My Top Beauty Essentials for Travel

One of the trickiest parts of traveling is packing. It can be tough to figure out what you should bring on your journey depending on where you are going, how long you’re staying and even how you’re getting there.

If you’re flying to your destination and only taking a carry-on bag, the struggle gets even more real. While it’s fairly easy to free up space by packing clothing pieces you can wear more than once, what is often the hardest part of packing is having all the travel beauty essentials you want and need.

During all of my travels, I’ve learned the best ways to get everything I need into my luggage and to my final destination. My list can be supplemented with your must-have makeup items or you can omit things that you just don’t like to use. Overall, however, I think this is a pretty good place to start when packing beauty items for a trip.

*Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. This means if you click through and make a purchase, I will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

So, what are my go to, never travel without, beauty essentials?

TSA approved travel container set

Available here on Amazon.

This one is really key for any liquids you might have that you absolutely can’t live without and don’t come in a small size. This set that I love comes with all different sized containers so you don’t have to bring anything in a bigger bottle than needed, maximizing your already limited space.

This set is affordable and it comes with a cleaning brush and its own carrying case for easy access at airport security. Best of all, you know that you won’t have any issues at the airport since everything is TSA approved!

Travel size makeup brushes

Available here on Amazon.

Anyone who loves makeup knows that packing for a trip can be tough as these items are sometimes bulky and add up fast. It’s a good idea to get some smaller travel size brushes to use while traveling to save space and make sure your (probably expensive) usual brushes aren’t damaged along the way.

I love this set because the brushes are a nice and compact size and most of them have dual purposes, which saves even more space. You can’t go wrong with that!

Makeup remover wipes

Available here on Amazon.

It’s so important after a long day of sightseeing to remove your makeup properly. The best way to do that while traveling is with makeup remover wipes. These are easier to pack as opposed to liquids or oils that you have to worry about the quantity. They’re also just the most convenient way to remove makeup on the go.

These smaller packs are prefect to take in your suitcase or even your purse to freshen up throughout the day.

Dry shampoo

Available here on Amazon.

I cannot say enough about how dry shampoo has changed my life while traveling. It saves me so much valuable time and I no longer need to wash my hair and style it every single day. An absolute game changer and my number one item to take on trips.

Airports can be strict sometimes with these containers so, make sure you get a small size, like the one in the link.

Moisturizer with SPF

Available here on Amazon.

Traveling can dehydrate you, so having a good face moisturizer is super important. Make sure you get one for the daytime that has SPF in it, to protect your skin from the sun, especially on those beach vacations.

It can be tricky finding a good SPF for your face. After a lot of trial and error, I’ve found a pretty good one that isn’t too heavy or oily and that I can wear everyday.

Lip balm

Available here on Amazon.

This is probably my number two item that I have to have with me at all times. Luckily, it usually comes in small containers, so there is no space issue. It’s very important for me to make sure I have some kind of lip balm when I travel so I’m always comfortable.

You probably already have a favorite lip balm to use, but if not, feel free to click the link and check out mine!

Oil absorbing tissues

Available here on Amazon.

I discovered these oil absorbing tissues when I was in high school and I still use them to this day! I think they’re so great for traveling because they’re small and easy to throw in your purse and they keep you feeling and looking fresh all day. You never have to worry again about looking shiny in your travel photos.

They also work great with makeup. You can remove the shine without taking off any of your foundation!

Shampoo and conditioner bars

Available here at Lush.

Typically the largest liquid items we take on trips are shampoo and conditioner bottles. Thankfully, these also come in solid bars that you can pack effortlessly and worry free. There are several places you can get shampoo and conditioner bars, but I have heard amazing things about these ones from Lush.

They have shampoo bars and pressed conditioners to eliminate the use of plastic bottles, which is great for the environment too!

Toothpaste tablets

Available here at Bite Toothpaste Bits.

Not only are toothpaste tablets awesome for travel, they’re also awesome for the planet as well! You can feel good about your choices for multiple reasons. They typically come in a jar and you just pop one in your mouth, chew it for a few seconds so it can foam up, and start brushing.

Wax sunscreen

Available here at Sand Cloud.

Sunscreen is important no matter where you are traveling to. Nothing is worse than getting a horrible sunburn on vacation and being in pain for the rest of your trip. Normal sunscreen comes in a liquid form and is actually not very good for the oceans. A much better solution for packing and marine life is wax sunscreen. Another double bonus product!

It works just the same as normal sunscreen and everyone seems to love it.

Single makeup items for multiple purposes

Available here on Amazon.

This one is more of a tip for packing. It has been such a travel life saver for me to pack less makeup items that can do more things. For example, if you can, pack only one palette that can be an eyeshadow, bronzer and blush all in one. If you don’t have anything like that, consider getting something to use just for travel. This will give you more space when packing and it will save you time getting ready morning since you won’t be reaching for 5 different items.

If you’re not beginning to travel again just yet, check out my post about what you can do now to prepare for future travel, besides ordering some wonderful new travel beauty items, of course!

What are your travel beauty essentials and packing tricks? Which items from this list do you love?

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I am a 25 year old American girl trying to see the entire world with my travel partner/boyfriend, Jacob. We find beauty in the biggest and smallest places and the journey it takes to get there.

14 thoughts on “My Top Beauty Essentials for Travel

  1. I always carry a few products that can be use for multiple purposes. Love the idea and such a great guide. Thank you for sharing!


  2. Having travel sized containers is so key! I think my best tip would be “less is more”. If you don’t use it at home regularly, you won’t use it on the road! Thanks for sharing!


    1. So true! Sometimes we get excited packing for a big trip and throw in way too many things that are not needed because “you never know!” I used to be a culprit of that. Thanks for reading!


  3. I love my dry shampoo for travel!! It comes in the small sizes and fits perfectly in my wash bag… great recommendations here. I like the idea of toothpaste tablets too, I’ve never heard of them.


  4. What a great list! I love all these suggestions : ) Always handy to have a great place to reference when getting ready for a trip!


  5. Those are great tips! I love multipurpose items they are so useful and save so much space! And I agree sunscreen is the most important thing no matter where you are travelling.


  6. I never heard of toothpaste tablets before. Very interesting item to take on a trip I can imagine. I never tried shampoo or conditioner bars before, but heard about them a lot lately. I am keen to give those a go.


  7. Yay! These are all great picks! I’m all for shampoo/conditioner bars as well and have been looking into toothpaste tablets since I think they’d be especially awesome for backpacking–I’ve heard great things about Bite but waiting on them to have an option with fluoride.


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