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TSA Approved: Skincare Tips to Follow When you Travel

From hometown visits to spontaneous flights across the world — this time of year is full of automated out of office email replies, booked planners, and sunscreen. When it comes to making travel plans, skincare prep is probably not your top priority. But between layovers, jetlag, and a packed schedule, it’s so crucial to keep your skincare game on point to avoid tired eyes and unhappy skin. While making time for your skincare routine might seem almost as daunting as ~actually starting to pack~,  it doesn’t have to be. 

Use these tips to make sure your skin is ready to take on vacation szn:

  1. Tailor your skincare products to your destination 🧴

When it comes to travel, it can be tough to keep up with a 12-step regimen— So don’t. Travel alone can be overwhelming, don’t let your skincare routine add to the chaos. Assuming you’re only gone for a few days to a couple weeks, you don’t need to bring your entire routine. Keep it simple: cleanser, toner, moisturizer, sunscreen, and just a few other essentials that make sense for your destination and travel plans. If you’re traveling somewhere with a different climate than where you live, consider switching out for products that are more compatible with the weather. For example, if you’re headed somewhere with lots of sunshine and humidity, who wants to layer on all those creams? Adapt your routine so it is more doable and effective for your vacation plans. If you’re not sure how to adapt your routine for the new climate, plug your destination zipcode into the Co-op for environmental tips custom to your location. 

  1. Packing your bag 🧳

Many skincare brands offer extensive selections of travel size skincare, so consider your next trip an opportunity to try products you’ve been eyeing on but are hesitant to pay full price for. Beauty stores like sephora frequently offer free travel sized samples for various brand promos, so if you’re not into the idea of transferring your favorite cleanser to a tiny 3 oz bottle, stock up on those samples! When you start planning which products make the final cut into your toiletries bag, prioritize multitasking products that fill more than one role to save room without sacrificing your skin’s needs. Micellar Water is a must: It doubles as a makeup remover and cleansing toner.

To avoid spilled products and a waste of money, cover the bottle opening with plastic, screw the cap back on, and place the product in a ziplock bag for extra protection. If you have the space, bring along some non-liquid products like bar moisturizers,  your favorite face wipes, or a mini facial spray for easily accessible skin TLC while you’re on the go.

  1. Pre-flight and Post-flight Routine > In-flight Routine 🛫

Setting aside the fact that your plane has zero good in-flight movie options and the fear that your luggage won't ever make it to baggage claim, flying can take a serious toll on your skin. High altitudes along with the stuffy cabin air essentially dehydrates your skin from the inside out. Without proper preparation, your skin will probably be dry af by the time you land. In response, celebrities and beauty bloggers alike have started a trend of practicing in-flight skincare. But we’re not so sure about this trend because moisturizing products in flight might actually leave your skin drier. When the air is dry, it searches for moisture. Because your skin holds so much water, the dry air sucks it out through osmosis. If you use hydration products in flight,  the pressured air will pull even more moisture from your skin because water attracts water. Instead of an inflight routine, give your skin extra love before you board and after your land. Prep your skin for the evil cabin air with lots of moisturizer and sunscreen, and be sure to give your skin enough time to soak it all in.  When you get to your destination, rejuvenate your skin with an exfoliant and a super hydrating mask to restore your skin’s healthy glow. 

  1. Taking a Break from Work, not Sunscreen ☀️

Traveling is no excuse to skip out on your suncare. It is particularly important that you apply and reapply sunscreen if you’re getting on a flight. Research shows that at an altitude of 30,000 feet, 56 minutes of exposure to risky carcinogens can be equally as harmful as lying in a tanning bed for 20 minutes.  UltraViolet A (UVA) radiation can penetrate through airplane windows and may be “much more intense at higher altitudes,” as Dr. Marisa Garshick, explains to Travel + Leisure. Make sure to keep your suncare handy if you’re sitting through an especially long flight. 

Whether your travel plans include scenic hiking or lounging on the beach, be particularly cautious about sun exposure. Vacation-brain can sometimes make you forget about harmful UV rays, so use your weather app to track the UV index to give you an idea of how much product you need and how often you should reapply. The higher the index, the more sun protection you should use. 

  1. Replenish with Vitamin C 🍊

Traveling can bring up a variety of new challenges for your skin’s health. Whether it be sun exposure, pollution, or even lack of sleep, your skin might not feel its best while you’re away. If your skin is feeling dull and tired, this is the one of the best ingredients for restoring your healthy glow. Vitamin C is one of the most powerful antioxidants in the skin and it is the perfect supplement ingredient to take while traveling because it helps maintain the overall health of your skin. It can help address a variety of issues including: protection against sun damage and free radicals, boosts collagen production, and brightens your complexion— not to mention it’s a boost for your immune system to prevent against that post-travel cold.

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