Travel Tips (And Products) For Your Toiletry Bag
Anyone who knows me well knows that I am a very, very, very bad packer. Overpacking is an understatement. I envy those who are able to pack for longer than a week — in a carry-on! My toiletries take up my entire carry-on — And that’s without the full size skincare products that must be checked because of the TSA no-liquid rule. Needless to say, I am over-prepared with my beauty products when traveling. Do I actually use all of it? NO. Do I actually need all of it? Definitely not. Then why pack it? I’ve been asking myself the same question.
So, on a recent trip, I decided to put my money where my mouth is — and pack just ONE bag for everything — makeup, skincare, and haircare products! It was tough; I’m not going to lie. But keeping in mind these tips, I did it — and I felt pounds lighter because of it!
PACK A PALETTE
One palette with everything you need to make you pretty — that’s the only way to travel (and save space!). My current choice for shadow palettes is Nars Narsissist Wanted Eyeshadow Palette ($59). This palette has everything you need to create a variety of pretty summer eye looks, from shimmers to mattes, bronze and golds to the season’s It hue, burnt brick red. For the face and cheeks, I’m still feeling Becca’s winter drop, Apres Ski Glow Collection Face Palette ($54). I told you it would last you through spring and summer, so if you haven’t picked one up yet, do so before it’s gone. With shimmery blushes and highlighters in rosy and golden hues, this is the ideal every day face palette. Some other great face-saving palettes are Nars Narsissist Wanted Cheek Palette Vol II ($59), with six punchy spring-approved blush shades, and Tarte Tartelette Toasted Eyeshadow Palette ($46), the 12 most wearable shadow shades you can find, from barely-there to earthy browns and beyond.
BRING YOUR FAVORITE FACE PRODUCT… SANS THE BOTTLE
Perhaps you knew this tip and I’m just late to the game, but I was always under the impression that shampoo, conditioner, and maybe a face wash went into the travel-size bottles that you buy at the drugstore. But, um, what I really can’t live without are my random face potions. So, I just change out the bottle to make them travel-friendly! For example, Bioderma Crealine H20 ($15) is one of those desert island must-haves. You can use it as a cleanser – -without water! — or a makeup remover. It’s my favorite micellar water, and the only one that has earned permanent residence on my bathroom shelf. When traveling, the trick is to pour it into a TSA-approved bottle. A little goes a long way so this will last for 3-4 weeks, with daily use! I do this with my Bioderma Recherche Lotion P50, too.
MULTITASKERS ARE MUSTS
One product that can do two (or three, or four…) things? Yep. Pack it. In fact, make sure that almost everything you pack has plethora of purposes… even your makeup brushes!
I can’t live without foundation (current must is Oxygenetix Oxygenating Foundation ($66)), and I used to travel with multiple foundation shades (what if I get a tan? What if I run out?). The what if’s never actually happen, so it’s better to bite the bullet and travel with a single shade, and then, perhaps, two cover-ups (as they are smaller and can be used for multiple uses). I like the Lorac Double Feature Concealer and Highlighter ($9), a multi-tasking wonder that can cover a blemish or under-eye circles (just dab a bit of highlighter to the cover-up to make it an illuminizing concealer!) and, a new favorite, It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Anti-Aging Concealer ($10) — in travel size (!!!), so it won’t take up any additional room, and you can actually keep it in your purse for on-the-go touch-ups. The full-coverage formula is fab and it’s waterproof, so you can even swim in it.
As far as brushes are concerned, I usually travel with an entire bag devoted JUST to makeup brushes. It’s a nightmare. I really only ever use 3, 4 max. But I don’t like to have to use the same brush for bronzer and blush — it’s an OCD thing. Then a friend told me to travel with face wipes and clean the brush after each use. This totally changes the game! It’s so easy and allows me tout my brushes in half. After all, one brush has multiple uses. My makeup wipe of choice is Simple Kind to Skin Cleansing Facial Wipes ($4) — and it’s travel-size! As for the brushes, I need my Bare Minerals Smoothing Face Brush ($28), a blush brush that can double as a bronzer brush (try this one), and a blending eyeshadow brush that can apply multiple shades from the lid to the crease (this one is my current favorite).
SAVE YOUR SAMPLES
I have a basket filled with solely sample and travel size products. Whenever I’m packing, I look in there for a face wash, moisturizer, and even face mask. Most of your favorite brands have their best-sellers available in travel size versions. For cleanser and moisturizer, I’ll usually bring two of each and trade off depending on how my skin is reacting. Some favorite travel/ sample size products: Tata Harper Tata’s Daily Essentials Kit ($70), everything you’ll need, all in TSA-approved packaging, Tammy FenderOily/Active Treatment Kit ($165), a recent discovery and, although pricey, these products last for three weeks (considering an extended vaca?), even the coveted Glam Glow masks ($24) are available in mini 1.7 oz pots. That’s so small, you’ll have room for two! Next trip to Sephora — take them up on their “two free samples offer,” and keep them unused until your next bon voyage. A dry shampoo is a must – I’ve been traveling with my trusted travel size Ouai Mini Dry Shampoo ($12) and it’s saved me many a bad hair days. Virtually any product that your heart desires can be found in a travel-friendly version, and when it can’t, just change the bottle!
KEEP YOUR BAG PACKED
I learned this trick from Kourtney Kardashian: Always keep your travel toiletry bag packed and ready to go. Then you can actually GO on a moment’s notice — without stressing about what to bring and what you may forget. In other words, buy doubles of your favorite concealer, foundation, mascara, bronzer, and anything else that’s not the travel version of itself, and keep one set packed, immediately restocking when something runs out so that you’re never without your must-haves. Trust me, this trick is a serious time-saver!
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