Inflight Skincare Routine in Four Easy Steps
Inflight Skincare Routine in Four Easy Steps

Inflight Skincare Routine in Four Easy Steps

Okay, so, question: what actually counts as a long haul flight? Four hours or more? Because even two hours spent in that recycled air is pretty rough on my skin. Moral of the story: I’m fairly serious about my inflight skincare and beauty routine.

If you’ve packed smart, all your inflight skincare necessities will be within reach in your quart-size, TSA-approved bag…or just straight non-liquid products. (I think the word I am searching for there is “solid.”) Now, here’s what to do with them once onboard:


If you have time before boarding, it’s not a bad idea to wash your face before you actually get on the plane. Otherwise, hightail it to the plane lavatory to wash your face before everyone else gets in there, or use a makeup wipe when you get to your seat. Neutrogena makes the absolute best cleansing wipes, and they come in handy travel packs, too!


This is the quickest and easiest way to quench your thirsty, thirsty skin. They’re not kidding about that recycled plane air, guys. Grab a travel-size bottle of your favorite facial spray or micellar water, and spritz liberally throughout flight.


I think I’ve made that exact same dumb joke before, sorry. But seriously: slather that stuff on, and slather it good. I love love love a heavy-duty moisturizer like Glamglow’s Thirstymud, while others swear by facial oils for maximum hydration. Be sure to use some eye cream, as well. Samples from Sephora, Nordstrom or Kiehl’s are seriously perfect for this. Top it all off with a swipe of lip treatment, like my new favorite, Bite’s Agave Lip Mask, or a solid like Fresh’s classic Sugar Lip Balm.


If you have thick, dry and/or coarse hair, consider bringing along a hair oil, like Ouai’s, or multi-purpose oil, like Caudalie’s, that you can use in-flight. Your hair isn’t immune to the drying effects of plane air! Same goes for your hands, too, so don’t forget about those. Instead of bringing a separate hand cream, I like Kiehl’s Creme de Corps as a great allover moisturizer while traveling.

And, of course, hydrate hydrate hydrate… with plain old boring water, that is. Alcohol is super drying and dehydrating, so it’s simply not worth it to me to drink on the plane. It’s also literally kind of not worth it, since drinks in-flight tend to be super expensive (if you’re not lucky enough to be in first or business class, that is). Unless, of course, it’s a legitimate long-haul flight and I am taking a page out of Kate Moss’s book: one glass of red wine and then sleep the rest of the way.


If you don’t mind odd looks from your fellow passengers, apply a sheet mask following moisturizer. If you are like me, and for whatever reason seem to care what your fellow passengers think, skip the sheet mask for a classic cream/gel mask that’s a little less conspicuous. Or just do eye masks — less conspicuous and extra hydrating on a flight. Sephora makes my favorite sheet and eye masks, and once again, I love samples for the non-sheet variety! Kiehl’s and Aesop both do a great version, and you can find one that suits your individual skincare needs practically anywhere.

Do you have any in-flight skincare rituals or tips? Share them in the comments below!

Image: Vienna Wedekind