When the travel bug bit me, it bit me big time and left me filled with all the delicious juiciness that comes with exploring another country. It’s an opportunity to enjoy timeless moments with the people you love and really take the time to be present. Time passes us in the blink of an eye, especially when you are travelling and to really savor the moments you in, you need to push pause and take it all in. I love to wander to streets of a city and get lost in the culture and really absorb the essence of an unknown place. I love how after a few days, what was unfamiliar suddenly becomes recognisable as you get your bearings and find your way. While I can’t say I have been to many overseas cities, the ones I have been to have swept me off my feet and left me yearning for more. With my passport itching to be stamped again, an invitation to our friend’s wedding in Germany was all the persuading I needed to plan a little trip (despite our rather dismissal exchange rate that makes you clutch your chest and break out into a cold sweat as you swipe your credit card…) My last Flight Essentials post got you covered for local flights but with a few long-haul flights coming up, I got to thinking about what else I’m going to take in my carry-on. As much as my heart skips a beat with the excitement of airports and flying, when you have a long lay-over or you can’t sleep, things can get pretty tedious and you can end up looking (and feeling) rather rough around the edges.
“Travelling. It leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller” – Ibn Battuta
Here’s the low-down on what’s going to keep me occupied on the plane and looking fresh on the other side:
1. Travel Pillow: I had never traveled with one of these before and then my mom got me this gorgeous one that actually doubles as a rectangular pillow too and they made a HUGE difference. It’s bean filled and super soft with a velour fabric finish on the one side. I don’t know how I managed before but I love it. They give your neck just enough support while sleeping so you don’t wake up with a stiff neck and stops your head from dropping onto your shoulder every time you nod off! If I could only take one item on the plane I think this would be it. Most luggage shops stock them and Woolworths have their own range too. This Go Travel 2-in-1 Pillow Duo is from the AA Travel Experience shop in Cavendish Connect.
2. Face Wipes: As much as I love Garnier Micellar Water (it’s been in two of my previous posts already – check it out here), their travel size is just too big to take on board at 125ml so I’ll be taking face wipes with me instead. I don’t wear much make-up when I’m travelling but I won’t go totally bare faced and I definitely won’t sleep with make-up on so when the lights go off, I take my make-up off, brush my teeth and am ready for bed 🙂 I love that Garnier has brought out Micellar Extra Gentle Cleansing Wipes and although I prefer the water, these work just as well when you need a quick fix. They are soothing and moisturising and even remove waterproof make-up (if you need it to) They contain the same ingredients as the water and are alcohol and colourant free and gentle on your skin. They are slightly thicker than other wipes I’ve tried and are super soft. I’ll always prefer washing my face but these work well when you need an on-the-go solution. I always make sure I moisturise afterwards to keep my skin hydrated and try avoid it drying out on the plane. I picked these up from Dischem for R32.95 for a pack of 25.
3. Sorbet BB Cream: Minimal make-up while travelling! BB Cream is great as it gives you enough coverage but is still light and doesn’t clog your pores. BB Cream (Beauty Balm) is specially designed to provide moisturisation, sun protection and sheer coverage for radiant looking skin – it can also be used as a primer if you are looking for a fuller coverage. Over and above the hydration benefits, they also contain antiaxidants and anti-aging ingredients – all in one little tube! I love Sorbet’s BB Cream as it blends into your skin beautifully and a little really goes a long way. It minimises pores and evens out your skin tone and with SPF 15, you protected from the sun’s rays. I use it everyday but it’s especially great when traveling as I can quickly apply it before getting off the plane and my skin looks bright and hydrated! Sorbet’s range comes in three shades, Light, Medium and Dark – I use the Light shade and it is a perfect match for my skin and as I always keep my face out of the sun (I make sure it’s always covered), it works all year round for me. At just R120 for a 100ml tube, it’s a perfect daily addition to your make-up routine AND their products are not tested on animals – GO SORBET!!
4. Kindle: This already made an appearance in my What’s in my Beach Bag? post so I won’t go into too much detail here but the best part about a Kindle is that you take take loads of books with you on holiday without worrying about the extra weight, space in your suitcase or running out of books to read. They really are so convenient to slip into your handbag for easy access.
5. Colouring Book: I’ve always loved to colour in and have very clear memories of doing my brother’s colouring-in homework when we were little so when adult colouring books launched and it became socially acceptable for an adult to colour in, I was all over it (although my husband loves teasing me about this and is not quite so convinced!) Johanna Basford is probably one of the most popular colouring books I’ve come across and with her exquisitely beautiful designs, it’s easy to see why. I chose her Secret Garden colouring book but it was so hard to chose one as her drawings are simply stunning. I can quite literally lose hours colouring-in so this is definitely finding a spot in my carry-on. It is a little big to take with but I’ve looked at the travel size books and the prints are just not nearly are beautiful. You can get these at Exclusive Books, Bargain Books or Take-A-Lot – I went with Take-A-Lot as they had a great special running and deliver to your door (I’m all about online shopping whenever possible!) These retail for between R200 and R250 depending on where you buy them and what book you choose.
6. Hand Cream: “The best things in life are friends” How cute?! I just love that!! It’s no secret that I cannot live without my hand cream and I love trying new brands. I spotted this JT One Flowery Hand & Nail Cream while on yet another mission through Woolworths(honestly, I think sometimes I need an intervention…) But, have you seen the new JT One section at Woolies? It is AMAZING – drawers and pretty lighting, soft colours – it’s so gorgeous and I quite literally got stuck browsing for my entire lunch hour! Anyway, this hand cream smells so lovely and fresh and not surprisingly with flavours of fresh flowers, apple and vanilla. It’s not greasy and easily absorbed and as it contains shea butter, it’s ultra moisturising. R49.95 for a 100ml tube and a no-brainer in my travel bag! And another Vegan and Beauty Without Cruelty product!!
7. Lindt Caramel with a Touch of Sea Salt: I’m sure you didn’t miss the slab of Lindt chocolate making it’s appearance! I cannot travel with out chocolate and I am totally hooked on this flavour of Lindt – it is mouth-wateringly delicious! I have been trying, slowly but surely to move away from milk chocolate (I’ll never ditch it completely but just reducing the sheer quantity that I tend to consume!) and Lindt’s range of flavoured dark chocolate make this a fairly easy switch. I also read a Women’s Health article (check it out here) on the benefits of dark chocolate (it contains antioxidants, is good for your brain and heart and lifts your mood) so I will be indulging in this guilt free!
8. Toiletry Bag: And lastly, the few bits and bobs I like to keep in my toiletry bag are toothbrush, dental floss, Listerine (I love that you can get the travel size bottles) deodorant and mascara (my go-to is Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara in Very Black)
So there you have it, my must-haves that will be making their way on board with me. Hope you picked up few tips – and be sure to let me know if there’s something vital I should be taking 🙂
“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list” – Susan Sontag