Whether you are jetting off to some fabulous destination or need to hop on a plane for a work conference in Nowheresville, traveling itself can be stressful. All the stress that comes with airline travel can wreak havoc on your body’s equilibrium, including your skin (particularly if it’s sensitive to begin with.) From different climates to carry on restrictions, there’s a lot to consider if you want your skin to stay healthy and happy while you’re on-the-go.
Keep reading to learn how best to protect your skin and adapt to new environments, how and what to pack, and some handy tips that can make your travel skin care routine a hell of a lot easier. Or, watch our 10 minute video below:
IN A NUTSHELL
Main Takeaways: It’s important to take care of your skin while traveling. If space is limited, be sure to at least bring a cleanser, eye cream, moisturizer, and sunscreen.
Good to Know: Flying can dehydrate you and your skin, so be sure to drink plenty of water while on the plane.
Why Your Travel Skin Care Routine Is Important
Cabin pressure is a huge part of the problem. Because of pressurized cabin air, humidity levels on an airplane are significantly less (some 20%) than on the ground.
The dry, recirculated air can cause your skin to produce more oil in an attempt to compensate. However, it usually leads to oily skin or breakouts — plus dry eyes, congestion and other unpleasantness.
Let’s talk about how to avoid these side effects of air travel.
Skin Care Tips While Traveling
In order to keep your skin looking its best — and avoid long-term consequences from that dastardly dry air, there are several steps you can take to give yourself some extra TLC and prep for your travel skin care routine:
Yes– we know you’ve heard this one before. But it particularly applies when flying and traveling in general. Water is the antidote to dehydration, and it can help fight excess oil production that can cause build up underneath dehydrated skin cells. 64 ounces a day is the recommended daily intake, but try to increase it while you’re traveling. You need even more if you are downing coffee or cocktails pre- and inflight. Carry along a reusable water bottle so you can fill up at airport filling stations.
When it comes to keeping your skin hydrated on the surface, simply spritz on some rosewater toner on your face. It’s the perfect pick-me-up for your skin and your senses after sitting on a plane for hours.
Wear Sunscreen Religiously
Another obvious suggestion, but c’mon — how many of us have gone on a beach vacation and conveniently forgot to apply (and re-apply) sunscreen? Make sure you wear at least SPF 30, or preferably higher. Don’t forget your neck, hands, and any other skin spots that’ll be exposed to the sun. Hats are also a wise idea!
Avoid Touching Your Face
When you’re traveling, you’re exposed to all kinds of new germs — and your hands tend to be the first place you pick them up. Try to avoid touching your face until you’ve washed your hands — and carry some hand sanitizer, too.
Eat Healthy Foods
Traveling can bring a lot of temptations in the form of food and drinks, but try to keep to a healthy routine as much as possible. “You are what you eat.” Too much sodium, too much alcohol, too much grease — it can all result in puffiness, blemishes and a less-than-glowing complexion. While there’s nothing wrong with an occasional splurge, try to plan ahead so you’ll still be eating good-for-you fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, and farm-to-table foods. Prep some healthy snacks for the trip, such as bit-sized veggies, trail mix, whole fruit, and natural protein bars that are packed with garden grown goodies, rather than fat, gluten and sugar.
Skin Care Routine On the Go: How and What to Pack
The biggest issue you’ll face when trekking your skin care supplies around the world is the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). As any frequent flier is aware, there are many rules and regulations surrounding what we can and can’t bring on airplanes. When it comes to skin care, the most significant law has to do with size.
Here’s what the exact law states, according to the TSA:
“You are allowed to bring a quart-sized bag of liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes in your carry-on bag and through the checkpoint. These are limited to travel-sized containers that are 3.4 ounces (100 milliliters) or less per item.”
Liquids, aerosols, gels, creams and pastes pretty much sums up any cosmetic or skin care product. You can put larger items in your checked bag, but if you’re looking to travel light — everything has to stick to the 3.4 ounce rule. This can prove problematic when some of your products are on the larger side, and you need your skin care routine to travel with you.
Unfortunately, high quality skin care products don’t always come in travel sizes, so we recommend filling mini reusable travel bottles with your favorite products.
We’ve put together two skincare sets: our 3 piece Starter Set and our 5 piece Deluxe Set. Both come in a convenient canvas travel bag. The only product in our line up that is over 3.4 ounces is our So Clean! facial cleanser, so you can opt to take your full sized items with you as is, or transfer them to smaller bottles to save space in your carry-on.
Pro tip: Most serum bottles are ideal travel sizes, and serums are usually your highest ticket item. We recommend keeping your serum in its original bottle, so you have the correct applicator and don’t waste product.
Skincare Routine Must-Haves Versus Might Haves
If you have limited space and need to minimize, it’s ok to stick to the basics. You can temporarily live without certain items in your skin care lineup, particularly on a quick trip.
Your absolute must-haves while traveling should include face wash, eye cream, moisturizer and sunscreen. Traveling can also do a number on your sleep schedule, so your pretty peepers will need to be treated with eye cream.
Toner, serum, face masks, and other goodies can be left behind if your trip is on the short side. But if you have the space to pack it- by all means, don’t skimp on your skincare routine! If you have a long trip planned, either pack your entire routine into your checked luggage, or opt for stacking travel containers to save space.
Stick to Your Healthy Skin Care Routine While Traveling
We hope you’ve gotten some useful info about how to make traveling easier on your skin — and your wallet! Because who wants to buy a whole new batch of products in your final destination? Or deal with skin issues while you’re trying to enjoy yourself?
Just plan ahead a little bit, stay straight with your H20, and you’ll be golden (hopefully with a healthy glow thanks to some outdoor adventures!).
Frequently Asked Skin Care Tips While Traveling
How to pack skincare for travel
When you’re traveling, it’s important to remember that any liquids, gels, creams, and pastes can only be taken in carry-on luggage in containers of 3.4 ounces or less, and they all must fit in one quart size clear ziplock bag. If you have too many products, and they don’t all fit in one bag, consider pairing down to the essentials: cleanser, eye cream, moisturizer, and sunscreen. If you have a little more room, add your toner, so you can give your skin an easy refresh while you're traveling.
If you don’t want to pair down your skin care essentials, then your best option may be to check your bag, as there are no size restrictions on liquids.
Which skin care items should I bring when I travel?
The most essential skin care items to pack when traveling is your cleanser, eye cream, moisturizer and sunscreen. However, if you are on the road for a long period of time, consider consolidating your entire routine into stacking travel containers.