In less than 10 days, it’s Christmas, which means one thing, lots of travel. (I mean it also means presents, Turkey, and lots of yummy mulled wine, but let’s be honest, the holidays and travel go hand in hand.) Whether you’re heading off on a trip abroad or are just off to stay with family for the holidays, it’s crucial that you don’t forget any beauty essentials. After all, the cold winter weather can be seriously damaging to your skin, nails and hair. So when it comes to heading off for the holidays, it pays to be prepared.


So what beauty items should you be packing for a winter trip away? What are the essentials and what can be left at home?


For your face


Obviously your makeup is a must, but what else do you need to keep your face happy and healthy while away?


I don’t know about you, but the combination of the cold winter weather and the heat from the radiator by my desk has left me with skin that’s seriously dry and sore. If I have any chance of looking half decent in the holiday pictures, a rich moisturiser is a must for my suitcase.


At the moment I am alternating between Forever Living’s Aloe Moisturizing Lotion and L’Occitane’s Pure Shea Butter, both of which I love. I would say that a rich moisturiser is an absolute suitcase must.


As well as a cream moisturiser, how about packing a moisturising spray that can be used on the go? I always like to carry a moisturising spritz with me, so that wherever I am, if my skin gets dry I can quickly hydrate it. At the moment, I am crazy about L’Occitane’s Pivoine Sublime Perfecting Mist, it moisturises and sets your makeup in place.


If you want to keep your skin blemish free, cleanser and toner are also holiday must-haves. Many of us make the mistake of turning to face wipes to remove our makeup when we travel, but the truth is they just don’t stack up to cleanser and toner. I am loving Skin Truth’s cleanser and toner at the moment – review coming soon. Look out for mini versions of your fave cleanser and toner that are perfect for popping in your wash bag.


Don’t forget an exfoliating scrub. Unless you want to be plagued by dry patches throughout your trip, an exfoliating scrub is a wash bag must-have. I am always switching between face scrubs, but at the moment I am loving L’Occitane’s Melting Honey Scrub – you can read the review here.


For your hair


Obviously a mini shampoo and conditioner are essentials, but what else? What you should be packing for your hair really depends on how long you’re away for, and also your hair type. If you’re going for any longer than 48 hours, you may need a couple more items than just shampoo and conditioner.


If you use straighteners or curling irons every day, a heat protection spray is a must. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that you can go without as it’s only for a few days – a day or two of heat on your hair with no protection is all it takes for damage to occur. (I don’t use straighteners or curling irons, but I’ve heard that Aveda Brilliant Damage Control is good.)


Prone to dry hair? Then you might want to pack a hair mask into your wash bag. At the moment I am loving the argan oil hair masks, the results are amazing. I also love the dry hair conditioning sprays that they do, these are fantastic for keeping split ends at bay.


As well as packing regular shampoo, a bottle of Batiste Dry Shampoo is also a must. Not only for those in-between days when you can’t be bothered to wash you hair, but also for adding volume. I have flat hair, and I find that dry shampoo is amazing for adding volume.


For your hands and nails


I always find that the cold weather dries out my hands, so for me, a rich hand cream is a travel must-have. I also like to pop a bottle of hand sanitiser in my bag as well, just in case. I find that most hand sanitisers dry out your skin, so I am very choosy about what I use. (My hand sanitiser go-to is L’Occitane’s Lavande Purifying Gel – it smells amazing and doesn’t dry my skin out.)


Of course, Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without sparkly nails, would it? So packing your fave shade of glittery nail polish, a gel top coat and some mini remover pads is also a must.


So there you have it, everything that I recommend packing when heading off on a trip over the holidays. Have I forgotten anything? What are your beauty essentials?