Scenic side panel
Scenic side panel

How to stay fresh on a long-haul flight

Smooth takeoff? Check. Preferred seat acquired? Check. Newborns at maximum distance? Partial check. Next dilemma: surviving the flight and exiting the arrival gates without looking like Medusa’s sister.

Smooth takeoff? Check. Preferred seat acquired? Check. Newborns at maximum distance? Partial check. Next dilemma: surviving the flight and exiting the arrival gates without looking like Medusa’s sister.

Please sympathise with me (especially if you’re from Australia) – long flights can be PAINFUL, particularly if you’re inadequately prepared. After travelling thousands of kilometres and enduring many sleepless flights, I have finally reached the essential in-flight beauty commandments:


Thou shalt always be prepared

L'Occitane Haul Mystery Grab Bag 2

The cardinal rule while travelling is to be organised – get a spray tan, dye your eyebrows and plan your on-board beauty essentials BEFORE you fly. Collect miniatures of your favourite beauty products prior to flying so you aren’t weighed down by bulky bottles and unnecessary products. Make sure everything is packed into a clear, zip-lock bag and it’s easy to access during the flight – that way you can maintain your routine with ease. Changing into pyjama-style pants after take-off also makes the process THAT much more enjoyable!


Thou shalt not wear makeup while flying


Wearing makeup on a flight has no purpose (unless, of course, you’re sitting next to Ryan Gosling). First step is to take off any traces you’ve got left on your face – and if you can’t go completely bare just leave on your mascara and eyebrows product. I like to use a couple of cottons pads soaked in Bioderma because it naturally rebuilds your skin’s hydrolipidic film and works a treat on dry, sensitive skin. Just a warning though – prepare to get addicted to this stuff, it is truly amazing!


Thou shalt remember that moisturiser is your best friend

Aesop Primrose Facial Hydrating Cream

Repeat after me: hydration, hydration  hydration. Slather on an intense facial moisturiser (mine’s Aesop’s Primrose Facial Hydrating Cream), then wait about 5 minutes and apply again. The moisture levels on planes can drop to 10% so you want to make sure you’re skin isn’t thirsty, and neither are you! Drink plenty of water – whenever the flight attendant walks around with a tray of water, take two and sip slowly. Your bladder might hate you for it, but your skin will ADORE you (and return the favour by looking alive and fresh)! Oh, and don’t forget your lips (Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream), eyes (Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment), hands (L’Occitane Roses et Reines Hand & Nail cream ) and nails (Revitanail Nourishing Oil).


Thou shalt remember the importance of masques

Dermalogica Skin Hydrating Masque

Moisture masques are the BEST for long-haul flights. I prefer ones that a) are clear (for obvious reasons) and b) contain Hyaluronic Acid. Sounds kinda scary, I know, but it’s able to penetrate the skin’s innermost layers and can hold 6x its weight in water – therefore locking-in any moisture on your skin. WIN! Before applying the masque I also prep with a facial toner so my skin is uber-hydrated and soft. Jurlique’s Rosewater Balancing Mist smells like heaven and works a dream paired with Dermalogica’s Skin Hydrating Masque.


Honour thy hair

Batiste Dry Shampoo Tropical

Let’s face it, after a 12+ hour flight, no one’s hair is going to look immaculate. BUT, there are a number of ways to combat post-flight flathead syndrome. Firstly, invest in a dry shampoo – great for a bit of root lift (and adding a hint of fragrance). My favourite is Batiste Dry Shampoo Tropical, miniature size of course. During the flight I’ll use a few drops of MoroccanOil on my ends so they don’t end up looking ragged and ratty and put my hair in a loose braid so it doesn’t tangle if by some miracle, I manage to fall asleep.


Love thy sleep

Hannah - sleeping mask

Last but not least, try to get as much sleep as possible. I am the biggest procrastinator when it comes to sleeping on flights – somehow I always seem to get distracted between repeats of America’s Next Top Model and The Little Mermaid. Sad, I know. Try to get your hands on some Melatonin (a natural sleep-enhancing aid) make sure you have a pair of noise-cancelling earphones and invest in a silk eye-mask (this works WONDERS – SLIP Pure Silk Sleeping Mask is my absolute favourite). Then you can start dreaming of the sun on your skin, a margarita in your hand and next thing you know… You will have arrived!

Happy travels 🙂