Keep airplane acne, travel breakouts and skin irritation at bay. Here’s how you can look great in all your holiday photos and feel amazing with clear skin.
It’s the time of the year where everyone is flying off to some destination or another, fulfilling their year-long wanderlust and of course, taking lots of impressive photos for the ‘gram.
Unfortunately, traveling can do a number on your skin. Partly owing to the fact that you’ve forsaken your good old regular skincare products for random travel-sized toiletries you found in your cabinet, and partly because of the stress your skin has been through on the journey.
What Causes Travel Breakouts?
We’ve all been there. Your skin is perfectly fine and dandy pre-takeoff but when you arrive at your destination, everything becomes haywire. Your T-zone is oilier than usual, areas of skin that usually are normal and balanced, like the cheeks, feel dry and sandpapery, and lips become horribly chapped. All these problems point to one culprit: parched aeroplane air.
Air pressure is not the only thing that goes haphazard in the course of a flight, the humidity levels on a plane can plummet to 80 percent lower than normal levels. What this means for your skin? If your skin type is normal to dry it becomes almost desiccated and dehydrated. If it is oily, expect oil production to be ramped up to oil slick levels.
Pre-Trip Scrub Off
Another chief cause of breakouts is dead skin, which clogs up pores and causes congestion, so a good preventative step is exfoliation.
The best way to do it is with an alpha hydroxy acid, in the form of a facial wash or an at-home peel, that will help to remove the dry, dead layer of skin on the surface and help to clear congestion in your pores.
Hydration, Hydration, Hydration — From The Inside and Outside
Dryness is the biggest offender that causes skin to breakout or peel. In areas that are dry with less active sebum glands, skin becomes so dry it tends to peel or feel really rough and look dull. And on the other hand, when sebum-active skin starts to get drier, it activates more oil production in a bid to rehydrate itself. Often this is overcompensation and skin gets super oily leading to a breakout. This is because when excess oil mixes with dirt and bacteria, it makes skin a breeding ground for zits and acne.
Remedy the sitch by drinking plenty of plain water to keep your skin hydrated from the inside out. Forego the alcohol from the beverage cart (if you can resist) as drinking alcohol causes your body to dehydrate even more.
Before you leave for the airport (and after the exfoliation we recommended in the earlier point), meticulously layer on the hydration with a hydrating softener and serum, followed by a good dose of moisturising emulsion and a light layer of richer cream to seal it all in. Pst… This skincare routine also helps to protect skin from external aggressors like pollution and germs, which, as you know, the plane is full of, being an enclosed space with hundreds of other people.
Essential Sun Protection
This should go without saying but you’ll definitely want to follow up your exfoliation and moisturisation skincare sesh with SPF. Even if you’re not flying you need a good slathering of sunscreen.
And you do know that UV rays are much more intense at higher altitudes, don’t you? What’s more, with the thinner air up there, the sun’s harmful radiation reaches your skin much faster too. So keep those window shutters closed and for the times the air crew require them open for safety reasons during take-off and landing, a good layer of sunscreen will save your face.
Skip The Makeup If You Can
Once your freshly exfoliated face is moisturised and protected from UV radiation, it is best to stop there, i.e. Do not apply makeup…. If you can. Just like you don’t sleep in your makeup, leaving makeup on your face during long periods of travel can lead to clogged pores and breakouts.
But if you must makeup, keep it as simple as possible with a tinted moisturiser or a lightweight BB cream and clean it off thoroughly as soon as you reach your hotel or airbnb. A session of detox with a deep cleansing mask won’t hurt either post-flight.
Calm Body, Calm Mind, Calm Skin
Keep stress in check as anxiety, lack of sleep and elevated stress levels can knock your skin off balance too. Get enough rest on holiday, as much as you want to see it all and do it all. And don’t forget about jet-lag and the impact it can cause on your body. Pop a melatonin pill and get more rest when you first reach a destination before you kick it into high gear with all the sight-seeing, shopping and experiences.
Some helpful aids you might want to pack on your trip (besides all the skincare mentioned above and melantonin pills) — a relaxing lavender scented candle, an eye shade for napping, lip balm to keep puckers smooth and hydrated, and probiotic pilld to keep your digestive track healthy and balanced during your trip.
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