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Keeping your skin refreshed on an airplane requires using great products before, during, and after the flight. So we designed this skin care regimen for your entire journey—from pre to post-flight—taking into account a crucial skin care principle: that the application of products should usually go from lightest to heaviest. A typical skin care routine starts with cleanser, a toner or essence, and then specific serums. When flying, serums need to be especially hydrating, which means you might instead tend toward face masks, which are an in-flight favorite for celebrities like Chrissy Teigan and Gwyneth Paltrow. After serums, it’s time for creams, oils, and the specialty products that can give your skin the extra shot of post-flight moisture it needs. And of course, supplementing this entire routine with a heavy-duty lip balm is a must for frequent flyers.
From departure to destination, these are the best products to keep your skin looking refreshed when flying:
Bioderma Hydrabio Facial Toner
Those who are particularly susceptible to dry skin or irritation while flying tend to overlook toner as an essential part of the in-flight skin care equation. But toning is a crucial step in keeping skin hydrated, because it allows the products that follow to effectively sink in. French favorite Bioderma is known for its nourishing micellar water and toner because it cleanses and refreshes skin without stripping away nutrients or the natural oils your skin needs while flying. Before takeoff, tone your skin such that it’s ready for the moisturizing products you’ll use in flight.
To buy: Amazon.com, $16.90
Sugar Lip Treatment by Fresh Beauty
Pre-flight lip balm is essential. And while intermittent lip balm application throughout your flight is also important, if you have a good lip balm, you’ll find you don’t need to constantly reapply, because the moisture sinks in and leaves your lips feeling refreshed. Super Lip Treatment is one of the most nourishing (and luxurious feeling) lip balms on the market. Fresh’s lip treatment is made from grapeseed oil, meadow and black currant seed oils, and of course, sugar. The sulfate-free lip protection is the perfect product to take on vacation, because it has SPF, and regular use smoothes uneven lip texture, while the untinted shade leaves a subtle shine.
To buy: Sephora.com, $24
SK-II Facial Treatment Mask
Take a leaf out of Gwyneth Paltrow’s travel book, and try back-to-back masks for optimal hydration. Using a mask in-flight is essentially counteracting the lack of hydration on an airplane. The SK-II Facial Treatment Mask has a cult-following thanks to the “exceptional concentration of PITERA™,” which is SK-II’s signature ingredient, meant to intensely hydrate and clarify the skin.
To buy: SK-II.com, $95
Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask
Follow up the pitera treatment with a hydrating cream mask. Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask is one of the prolific skin care flight remedies. Apply the mask to your entire face, including the under-eye area, and for best results, leave on for at least 10 minutes. One of the reasons it’s such a perfect in-flight product? You don’t need to rinse it. The mask sinks in, soothing skin and providing lasting hydration.
To buy: Sephora.com, $25
Drunk Elephant F-Balm Electrolyte Waterfacial
When you get off the plane and into your hotel room, there are few things that feel better than F-Balm Electrolyte Waterfacial by Drunk Elephant. From all-clean skin care brand Drunk Elephant, it’s no surprise that F-Balm is free of silicones, essential oils, and fragrances, and focuses on niaminicide, omega fatty acids, vitamin F, and powerful antioxidants to rehydrate and exfoliate. If you arrive in the evening, use four to five pumps of F-Balm before you go slip into your hotel bed as an overnight mask. Or, if you’re taking the redeye from LAX to JFK, use this one product in lieu of the two in-flight masks right before you close your eyes for a few hours of sleep.
To buy: drunkelephant.com, $52
La Mer Renewal Oil
La Mer’s Renewal Oil is the perfect post-flight antidote because it moisturizes, nourishes, and renews the glow to your skin. The Renewal Oil brings radiance back into your skin after the planes zaps natural brightness and moisture from your skin. La Mer’s paraben-free treatment is made from lime tea concentrate, and the brand’s patented Miracle Broth and Miracle Broth oils. This renewal oil can be mixed with a moisturizer like Crème de la Mer ($335) or Drunk Elephant’s Protini Polypeptide Cream ($68) or applied directly after moisturizer.
To buy: cremedelamer.com, $130