How to Look Good After An Overnight Flight

By: Lynne Marks | 25 Apr 2014

FlightBlogI often travel to Asia and Europe and those flights always involve an overnight flight and sometimes a lengthy layover in the small hours of my night. After a sleepless night I don’t exactly look like a fashion late or even an image consultant and if anybody is foolish enough to ask me what I do I have been known to say “insurance agent”. Nobody seems to show any interest after that one! At the end of my exhausting 25-hour trip I want nothing other than to hide my face from the world and climb into bed. But sometimes there is more day left after the flight and I have to show a decent face. Here are a few steps to follow.

  1. Drink at least double your normal intake of water and stay away from coffee and alcohol before, during and after your flight. Try coconut water or electrolyte water such as mixing a powder like Emergen-C.
  2. Herbal teas are better than coffee and you can easily put several tea bags in your carry on bag. Try ginger, ginseng, peppermint and of course chamomile to aid sleepiness.
  3. Dress in forgiving clothing such as leggings or yoga pants and add a warm blanket that folds into a tiny bag. Layer the pieces so that you stay comfortable and warm in over-enthusiastic air conditioning. Doing so will help you relax and fall asleep faster and easier.  It is possible to dress comfortably and with style and anything non-crease such as knits, poly-spandex, microfiber and jersey travel garments are the perfect solutions.
  4. Bring water and snacks with you.  Although meals and beverages are served on overnight flights, I tend to go for the lighter salad option. Before you board, grab a few healthy snacks at the airport such as no-salt walnuts or almonds and an extra bottle or two of water.
  5. Keep your skin soft.  Being in an airplane cabin for so long will dry your skin out, so be sure to bring lip balm, hand cream and face moisturizer to apply before and during flight. Experts suggest exfoliation the evening before you fly so that your skin accepts the moisturizer more effectively. After the trip, cleanse and moisturize really well.
  6. Close and rest your eyes if you can.  Sleeping on an airplane, for most of us, is not easy.  Increase your chances of falling asleep by bringing warm socks, a neck pillow and noise-cancelling headphones or soothing music. Also try melatonin that helps some people drift off naturally. Badger Balm on the temples and No-Jet Lag homeopathic lozenges are also natural alternatives. Buy a molded eye maskthat doesn’t crush your eyelashes and allows for eye movement during REM sleep. While that book in your carry-on may be a page-turner, resist the temptation to keep your eyes open.  Sit back, relax and close your eyes.  The next morning, your body and mind will thank you.
  7. Other great freshen-up tips: Don’t use drying makeup towelette cleansers for your face; use a proper cleanser. Also, use natural deodorant wipes to eliminate odor-causing bacteria under arms and in the creases after a long flight. Brush your teeth, brush your hair and wash your face when you land.  Bring disposable underwear and change into it when you land.
  8. Makeup helps! If possible, avoid wearing make-up during your flight. To brighten that death- warmed -over look after the trip, choose a tinted moisturizer, concealer and natural non-silver based highlighter. All those cover dark circles, lighten and give a fresh look to the skin. Finally, a little mascara and lipstick are my two makeup staples that help wake up my face.
  9. Substitute your contacts for your glasses as the dry air will dehydrate your eyes and always apply eye drops as soon as your eyes feel tired.  Never use Visine to shrink your red veins- use a medical eye drop from your optician.
  10. If you are troubled by puffy legs or worried about Deep Vein Thrombosis, invest in a little collapsible footstool that lifts your thighs off the seat and invest in compression tights, knee-hi socks and moisture wicking micro-knit travel slippers. Magellan’s catalogue sells everything:
  11. If you suffer from headphone or flat hair, a cordless mini curling iron will help you lift the hair and give it shape if you have to look good when you land. Conair does a cartridge- powered version for USD 25.00.

All products mentioned are available in Magellan’s catalogue and Travel Smith catalogue.

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