Travel Beauty Picks for Spring

May 4, 2015

A couple weeks ago I attended the third rewardStyle conference in Dallas, Texas. It was such an amazing week and I was thrilled to meet so many incredible women, many of whom have been such a huge inspiration to me over the years. It was also great to discover and meet some new people. I loved hearing about how other bloggers got started blogging, their professional backgrounds, chatting about work/life/blog balance, and more. The week was packed with events, meetings and educational sessions but I managed to snap a few photos of my week there. Today I’m sharing the beauty items I brought with me. I waited to the last minute to pack my items and didn’t plan in advance (which is how I ended up bringing 3 mascaras with me and way too many brushes). I’ll go through what I packed, how I packed it and what I ended up using.

Quick snapshots from the rewardStyle conference. For more on the event, you can search the hashtag #rStheCon via social channels to see more of the festivities. One of the biggest highlights of my week was being able to hang out with Rachel from Beauty Professor (yay #bbloggers!):

Here’s how I packed the vast majority of my beauty items. I brought a lot of items with me, most were to use for day or night. Some items I brought with intent of finishing up some posts and product reviews. Due to the busy scheduling of meetings and events I didn’t get to complete the reviews I planned. Even though I brought a lot of items with me several pouches and brush holders helped keep everything compact and organized.

  1. Barneys New York Love Yourself 2015 gift with purchase bag is the perfect size to carry lots of compacts, lipsticks, tools, mascaras etc. I like that it’s large but sturdy. For travel I usually travel with my Bobbi Brown Train Case (shown here and here) but the Barneys Makeup Pouch fit into my suitcase better for this trip.
  2. Make Up For Ever Dany’s Pouch is a two-piece makeup pouch you can use to store brushes, pencils or mascara wands. It keeps the brush tips from getting smashed and when you travel it doubles as a brush holder.
  3. MustaeV Bloom Pouch (c/o) is something I received at The Makeup Show LA. The pouch comes in two sizes, small is shown above. Large version is shown here. These are flat zip pouches that come with a magnetic closure and a top that folds down so you can transform it into a brush holder. It’s an innovative makeup bag that stays relatively flat when you zip it making it slimmer and easier to slip into small spaces.
  4. Truffle Large Clarity Pouch (c/o) measures 10 inches by 12 inches. The see thru plastic makes it easy to see what’s inside so you don’t have to dig around bags to find things. The flat shape is flexible but I personally like to keep flat things inside so the material doesn’t become stretched. That being said, the Truffle bags are extremely sturdy so they tend to keep their shape.
  5. Quart-sized ziploc to keep all my liquids. I usually travel with one carry on and one personal item since I just find it easier to travel that way. My trips are usually on the shorter side so I can get away with one suitcase. 

The liquids, skincare, hair care and more:

I was able to fit all of these items in the quart sized bag. Most of these are minis I’ve been saving up for months from Sephora Beauty Insider offerings, online promo codes and gift with purchase events. A few brands I like offer travel items you can actually purchase. I wish more brands offered travel sizes you could buy or test out. Do you stock on up on minis to save for travel or do you use them as soon as you get them?
  1. First Aid Beauty Face Cleanser mini gwp
  2. Caudalie Instant Detox Mask mini gwp
  3. MAC Prep + Prime Blemish Control Gel
  4. Bioderma travel size (review here)
  5. Lancome Bi-Facil travel size gwp
  6. Chanel Le Coton
  7. Q-Tips 
  8. Drybar The Chaser sample gwp
  9. Byredo Black Saffron mini sample gwp
  10. Tatcha Indigo Hand Cream travel size (c/o) 
  11. Cle de Peau Beaute Essential Correcting Refiner gwp
  12. Tatcha Dewy Skin Mist travel size (c/o) 
  13. Make up For Ever Instant Brush Cleaner travel size
  14. Bumble and Bumble Invisible Oil Primer gwp
  15. Bumble and Bumble Straight Blowdry Creme gwp
  16. Chanel Le Lift Creme gwp
  17. Chanel Hydra Beauty Micro Serum gwp 
  18. Chanel Le Nuit sample gwp
  19. Chanel Sublimage Eye Cream gwp
For makeup, I packed summery colors with lots of shimmer. For cheeks, I layered the Tom Ford Cream blush with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting bronzer and blushes. To highlight I relied on Edward Bess’s Afterglow. For the eyes I primarily used the Tom Ford Cream and Powder Duos and the MAC Palette. Those two were sufficient to get me through the trip. I didn’t end up using the Burberry Shadows or any of the Cream Shadow Sticks I brought with me. 

  1. NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in Ginger (review here)
  2. YSL Touche Eclat in 5.5 (swatched here)
  3. Chanel CC Cream in Beige 30 (review here)
  4. NARS All Day Luminous Weightless Foundation in Punjab (in mini empty sample jar I had on hand, review along with swatches here)
  5. Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick in Ibiza (review here)
  6. Tom Ford Cream Cheek Color in Pink Sand (review here, c/o)
  7. Burberry Wet & Dry Glow Eyeshadows in Nude and Shell (review here, Shell c/o)
  8. MAC Warm Neutrals x15 Palette
  9. NARS Brow Perfector in Caucase
  10. Edward Bess Illuminating Eye Base in Dune (swatched here)
  11. Chanel Stylo Eyeshadow in Caroube (review soon)
  12. By Terry Ombre Blackstar in Brown Perfection and Frozen Quartz
  13. Burberry Bold Lash Mascara (c/o) 
  14. Marc Jacobs O!Mega Lash Mascara (c/o) 
  15. Armani Eyes to Kill Stretch Mascara
  16. Tom Ford Cream and Powder Eyeshadow Duos (review here, c/o)
  17. Marc Jacobs Poutliner in Honeybun (reviewed here)
  18. Edward Bess All Over Seduction in Afterglow (swatched here)
  19. YSL Glossy Stain in Wet Nude (review here)
  20. Chanel Rouge Coco Shine in Reveuse (review soon)
  21. Hourglass Ambient Lighting Bronzer in Radiant Bronze (review here)
  22. NARS x Christopher Kane Lip Gloss (review soon)

For brushes and tools, I brought some of my favorites along with the Make Up For Ever Instant Brush Cleaner. It gives a good quick clean but doesn’t give them a thorough washing like shampoo or traditional brush cleaners. Left to right includes:

Wayne Goss Holiday Brush (reviewed here)
old mascara wand I recycled for brows
Additional beauty items I brought with me:

  1. Tatcha Japanese Blotting Papers (regular and evening versions)
  2. Misc hair ties
  3. Drybar Lemondrop Detangler Brush
  4. Lavanila Fresh Lemon Deoderant
  5. Drybar Buttercup Blow Dryer
  6. GHD Flat Iron
  7. Drybar Hold Me Hair Clips
I definitely overpacked beauty items, but it’s something I almost always do. With the exception of foundation, I think I brought enough items to last a full month even though I was only traveling for a week. I used all of the liquids for skincare and haircare that I brought with me so I think those items were well packed (I relied on the hotel for other things like shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, toothpaste). For makeup, I could have left 60% of the items at home. I did intend to swatch/review a lot of the items but should have known better that time and energy would be limited while traveling. For brushes I used fingers to apply foundation during the week so I could have skipped the cream foundation brush. All of the other brushes were used during the trip and I could have left the instant brush cleaner at home but I found it handy to clean off the eye brushes for a quick clean.
There were a lot of skincare items I wanted to bring with me but didn’t have small containers to pour out product into for travel. I know many of you have mentioned you buy small travel jars at Target or the Container Store for your travels, if you have any specific favs or other recommendations to store liquids or creams while you travel I would love to hear about them!
Do you travel a lot? If yes, how do you carry/store your beauty products? How do you edit what you bring with you? Are there any things you can’t be without when you travel? I can’t live without my hairdryer or flat iron so it usually goes with me on every trip even though they take up a lot of room in my suitcase.

P.S. For those planning a trip whether it’s overnight or for an extended period, the Tumi Just In Case duffle is a lifesaver in terms of packing. I usually end up bringing more items home with me than I took with me and the Tumi Just In Case Duffle is something that folds into a small pouch you can store in your suitcase. You can see the diagrams on the Tumi website to see how it works, but it’s a foldable sturdy nylon tote that has a their add-a-bag sleeve on the back so you can put it on the handles of your suitcase. 

Some items in this post were samples from gift with purchase events and some were press samples all of which are disclosed next to each listed item with a gwp or c/o note. The remainder items from my purchased by me.

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  • So much great stuff! I'm about to move and have to pack up all my makeup until June, so it's hard to decide what I'll be keeping out for my "traveling" 3 weeks

  • Anonymous

    Nice post 🙂
    Muji is a great shop for travel containers 🙂

  • ame

    I am a total hoarder, and I have finally gotten it semi-pared-down to travel sizes of my daily drivers, and I have a designated set of travel-only goods.

    In my makeup bag: I found a great "brush roll" from Eco Tools actually, it came with a brush that I use for cheek gel. I use that brush roll for my travel brushes–which are basically a dupe set of my daily use brushes, or travel lengths in a few cases. So I have that loaded and ready, and deep clean my brushes after every trip. I bring brush wipes from sephora with my in the zip pouch of the bag (Sonia Kashuk Completely Organized Grande. Inside the bag I put the Brush Roll on the bottom, with a ziplock of my makeup, identical to my daily routine from home, all the compacts, etc. Then I have the travel BeautyBlender airport, and a solid cleanser in there. I also have my lash curler. I tuck my concealer and mascaras in the pockets of the inside of the bag. I also have those Drybar clips in there as well. On the outer pockets I have qtips, a comb and my magnifying mirror.

    My liquids bag is a MUFE crystal pouch, and in there are my shampoo, conditioner, leave in, cleasers, etc. That's fully loaded.

    Then I have my large Truffle clarity pouch with my razor, pads, glasses case, earplugs, extra qtips. Any dry goods necessary and a small can of Kevin Murphy dry shampoo.

    Then I have my curling iron (T3) in a curling iron bag separately.

    I have serious problems with vanity.

    • stephanee

      I travel often amd also use the Sonia K bags. The pockets inside are generous and stores each category, they really are the best bags for travel!

    • michelle

      Another big fan of the Sonia Kashuk bags over here! I have 2 and use them all the time to keep my larger tote style handbags organized—not just for travel but GREAT when I do♥

    • ame

      Until very recently I used the small version in my purse. I am DESPERATELY trying to pare down. It's going poorly.

      But being that I am a serious hoarder, I have multiples of the bag, in every color it's released in… in all four sizes, but the "Grande" is I think the most versatile. I can make the "mega" work for me as well, with just that and my liquids bag, but I think the Grande works the best for me.

      Her bags are just fantastic.

  • I'm traveling to Vegas at the end of the month, so I've been obsessed with seeing what people take in their travel makeup bag. These are some great picks, especially that MAC eyeshadow palette 🙂

    Emily | EMBUR.

  • I collect minis and GWPs for travel but never bring untested products with me on trips. I find that I always use less makeup on vacation then in my normal routine, but I tend to overpack nonetheless! I usually will bring my Naked palette and then a few cream shadows and/or eyeshadow sticks, a neutral blush (MAC sweet as cocoa usually) and probably 5 or 6 lip colors.

    adia | beauty luxe life

  • I love seeing what people bring with them when they travel. It's incredible to see the difference between your items packed versus your items laid out. Laid out, it looks like you took a whole bunch of products. I love how minimal it all is once it's packed up.

    Connie | Sponsored by Coffee | Bloglovin’

  • t

    I want to try those new Nars lip glosses!

  • You pack like me! I am usually on the mark with skin/hair care but waaaay overdo it on the makeup. I love all the travel mini and GWP that you packed, I try to keep a lot of samples & minis for this very reason also x

  • Usually I'm pretty good at packing light makeup on a trip! I'll bring a favourite base, and a palette with a mix of eyeshadows and at least one blush. I need my eyelash curler & I'll bring a gwp mascara. I also try to use up a lot of my samples when I travel, and can usually get through quite a few. I have an upcoming trip which is kind of special, and I'm taking a lot of makeup so far including a few full sized foundations. I'll try to cut some stuff out before I leave! But no promises! 😉

  • stephanee

    I travel often and swear by the Sonia Kashuk grande and medium travel bags. The grande size holds skincare & hair and medium holds makeup and brushes, beauty blender, and the small soap. I have the bags already pre packed with dupes of my make brushes and toiletries so its not hard to pack when its time to go. I have a pack list each page split out by category but its detailed. Instead of writing face soap, it says la prarie face cleanser. Im specific so that I know what to grab and most are in travel sizes. Everything is typed out, I might not need to pack it but to see it and then cross it off reminds me of what I use so that I don't forget. I do not bring anyhing new to test while travel it's all my classics that work no matter where I go. Same detailed method for makeup. I really dislike packing but since I started this method it is less stressful 🙂

  • Oh my gosh, this is such a wonderful post! I love that you've listed every single beauty item that you travel with. When it comes to makeup, I prefer to travel with a big neutral palette, instead of lots of smaller ones.

    Your beauty products are amazing by the way. Adding lots to my lust list.

  • I wish I had your packing skills! I'm rubbish at packing beauty products xD

    Sarah | More Than Adored

  • Wow what a great post and such lovely products!

    Love, Charline | Charline Has a Blog

  • This is a great post! I'm going to Mexico and needed tips on what to bring =]

  • Shauna

    I love these types of posts! I usually pack my skincare products in the Bobbi Brown "empties" suck good quality and variety of shapes and sizes.

  • Oooh love bringing minis on trips! I definitely need to get a case for my makeup brushes. Love how you've organized this xx

    Erin | Erin and Katherine Talk Beauty

  • Gorgeous post, my friend! Also, love the pics from Dallas…it was such a treat, as always, to spend time with you!

  • Petunia

    Better a little too much, a few extra choices, than not enough. As long as it all fits in your suitcase, eh, so what?
    Lovely photos. Looks like you girls had fun!

  • I don't travel that regularly, a few times a year, but I have become the queen of decanting! Any liquids and powders that I can decant I do. Mostly I use old MAC sample containers as they are small and I can always pour into two or three containers the products that I use the most. As for make up, I too have come back home with many unused products in the past, so I tend to go for classic and multipurpose products. Last time I put a blush and 5 eyeshadows into a small zpalette and that was half of my makeup!

  • Thank you!! I've been searching for a new brush case you years (to replace an old and discontinued MAC pouch) and bought the Bloom Pouches (both sizes). These are fantastic!! I travel weekly and these are so convenient and useful. I wouldn't have founds here without your blog!