Updated: Jul 16
Trends say seek solitude, find yourself, and slow travel. Inspired by trends and Chris McCandless from the book Into the Wild to travel slow to offbeat destinations for life-changing relationships along the way. Isolated and uncrowded places certainly give you that bragging right when you are just the first among your Insta family to visit a remote destination. But these genuinely off-the-radar spots can be hard to find.
Winter hike to a snow-clad mountain top and camping for five straight days. Two trains and a jeep ride away to a tribal village tucked amidst mountains. Sometimes pitching a camp in the middle of nowhere to surrender yourself to the first rays of the morning sun. And other times in an eco-friendly hostel made of minimalist materials using renewable, natural, sustainable energy. That's what I call an escape.
While I love adventures and being outdoors for much of my time, I also know that my skin cannot take a toll anymore. Precaution is always better than cure. My skin for many years has taken a beat dealing with severe hyperpigmentation. On mountaintops, I have allowed the winds and the sun to dry my hands and face constantly. When hiking or swimming, exposure to the sun has left dark patches on my face. While my beauty cupboards are bursting at the hinges in organized chaos, they never made it to my rucksack.
But now, in travel, I am streamlined, miniature slicked, and systematic. P.S. I am not talking cat-eyed with a red lip and cheek stains. The 'Less is more approach works fantastic for me. Here are a few of my favorite beauty essentials that keep me looking and feeling great while living out of a backpack.
Moisturizers are non- negosh!
I have always found myself hunting for the best face moisturizers on the internet every two months and most often ending up buying a completely new product. (Sometimes, this cycle continues.) While moisturizers are categories as oily, combination, normal, sensitive, dry, this is not enough to ID the best that money can buy you. When picking a moisturizer for your trip, consider the location you’re going to. A mountain holiday and a beach holiday would need different products.
My best bet is a tinted moisturizer that doubles as a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 or more.
Shishido’s Urban Environment Tinted UV Protector Broad Spectrum with SPF 43 or La Roche-Posay Anthelios SX Moisturizer with Sunscreen SPF 15. The latter works all year long, with Mexoryl as an ingredient that gives you the best protection from UVA and UVB rays.
CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion (always mentioned with a thousand good reviews) is an excellent 24-hour hydrator. (P.S. It contains hyaluronic acid to help retain the skin's natural moisture.)
Sunscreen, sunscreen, and more sunscreen!
While I use a moisturizer with SPF, I’m the one with pigmented patches on my skin. Also, SPF only protects from UVB rays; there are sunburn rays that damage the skin's DNA. So, I never go outdoors without this lifeguard. Again, your skin type plays a role in dictating the screen you need. Oily skin would need a matte finish; dry would require a more hydrating one, and sensitive skin would need a mineral-based screen. But always remember, sunscreen is just a screen. You def have to use your moisturizer.
I swear by Elta MD Shield Broad-Spectrum, SPF 45. This sheer, oil-free, full-body, mineral-based is recommended for oily to regular skin.
My dermatologist also recommends an additional dosage of anti-oxidant in extreme temperatures. Heliocare Skin Care Dietary Supplement is no harm if you are extra precocious of skin damage due to the sun.
Don’t Let Them Laze & Dry. Carry A Lip Balm
I am not a big lip balm devotee. No lip balm can sometimes spoil a perfect vacation. Nommater what the weather is, a lip balm is a must. There are so many balms floating in the boat, from tinted to glossy to glammy; choose the one that works best for you.
I carry my Burt’s Bees is a classic. Its beeswax at once soothes and hydrates, along with shea butter and vitamin E. Jane Iredale’s Just Kissed lip and cheek stain is my recent favorite, With olive and avocado oils to take of the flakes; this multipurpose stain gives my cheek and lips a pretty pink flush. (Multiple color options to choose from.) Do carry a good lip color for a game-changing look.
Brighten Those Eyes To vavavoom
Mascara, eyeliner, and brow stick enhance the eyes in no time and give you the biggest bang for your buck. As much as I love over-the-top eye makeup, there are some simple looks that you could achieve in a few short minutes. Lashes are camouflaged if you have tired eyes. Benefit Cosmetics is my go-to brand. My favorites are Benefit They're Real! Mascara, Beyond Black, Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner Matte Liquid Eyeliner in Black and Goof Proof Brow Pencil Easy Shape & Fill 3.5 Medium.
Face Mist Are A Quick Fix
During long flight journeys to camping and hiking, face-mist is the quickest way to keep your skin hydrated and refreshed. To salvage the stressed-out skin in the middle of nowhere, I rely on Eau Thermale Avene Thermal Spring Water.
While your full-sized products may not look like a big deal individually, they add on. I always repackage them into small bottles or buy miniature travel-sized products(whenever available). At times I get lucky with miniature trail products from my BirchBox subscription and Sephora. While looking fresh and sound is key, I never sleep with my makeup on. Make sure to carry makeup removal wipes and your regular night cream or serum to wake up looking fresh.