Beauty Essentials for Travel

When it comes to my everyday makeup, I’m pretty simple: eyebrows, undereye concealer, and mascara. Sometimes I’ll throw bronzer and eyeliner into the mix if I’m feeling motivated enough. For someone who’s pretty into makeup, you’d think I’d be more into doing my makeup, but it just takes so much effort. Obviously for more special occasions (like an opening night, a nice dinner, or even get-togethers) I’ll glam up. But I really can’t be bothered to do a full face of makeup on a regular day of errands, work, and staying at home. This is why it used to be difficult for me to pack beauty items when I was travelling. I would either over pack--ready for any occasion from swimming to red carpets--or severely under pack--thinking that there really wouldn’t be much going on wherever I was going. Several years later, I pretty much pack the exact same beauty items that all fit perfectly into one small travel bag. Toiletries and skincare items are packed separately, but I’m hoping to one day condense it all!


One of the best purchases I ever made was the Lorac Pro Matte Palette. I can rave about this product for hours. Obviously, the colors were what first attracted me to this palette. I’m a big fan of neutrals and mattes, so this was the perfect palette for me. It also includes a beautiful burgundy shade for something a little different. These are seriously the only shadows I travel with. There’s no need for anything else! If you’re thinking, “but what about shimmery shades?!” Honestly, you can make these matte shades look super glam with a really winged out liner and a great highlighter. The other plus about this palette is that it’s tiny! I used to travel with giant palettes that wouldn’t even fit into my makeup bag, but this one is no bigger than my hand. It also has a really great mirror! For application, I use none other than Real Techniques brushes. Personally, I only need the “deluxe crease brush” and the “base shadow brush” to make things work.

Moving on to eyeliner, I travel with a tiny pot of the Maybelline Eye Studio gel eyeliner in “blackest black,” paired with the “fine liner brush” by Real Techniques. These two are a match made in heaven, and I cannot stress enough how amazing gel liner is. You can have a really crisp, winged out look, or thick smokey liner all with the same product!

Lastly for lashes, I travel with the Maybelline Volum’ Express Pumped Up! Colossal mascara (jeez) because it’s my Holy Grail mascara that will never fail me. Again, this product is versatile, creating sweet winged out lashes to super sexy thick ones. I also never use mascara without an eyelash curler.

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For my eyebrows, I only need two things: the e.l.f. eybrow kit in Medium and the Real Techniques “brow brush.” I’ve tried so many brow products, from pencils and gels, high end and drugstore, but something about this little e.l.f. duo just does it for me! It’s honestly my perfect shade and I can play it up or down, using both the gel and the powder, or just using one or the other depending on the type of look I want to go for. And again, shout out to Real Techniques for honestly making the best affordable brushes!


My most used “face” makeup has got to be the Maybelline Instant Age Rewind concealer. I use it under my eyes, which is what it’s marketed for, but I also blend it out into the rest of my face, usually nose and cheeks, sometimes chin. This stuff provides such great coverage, but it’s so light that it feels like you’re not wearing any makeup at all! If I’m going out and I want a nicer, wider coverage, I’ll use the Maybelline Dream Pure BB cream, which is also such a great product! Lastly, to conceal any spots, I’ll use the NYX HD Concealer. The best thing about these three products is that they’re all really lightweight, but also buildable! To apply, I use (surprise) the Real Techniques “buffing brush.” Setting powder is so essential to me because I don’t think I can rock the dewy look. The NYX HD finishing powder is great because it doesn’t completely mattify your face, but it definitely keeps things in place and prevents you from looking greasy and sweaty. I like applying this with a flat e.l.f. powder brush. Last, but certainly not least, a duo from the heavens, the NYX matte bronzer and NYX illuminator will make you look flawless! These are my two favorite products to use if I want take my look up a couple of notches. They’re great for travelling because the packaging is small and lightweight, but also because it can totally transform your look!

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In the past I’ve travelled with upwards of ten lipsticks. I usually end up only using 2 or 3. This has been one of my biggest lessons about travelling with beauty products: don’t overdo it! Lip colors are another thing that can totally transform your makeup look, and if you haven’t guessed by now, that’s the most important part about your travel makeup: taking products that can give you multiple looks! I like taking pretty diverse colors but I usually limit myself to 4 or 5 lippies. This time I brought with me all mattes by total accident! I brought the Revlon Ultra HD Matte Lip Color in “Seduction,” the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in “Antwerp,” the Revlon Matte Balm in “Sultry,” the Revlon Matte Lipstick in “Really Red,” and the Revlon Matte Lipstick in “Wine Not.” These are a good mix of nudes, pinks, and reds! Seduction and Wine Not are two of my staples, and obviously over the holidays you need a classic red (cannot recommend this Revlon one enough!). Lastly, for days where I keep the makeup to a minimum, I like to throw on my strawberry flavored ChapStick!

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Well, that is truly all the makeup I travel with. You’ve got all your essentials, a few bits to really turn those every day items into a full-faced, night out look, and everything in between.

Happy Holidays!