Illustrations by Alex Marino.
We’ve been awaiting summer for more reasons than we can count — long weekends, the return of cold brew — but above all else, we’re ready for a hard-earned vacation. Whether you’re leaving town for a quick jaunt to the beach or planning an around-the-world trip, we’re guessing you want to look your best in every travel #selfie. But you also want to lug around as little as possible. That’s where we come in.
We’ve rounded up the very best beauty products to streamline any carry-on beauty kit. From a small-but-mighty blowdryer to a multitasking Burt’s Bees lipstick, you’ll have everything you need at your final destination and even en route to it. Your prettiest adventure starts now.
A Futuristic Shaving Kit
This colorful little disc is packed with everything you need for a shaving session. There’s a razor, a bar of solid shaving cream, and even a spray bottle of water. It works everywhere — from a luxe hotel room to a campground.
Sphynx Razor 3-in-1 Anywhere Razor, $14.99, available at Ulta Beauty.
Cooling Eye Balm
Eye cream is often one of those “extras” that gets left at home when packing space is limited. But let us assure you, it’s worth making room for this eye balm. Glide on the solid (read: carry-on friendly) stick to soothe and de-puff tired undereye areas. It’s packed with nourishing ingredients like goat milk, manuka honey, and plant stem cells — and feels refreshingly cool to the touch.
Kate Somerville Goat Milk De-Puffing Eye Balm, $38, available at Sephora.
Lugging around an entire makeup collection isn’t exactly the move of a savvy traveler. That’s why lipsticks are vacation-beauty game changers. A swipe of bold color instantly brightens your entire face. And, in a pinch, you can use your fingertips to blend the product over the apples of your cheeks. Our hands-down pick is Burt’s Bees Lipstick for its all-natural, super-moisturizing formula.
Burt’s Bees Lipstick, $9, available at Burt’s Bees.
Single-Serve Hair Treatments
Planning to ravage your hair with heavy doses of sun, saltwater, and ponytails? We’ll allow it — as long as you do a little rehab along the way. Each box of these Ouai Treatment Masques contains eight single-serve packs of conditioning treatment, so you can easily tote one or two in your toiletry kit.
Ouai Treatment Masque, $32, available at Ouai.
Spill-proof, easy, disposable — wipes are a traveling girl’s best friend. We were instantly enamored when we found these fragrance wipes that are so tiny you could easily slip them into your wallet. Each set comes with 20 towelettes infused with one of 10 scents (two of each). They range from inventive florals and zingy citrus-y varieties to a warm, delicious blend of vanilla and caramel.
Pinrose Parfum à Go-Go!, $24, available at Sephora.
Serum-Loaded Sheet Masks
Airplanes can zap the moisture right out of your skin, which is why wearing a sheet mask in-flight has become a tried-and-true celeb/model travel secret. Sure, you’ll catch side-eye doing it, but it’s worth it if you can emerge looking baby-faced, right? Go for a hydrating formula on the flight there to keep skin plump and radiant. Then, try a calming, atone-for-those-vacation-sins version on the trip back.
The sheer, lightweight formula of this cushion compact is perfect for on-the-go touch-ups without the mess. Plus, it’s spiked with SPF 50, so you’ll stay protected whether you’re museum-hopping indoors or sightseeing outside.
Physicians Formula Mineral Wear® Talc-Free All-in-1 ABC Cushion Foundation SPF 50, $16.95, available at Physicians Formula.
A Compact Hairdryer
The wimpy, in-room blowdryers at hotels never fail to disappoint. Enter this scaled-down version of T3’s cult favorite. It’s super-powerful, comes packed with ionic technology to cut down on frizz, and has a folding handle. So you’ll have that much more room to pack the really important stuff — like shoes.
T3 Featherweight Compact Folding Dryer, $150, available at Ulta Beauty.
Sunscreen is a non-negotiable — especially when you’re traveling and racking up extra time outdoors. But a face full of chalky, white residue screams “tourist” just as loudly as a fanny pack. This gel version from Cover FX goes on clear and stays clear. It’s loaded with skin-nurturing ingredients (squalene, sesame extract, and antioxidants) and, unlike many other SPF behemoths, clocks in at a slim, TSA-friendly one ounce.
Cover FX Clear Cover Invisible Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30, $45, available at Sephora.
A Palm-Sized Hair Brush
The teeny, unassuming plastic teeth on this palm-sized brush are seriously genius. Specifically designed for tangles, they comb through snarled hair, removing knots gently and efficiently. Pack it in your beach bag for ouch-free poolside detangling.
Tangle Teezer The Original, $15.12, available at Tangle Teezer.
By: Alyssa Hertzig.