Travel Beauty Tips That’ll Change Your Life

Victoria Moorhouse
B2M Productions / Getty Images

B2M Productions / Getty Images

Keeping your hair and makeup look fresh and intact during and after a long trip is no easy feat. Exiting a car or plane after hours upon hours of traveling often presents you with annoying beauty problems like dry skin, smudged eye makeup, and virtually no hair volume whatsoever. Who knew sitting motionless for so long could put such a damper on your look?

Because no one wants to finally arrive at their destination feeling like they need to immediately book a blowout, we rounded up a few travel beauty tips that’ll change your life—and your next vacation.

Combat Dry Skin
Ever hop off a flight with significantly drier skin than you originally sat down with? It’s a common problem. “The re-circulated air on a plane is very drying to the skin,” says Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, co-director of the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery in Washington, DC. To save your skin from this unpleasant situation, Dr. Tanzi suggests moisturizing the night before your flight, as well as the morning of, with a moisturizer formulated with hylaronic acid, an ingredient she says pulls water in to keep skin hydrated.

In addition to a moisturizing serum or moisturizer, celebrity facialist and founder of Joanna Vargas Salon and Skincare Collection, Joanna Vargas, suggests bringing along rosewater toner in a spray bottle to spritz on dehydrated skin. “Rosewater is incredibly hydrating, so if you spray it directly on your face, it gets moisture into the skin immediately. If you’re traveling overseas, I recommend doing it twice mid-flight and your skin will be refreshed when you get off the airplane,” she says.

Say Goodbye to Puffy Eyes
If you just woke up from a cat nap with puffy eyes, Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi suggests reaching for a cold compress or something cold to place over your eyes to reduce swelling. This is a great tip, especially if your trusty eye cream is safely stowed away in your luggage. If you have a cooler in the backseat, this is the place to pack ’em!

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How to Banish Mid-Trip Breakouts
Sometimes skin doesn’t stay crystal clear for the duration of your travels. Joanna Vargas says dehydration is often a culprit for unexpected blemishes and the best way to prevent this from happening is to exfoliate and then rehydrate once you’ve arrived. If you already have a blemish you need to deal with, give your toothpaste another purpose and dab a bit on the top of the blemish, as Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi says it is a good drying agent.

Exfoliate for a Refreshed, Glowy Complexion
If you have to run to a meeting as soon as you arrive, try to take a quick trip to the bathroom to exfoliate and revive your complexion. Try a multitasking product, like Joanna Vargas’ Vitamin C Face Wash that will remove makeup as well as exfoliate or the anti-inflammatory Exfoliating Mask that’s formulated with lactic acid and volcanic ash to unclog pores. Touch-up after washing your face with mascara, concealer, and gloss for a glowy look.

Eliminate Fly-aways With a Product in Your Purse
Chances are, you have a mini bottle of hand lotion in your purse. That skin savior can do wonders for a frizzy ‘do.  Jill Engelsen, senior stylist at Butterfly Salon in New York City, says that after using it on your hands, take the remainder and apply it on static-prone or frizzy areas of your hairstyle as a control mechanism and a moisturizer.

A Quick Fix to Flat Hair
You’re probably not happy about the flat spot on the back of your head due to leaning against the headrest for hours on end. Comfortable, yes, but it didn’t do any favors for your hairstyle. If you have long hair, stylist Jill Engelsen says to flip your head upside down and pull your hair into a loose topknot. “The knot helps to preserve your travel blow out because the shape sets the hair and gives a boost to your roots, just make sure not to make it tight,” says Engelsen.

For short hair, Engelsen suggests lightly spritzing the spot with water. “This resets the root direction to give you volume again. If you don’t have a spray bottle, get your fingers wet in a bathroom sink or via a cup of water and massage the root area to reset the root.”

MORE: 9 Dry Skin Beauty Tips to Make It Through Winter

Tackle Tangles
Similar to skincare, prep your hair the night before to prevent tangles from wrecking havoc on your look. Wash and condition with a moisturizing formula and then spritzing in a treatment spray made specifically to strengthen hair before you move on to styling. Natasha Sunshine, Pureology Artistic Ambassador, suggests using Pureology’s Colour Fanatic, a color-safe and heat protectant spray that will hydrate and ward off unruly frizz. Carry along a mini hairbrush in your handbag to touch-up your ‘do throughout the day and a travel-size dry shampoo bottle to add back volume.

Another easy way to keep hair looking neat is to braid it before your departure and undo the style right before you arrive. You’ll debut beachy waves that are manageable and chic.