Life on the road - Toiletries hacks
I LOVE reading blogposts where other people share what they take with them when they travel. Why? Because I'm always looking for better, smarter and lighter ways to do so myself. Travelling can be challenging in itself and it makes all the difference if you've got great stuff with you.
I wouldn't have want to do NZ without the raincoat I bought last-minute before leaving Australia (silly me assumed their weather would be almost identical, a fellow traveller saved me from getting soaked -literally- 5 minutes after landing in Auckland). I am forever grateful that a fellow blogger taught me about the importance of packing cubes and my ex-boyfriend who made sure I got the right backpack is making my life easier every day I spent on the road (more than 130ish so far).
One of my biggest sins, packing wise, is my toiletry bag. Long gone are the days of my first backpacking trip when I attempted to take 4(!)kg of shampoo, toothpaste, shower cream and moisturiser with me, however I still have a lot of stuff with me. My boyfriend makes fun of me, however yes, I have about 4x as much stuff as he has, but guess whose shampoo, moisturiser, EHBO kit, toothpaste and soap he uses. Right.
I hate leaking shampoo bottles, oversized conditioner and products that run out so fast you find yourself in a foreign country trying to explain what an eyebrow pencil is ;) So let me give you a look inside of my toiletry bag and share my travel hacks with you!
Find above my travel essentials, the things I don't want to live without (because let's face it, NEEDING specific cosmetics and lotions is a bit of an overstatement.) On the first picture on the left you see my conditioner (the bright pink oval), my shampoo (the pink circle), my face cleaner (the black square), my deodorant (the white oval), my toothpaste (the little pink tabs) and my sunscreen (the white/yellowish thing on the left side, it's really fabulous as you apply it whilst showering!)
I love solid products. I buy them at Lush, a store that doesn't test on animals, uses a minimal amount of packaging and great natural ingredient. Added bonus is their international presence so I can find them in a number of the countries I live in. It takes a little while to get used to stuff like solid shampoo and deodorant, I get that. However, the benefits while travelling are tremendous. No leaking bottles, being able to fly hand luggage only and no nasty chemicals in my deodorant are making me really happy :)
The next picture shows three bottles, a little bottle of oil, my tooth tabs (I just had to get a picture of the name in "oral pleasure" and my powdered sunscreen. I always have some kind of oil with me when I travel, it is great as a moisturiser, conditioner and if it doesn't have things added to it you can even cook with it. This time I am travelling with rose oil after visiting the valley of the roses in Morocco. The powdered sunscreen is great. It's super easy to apply and I alternate between the powder and the solid one from the earlier picture. It is also super easy to mix into my moisturiser so I am protected from the sun during my eternal summer whilst travelling :)
On the third picture we have a papaya ointment I fell in love with when I travelled NZ. It works against rashes, insect bites (sadly not wasp stings as I found out this April whilst back in NZ..) and little cuts. It is also great if you've got a new tattoo and need to keep that moist. The next little (white) flask is a little bottle of make-up remover. I am not going all natural this trip so I need something to get the stuff of at the end of the day. I fill my camomile make-up remover from the bodyshop into this little bottle that is made to travel with. All the way on the right: my moisturiser. Also from Lush (did I mention I am addicted?) Moisturising the skin is so important when you are dealing with many different (and harsh) environments and when you spend a lot of your times in planes.
Besides products I also have some "tools" with me. On the left a scrubber for my face. In many Asian countries I haven't been able to find peeling products or scrubs or, I could only find ones that would bleach my skin (let's not do that, there are some funky ingredients in those). So I like to travel with a soft peeling sponge, currently I am testing one from Sephora. A razor from Venus, they are an international brand, meaning it's super easy to find replacement blades on the road. Also I have a number of travel sized containers with me (the blue little bottle), however I am using them less and less as I now mainly travel with solid products.
On the second picture there is my toothbrush, my (red) lipstick and my contact lenses. Obviously I need my contacts to actually see, I have a mild red lipstick (Channel) addiction (you can upgrade any look with it) and my beloved electrical toothbrush. Sadly the later cannot go with me when I travel hand luggage only, however otherwise I always have it with me. Keeping my teeth healthy on the road is super important to me.
Last but not least: my nail kit. It's super practical to have a pair of scissors, pair of tweezers and a file with you and this baby has got it all.
Besides the things above I have a diva cup, some hairbands and a (very limited amount of) make-up items with me. It took me about 2 months to replace the eyeliner I threw out in Valencia so that will give you a little bit of an insight into how much I care about make-up ;)
I hope this helps when packing and do let me know any of your hacks! I'm always on the hunt for ways to make my life even easier and more efficiënt :)