Over the years, whether it be abroad or weekends away on home grounds, I feel like I have almost got the knack of how to pack lightly (which as us females know, is pretty hard when it comes to all of our 'essentials!'). I've exceeded my luggage limit on several occasions on the way back from my holidays (luckily they've never said anything, but its always that 'what if'?). I've also lost track the amount of times my boyfriend and I go on weekends away in the UK but decide to take the train. The same thing happens - we have to check out of our hotel room in the morning, but our train isn't till the evening, so we are left with 2 holdall's, as well as extra shopping bags that we've accumulated over our stay, lugging them around the city all day till our train arrives. Its not fun.
Today I've got some good tips on how to save on space and luggage weight to make room for all those gifts on your return home!
This blog post is going to be purely on make-up, so if you are wondering where my fragrance, deodorant or exfoliator is, that's for another post!
This is my current travel bag and I love it. Its only a cheap Primark one which I picked up in the Spring time, but I love how bright it is and how much it fits in. If I was going on holiday for 2 weeks I would have to take another cosmetics bag alongside this, but generally, for 1 week this normally does a good job at housing both my cosmetics and all my other toiletries as well.
Lets take a closer look... (if you're observant enough you may notice an added item that wasn't in the 'group' photo, brownie points to those that spot it!)
From L-R - MeMeMe highlighter. I love highlighters on the cheekbones on holiday after a day of tanning, I just feel like highlighter and glowy skin are meant for each other!
Rimmel Lasting Finish 25hr wear foundation. I know some may think this is quite heavy for a sun holiday but sometimes my skin plays havoc so its for the times I'm feeling a little less confident!
Collection2000 lasting finish concealer (which is hiding!)
Givenchy Mascara (so tiny!)
Collection2000 Fix Me Up make-up fixer
(A very battered) Urban Decay primer
Dr Jart's BB Crème for when I'm feeling fresh and flawless!
One for the lips - Kate Moss' Lipstick in No3 (My fave!)
Laqa & Co lipstick
Burts Bee's lipbalm (I wear lipbalm almost every day because my lips tend to get a little sore without it)
Collection2000 waterproof mascara for those swimming/beach days!
Rimmel Apocalips lip laquer in 'Apocaliptic'
In the forefront is a snippet of Rimmel's 'Stay Matte' pressed powder to keep that shine at bay while away!
Mica Belle Cosmetics - Mineral Bronzer
Beautiful Movements - Prime and Create Face Primer
Blink & Go Eyeshadow Palette
Blink & Go Blush
Top Tips on how to pack lightly
Flexibility. Packing lightly requires you to be fairly flexible. If you are someone that is dedicated to a certain brand and specific holy grail products that you struggle to venture away from, you may find this a little difficult. Luckily there are lots of travel bottles to decant your products into, but at times you are going to hit barriers whereby decanting is not an option. Luckily I'm always open to new products. My Blink & Go Eyeshadow & Blush palette above isn't the most ideal due to the shape of the pans and the awkwardness it creates when trying to dip your make-up brush in, however I need to pack lightly, so it's mind over matter! (In an ideal world I would love to take my Urban Decay NYC Eyeshadow Book everywhere but its just not practical...)
Save miniatures. I am subscribed to 2 beauty boxes so I am in constant flow of small travel sized products. If I know that I am due to go away, I will put certain products aside in order to save them for my trip, no matter how appealing they are and the fact that I want to use them right there and then! If you are not subscribed to any beauty boxes, save miniatures that you receive as gifts, maybe at Christmas or Birthdays. You may get a free sample of something in a magazine that is the perfect size for travel, or even as a freebie from a beauty counter. If you think you will use it.. save it!
Type of holiday? Are you venturing into the sun or is ski-ing more your thing? Either way, think about where you are going and the duration and the activities you may be partaking in. For the most part, it wont change a great deal, but for example if I was going ski-ing, I certainly wouldn't be taking my waterproof mascara, so we're down 1 product already! Duration is also an important one - for example my miniature Givenchy mascara probably wouldn't see me through 2 weeks so I'd upsize to a larger one.
Doubling up. There are many products out there now that are 2 in 1, 3 in 1, and sometimes 4 in 1... lipglosses with colour at one end and a clear gloss at the other, or a lipgloss and cheek tint in 1. Moving a little off cosmetics and more into toiletries but shampoo and conditioner - buy 2 in 1, will save you so much weight! My doubling up product for my make-up is my Blink & Go palette - 1 layer is THE perfect array of colours for either a golden or smokey eye, then the 2nd layer provides me with 2 blushes. This means I don't have to carry lots of individual pigments with me which is fab. I am however more of a bronzer girl, so I dug in my stash of minis and found a tiny mineral bronzer, perfect! Also, are you going on holiday with anyone alike? Maybe a sister or a female friend whose also into make-up. Compare lists and see if there is anything you can share. Come to an agreement whereby you both take different things then put them altogether once you arrive. (This definitely comes in handy with the more heavier hair items such as hair straighteners and hair driers etc! Although no fighting on whose having them first!).
Decant. I'm sure many of you would have seen them by now - Primark do a stash of travel sized bottles for all your lotions and potions, with stickers as well so you don't forget what product is what. I'm almost sure they are only £1 so definitely wont break the bank! Or if you happen to use up a mini bottle - save it, rinse it and re-fill it with your own product to save you money.
Be Mindful. So, you've just purchased your favourite body crème. Its that delicious that you want to take it on holiday with you too, however the bottle is a little big and bulky. Its 2 weeks till your holiday - start using it now and stop when you think you have enough product to last you on your holiday. That way, you're not taking a full bottle of body crème with you, knowing full well you'll only use half of it! More weight that you don't need! Try do this with as many products you can.
Bin It. This applies more to every day toiletries such as shampoo's/conditioners/sun lotion. Going back to the first pointer of trying to be flexible, you've just bought some herbal essence shampoo and have used 3 quarters of it on holiday and its now home time. Would you be prepared to throw it away in order to gain some weight & space in your luggage for all those extra souvenirs you've bought? Bringing £20 BedHead shampoo would be a little more difficult in parting with! (Now can you see why you need to be flexible?!). Also, with certain products (i.e. sun lotions, face cooling mists etc) these have an expiry date on them - check them before you depart from your destination - ask yourself will you be going on holiday before the expiry date hits? If not, throw them! I find it so liberating being able to throw products away at the end of my holiday, knowing that my suitcase is becoming lbs lighter and I'm getting further away from getting charged from exceeding my luggage limit! (Oh, and the fact that I can do even more last minute shopping!) ;-)
Research. Check out what your hotel offers before you go. Going back to point #1, most hotels offer complimentary soap, shower gel and hair products. Could you make do with their offerings? I know the shampoo certainly wouldn't cover my hair with the amount of it so I like a back up, but for the shower gel, its something worth considering if you know they will get replenished every day. Research also comes in handy for hair driers. I hate taking my hair dryer with me, but a lot of hotels have started to include this in the room now (as well as travel irons) so check them out!
These are the rules I follow each time I go away on my travels.. I hope these have helped some of you in order to pack lightly for your next trip!