How to Travel Like a Supermodel, by Lindsay Ellingson
I’ve been so fortunate to travel the world for the past 10 years as a model. In that time, I’ve learned how to dress for a flight, pack efficiently, and arrive at my destination looking and feeling great—well, most of the time anyway! Wherever you may be jetting off to this summer, I hope these tips I’ve picked up over the years will be useful to you.
Scroll through for all of my travel beauty secrets!
My travel uniform consists of these AG The Farah Skinny super-stretchy and comfy skinny jeans, which are easy on your circulation; an oversize cashmere sweater (because no matter where I’m traveling, planes are always freezing); a warm pair of socks; a tote bag filled with travel-size beauty products; and my Kipling duffle bag, which I’ve been using for years—nothing beats the durability and bonus collapsible design. I’ve become such an expert packer; I never check a bag! (Keep reading to find out how.)
I fell in love with these Krestrel makeup bags recently. They’re durable, functional, and fashionable at the same time. This one is great for protecting any glass jars and tucking away makeup brushes. They also come in a micro-twill fabric with an easy-to-wipe black lining—perfect for traveling!
I usually drink a fresh cold-pressed juice before I fly. I recently had a job in London, and I downed this Gingersnap’s Organic juice before rushing through security. The spicy mix of ginger, cayenne, and lemon was a challenge but well worth it. It’s a super–immune- boosting and stomach-soothing cocktail, so it’s perfect to have right before a flight. It’s also easy to make your own: Just juice a slice of ginger and half a lemon, and then add a pinch of cayenne; you can take it as a shot or mix with water. Of course, don’t forget to stay hydrated during your flight! I like to buy a liter of water after security, because those little cups of water on the plane just don’t cut it.
My in-flight beauty routine is pretty simple. I repeat it every few hours, depending on the length of my flight. Since I’m usually surrounded by strangers, I really don’t care what I look like. First, I take off all of my makeup with Bioderma’s Sensibio H20 ($30) cleansing water, then I spritz my entire face with Avene’s Thermal Spring Water ($18) and let it sit for a few minutes—it soothes, softens, and calms any irritations. Finally, I moisturize and coat my under-eyes, lips, and any other dry patches with Earth tu Face’s Skin Stick ($34). Before landing, I always put on a little mascara and use Wander Beauty’s On-the-Glow ($42) blush and illuminator to instantly give me a more awake and fresh look.
Ling Spa in New York City is a model’s go-to for beautifying facials and innovative products. I love its new line of hydrating body balms and oils called FeeLING Beautiful. The day before a flight, I recommend either dry brushing your body or using ayurvedic raw silk massage gloves ($20). Both improve circulation, help break down cellulite over time, and exfoliate the skin. They’re easy to do and take just a few minutes. Follow by hydrating your skin to create a barrier against the harsh air inside planes. Ling’s massage oil ($40) and body butter ($35) are two that I recommend; both have certified organic ingredients like green tea oil, shea butter, and a natural scent that will lift your spirits.
After 10 years of modeling, my hair has been through it all! From heat styling tools, bleach, and harsh hair sprays to drying airplanes and stripping shampoos. It wasn’t until I started using Wen haircare that I noticed the health and shine of my hair return. I’ve been using Wen now for two years and never travel without it. These Six Thirteen Travel Packettes ($36) are my favorite. It’s the most nourishing formula it makes. I like to use it as a deep-conditioning treatment when I travel. I leave a little in my ends before a flight, french-braid my hair, and arrive with great texture and shine!
My facialist, Ildi Pekar, recently came out with an organic line of skincare products called I Pekar. Her key ingredient is raw honey, which is known for its hydrating and anti-aging properties. I love her travel kit, which comes with a cleanser, moisturizer, and eye cream. Even better, she introduced me to these compressed cotton towels ($20) that expand into a face cloth when wet. They help to deeply cleanse and refresh your skin, which is especially nice after a long flight. Plus, they’re so easy to transport!
Sometimes a one-quart plastic baggie is just not enough to fit all of my beauty necessities, so I’ve found beauty alternatives that are not liquid, cream, or gel! Of course, I never travel without my Klorane Soothing and Relaxing Eye Patches ($21)—I’m obsessed. A great alternative to rosewater sprays are these This Works In Transit No Traces ($31) pads that are infused with rose water and mint to cleanse and refresh your skin. I keep my nails hydrated with Dr. Hauschka's Neem Nail and Cuticle Pen ($19), which comes with a cap that can be used to push back cuticles. No room for face cleanser? Peter Thomas Roth’s Camu Camu Brightening Cleansing Powder ($45) is a great alternative and so effective. It’s rich in vitamin C and rice powder, which together gently exfoliate skin for a more radiant appearance. Colorescience’s Sunforgettable Mineral Sunscreen Brush ($57) is my alternative to liquid SPF. It comes tinted and contains 24% zinc oxide, which keeps skin protected from summer sun! I love to travel with my new beauty find, Dr. Singha’s Mustard Bath ($18). It’s traditionally used for detoxification and restoring pH balance. After a 20-minute bath, my skin is left feeling rejuvenated and conditioned, and as a bonus, it de-puffs and helps you to sleep well—it's a travel must! Finally, since we all know beauty comes from within, just add hot water to this delicious on-the-go Superfood Cereal from Vigilant Eats for a morning or mid-flight snack.
Usually when I travel—and remember, I never check a bag—I sacrifice bringing my favorite perfumes, because there's just not enough room in my little plastic baggie. Instead I spritz my freshly packed clothes with my favorite fragrance of the moment and hope it lasts the duration of my trip. Well, I won't be doing that anymore! I recently discovered these magical little fragrance petals from Pinrose. They come individually packaged with unique artwork on each one that screams "Instagram me!" (which I immediately did). I love that I can now travel with a variety of perfumes, and they're TSA-approved. Thank you, Pinrose!
Comment below if you have any favorite travel beauty secrets, I would love to hear from you!