In the Travel Bag

Writer Kate O'Brien | May 31, 2015

Whether this summer is the beach, the south of France, the cooler mountain air or some last-minute preparation for the Gobi Desert, Ecuador or Sahara challenges, be prepared.

Even if you are seated in the coveted ‘1A’, right up front, don’t depend on the in-flight goodies to tide you over. On-board amenities these days seem to focus more on the actual bag rather than the goodies inside. The in-flight bags are so good with designs from brands like Jake Spade, Bulgari and Anya Hindmarch. If you’re not up front, but on the lookout for a chic handy carry- on, then Hindmarch’s newest bright neon yellow In Flight travel case is designed with patent leather with a clear exterior that is ideal for travelling through airport security.

Air travel is part of the working week for Kathy Phillips, former Vogue beauty director and founder/creative director of cult skincare brand This Works. She won’t leave home without her personalised kit. “I probably travel more than most and because of this I have several cosmetic bags packed ready for overnight or week-long trips, business or holiday. I never make do with what might or might not be available at my destination,” she says. Her chosen essentials are well beyond what you can find inflight – primarily because they were formulated to deliver on the move. Two mega moisturisers, one with an advanced sun protection factor and one that acts as a multitasking mask, primer and moisturiser in one – This Works Camera Close Up, which is amongst her favourites (Victoria Beckham’s too apparently) as it is packed with hyaluronic acid to keep the skin plumped.

Seasoned travellers from the beauty world wear minimal make-up when flying to let their skin breathe – at most, a small amount of tinted moisturiser and lots of hand cream and lip balm (which is also great for the cuticles) or tinted lip gloss to help trap moisture around the lips. Close to landing, an ice cube put over each eyelid for a few minutes will help reduce any swelling followed by a little tinted moisturiser and highlighter for added glow. A bit of blush is all Phillips applies before she lands.

It goes without saying that water is the key to fending off dehydration in-flight. Rather than depending on the nasty plastic glasses handed out (unless of course you’re still up front where you can request your personal bottle) bring your own and refill it. Caffeine and alcohol are best avoided.

Everyone knows sun cream is essential for every holiday, but here’s a quick recap as to why: Sunscreens contain either physical (micronised Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide) or chemical (eg Octinoxate or Avobenzone) barriers against the sun’s rays. Physical barriers reflect or scatter the UV rays giving broad protection from UVA and UVB, while chemical barriers act by absorbing the UV radiation before it penetrates the skin. Whether you choose the physical or chemical version, make sure it’s broad spectrum and always use enough to adequately protect your face and body – the WHO says that approximately 35ml of sunscreen must be applied to the total body surface of an adult to result in the SPF quoted on the tube. So as a rough guideline, one 100ml tube of sunscreen should last for approximately three whole- body applications. That’s a lot of sunscreen and seems to be where most well-meaning people fail to comply. Reapply every couple of hours.

The problems caused by extreme hot and extreme cold need to be addressed specifically before a trip
~ Kathy Phillips