I am off to India in about 2 1/2 hours and, as excited as I am to be going back, I am never excited to get on an airplane. I bore easily, the air is dry and is a breeding ground for airborne illnesses, and I bloat like a seagull on Alka-Seltzer. Over the years, however, I have learned ways to minimize the negative effects of flying, especially on long haul flights. I even manage to walk off the plane looking half way decent!
Below are some of my top health and beauty tips for surviving long haul flights:
1. Begin hydrating a few days before your trip. Avoid coffee and alcohol on those days. Drinking green juices, coconut water, and Vitamin-C boosters such as Emergen-C are not only super hydrating but infuse the body with immune boosting vitamins and trace minerals necessary for combating the many airborne virus and bacterial beasties floating around in the cabin. Staying hydrated before and during the flight combats constipation so common during travel. During the flight, forgo coffee and alcohol and drink at least 8 oz. of water ever 30 minutes of flight time.
2. Move your body. On long haul flights, tight seating and the lack of the ability to move freely can increase your chances for developing DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis), a potentially life threatening condition caused by blood clots developing in the legs. Getting up and moving around every half hour or so, doing a few bends, walking around the cabin, even doing foot flexes and circles while seating can minimize your chances of developing these blood clots. Moving around also helps combat sluggish digestion. Wearing compression stockings are also a good idea if you have a history of blood clots or have had recent surgery or a prolonged illness before flying.
3. BYOS. Bring your own snacks. If possible (it’s been awhile since I have done a long haul flight in the US so I have lost touch with the rules), bring whole grain crackers, almond butter, orange or apple wedges, some raw cashews or walnuts, or celery and carrot sticks instead of relying on salty, questionably roasted airline nuts or pretzels.
4. Opt for natural beauty. It never ceases to amaze me when a woman gets on an airplane with a full face of makeup. Cabin humidity is down around 10% and all that makeup just cakes into the pores making it nearly impossible to clean later. Let’s not even talk about raccoon eyes from migrating mascara. If you must wear a full face of makeup make sure you take off all your makeup upon taking off and using a stellar moisturizer. My go-to product for flying is One Love Organics Skin Savior Balm which can be used for removing makeup and makes a fabulous moisturizer for locking in hydration. It also makes a wonderful hand and body cream. Before you land, a little concealer, a luminizer, and an all-in-one cheek and lip balm like the prouducts such as Lip 2 Cheek and Living Luminizer, both from RMS Beauty along with a little mascara such as the one from The Organic Pharmacy will have you looking like a superstar stepping off the plane. Top Tip: Don’t neglect your hair while flying. Before you fly, shampoo and deep condition your hair. Leave a little conditioner on the ends. A scarf tied around your hair (Hermés will have you looking like a jet setter) is a great “cheat” for looking fashionable upon deplaning. A boar bristle brush such as this Junior Mason Pearson helps distribute hair’s natural oils, allowing it to maintain hydration naturally.
5. Wear loose clothes that don’t wrinkle. Any spills or stains should be less ovious on dark colours, but it’s a good idea to carry a spare top in your hand luggage. And don’t forget to keep a wrap handy in case the air-conditioning gets too much. If you’re travelling in sandals, you might want to slip on some socks to keep your feet warm. Remember, though, that your feet will swell during the flight so if you take your shoes off while in the air, you may have problems later. For the perfect travel flats try Tieks, these ultra-luxury foldable flats with adorable blue soles and butter soft leather. They are the MOST comfortable ballet flats I have ever worn and come in so many colors you will be spoiled for choice. I carry them around in my bag for the times when heels are just too much to bear.
These tips will keep you healthy and looking like a rock star during even the longest of flights.
Wishing you peace and balance.