So you've probably seen all sorts of travel skincare advice. Plus there are endless companies trying to sell you their Ultimate Travel Skincare Packs. However; no matter how easy your skin is to care for, the worst thing you can do is start new products just before, during or after traveling in an aeroplane. Just saying. Since my skin is so sensitive, I have quite a few tricks up my sleeve for looking good on the go. Read on for some seriously funny travel anecdotes and some wonderful travel skincare advice too!
Man did I have a great trip. I mean it had its difficult moments too of course. But overall it was a pretty great trip. For starters; if you don't read my blog or follow me on Instagram, you wouldn't know that I just did a huge trip to Japan, London for Fashion Week, Russia and back to Japan again. My husband and I speak Japanese so we fly JAL, which stops through Tokyo on the way to Europe. We stopped and got out in Tokyo on the way and way back which was super fun. Another thing that I will mention too; this trip was for my 10th Wedding Anniversary. So I had really looked forward to it for a long time. I love being super organised. So everything was booked, some things paid for and there were deposits on most other things we wanted to do. I am not sure if any of you have travelled to Russia; but in order to get a Russian visa from Australia, you need to have travel plans laid out in your visa application. I have applied for a few visas over the years and the Russian visa is the most difficult to apply for. They want to know the most information. So you needed to save the application and take it up again as a draft.
A lot of travel skincare guides just outline some great products that you need to take with you. One thing a lot of sites agree on is that less is more. Well that sort of goes for packing in general right. You want to pack your bags with tops, skirts and dresses that you can pair together in lots of ways to maximise your outfit possibilities from the least amount of clothes. You need to streamline your skincare routine and only take the things with you that are absolutely necessary. I totally agree with that. It's just that people with allergies and sensitive skin need a few more things that aren't really discussed.
It's all well and good being prepared for the flight. You can take as many travel size kits of your regular skincare routine as you like. However it doesn't matter how much hand cream, moisturiser, lip balm, eye patches, etc you put on.... if you guzzle alcohol for example which dries you out. Drink lots of water. Make sure you eat well. You also need products that moisturise, I am all down for that.
Packing for Travel when you have Sensitive Skin
I always pack and prepare a lot before going away. I start a list on my phone so I don't forget anything. I have a lot of essentials on my list that don't really make the cut for someone with really easy skin. I have to take LOTS of antihistamine tablets with me, for example. In fact I also take sleeping tablets that are antihistamines in case I have a reaction to something. That way I can sleep it off if I need to. Allergic reactions are more involved than that; but if you have one when you are on a plane, the only thing you can do is to sleep it off really.
I also take a bucket load of sorbelene with me. Plus I have to plan my product usage in order to make sure everything lasts me. I can't go buying something I can use in Russia for example. For starters I don't speak Russian... I even need my own shampoo; can't go using those lovely samples that you get in hotels. My husband makes up for it because he can use whatever. He packs light and I pack as light as I can. Argh...
So before I summarise my Ultimate Travel Skincare Advice for Looking Good on the Go I want to chat a little bit about my trip and what I learnt about my skin and skincare. There is always room to learn; although sometimes I wish it wasn't because I had BIG reactions to things...
The Hard Water in Central London, England
I have been to London before for Fashion Week. Time flies; however I think it was two or three years ago. I loved it and I wanted to take my husband next time I visited. I stayed in a hotel just down the road from the hotel we stayed in this time too. Our hotel for this trip was right in the heart of London, which made it easy to get to all the shows. Plus we were a short drive to the flagship Burberry store; shopping is important right? The first day my skin was fine. Admittedly it was a lot colder than Sydney but I had lots of moisturiser so I thought I would be fine. On the second day my skin started to become really itchy. I thought nothing of it and took an antihistamine and moved on. I didn't have an issue last time we were here so I put it down to my skin just getting used to the cold, dry weather. Next morning I woke up all red and sore. My face was the worst. So I did some googling.
On a side note - what would we do without google now? I don't know. I think I would be lost without it. I shop online, I also get health advice online, I look up how to clean things online.... what don't I do online?... (I will just say here that going to a doctor is necessary, you can't believe everything you read online. However there is a time for google. When you wake up with a lump on your skin at 3am, you can get online and check it is not a major drama. You can also book yourself an appointment the next day to see someone about it.)
Bathing in Bottled Water. No, Not Evian Darling.
Turns out London has hard water and we have soft water in Sydney, Australia. So my skin wasn't used to it. In fact a lot of people in London in the hard water catchment areas have trouble with their skin. I found a whole forum dedicated to people talking about buying water softening systems. But what would I do while I was staying in London. I would probably need to have a solution for Russia too since they have hard water as well... So I ended up bathing in boiled and bottled water for the next week. I also took antihistamines every morning while we were there. Turns out London supermarkets are super cheap compared to Australian supermarkets. I could buy 3 Litres of water for 17p. I then got a bit upset at how much I am gouged in Australia. Our food and drink is so expensive!! Even when it is on sale in the major supermarkets!!
There is a huge movement for bathing in filtered/bottled water. I had no idea it was such a big deal. Most of the older women who bathe in filtered or bottled water swear they look younger. I am really not sure about that guys. The story goes that tap water has added chlorine, extra fluoride and a whole bunch of heavy metals in it. Although; I think bathing in bottled water every day might be taking it a bit far, I do see the sense in this argument. Since your skin absorbs substances. I mean how else would skincare work? My skin also felt a lot better when I started washing it in boiled or bottled water in London. Thankfully my skin was fine in Russia. Go figure.
Ultimate Travel Skincare Advice for Looking Good on the Go
1. Make sure you pack the most important skincare products you use. Simple is best.
2. Transfer larger products into small travel containers for the plane. Some products have important and beneficial ingredients and transferring them into a transparent container will make them less effective. Take them in your main luggage in their original packaging.
3. If you are currently treating a skin condition like acne, continue treating it even when you are on holidays.
4. Make sure you pack lip balm and moisturiser for the plane. Plus you can use your moisturiser around your eyes as well as on the rest of your face. Whatever works for your face can work on the rest of your body so you cut down on your carry on.
5. Take some eye masks/gels for the plane. Cooling and hydrating ones are just the thing to brighten tired eyes just before you get off the plane.
6. Take sunscreen with you. Many guides say you can buy this when you get to your destination however sunscreen is often the most difficult item to source. Especially when you have sensitive skin. If you're easy, then purchasing when you get to your hotel is fine.
7. You don't really need masks and cleansing devices while you are away. I always pack gauze. You can wash your face with it and throw it away. Face cloths breed germs. Disposable is best when traveling. That said; Korean sheet masks are light and flat and what's the harm in taking a few anyway?
8. Take your AHA or BHA in a HUGE size. You won't want to scrub while you are overseas. And if you haven't learnt that manual exfoliation is bad by now... Trust me. You'll love chemical exfoliation when you start... But start well before your trip.
9. Boil water in your hotel room and keep some on stand by. You may not be able to drink the tap water, depending on your location. However you may need to wash your face in boiled or bottled water if you are so sensitive like me.
Some other Travel Advice While we are at it...
Drink plenty of water while you are away every day. If you do have an allergic reaction, it'll help flush out your system. If you are like me and go away for long periods of time you'll need to do washing. My tip? Only send out for cleaning or dry cleaning if absolutely necessary. Wash your underclothes and tops in the hotel sink with shampoo. You can then hang them out in your bathroom for a while. Make sure you get a hair dryer on them after a day so they dry properly!!