I love travelling, and some months it seems like I’m on a plane every week. But I know that when I travel, my skin requires extra love – planes and great skin do not a happy pair make! There are several reasons for this.
- Low humidity on planes. The air pressure in planes can dehydrate skin, which then disrupts the lipidic skin barrier and can lead to irritation and breakouts. There’s a reason you’re always so thirsty when you’re in the air – the plane’s air conditioning is literally taking moisture from you! Thief!
- You’re out of your normal routine. When you’re out of your own home, the tendency to skip products or steps in your routine is higher, meaning your skin may suffer.
- You’re eating and/or drinking differently. We all know the allure of a hotel room-service burger (of course!) but your diet can definitely wreak havoc on your skin.
- You’re not sleeping as well as you usually do. Planes and hotels aren’t always the best places to catch up on your shut-eye, and when you’re not well-rested, your skin takes the toll. Some hotels also have closed windows and full-time air-conditioning which, again, dries out your skin
So, what can you do to maintain your skin while you travel? Here’s what I do:
- Drink plenty of water. On the plane, on the ground – everywhere! I also don’t drink alcohol or caffeine on flights.
- Limit processed foods. Stick to fresh, whole foods when you can, and try to resist the siren call of room service. I also pack my own snacks when I fly. Airplane food is infamously full of sodium, which can cause fluid retention.
- Pack a hydration mask for the plane – and use it! Yes, you’ll look a little silly. But do it when the lights go down and nobody will even notice. (I actually use masks in broad daylight without caring what others think – let’s say I consider this a social service, as I am making them exercise their facial muscles as they giggle at me!) You should also pack a thick barrier-type lip balm to stop your lips drying out.
- Get some exercise in the fresh air when you can. Explore your new surroundings! Even going for a quick walk will help not only your skin, but also your mood and your fatigue.
- Don’t forget the SPF! Ever.