My Favourite Travel Sized Companions

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.

Some of my favourite travel companions
Some of my favourite travel companions

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.

We’re All Moved….Except for the Organizing

Well, it has taken me longer than I thought it would to get moved, unpacked and most things even put away.  Plus, we didn’t have broadband here at the new flat until late last week!  I didn’t realize how much I depend on the Internet until I could only access it with spotty coverage from my mobile phone.  Yikes!  But finally we feel like we are settling in to the new flat and hopefully a few more days of organizing will get things in hand.

Since moving can be so stressful, I decided that I needed a bit of a reward, so I did a little shopping at FeelUnique.com and have a few things on their way to me as I type.  I didn’t get anything that exciting, but they were things I’ve been wanting to try.  So, here’s what I got:

As you can tell from this combination, I’m trying rather hard to get my skin to look a bit better, more even and less splotchy.  My skin has been looking pretty lousy lately, I’m not sure if it is just the stress from moving or (more likely) the lousy eating habits I’ve had for the last couple of weeks.  Well, and I haven’t been exercising either.  Given all of that, it’s not surprising that my skin looks so horrible, I guess.  Of course, I also have a few pigmentation problems from past sunburns and such.  I’ve decided that it is best to do something more long term to conquer the pigmentation problems as well as the natural dullness that comes with getting older.  In concert with that, I’m also trying to find a really great concealer for the splotchiness and the dark circles under my eyes.  Hopefully, this will help my skin look beautiful and lovely and not like I have a bunch of makeup piled on my face covering yucky skin.

I’ve read really good things about the Lancome DreamTone Dark Spot Corrector and I truly hope it lives up to all the hype.  You have to pick from three different skin tones – fair, medium, and dark.  Presumably/hopefully, this is because they are truly targeting things differently for the different skin tones.  In a test with 209 women they found that:

  • 70% saw a visible reduction in Dark Spots.
  • 84% saw a visible improvement in Skin Tone.
  • 80% saw a visible reduction in Colour Irregularities.

All of that sounds really great and makes me quite hopeful.  I’m going to do some photos so that I can track its effectiveness and then write up a post or two to let everyone know if it actually seems to work or not.  But I’m definitely keeping my fingers crossed!

As far as the concealers go, I read a lot of reviews and information.  I ended up choosing two that seemed to get good reviews and were in two different price ranges.  Certainly it would be great if the cheaper choice from theBalm worked really well and was a great option because who doesn’t like paying less for things that work well really.  And it does get really great reviews.  However, so does the Dior product, which is almost twice as much, naturally.  I can’t wait to see which concealer works best for me and my skin.

The other great thing that I discovered when I placed my order is that FeelUnique.com is now offering three free samples with your order of £30.00 or more.  And not only that, but you get to choose!  I was able to choose my three free samples from a selection of six.  Three were perfume and three were skin care products.  I’m not big on wearing perfume, so I went for the skincare products:

I love being able to try new things and these little samples are the perfect way to do that.  I’m really pleased that FeelUnique.com started doing this because they are more top choice for purchasing cosmetics, skin care, and hair products.  So, you can get three samples and free shipping. How can you not like that?

As a result of moving, my new project is organizing all of my makeup, skin care, hair products, and such.  I’ve been keeping all of my stuff in a couple of makeup bags for more than nine months while we were, so it will be great to have them out where I can actually see what I have.  Plus, I was reunited with all of the things I had in storage.  I found a few brand new things that I had forgotten about even.  It was almost like Christmas or my birthday!  It’s hard to find something that will keep things covered that require that but also make things nicely accessible and easy to find.  I’m still searching for the perfect thing though.  So far my favourite solution is a toolbox.  Yes, like you would keep a hammer and screw driver in normally.  It’s certainly not glamorous but they have the right type of compartments and can keep everything together in one handy place.  But I’m still looking for something that might be more girlie.

Lancome’s Teint Miracle Perfecting Concealer Pen

Lancome Teint Miracle Perfector Concealer Pen

This perfecting concealer pen really is multi-functional for you because it certainly works wonders on under eye darkness, as well as covers up blemishes of all varieties, plus it is great as an illuminator or highlighter.   And it does all of that really well, without feeling clumpy or heavy on your skin or looking greasy.  As a result of all that, this is one of my favourite items in my makeup kit now.  It’s as great as the Teint Miracle foundation, but it’s in this handy little pen-sized container, so you can easily take it with you in your purse, or even a pocket, for touch-ups.

When I originally got this, I wasn’t quite sure if I was going to like the pen form factor but it is really quite handy and very usable.  When you remove the cap, you see a little brush head, which is obviously where the product comes out.  This is a pretty clever idea because you’ve got concealer and brush all in one, so you don’t even have to get anything on your fingertips if you’re in a hurry.  To get the concealer to come out you push down on the other end which is a bit like a ballpoint pen really.  When the pen is brand new it will take a  few pumps to get the product to come out, but after that you should need just one pump to get a pretty good amount to come gently out of the end.  Don’t worry, it doesn’t squirt out or anything, it just kind of seeps into the brush part and you can barely notice it but it is there and ready to use.  I have made the mistake (so you won’t have to) of giving it a couple of pumps and that was just too much product for one application; so don’t do that!  Luckily, it blends so easily that I didn’t end up with a face full of concealer or anything horrible.  I actually don’t think anyone else would have noticed.

The ability for the concealer to blend in is certainly one of the things that makes it so great. I have found that if I use the brush on the end to get the product where I want it and then just pat it ever so lightly with my fingertips it blends right in and looks natural but definitely offers good coverage for all of your issues.  It’s really great for under eye darkness because it is a very light product with enough moisture to make it not emphasize lines or wrinkles.  We’ve all used under eye concealers that are too heavy or dry and just end up settling in the fine lines around the eye area and make you look worse than when you started.  It’s this same lightness that makes it work well for covering blemishes too.  It doesn’t make things look worse, but just kind of makes them blend in with the rest of your skin.

As a highlighter, I find this so easy to use and less ‘showy’, or obvious, than some of the other options you might try.  It highlights, sort of by magic it seems, because you don’t really notice it but it seems to brighten up the areas that you want to highlight, such as the area around your ‘cupid’s bow’ or across your brow bone, or even down the center of your nose to make your nose appear slimmer.  What really amazes me is that it works this way, but also covers blemishes and doesn’t just highlight them too.  Though, when I used it as a concealer, I used it under my foundation and as a highlighter I used it over it, so I guess that is probably the difference.

I also use the Teint Miracle foundation and the two products obviously work beautifully together, but it is amazing how truly beautiful and luminous they make your skin look.  I’m not sure what Lancome has in the formulation but it covers wonderfully without feeling heavy or even noticeable on your skin and it definitely doesn’t feel greasy or dry.  But it is the way it lightens everything up that is really cool.   I was amazed the first time I used them because my face looked incredible, in a way that it hasn’t in a few years, for sure.

Three concealer colours for you to choose from

I use the Peche Lumiere (02) colour in the corrector pen, which works hand-in-hand with the Lys Rose (02) colour for the foundation.  I’m not sure that I would have picked out the perfect colours for my skin tone because I almost always find that more challenging that I think it should be.  However, I went to the Lancome skin expert at Harrod’s and she set me up with the perfect colours, as well as all of the right choices from their skin care line too.  If you haven’t been to your Lancome skin care expert near you, I would really suggest it.  She analyzed my skin with some cool little machine and gave me a facial with all of the products that she suggested for my skin type.  But since they have such a full line up, you also get some input into what kind of stuff you like, so it is quite personalized, I think.  In any case, she also told me what colours of the foundation and concealer pen to buy and was spot on with her suggestions.

I purchased my Lancome Teint Miracle Perfecting Concealer Pen from FeelUnique.com, but obviously you could get it at your favourite Lancome retailer.  At FeelUnique the pen is £26.00 for 2.5 ml, unfortunately, they were having a sale recently but that’s over now now.  I was kind of bummed because I was going to buy a replacement to keep on hand since it was a bit less with the sale, however, they were out of my colour.  Isn’t that the way it always works out?  But even paying the full £26.00 it is totally worth it and I won’t hesitate to get it again.  Right now if you buy £50.00 worth of Lancome from their site though, you get a very nice gift of several products from the Hydra Zen collection worth £70.00.  So, it might be the perfect time to try out the great Teint Miracle Perfecting Pen and one or two of your other favoured Lancome products.