Unsightly Skin When Traveling? Problem Solved.

February 15, 2017

For years, I thought I was alone in the airport skin battle. As soon as I boarded a plane, I knew the experience was going to wreak havoc on my skin – making it dry, sensitive and full of breakouts. I figured it was just my general stress or the traveling exhaustion that was putting such a toll on my skin when airbound, but it turns out, airplane skin is totally a thing. And Marie Claire opened my eyes.

Think about it: you’re trapped in the same gross air for hours on end. Every cough, speck of dirt and overall germy surface is recycled up at 35,000 feet, and the recirculated air makes for an extremely dry, moisture-free environment. Dry skin? It’ll get even drier. Oily skin? It’ll get oilier as it tries to make up for the lack of hydration. Add that in with the less-than-clean elements you’re exposed to, and it’s a total nightmare — especially if you’re kicking off a vacation.

Luckily, I’ve found an in-the-air skin regimen that has saved me from the perils of airplane skin. Trust me, it works, and I’ll be following these steps this week when I hop on a plane for a little R&R. All you have to do is follow these basic steps, and you’ll step off the runway feeling fresh.

What to pack in your carry on:

  • Hand sanitizer
  • Skin cleansing/makeup remover wipes
  • Overnight moisturizing mask
  • Hyaluronic acid (optional)
  • Face wash
  • Face lotion
  • Water

Step 1:

As soon as you’re settled in your seat, slather on that hand sanitizer and take out a face wipe. The wipe will remove any traces of makeup and clean your face after you’ve touched every surface of airport security (ew).

Step 2:

Once I have a clean canvas, I apply a drop or two of hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a molecule found naturally in your body, and has an amazing ability to retain moisture. You can forgo this, but as someone with extremely dry skin – especially in the winter – it’s a must.

Step 3:

Next step is to apply your overnight moisturizing mask. Yes, people might look at you a little crazy, so I recommend sticking to one that is clear. My favorites are Origins Drink Up-Intensive Overnight Mask or the Mario Badescu Seaweed Night Cream. Lather that sucker on to help combat the dry air in the plane.

Then sit back, relax, and don’t forget to chug water throughout the flight.

Step 4:

Once you land, head to the bathroom and wash off the mask. Something with gentle exfoliating beads will help get rid of any dead skin caused by dry skin, and if you don’t give your face a nice scrub, oil and bacteria can build up causing breakouts.

Step 5:

Apply some of your regular face lotion, and voila! Clean, moisturized and ready to take on your trip.