With summer approaching, I know many of you are bursting with excitement about the various trips and vacations you have planned. Some of these trips, I assume, may include a very long flight or series of flights (layovers, anyone?) to get you to to and from your destination. I’ve been on a lot of planes, and it didn’t take long for me to wonder why I came to look like such a hot mess after just a few hours. I did the research and made a plan to help myself look and feel fresh, clean, and put together throughout my trans-atlantic flights…and, well, theory proven! I thought I’d take the time to share my newfound wisdom with you. Follow these steps and you’ll walk out of the airport feeling top notch.
Step One: Stay Hydrated
- This is THE most important thing you can do. I can not stress this enough. Flights are long, the air is dry, and in most cases you are only served drinks two or three times, in tiny plastic cups smaller than any normal glass. Not only will staying hydrated make you feel better, it will help keep your skin more vibrant and prevent it from drying out too quickly. Being hydrated is also the number one way to combat jetlag. Your body works better when there is water in it! I drink a huge bottle of water on my way to the airport and then buy an even bigger one there (1.5 liters) once I’m past security. Then I have something to drink during the entire duration of the flight, even when the flight attendants aren’t around.
Step Two: Clothing
- Dress Comfortably. For flights over five hours, I would recommend avoiding denim at all costs. My go-to outfit for traveling is a pair of cotton trousers and a cute-but-loose tee. Other great options would be thick leggings (or jeggings) paired with a long cotton top (I’m serious about the “long” part, no one wants to see your pantyline) or even a linen jumper.
- Layers. From what I’ve learned, airplanes are too cold and airports are too hot. Dress in layers to prevent discomfort both on the ground and in the air. Wise layering also can increase the overall “cuteness” of any outfit.
- Comfy shoes. I like wearing flats, because they’re easy to slip on and off. I always pack a pair of fuzzy socks to slip on during the plane ride because my feet get so dang cold.
Step Three: Hair
- Before you leave for the airport, work a pump or two of leave-in-conditioner through your hair and pull it into a casual but flattering low bun. This will keep your hair out of the way and prevent frizzing, tangling, and other annoyances.
Step Four: Pack a Survival Kit
The dry, recycled air on a plane is your skin’s worst nightmare. Put together a small pouch with the above items and you’ll be grateful for it later. The above picture is a peek at mine.
- Face Wipes. A typical trans-Atlantic flight will involve about twenty four hours of traveling if you include layovers and driving time. If you were at home, I’m assuming you’d wash your face at least once in twenty four hours, so the same logic applies when you’re traveling. The great thing about face wipes is that, when that fasten seatbelt sign is on, you don’t even have to get up to rid your skin of unwanted impurities.
- Moisturizer, Hand Cream, Lip Balm. As stated before, airplane air is DRY. Apply the mentioned moisturizers to keep your skin from getting gross and dry and flaky. A tinted moisturizer for your face will also keep your skin tone looking even.
- Powder, Lip Gloss, Mascara. I don’t recommend wearing makeup during your flight, but I like to excuse myself to the lavatory near the end of the flight to apply these very basic cosmetics. This is optional, of course, but doing so helps me feel like I didn’t spend all day sitting on a plane, even though that’s exactly what I did.
Step Five: Get Your Beauty Sleep
- Sleeping on the plane will help you feel refreshed and combat jetlag later on. I know, sleeping on an airplane can be difficult – especially in economy class! I highly recommend investing in a pair of earplugs (or better yet, noise cancelling headphones), a neck pillow, and a sleeping mask. I can’t stress to you how much they help. I take sleeping pills on trans-Atlantic flights because, let’s be real, it’s never going to be easy sleeping sitting up with people all around you talking and moving and eating. This is of course completely optional, but I must say I walked off of yesterday’s flight feeling pretty darn good having slept eight of the ten hours in the air.
I hope someone finds these at least a bit helpful. If you have any other tips you’d like to share, please leave them in the comments!