A Guide to Self Care While Traveling
I love the thrill of hopping on an airplane and jetting to somewhere new.
…Even if it means taking a red eye across country and returning 24 hours later.
…Even if it means that I’m cramped in the middle seat of a jumbo jet with screaming babies and pre-teens surrounding me.
…Even if it means sitting in an airport for nearly an entire day.
And then there are other considerations:
- Am I going to have to get up at the butt crack of dawn to get to the airport on time?
- Are security lines going to super long?
- Are there going to be flight delays?
- Am I going to be harassed by TSA? (Especially if you happen to be transgender, this can be an issue. One of my closest friends is mother to a trans girl, and they have unfortunately had trouble with TSA while flying.)
And let’s not forget:
- Airplanes are cramped
- …and they’re the perfect breeding ground for germs
- …and that dry, faux-air does nothing for the complexion
So what can we do to take care of ourselves on the road? As a self-proclaimed radical self care advocate, I’ve perfected the art of taking care of myself while traveling – and these are my best tips.
What to pack
These were some essentials from my most recent trip.
Cozy & snuggly things:
I always make sure that I have cozy and snuggly things in my bag. Temperatures fluctuate on airplanes, so you can go from hot flashes to teeth chattering in no time. Here are the items I pack time and time again to keep me comfy:
- Blanket scarf: I got mine from Modcloth (similar here). It’s cute, functional, and can be used, literally, as either a scarf or a blanket. Here’s some info on how to style a blanket scarf.
- Thick socks: Even if it’s early August and you live in Florida. Trust me on this one.
- Eye mask: I got mine from Made In California. It’s scented with lavender and lemon and is light as a feather. I like to meditate (or sleep) on airplanes, so this is the perfect touch!
Skin care Essentials
Like I said earlier, that airplane “air” is HARSH on the skin. Here’s what I carry-on to keep my skin feeling soft & supple:
- From Molly With Love Nourish Face Cream: I slather this on my face (and hands) before, during, and after the flight. (Shop here.)
- From Molly With Love Almond Eye Serum: I’ll roll on a bit of this during the flight to keep the delicate skin around my eyes hydrated. (Shop here.)
- Evan Healy Hydrosol: I LIVE for Evan Healy’s natural & organic hydrosols, particularly their Rose Petal and Frankincense varieties. There is nothing better than spritzing this lovely concoction on your face mid-flight. Plus, they come in 1 oz. sizes, which are perfect for traveling. (Shop here.)
- Bar soap: I am committed to using as many natural products as I can to avoid nasty chemical goblins when possible. This means that I carry a bar of soap with me where ever I go, so I don’t have to use public hand soap. I make my own, of course, but you can purchase soap from me here.
- Aromatherapy Essential Oils: I carry small bottles and vials of essential oils where ever I go. I like to slip a few drops in my palms, rub them together, and inhale the scent when I’m feeling stressed or need a quick boost. An airplane is the perfect place for that – especially right before meditating or catching some quick zzzz. People are REAL PASSIONATE about their essential oil brands, so go with which ever company you like best. I buy from a few different brands, but my favorite is probably Rocky Mountain Oils.
OK – this isn’t for everyone BUT I am a very “woo-woo” and spiritual person. And I find that engaging in spiritual practices while traveling helps keep me grounded and centered in an otherwise stressful situation.
I always say – “you do you, boo.” So if this isn’t for you, skip along to the next section. But this is just what works for me.
- Moonstone – this has often been called the “Traveler’s Stone.”
- Hematite – absorbs negativity
- Red Jasper and Snowflake Obsidian – these are very grounding stones
- Amethyst – another protective stone
- Tarot and/or Oracle cards. My favorites are The Wild Unknown Tarot and the Sacred Rebels Oracle. These give me something to play around with while on the plane or in the terminal.
- Meditation app: I have several downloaded on my phone, but my favorites are Insight Timer, Calm, and Omvana. If you’re not a meditator, I recommend downloading music, podcasts and/or movies from iTunes or Spotify to your tablet or mobile device before you fly.
- From Molly With Love White Sage Smudge Spray: Our White Sage Smudge Spray is really great for travel (and handy in a 1 oz. size) because sometimes you can absorb a lot of people’s energy when you’re traveling. This is just a nice way to be able to clear some of that while you’re on the go.
- Phone charger – Somehow this is easy to forget!
- Laptop or tablet charger – This can also be easy to forget
- Ear buds – Don’t get caught without your music
- Journal & pen – I love journaling. Especially on airplanes. I am obsessed with paper planning & writing (my favorite tools are the Danielle LaPorte Desire Map Planner and the Moleskin Bullet Journal).
- Tea: I’m trying to drink less soda (my only remaining vice!) So I love packing some of my nicest, most luxurious tea bags. I’ll just pop a couple in my bag, and then on the airplane, instead of getting the Diet Coke or whatever, I will just ask for a cup of hot water and I’ll drink a nice, luxurious cup of tea.
SELF CARE RITUAL
Just imagine – you could turn flying into a self-care ritual. You’re sitting on an airplane, and you have your big cozy scarf on, gazing out of the window, maybe taking some pretty shots as you’re up in the clouds. Maybe you pull a card or two or do some quick journaling. And then you pop on your earbuds, start a meditation track, and pull an eye mask over your eyes. You dab essential oils on your palms, and breathe in that super good aromatherapy, and sit back and meditate for 20 minutes. Then, maybe when you’re done meditating or napping, you spend some time pampering your face with your face cream and your eye serums, and you give your face a little spritz while you read your favorite book or magazine, and drink a cup of luxurious tea.
How juicy does that sound?
What are some of your favorite self-care tips while you travel? Is there anything that you think would be helpful that I haven’t already mentioned? If so, pop that in the comments.