While we love travelling to countries far and wide, getting to our chosen destination by plane can be quite taxing indeed. Flying doesn’t just wear us out both mentally and physically, though – the recycled air that goes through every cabin can seriously dry your skin out and wreak havoc on your complexion. This is why you’ll see tons of airplane beauty routines all over YouTube, because in-flight skincare can truly make a difference to your epidermal health and ensure you step out of the plane looking fresh and well-rested.
This week, we challenged ourselves to pick out the one beauty item that we must have when we board the plane – and boy, it wasn’t easy.
Lush Ultrabalm, $38, available at Lush stores and online
“Immersed in the Lush universe during a press trip in London two months ago, I picked up the Ultrabalm and have gotten a ton of use out of it since. Housed in a convenient tin, I whip it out and swipe a tiny amount on rashes, chapped lips, dry hands, hair, brows, my tattoo, and even my nostrils when it gets ridiculously arid on the plane (I don’t double-dip, okay). There are only three ingredients in the formula: jojoba oil, candelilla wax, and rose wax, which all work to soothe and moisturise parched patches of skin. It may be a balm, but due to jojoba oil’s affinity with our sebum, it’s absorbed much quicker and doesn’t leave a greasy slick on the skin. Apart from a faint rose scent from the wax, there’s no added fragrance, which is a surprising discovery since Lush is known for their distinct scents detectable from miles away, so the fragrance-free formula makes it perfect for my sensitive skin.” – Jade Yeo, Writer
suisai Beauty Clear Powder, $27, available at Welcia BHG
“I have this incessant need to cleanse my face before I sleep, especially if it’s a long haul flight. Previously I used to hog all the mini facial cleanser bottles and sample packets that I received whenever I bought skincare products so that I can use them on the plane. I’ve just discovered this wonderful cleanser by suisai that comes in powder form and is packaged into little capsules for one-time use. All you have to do is open the packet, add some water to lather it up and clean your face! The enzymes in the powder also helps to exfoliate, leaving your face squeaky clean. The small capsules are the perfect size to bring on the plane or when you go on short trips. I’ve just stocked up on them since I’ll be traveling a fair bit these couple of months!” – Michelle Ng, Writer
Estée Lauder Re-Nutriv Replenishing Comfort Crème Light (50ml), available at all Estée Lauder counters
“I have super dry skin – so dry that I still slather on ultra-rich moisturisers every night in Singapore’s high humidity levels of 85 per cent. It’s so bad that I’m not sure if I have eczema on my face, or I’m just naturally prone to flaky and red skin. When I get onto an airplane, where the humidity levels are at around 20 per cent, it gets worse; I have to physically resist the urge to claw at my forehead. Not wanting to sound like the Estée Lauder spokesperson for this, but Estée Lauder’s Comfort Crème is really like a miracle cream. I can’t help but gush about it because it truly works. The amazing thing is that you don’t even have to use that much product, just a tiny blob around the size of your pinky nail soothes the itch and lessens the redness. Definitely my go-to product when I travel, since I need it to survive the dry cabin air.” – Pailin Boonlong, Writer
The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask, $32.90, available at The Body Shop stores
“I’m not a frequent flyer, but I’m never one to miss the opportunity to protect and nurture my skin. As someone who used to suffer from terrible acne in my T-Zone, I always prioritise that area of my face to ensure it doesn’t break out. If I had to curate a travel-friendly skincare kit, I would definitely bring a pore-cleansing face mask, a spot-treatment and sunscreen lotion. My favourite mask to use is Body Shop’s Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Glow Mask. Whenever I put it on, I feel extra taken care of when I can feel it actually tugging my skin taut and releasing a fresh, rejuvenating scent. While it’s kind of a pain to remove, I find my skin visibly brighter after use. ” – Marcus Lee, Editorial Intern
Avene Eau Thermale Thermal Spring Water 50ml, $10, available at Watson’s stores
“With our weather being what it is, this facial mist is a welcome companion on days when I’m out in the sun for hours on end. It goes on light and possesses no odor – great for cooling and soothing dry skin. Conveniently, it comes in a 50ml can which fits nicely in my carry-on, making it a practical travel buddy that gets the job done. It also has a budget-friendly price tag to boot!” – Patrene Mathieu, Designer
Smith’s Rosebud Salve In A Tube, $6, available at Sephora
“To be honest, I don’t really bring a lot of skincare products with me when I’m on the plane as most flights I’ve been on are quick ones that take less than 5 hours but the one product I always carry with me is a lip balm! My lips tend get really dry when I’m flying so I always ensure that I bring one with me to keep them moisturised. My current favourite is Smith’s Rosebud Salve. It gives the lips a slightly glossy look, keeps the lips moisturized for long hours and it’s not heavy or sticky. Especially obsessed with the pretty packaging and the rose scent!” – Nurasyiqin Sedik, Media Executive
Origins Make A Difference Plus + Rejuvenating Moisturiser, $82, available at Origins outlets
“The best thing you can do to keep your skin hydrated is drink plenty of water and this applies more so on a plane. A super dehydrating element whist flying is the air-conditioning. For those who have been on a long haul flight, would attest to wanting the right consistency in temperature that doesn’t leave you feeling like a prune or like an icy pop. I always make sure I pack a small toiletry bag with my on the go products, one of which is the Origins Make a Difference Plus+ Rejuvenating Moisturiser. I received a sample of this moisturiser recently and have been squeezing to use every last drop. With the help of ingredients like Lychee and self-hydrating Rose of Jericho, my skin feels hydrated and relaxed. ” – Eleni Kontorigas, Media Executive