6 Travel Makeup and Skincare Essentials

Image via Lasse C via Flickr

I travel a fair bit. Not necessarily for holidays, but also for conferences and also travelling between my country and city homes. So that means lots of packing and living out of suitcases. Clothes are a no-brainer. You gotta bring that on your trip. But gosh, how about makeup and skincare? What should you bring? Especially if you have growing makeup stashes like mine, it seems to get harder and harder to pick what exactly to pack into the little makeup pouch for a week or two away.

I’ve tried a few things and here’s what I’ve found works the best for me:


Travel sized- cleanser, toner, moisturizer.

Even if you don’t end up using any makeup, you will still have grime and dirt clogging up your pores at the end of the day. Especially if you are used to the clean and crisp air of the country and end up travelling into the city. The skin reacts quite differently, I can assure you.

So always remember your 3 step – cleanse, tone, and moisturize. Bring travel sized replicas of your normal products – Tip: samples of such products can often make for good travel sized products.

I use: Clinique’s 3 step skincare


The logic behind having sunscreen on you should already be well and truly drummed into your head. But if you still don’t get it, then please read this blog post I wrote on my friend Clare Oliver who died from skin cancer.

So that’s all I bring for skincare. I cut my routine down to be the bare minimum as most of the time, I don’t have time to fiddle with masks or serums or anything else. But this is sufficient to keep my skin soft and supple as well as protected through my holiday. Now for Makeup.


This is where I confess to something naughty. I don’t actually use BB creams or foundations when I’m on holidays. I leave those behind and I have been blessed with nice enough skin for me to pull it off. No coverage can be scary for some folks, but I’m quite happy to flash my nakedness.

Instead I bring:


For me, eyeliner means liquid eyeliner. Even if you are running short on time and need to skip a few steps of your makeup routine, never ever skip eyeliner. It is the one thing that will transform you from daggy to fab! While I’m always trailing new liquid eyeliners (I have an eyeliner obsession), when I’m on holiday I bring the one I trust the most so that it will work the way I want it to, and not waste precious time.

I use: Benefit’s Magic Ink

Eye Makeup

Palettes are a godsend here. Why worry about bringing a million and one single eyeshadows when you can bring a palette and pick and choose as you need during your holiday? You might pick up a new dress during your holiday and the single colours you’ve picked might not work with it, so avoid such headaches and bring a palette. It doesn’t have to be a massive palette, but any with a good range of colours will work.

I use a palette I got from China Town (doesn’t have a brand) that contains 45 colours. Half the size of the Coastal Scents Palette I usually use!

A bonus is if the palette contains a brush. A good example of this would be the Naked palette (2nd edition) which contains a brush. This means you won’t need to bring extra brushes for your eyeshadows. While I may use up to 3-4 brushes to blend and such at home, I don’t want to clog up my luggage with brushes, so having a palette that contains a brush is a good thing. Another reason to use Urban Decay’s Naked Palette – it contains a travel sized primer potion as well. Score!


Again, along the veins of not bringing extra brushes, I bring blushes that either have a brush in them or doesn’t need brushes. I also bring a blush that is usually subtle and pink so that it will go with any of my usual colour combinations.

Examples of blushes that won’t need a brush is : Benefit’s Cheek Stains like Chacha tint or Posie Tint or Rimmel’s Mousse Blush.

I recommend: Benefit’s Posie Tint


Now if you have heeded my advice and picked up the Posie Tint (or any of Benefit’s Cheek stains) for that matter – you’d be saved a spot for lips. The stains work well for lips too, so voila! Instant lip colour!

However, if you rather not have the same colours or have chosen to use a different blush, then opt for a neutral or slightly pink lipstick. Think about your wardrobe that you will have with you and find the lipstick colour that will match the majority of it. Neutrals and muted pinks are the safest bets!

Unless of course, you are like me and you can’t go a day without a hot red lip. Then by all means, bring a hot red lippie.

I use: MAC’s Heartless

And that’s it! Really, that’s all you need for your holiday! If you have oily lids, then remember to throw in an eyeshadow primer but otherwise, this is really all you need. The bare minimum that will still allow you to be fresh faced and at your prettiest.

Of course, this is for shorter trips – within 2 weeks of holidaying. I’ll share again when I go on my one month long holiday at the end of the year and we’ll see if anything changes!

Submit a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge