"The challenge of breakfast TV and the fun is the difference. You're going from the highs and the lows constantly, it doesn't run across one level of emotion," she says.

When it comes to eating breakfast, she can eat in the commercial breaks around 6:30am, the team often providing her with food like eggs, haloumi, spinach, tomato and avocado.

"I'm literally shovelling food in for three to four minutes."

The first thing Barr does when she gets home after work is to take her makeup off.

"TV makeup is hardcore. False lashes I'll peel off, often in the car on the way home. I don't like them being on my face. I rarely wear makeup when I'm out of this work environment."

Barr also often wears hair pieces when on Sunrise, just like numerous female breakfast TV anchors do. She says it hasn't always been a typical thing, but in the past 10 years hair pieces have become more common.


Aside from work, there's a bunch of activities that bring Barr joy.

One is exercising sometimes, saying she loves Extend Barre classes, or physio rehab to help her frozen shoulder. She also loves spending time with her family at home. 

"The hardest part of this job is when the kids were little. As soon as they get to school, you've just got school hours to sleep," she explains, adding she's grateful her kids are now grown up and can rely on themselves.

Even though Barr's job is typically between the hours of 3am to 10am, she still lives and breathes journalism throughout the rest of her day. 

"I don't listen to music. I listen to talk-back radio and I spend all day reading news articles on my phone, and I always have. That's my kind of fun - reading and consuming news."

Around 7pm to 7.30pm, Barr gets ready for bed and is usually asleep by 8pm.

And by that stage, after doing live TV, reading the news consistently and taking some time out for herself and her family, Barr's day is officially done and dusted. Only to be repeated for the rest of the working week!

To hear the full conversation with Natalie Barr and Mia Freedman, you can listen to No Filter now.

Feature Image: Instagram @natalie_barr7.

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