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general sensitive skin

Your Complete Guide to Travelling and Skin Care

Driving to visit family over the holidays? Jet-setting to the tropics the second the holidays are over? Whether you’re travelling by plane, train or automobile, making sure you have a proper skin care plan is just as important as figuring out what clothes to pack.

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The bad news is, the second you step out of your regular routine, your skin feels the stress and there’s no avoiding it. Also the good news is, there’s a lot you can do to minimize the impact – before, during and after travel. Read on as we share our best travel tips and tricks you can use not just during the holidays, but all year round.

Before Take Off

Taking care of your skin while you’re away starts well before you set foot on a plane. Follow these tips to make sure you kick things off right.

The Perfect Pack

  1. It all starts with the perfect toiletries bag, preferably one that’s in good condition and doesn’t leak. Once you find the one that’s right for you, pack it properly.
  1.  Organization is key. Try to make a checklist ahead of time that you can add to as your vacation nears so you don’t forget anything. Remember, it could be tough, if not impossible, to find your perfect products in a foreign place.
  1. Travel sizes are ideal if you want to bring your whole skin care regimen without bringing your whole skin care regimen. Favourite products don’t come in travel sizes? Make your own! Buy travel-size containers with labels so you can have them all.
  1. If you favourite product comes in a glass container, give it a little extra protection by rolling it up with a sock and tucking it into a shoe in your luggage.
  1. Carrying on? Size matters. Know your TSA/CATSA rules and container measurements before you start packing to avoid confiscation at the gate. For instance, you’re only allowed a one litre bag for liquids and each item has to be under 100 ml each. Looking for some great carry-on skin care products? Try our Anti-Redness Serum and Lightweight Moisturizing Lotion. Also, be sure to read up on what counts as a gel or liquid - you don’t want any surprises there, either. A tip for Canadians for remembering how to differentiate is that maple syrup is considered a liquid, but maple butter spread is considered a gel. 

Priming Up for the Plane

  1. Step away from the makeup. Try not to use any foundation or blush on your face if you can manage it, as it clogs pores (and your skin needs all the help it can get while travelling). No time to cleanse before you go? Make sure you have those wipes handy so you can remove makeup in a flash.
  1. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. It’s one of the most important things you can do to keep skin healthy1.  Plane cabins have very low humidity2 which can suck the life out of your skin so make sure you load up before you step on (and don’t forget your neck, décolletage, lips, hands and feet).

During the Flight

Planes can cause a lot of problems for any skin type. Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to make up for the lost moisture.

Step Up the Skin Care

  1. Suffer from dry skin? Unfortunately things are about to get drier. As the plane goes up, your hydration levels go down, so keep your moisturizer handy and replenish as needed.   
  1. On the oilier side? Your skin will produce even more oil to overcompensate for moisture loss. Keep blotting papers on-hand and dab your T-zone as necessary. It’ll help you remove excess oil without stripping out moisture.  
  1. About an hour before you land, dab a little eye cream on tired eyes to help give them a boost and put on a little makeup if you feel like it. Consider using a tinted moisturizer in place of foundation to keep things light.
  1. Avoid touching your face at all costs. Remember, you’re sharing the space with a lot of people and a lot of surfaces (and there’s not a lot of opportunity to wash those hands).

Take Care of Your Whole Body

  1. Because of that extra dryness in the air, staying internally hydrated is incredibly important as well3. Try to aim for a cup of water every hour throughout your flight for maximum hydration.
  1. Stretching is always incredibly important4, but since high altitudes can do a number on blood circulation, it’s best to get it flowing with in-flight stretches. Doing some neck and shoulder rolls, knee bounces and taking short walks down the aisle every now and then can really work wonders.

After Landing

You’re not in the clear yet. Now it’s time to reset your skin and treat yourself.

De-Stress With a Mini-Facial

  1. First, we exfoliate. Use a gentle facial scrub or a light peel, like the our Exfoliating Glycolic Peel, to help remove dead cell buildup while washing away any residual dirt and bacteria. This will also help fend off any breakouts5.
  1. Time to rehydrate (again!). Choose a soothing and deeply hydrating face mask to help bring back the essential moisture lost in the air while brightening up tired skin. A good one to try is our Hydrating Antioxidant Mask.
  1. Once you rinse off the mask, apply your favourite moisturizer and bask in your healthy glow.
  1. Vacationing somewhere warm? During holidays, it’s even more important to practice sun safe behavior as you’re generally in the sun for extended periods of time, soaking it all in6. Make sure you pack a good sunscreen with at least a 30 SPF.

No matter how you travel or where you travel to, safe skin care is a must and choosing the right products to travel with is crucial. If possible, schedule an appointment with your dermatologist before you take-off to make sure you’re bringing the best. Safe travels!

References

  1. M Loden (2005) The clinical benefit of moisturizers. Retrieved from:  http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1468-3083.2005.01326.x/abstract
  2. Nagda NL, Hodgson M. (2001) Low relative humidity and air craft cabin air quality. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11521505
  3. Barry M. Popkin, Kristen W. D’Anci and Irwin H. Rosenberg (2010) Water, Hydration and Health. Retrieved from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2908954/
  4. Harvard Health Publishing (2013) The importance of stretching. Retrieved from: https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-importance-of-stretching
  5. American Academy of Dermatology (2015) Evaluate before you exfoliate. Retrieved from: https://www.aad.org/media/news-releases/evaluate-before-you-exfoliate
  6. John B. Lowe DrPH (2013) Traveling Sun Smart Starts Before the Patient Leaves. Retrieved from: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jtm.12004/full