How to Survive a Long Haul Flight

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Flights can be long and draining and leave you looking less then perfect at the other end! To avoid starting your holiday dehydrated, cranky and headachey follow these tips.

Before you get on the plane:

♥ Wear minimal makeup to the airport. I understand you probably feel less than glamorous and perhaps a little self conscious arriving at the airport with a bare face. I put on a little lippie, some mascara and a bit of blush.

♥ Wear comfy, warm clothes. I like to wear stretch pants, a comfy tshirt, good socks and a jumper. I always get freezing cold on long haul flights! If you are not keen on looking like a dag in public then throw in some comfy clothes/pyjamas in your carry on and get changed on the plane. Oh and comfy, slip on shoes! You don’t want to be dealing with shoe laces when tottering to the loo on the plane. Also a change of underwear is always very welcome.

♥ Once you are through security and customs buy a big bottle of water. I always get so dehydrated on the plane and prefer to have a decent amount of water on me so I don’t have to hassle the flight attendants every 1/2 hour.

Carry on luggage

As you know there are now 100ml requirements on most liquids for carry on luggage. This is fine as long as you do a bit of preparation before hand. To make life easier I highly recommend popping into your local chemist/drug store and seeing if they have a travel boarding set like this one from Manicare.

It comes with airline compliant bottles and jars that you fill with your product and then label, and a clear bag. I put my moisturisers in the containers but don’t have to worry about things like eye drops as they are under 100ml. A lot of companies are bringing out 100ml versions of their products to deal with the flying situation, so check out your local chemist/beauty store and see if they have your brand!

When I fly long haul my carry on pack list usually looks something like this:

♥ Passport
♥ Travel documents
♥ Reading glasses
♥ Basic makeup (I put foundation into a little sample bottle I get from department stores)
♥ Night cream
♥ Bio Oil (I am obsessed with this stuff, it is so moisturising)
♥ Day moisturiser with SPF
♥ Moist Towelettes to clean face
♥ Chapstick
♥ Hand cream
♥ Earphones (preferably noise cancelling) – To block out sniffly passengers or babies crying!
♥ Iphone
♥ Tissues
♥ Chewing gum
♥ Panadol
♥ Eye drops
♥ Deodorant
♥ Change of underwear

While this may sound like a lot, believe me it’s not and you will be thanking me somewhere over the Pacific Ocean!

Once you are up in the air:

♥ Once the seatbelt sign has been turned off I go to the loo and remove ALL my makeup using moist towelettes. Then I slather on a layer of bio oil followed by night cream and chapstick. Yes I probably look silly. No I do not care. Nothing makes you feel worse then being dehydrated and I like to attack this straight away.

♥ No alcohol! Yes I know alcohol is free and yes I know you get drunker quicker when at that altitude. But if you want to feel refreshed at the other end then avoid alcohol! Also try and avoid too much coffee and tea as they are diuretics and can also dehydrate you.

♥ Keep your water intake up, to prevent dehydration and that dreaded headache that never seems to go away.

♥ Try and get up regularly to stretch your legs (with all that water you are drinking, going to the loo is a good opportunity!)

♥ Sit back and relax – you have an excuse to spend the next 8+ hours watching movies, reading trashy magazines, listening to music etc. No email, no mobile phone – enjoy the relative peace and quiet!

Do you have any more tips on how to survive a long haul flight?


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  • Reply zarah November 17, 2010 at 5:22 am

    oh such great tips! I always find avoiding washing your face with the tap water in the bathroom good, use your bottled water instead and do stretches every hour if you can. x

    • Reply Swah November 17, 2010 at 6:33 am

      Oh yes they are great ideas as well, thanks Zarah

  • Reply Anni Shrapnel November 29, 2011 at 9:48 pm

    This is absolutely gorgeous (love the bio oil idea). I’m going to Brazil in February on a 50 hour flight- I shall follow your advice to secure a delightfully fresh arrival in Sao Paulo.
    Thanks! xoxo

    • Reply Swah November 30, 2011 at 2:14 pm

      Brazil will be amazing! But a 50 hour flight… ouch! Hope this advice comes in handy :)

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