Good to Go

These travel-ready cosmetics 
are all about convenience.

Wendy Duren Health & Wellness


111 East


My summer months are travel-heavy with weekend weddings, short excursions to see friends, and even a proper island vacation. Whether the trip is for a couple of days or a couple of weeks, preparing to travel leaves me feeling short on time and full of anxiety. So when it comes to my beauty bag, I crave convenience.

TSA-approved bottles are easy enough to find, but it’s a hassle to decant lotions, creams, and serums (to say nothing of the contaminants you’re exposing your products to in the process). And once home again do you actually use the product remaining in the travel-friendly containers? Or do you, as I have, forget about those bottles until you need them for the next trip, letting the leftover product go to waste?

Foil sample packets are any traveler’s best friend. Upscale retailers are generous in handing these things out with beauty purchases. When I receive samples of products that I use regularly, I immediately toss them into my travel bag. They are good for one, and often a few, applications, but are seldom enough to fill out a full skin care routine for more than a couple of days. Fortunately for those of us with longer getaways on the books, Macy’s, Ulta, Anthropologie, and Sephora have dedicated travel sections stocked with slimmed-down sizes of your favorite skin care and makeup items. Yes, the price per ounce or gram is higher, but the convenience is well worth it.

Flying makes me uncomfortable for many reasons — chiefly because hurling through the air in a metal tube strikes me as very wrong, but also because the recirculated air in those metal tubes is murder on the skin. To combat moisture loss, I like to apply a sheet mask early in the flight (really, it doesn’t matter what the other passengers think — keeping your skin hydrated is what’s important here). SK-II Facial Treatment Masks ($135, Saks Fifth Avenue) are the best hydrating and radiance-boosting sheet masks I’ve encountered. I use them as part of my weekly skin care routine, and since they’re individually wrapped it’s easy to keep them in a carry-on.

These drops will whiten and brighten and chase the red away, offering a result
that Visine simply can’t. they will also make 
you look like an alien if you allow the 
blue drops to come in contact with your skin.

Anything from Elizabeth Arden’s Eight Hour collection of products will lock moisture into your skin, but I especially like the Cream Lip Protectant Stick SPF 15 ($22, Macy’s), which is basically the balm version of the Eight Hour Cream. Whether your lips dry out in transit or chap in the sun, this colorless balm will maintain hydration and softness.

If traveling — or having too good a time at your destination — leaves you with red eyes, Collyre Bleu Eye Drops ($35, will change your life. These drops will whiten and brighten and chase the red away, offering a result that Visine simply can’t. They will also make you look like an alien if you allow the blue drops to come in contact with your skin, so some dexterity in application is a must. Thus, this is not a product I recommend using in transit unless you are practiced in doing so and even then, well, save this for the moment you’re on solid ground. No one was ever complimented for looking like a Smurf.

The website is curated and run by celebrity makeup artist Fiona Stiles and everything on the site is worthy of your travel bag. Many products you won’t find elsewhere, like Arpin’s Hand Bag Mirror ($140). I like this double-sided mirror for its normal and seven-times magnifying reflections. Thanks to the magnified side I can apply my eyeliner exactly where I want it wherever I am, even from my seat inside a giant metal tube soaring across the sky.

And no worries if you forget to pack something. I’m sure everyone I just mentioned will be happy to express-mail their product to wherever you’re going.