How to Overcome the Effects of Air Travel On Your Skin

Taking a relaxing vacation is all fun and games until you break away from your skincare routine and expose yourself to a new environment, a combination that may have your skin looking and feeling out of sorts. While our skincare routines can be a sacred part of our mornings and evenings, sometimes you have to accept the fact that traveling will affect your skin, no matter how diligent you are. Adopting an in flight skin care routine, however, goes a long way in keeping your skin in check while traveling, allowing you to enjoy your vacay, sans the stress of imbalanced skin.

What Does Air Travel Do to Your Skin?

There are plenty of factors that cause changes in our skin during and after we travel. Much like how the winter can dry out our skin and cause it to be dull and irritated, traveling via airplane can cause similar effects. An airplane cabin is a low-humidity environment, which can cause skin to become dehydrated. In fact, most of the humidity that is present within the cabin is created by the exhalation of other passengers (ew).

If your skin is already dry, the drop in humidity can cause the build up of oil beneath dehydrated skin cells, while oily skin types will experience an increase in oil production - both conditions that can lead to breakouts or inflammation post-flight.

Stress is also a major factor in any disruptions to your normal skin balance, especially when it comes to unwanted breakouts post-vacay. Since stress affects our hormone levels, the stress caused by travel can offset your skin’s normal balance and lead to increased oil production that may cause pesky breakouts.

Your skin may also become dull while in transit thanks to the altitude and change in cabin pressure. Altitude impacts blood flow to the skin, so the higher the altitude, the lower your blood flow, stripping your skin of its gorgeous natural glow.

As if these changes weren't enough, the lack of movement associated with air travel can cause water retention that shows itself in the form of puffy undereyes. Add in a bag of salty pretzels mid-flight and the effect is only worsened. 

What Can You do to Avoid the Effects of Travel On Your Skin?

While traveling will inevitably try to wreak havoc on your skin, there are ways to combat your skin's tendency to revolt. 

While there's no magic product that will save you from the overall stress of traveling, sleep comes pretty close. Avoid the consumption of excess sugar and caffeine while traveling and try to take a nap mid-flight, even if it requires a sleeping mask and the window with a view down. When you wake up, apply a de-puffing eye cream.

Product Suggestion: Holiday Rescue Kit, $89.99

With stress pushed aside, your skin can lack some serious hydration, especially when it comes to trips with long-haul flights. To avoid dry, flaky skin at all costs, it’s important to prioritize hydration in your skincare routine. Opt for a toner that helps balance your skin by minimizing inflammation, moisturizing your skin, and slowing transepidermal water loss.

Product suggestion: Tone & Balance 1 oz, $5.99

Adding a hydrating serum to your inflight skincare routine can help keep flaky skin at bay. If your face gets dry all over, use a moisturizing serum all over your face as a soothing base that reduces redness, adds hydration, and helps retain skin moisture. Alternatively, use it as a spot treatment, adding it to areas of your face that are prone to dryness.

Product suggestion: Moisture Intensifier Serum 1 oz, $52.99

A trio of hydration isn’t going to hurt you, especially if you’re prone to dryness. Using a lightweight moisturizer in your inflight skincare routine will help restore your skin’s moisture and lock it in for a soothed, smooth face.

Product suggestion: Simply Hydration .24oz, $3.50

The skin on your face isn’t the only part of your body that may suffer in transit. Have a hand and body cream handy to treat dry hands, elbows, or knees to help with any inflammation and offer a protective barrier for your skin.

Product suggestion: Hand & Body Lotion 1oz, $6.99