This In-Flight Skincare Routine Kept My Skin Hydrated From Sydney to L.A

Growing up in the United States and now living in Sydney, long-haul flights have been something I’ve just had to grow accustomed to over the past few years. No matter how much I prepare, no matter how many books I download and podcasts I queue up, it’s still a struggle to make that fourteen-hour trek from Sydney to Los Angeles somewhat semi-enjoyable. 

However, each time I do the trip, I do feel the age-old-adage ring true: Practice makes perfect. And while “practice” might seem like a weird concept to use for travelling, it is true that the more I do it, the better I get at it. From keeping my passport in an easily-accessible pocket to remembering a pen in my carry on for filling out the customs form, I’m beginning to hit my stride when it comes to the tortuous flight… But while all those little details are important, there’s one travel routine that outshines them all in my humble opinion: The in-flight skincare routine. 

Travelling is tough. The stress, odd hours, and dry air inside aeroplanes all add up to create an environment that is far from friendly to our skin. While it might be tempting to just give up altogether and worry about your skin once you reach your final destination,  I promise you that with a little effort put in, you’ll feel a whole lot better during and after the flight.

Figuring out just what to do is all about trial and error but never fear, I’ve suffered through that part so that you don’t have to. Coming out on the other side, I can tell you that this routine works — and my skin is perhaps even more glowy than before. Keep reading for my perfected in-flight skincare routine, and save this page to reference for your next long haul trip.

A Step-by-Step Breakdown of My In-Flight Skincare Routine

  1. I’m at the airport at an ungodly hour. I’ve drunk a coffee in an effort to hold off on sleeping for a few hours and am waiting to board the plane. But wait! First, I go to the bathroom and do a quick pre-flight pampering to prep my skin for fourteen hours in the air.
  2. To get off any grime that might have accumulated on my way to the gate, I wipe my face clean with a Bioderma Sensibio H20 Wipe. It’s like using micellar water, but the wipes are allowed on the plane. 
  3. Now that my skin is fresh, I apply some Truth Serum. Travel Hack: For aeroplane friendly products, use miniatures from gift sets. I rely on is the Let’s Get Luminous™ Brightening Essentials Set from Ole Henriksen. 
  4. Using products from the same set, I then apply the C-Rush Brightening Gel Crème. Once that soaks in, I finish things off with Banana Bright Eye Crème
  5. I’m on the plane now, high up in the sky and it’s time for a bathroom break. On the way, I grab my cosmetics bag from my backpack. I use the TPU Clear Case from Muji because it fits all the requirements for getting through security. 
  6. In the bathroom, I freshen up my skin with a quick spritz of Shake & Glow Luminous Setting Spray from L’Oreal. Yes, it’s a setting spray, but the coconut water helps my skin feel fresh and hydrated, even when I’m not wearing makeup — best to skip it on a long flight.
  7. Before “bedtime”, I repeat steps 2-4. Before putting on an eye mask to try and sleep.
  8. I know that sleep is an important part of any routine, so making sure I’m undisturbed while I snooze is essential. Any eye-mask will work, but I like this Silk Eye Mask from Slip.
  9. Upon landing, I go to the bathroom and repeat the entire routine again (steps 2-4). Throughout the day, I make sure to rehydrate and drink plenty of water. 

Do you have any tricks for keeping your skin healthy while flying?