When you're zipping from city to city, sightseeing all day and enjoying the nightlife, skin care is probably the last thing on your mind. Unfortunately travel can really take its toll on your precious skin: climate changes, dry airplane air, and changes in diet can all lead up to a skincare disaster. Nobody wants to look ruddy, pimply, or sunburned in their vacation pictures, so here is what you can do to keep your skin happy on the road.
No matter what your elaborate skin regime is at home, you will want to tone it down for the road. A simple routine involving the fewest number of products ensures you will actually care for your face and not blow it off because of jet lag or a busy schedule. It also means fewer bottles and jars to lug around.
Generally speaking, you will probably want to bring some sort of cleanser or face wash, a moisturizer, night cream (if you use it), and any other skin products you use on a daily basis. Leave behind anything you've never tried before and things that might irritate your skin like harsh astringents, alpha hydroxides, or peels.
Your skin care plan may be dependent on the kind of environment you are headed to. Will the air be drier? More humid? Hot or cold? Depending on your own skin type and concerns, you may need to pack extra moisturizer, heavy-duty sunscreen, or a non-drying face wash.
Skin loves moisture, but long flights, cold winter air, and hot desert air can all be very drying. Dry skin is not only uncomfortable, it looks sallow and leaves wrinkles more pronounced. A good heavy-duty moisturizer (formulated for your specific skin type) will help your skin stay soft and vibrant. Slather it on before, during, and after flights, after showering and whenever your skin feels dry.
Likewise, keep yourself hydrated by chugging water at every opportunity. Not only will you feel better, you will definitely look better as well.
A healthy diet also plays big role in the creation of healthy looking skin. Major diet changes due to travel: particularly changing to a diet heavy in salt, sugar, and other junk, can make your skin break out overnight. Try to curb your urge to pig out on airport snacks, and opt for fruit and vegetables full of antioxidants.
If you only bring one skin care item on your trip, make it sunscreen. Sun exposure can seriously damage your skin over the long-term, and in the short-term, a nasty sunburn will ruin your trip and your photos. Don't think that sun protection is just for warm weather excursions either: trips to the mountains or involving snow can leave you with burns just as easily.
Pick a moisturizer or foundation with an SPF base to help incorporate sun protection into your daily routine. If you will be out doors for any long period of time remember to apply, and reapply sunscreen on a regular basis. You will thank yourself in ten years.
Interesting make-up and skin care products make a great souvenir. Be sure to check out the local drug stores to see what's on offer. Consider trying out a novel skin mask or some interesting lotion; you may find something you really love.
How do you take care of your skin when you travel?
Stephanie Yoder is a girl who can't sit still! Since graduating college in 2007 she has either been traveling or planning to travel. She's lived on four continents and visited everywhere from the Great Wall of China to the Great Barrier Reef. She now writes and travels full time, blogging about her adventures on Why Wait To See The World? (formerly Twenty-Something Travel). Follow Stephanie on Twitter or visit her on Facebook.
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