I’ve been traveling a lot recently and have gotten the chance to really refine what I’ve been packing for hair products, skincare, and makeup. As I’m sitting here in a hotel lobby in Tennessee, I thought I’d share some of my favorite products that I normally pack on trips!
None of these recommendations are sponsored. If any product is linked, it’s an affiliate link – meaning, if you purchase the product through the link, it’ll help me out just a little bit financially.
Skincare is arguably my favorite category of the beauty world. I started to take skincare seriously only about four or five years ago, and I wish I did sooner!
Lately, I’ve been using products that focus on hydration and gentle exfoliation. I’m sure these products will change once the spring and summer months roll along. It’s important for me to make sure I pack skincare products that are reliable and dependable. I typically don’t pack anything if I haven’t tried it yet.
I know I’ve mentioned this product before on this blog – it really is an amazing moisturizer. It’s 1.7 oz, so it’s carry-on safe. It glides into your skin and really makes it feel smooth and hydrated. This is great for travel because I can use it as an AM and PM moisturizer, so one less product to pack!
02. Lush’s Mask of Magnaminty
I know it sounds extra that I pack a mask when I travel, but go with me on this. I’ve been exfoliating if I have super dry skin so that my moisturizer can go on a bit more smooth, and so that my makeup looks better. I haven’t had to use it that often, but it’s nice to have in case I need to get a deep clean. An alternative to this product is the St. Ives Gentle Smoothing Oatmeal Scrub, which is also much cheaper than this mask from Lush.
03. Curology Formula
I took a risk on Curology a while ago and it’s been doing an amazing job of improving my skin’s texture and combating acne. I use it every night, so of course, I bring this everywhere. I opt for the smaller bottles so I can pack them a little more easily.
04. Burt’s Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes
I like having some sort of makeup removing wipes or cleansing cloths when I travel. These towelettes in particular are really durable and thick, which is nice because you really get your mileage out of one towelette. This pack of cleansing towelettes takes up way less room than cotton rounds and micellar water.
05. Elf Lip Exfoliator
This is not a normal packing essential, but again, this winter has been awful and I always have chapped lips. This is nice because it doesn’t take up a lot of room in my makeup bag. It’s just an average lip scrub that doesn’t leave your lips super dry. Also a must if you like wearing matte lip colors.
06. Tarte Pearly Girl Teeth Whitening Pen
This isn’t technically skincare per-say, but I wanted to include it somewhere. I have the travel size version of this pen. It actually works too – you can see a huge difference after about 3-4 days of use. You can use it up to 4 times a day. It’s something you sort of paint on your teeth, so it’s awesome for getting in all the sides and places where a strip wouldn’t be able to. It’s a great thing to have on hand when I’m traveling for business where I need to network and present things.
07. Glossier’s Balm Dot Com
I’ve talked about this enough on this blog so I won’t go into much detail on it. It’s been a great product to have while on this trip in particular because I can use it on my knuckles, lips, and also cuticles.
I normally don’t pack too many things in this category. The trips that I’ve been on recently have events that fall into the business casual dress code, so I wanted to pack products that I could do slightly fancier things to my hair than usual.
This is more or less an off-brand Wet Brush. It really does make brushing your hair super easy and painless. It’s also smaller than most brushes, which makes it awesome for travel. And you can just rinse it with hot water to clean it.
02. Hair Coils
I bought these just a few weeks ago so I know I’m late to the hype, but these are really so much better than traditional hair ties. I still pack a few standard hair ties just in case, but so far I haven’t used them. They don’t leave weird creases in your hair and they actually add volume to your hair buns and ponytails. They come in clear, various browns and beiges, and black.
03. Not Your Mother’s Clean Freak Dry Shampoo
Gotta love dry shampoo. I love using this as a texturizing spray after I curl my hair or to absorb excess oil on days where I can’t be bothered to wash my hair. I like this one slightly better than the Batiste Dry Shampoo, but both are fair in price and value.
04. OUAI Leave-In Conditioner
This product has been my holy grail hair item for months now. I was so surprised about this because I wasn’t expecting it to work as well as it does. I use it on damp hair after I shower, and it really does keep it smooth, soft, and detangled for hours after I comb through it. It’s also a heat protectant, so I don’t have to pack a separate product for that! I’ve actually skipped putting on conditioner in the shower before, used this leave-in conditioner, and my hair has still been soft for the day. I can’t recommend this product enough.
05. OUAI Wave Spray
If I have room in my bag after all of this, I’ll pop this spray in to take with me. Sometimes I’ll use it after I curl my hair and it helps maintain the heat styled curls pretty well. Alternatively, if I just want a little more texture in my hair after I comb through it, I’ll spray this and work it into my hair. It really does add some wave and bounce to your hair without having to do much effort at all. This is definitely a lazy girl product to make it look like you spent hours on your hair without really trying.
06. L’ange Ondule Curling Wand – 32mm
I love this curling wand and prefer it over the ones with the clip attached. I got it on sale for $26, I think, which is a pretty good deal for this wand. It’s ceramic, so it holds the heat pretty well. It’s also easy to use and packs nicely in a suitcase. I bought the 32mm one so I could do looser, more natural looking waves.
I guess this is technically skincare, but if you don’t have a solid base to work with, your makeup is kind of set up to fail. I think I’ve mentioned this on the blog before, but I really like this sunscreen. I think my next step in skincare is going to be purchasing the new Neutrogena Hydro Boost with SPF, so I can get rid of this extra product and streamline my skincare a bit more.
02. Elf Luminous Matte Primer
This primer has been a pleasant surprise for me. It was pretty cheap and is a great size for travel. It works well with the rest of my makeup products and honestly works well by itself too. It’s not drying at all, which is what I look for in primers.
03. Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer
This product has been raved about by so many influencers, people I know personally, and reviews online. It really does eliminate the appearance of dark circles under your eyes for a pretty affordable price. It does crease easily without a primer, so don’t skip that step!
04. Elf Powder Brush & Eyeshadow Brush
These brushes are so affordable and great to travel with. I use the powder one for bronzer and setting powder, and the eyeshadow one for everything else.
05. Elf Powder Bronzer in Deep
Super affordable, a great size for travel, and has pretty good color payoff. The deep color works well for my skin tone as a bronzer/contour duo. I also use this as an eyeshadow color on days where I need an extra boost in my appearance.
I highly recommend powder skin products if you have any sort of oily skin. This powder is only $6 and does the job pretty well. Elf makes a pretty good finishing and setting powder as well. It’s just nice to have something like this to finish off your makeup and make it last longer.
07. Glossier’s Boy Brow
I cannot recommend this enough. With this product, it takes less than minute to do my brows. It looks natural and emphasizes what you already have instead of highlighting imperfections. It’s also a great size to travel with.
08. L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Mascara in Carbon Black
Lately, I’ve been really loving wearing mascara if I need a little extra help looking put together. This mascara is affordable, separates your eyelashes to make them look more full, and is actually black and not a weird black-grey hybrid like other mascaras.
All of these products except for the curling wand and hairbrush fit in two small toiletry bags. I really like reusing the pink bubble wrapped zip bags that Glossier products come in – it’s been so nice to travel with those. The Glossier bags are so easy to take in/out of your luggage in the TSA security line. I also find that separating my beauty products into different bags makes it easier to fit in my suitcase around my other things.
I’m currently on the hunt for an eye cream (trying to add an anti-aging step into my skincare routine) so if anyone has any recommendations, let me know down below or on Instagram @craftswomancentral!
I hope this post was helpful or at least informative! Happy traveling!