We take a lot of weekend trips, so over the last few years I’ve tried to get a good selection of travel sized beauty products. If we’re not going on a super long trip, I only carry hand luggage, which means I have to comply with airline regulations that I have all of my liquids in a clear quart sized bag and none of the items can be over 100ml. This is pretty annoying and restrictive, but I’ve found some really great multi-purpose products that fit into the small size requirements perfectly. Sometimes, I even have room left over in my quart sized bag.
1. DHC Deep Cleansing Oil, 70ml – I’ve written about this before because it is my daily facial cleanser of choice. It’s an ideal travel companion though because it does the work of two products but isn’t a space hog. It removes makeup and leaves your skin looking and feeling super clean but since it doesn’t strip it of its natural oils your skin still feels soft and not at all tight. I always use it to remove my makeup because it works so well on even really stubborn mascara. Plus, the oil texture means that you don’t have to worry about scrubbing at the delicate skin around your eye area to get your eye makeup off. You can only find this at the DHC website, but you can get it in two travel sizes now: 70ml for £11.00 or the really tiny 30ml version for £4.50.
2. La Roche-Posay Hydraphase Intense Light, 50ml – This is another great multi-purpose item. Depending on how heavy you put this on it is equally good as a day or night cream. It doesn’t have an SPF in it, but I’ve got another product for that, so it can be used to keep you skin hydrated and lovely all day and night. It has a nice light texture that works well under foundation because it isn’t too heavy feeling, and really, the lack of SPF means that you won’t get any of that shine in your holiday snaps either. At night I put this on a bit heavier and it works to keep my skin hydrated. You can get La Roche-Posay products at a number of chemists, but I get mine from FeelUnique for £16.50. They also have a formula that is thicker called Hydraphase Intense Rich for people with really dry skin, they sell a version of that with SPF too, both for £16.50 as well.
3. Chanel Perfection Lumiere Velvet, 30ml – I am loving this foundation. I haven’t had a chance to write my full review of this yet, but the condensed version is that I am a huge fan. This gives your skin a beautiful smooth, matt finish with an incredibly light texture even with its SPF15. It goes on as a liquid but dries to a powdery type finish, and that’s how it makes your skin look so great. It is light enough that you can use it under your eye area too without it settling into all of the fine lines and looking like a hot mess. This is great for travel because of the packaging, but also because you’ll look gorgeous on holiday. The packaging is very slim, flat, and compact so it fits in your little bag of liquids really well. This is the best liquid foundation packaging I think I’ve come across for traveling. Also, you don’t need to use a lot of it so this little bottle has good longevity. You can get this at Boots or Harrods for £33.00.
4. Lancôme Définicils High Definition Mascara, 6.5g – I’ve used this mascara for years and love it. It will always have a place in my mascara collection because of how you can use it to either get a very light coating or layer it up for a more dramatic look. The small brush is the key I think because it is can easily coat all of your lashes, upper and lower, without clumping. It’s nice for travel because of the slim packaging, which I’m sure they can achieve because of the small brush. Also, I never have a problem with this flaking after a long day, which is great since I wear contact lenses. Lately I’ve been getting my Définicils Mascara from FeelUnique for £22.50. You can use this without an eyelash curler because it will actually give your lashes a bit of curl it seems, or you can pack the very compact Muji Portable Eyelash Curler (£3.95) which takes up way less space in your travel bag than your traditional eyelash curler.
5. Aveda brilliant Retexturing Gel, 25ml – Dave and I have both been using this for years in our travel kit. It works really well to give your hair body and control without making it look dry or dull. I like it because I can use it to bring out my curl or to keep my hair sleek and smooth when I blow it out straight. This has all kinds of reasons for being in my travel bag really, not the least of which is that both Dave and I can use it and it works for curly or straight hair. It’s quite good for hold too, so sometimes I don’t even need to bother with hairspray, which means I can save that much more room. I’ve only had luck finding the travel sized version of the brilliant Gel from Aveda for £5.50.
6. L’Oreal Elnett Flexible Extra Hairspray, 75ml – Even though I just got through saying that I don’t always need hairspray with the Aveda gel, sometimes I do, it just depends on where we are traveling too. I like the L’Oreal Elnett Flexible Extra because it keeps my hair soft to the touch, and to the eye, but still manages to have great holding powers. I find this to be really useful when it is humid too because it doesn’t ever seem to get sticky like a lot of hairsprays. I normally get mine when I order from my groceries from Ocado for £2.50 because it seems to be less expensive than other places I’ve found it. It is kind of expensive for this little can, but I haven’t found a good replacement that is less expensive for a travel size.
7. bareMinerals Natural Sunscreen SPF 30, 4g – Okay, this doesn’t need to go into your clear baggie of liquids, but is something you should always take when you’re traveling. I’ve only been using this for about a month now, but I love it. The powder sunscreen works so well to protect my skin, but doesn’t feel heavy or make my face feel greasy or sweaty. I like that this does double duty as a way to protect my skin from the sun, but also as a light finishing powder to set my makeup. The packaging is nice because it comes with its own retractable brush so you don’t have to worry about bringing one along with you but is still really compact. This can easily tuck away in your carry on luggage or even your handbag. I got mine from FeelUnique for £21.95.
So, that’s not an exhaustive list of what’s in my travel bag, but these are the things that are always going to be in there. If you are looking for some other travel sized suggestions, Vogue recently had a great article with 20 petite products that they think are tops for travel.