After traveling for a few years now, I've boiled down my toiletries bag and grooming routine for when I'm on the road. If you're planing on travelling soon, have a look at my tips below for staying glamorous with limited resources and time.
1. Minimise your makeup
Cutting down on your makeup supplies can be challenging, but it is the best thing I did for my toiletries bag. Of course, what you leave behind is up to you. I decided that I could easily live without foundation or even BB cream, and instead I only take three items: eyeliner, an eyebrow pencil and mascara. But if you want that glowy skin, maybe you could swap eyeliner for some concealer or BB cream? Lightening the load on your baggage as well as cutting down on the time it takes you to apply your face in the morning are key.
2. Cleanse your face twice daily
When at home, I wash my face in the shower every morning and in the sink with soap and water every evening to remove grime from the day as well as makeup. When camping, I found that it was such a bother in the communal sinks that I wasn't washing my face at all in the evenings, which is no good! Getting a pack of makeup removing wipes from a supermarket is a cheap and super easy way to clean your face at night, meaning clearer skin and no panda eyes.
3. Drink water - but not too much!
I will always provide this as a beauty tip no matter the circumstances: drink water. Drink it all up! Water is just good for you, and especially your complexion. Now, when travelling you should exercise some restraint as toilets aren't accessible all the time, but drink as much as you safely can (see my post on finding toilets in unfamiliar cities here). Tea is good too!
4. Minimise your hair routine
As with the makeup tip, minimising your hair routine can be even better for your baggage. At home I usually use a hairdryer and occasionally a hair straighter for unwieldy bits, but whenever I go travelling it's air drying all the way. There's no chance I would take up valuable bag space with a hair dryer. Instead of heat styling, you can look at different hair styles to try or just live with whatever your hair decides to do. I have also made the change to only washing my hair once per week, which allows the natural oils in the hair to come through and give you volume. You can read about my no-poo (no shampoo) experiences here. For some travellers it could be the perfect way to save money and improve hair health.
5. Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise!
This may go without saying for many of you, but moisturise! After your shower, moisturise your face, neck and hands at the least. A simple cheap moisturiser from the supermarket will do unless you suffer skin irritation. When you have more time available, moisturise the rest of your body.
6. Leave the hair product at home
A trick for moisturiser is that it can also be used as a kind of hair conditioner - I never bring hair products on my travels but when my hair is a bit frizzy I spread a thin layer of moisturiser on my hands and lightly apply it to my hair. Voila! Works a charm, and no exorbitant prices for product or bag space taken.
7. Protect yourself from the sun
Ideally, look for a moisturiser with built in SPF for added protection, but you should always apply sunscreen when going out into the sun for periods longer than half an hour (note if you are travelling to Australia or New Zealand this time is reduced to ten minutes due to the hole in the Ozone layer - you can burn fast so be prepared). You do not want to get sunburnt, so apply that SPF like your life depends on it because someday it actually might.
8. Maintain your nails and eyebrows
Nail clippers and tweezers don't take up much bag space and let you maintain a good level of grooming. About once a week to once a fortnight, I take the time to trim my fingernails and toenails and pluck my eyebrows. You may not feel like it, but you will look that much more polished.
9. Get your beauty sleep
This has become something of a cliché, but you need your beauty sleep. The "right amount" varies person to person, some needing as little as six hours and some not being able to function with less than nine. Just listen to your body to help you determine what's right for you. To help you fall asleep in potentially bright or loud situations, bring an eye mask and ear plugs. On those nights that I'm wide awake and the minute hand keeps ticking on, I listen to soothing music or use a noise making app that plays rain sounds such as Infinite Storm. Sleep tight!
10. Don't overdo it on the partying
If there's one thing that will make you and your skin feel like shit the next day, it's drinking to excess. You'll wake up parched and hungover. I know that when you're travelling it can be temping to go out and party, especially at events like music festivals, but trust me on this: if you limit your alcohol intake to one or two standard drinks and consume plenty of water, you will look and feel much better.
Now go be a nana like me and have a nap, moisturise your dry elbows and drink a cup of tea. Do it!