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Skincare Travel Guide

Updated: Apr 10

Pro tips to ensure beautiful skin for your getaway

There's no doubt travel is good for your soul, but it often wreaks havoc on your skin. Here are a few strategic tweaks to your skin ritual that will have you looking beautiful anywhere!

You spend a lot of time refining an ideal skincare regimen, so don't let travel throw off your routine. This is a time our skin needs some special attention. We want to face the world with confidence and not come home looking like we need another vacation.

One of the joys of traveling is breaking out of our normal routine. Unfortunately, when it comes to your skin, it kinda likes the same ol' predictable environment. This is why we need to adjust a few things in our routine to prepare for the changes in humidity levels, sunny adventures, and red eye flights.

You most likely won't have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to your routine. Rather, adjust by anticipating your skin's needs, simplify and stock up on one or two special items. Keep reading to discover ways to prepare for dreamy skin while traveling and key items to bring and not to bring.

Keep it simple. The bulk and weight of products can add up and you likely won't need your whole line up. Focus on your skin's primary needs while traveling: stay hydrated, clear, and protected from the elements.

Pre-trip skin preparation

Say hello to your new destination with a healthy glow. Your best shot at great skin while you are traveling begins well before your trip.

Keep these things top of mind on the days leading up to your vacay.

  • Get a facial 7-3 days before your trip - A gentle enzyme facial is a nice choice to smooth texture, brighten and deeply hydrate as well as help de-stress. Be sure to mention to your Esthetician that you are going on a trip!

  • Increase internal hydration and limit inflammatory foods - We can't only focus on topicals if we want sustainable results. If you want to arrive plump but not bloated, drink plenty of water before take off as well as 8 ounces of water per hour once in the air. It's not in your head, air travel is known to dehydrate us. Also, limiting alcohol and sugar and other inflammatory items leading up to air travel will help you look your best when you land. For beauty enhancing foods click here.

  • Hydration mask pre-trip - The night before or morning of a long travel, carve out a few extra minutes to give a hydrating boost to your skin in the form of a hydrating sheet mask. Your skin will thank you!

  • Minimize makeup on travel days - These days flying with makeup is pointless if you have to wear a face covering, but it still bears mentioning. It is better to keep your skin simply clean and hydrated to avoid clogged pores and breakouts. Mascara and eye makeup can be ok, depending on the length of your flight and if you plan on using an eye mask. Pro Tip : Spritz a botanical toner or sanitizer on the inside of your mask to limit congestion on the chin. One to try, Botnia Hand Sanitizer.

Let's talk about exfoliation

There is no universal law when it comes to exfoliation as we each have different needs, skin types and travel plans. However exfoliation in general, especially AHA and retinoids, can make us more sensitive to UV exposure, which is one thing we are sure to get more of when we are adventuring. To avoid heightened sensitivity, avoid excessive exfoliation, or eliminate exfoliation altogether. Your skin can take a break from exfoliation and will still look great, especially if you get a pre-trip facial. If you are break out prone, opt for a spot treatment such as, Cosmedix Correct at night.

Travel must-haves and a bit extra

You may be limited on space and time while away so the essentials are priority.


  • Micellar water wipes - Great for a first cleanse, removing sunscreen, makeup and oil at the end of the day will keep your skin clear and smooth. Try Burts Bees Micellar Wipes.

  • Gentle cleanser - The wipes are great but will not be enough. Bring your favorite gentle cleanser for the morning and second cleanse at night. Try Herbivore Pink Cloud cleanser.

  • Moisturizer - Keeping your skin's barrier hydrated will keep it looking refreshed not depleted from long days of travel. Tailor your moisturizer to the climate of your destination. For humid weather skip the oils and go for a lightweight moisturizer, try Saint Jane's Petal Cream. For dry climates, add oil into your moisturizer. Try Saint Jane's Luxury Beauty Serum.

  • Travel Kits - If you really want to simplify there are many pre made kits available that offer travel-sized skin essentials organized in a tote bag. This is especially handy if you travel often and want to grab and go. Try Botnia Travel Kit which includes: cleanser, hydrating serum, facial mist, body cream, a soothing repair mask and facial moisturizer.

  • Sunscreen - To keep you beautiful long after your trip, sun protection applied daily and often is a must. Don't forget to apply to your chest, hands, arms and any exposed area. Try Tizo Sunscreens.

Avoid bringing mystery product samples to use throughout your trip. Find products that you know your skin loves and avoid breakouts or reactions.


If you got the basics down and can fit a few extra products.

  • Serums- Bringing a few targeted skincare products like serums is a great idea if you are able. Select based on your favorites, one or two should be plenty. I personally love a good antioxidant peptide serum such as Cosmedix Affirm along with a clarifying hydration booster such as Cosmedix Surge.

  • Mask- If you feel like you may have time, a quick sheet mask can be a pick me up mid-trip. These are also great pre-flight. Try Orgaid Sheet Masks.

  • Guasha or roller- To keep your eyes de-puffed and features lifted using a facial massage tool as needed can work wonders. Here's an affordable travel guasha to try.

Whether you are going on a business trip, a romantic getaway, a family reunion, hitting the slopes or cruising the beach: one thing is certain, your skin will look best with extra care. Traveling to a new climate requires a few adjustments to our usual routine.

It takes a lot to get away so preparing and thinking about your skin's needs ahead of time ensures you are doing your best to support healthy radiant skin at home and beyond.


Hello, my name is Summer, a licensed Esthetician from San Rafael, California. I specialize in corrective facials combined with deep restorative healing. I am obsessed with bringing joy to my clients with results that they see and feel.


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