Before I started documenting every moment of my travels, I was getting around looking like a swamp monster. Just, a big ol’ swamp monster, dragged straight out to the bayou, getting around Europe looking real oily and frumpy. But then my blog became a thing and I had to start looking decent for photos. This created a mini revolution within my life and, like our primal ancestors, I had to evolve and adapt. Now, I’ve got a whole slew of tips and tricks for always lookin on fleek when ya travel… here are 3 quick and easy tips that’ll up your game, with minimal effort!
P.S Sorry in advance, this blog post contains way too many photos of me and my face… it’s weird… but contextually appropriate so, keep that in mind.
1. Match your hair-do to the weather conditions
If I could impart one piece of advice, this would be it! You need to get a feel for the weather conditions of the place you’re visiting and make sure you choose a hair-do that’s appropriate. Lemme tell you, friend, curling your hair then heading out in the intense AF Bangkok weather is NOT going to work.
When you’re in humid countries like Singapore, Thailand, and Indonesia, you need to proactive about slicking your hair back. I always opt for slick ponytails, braids, buns and braid/bun/pony combos. Make sure you pack plenty of bobby pins, hair spray and hair ties to help you.
Pro Tip: To avoid those pesky fly aways that pop up in humid weather, spray a little hairspray on your ‘do then shlick it down by gently brushing it over with a dry toothbrush. It’s like MAGIC. I use this for ponytails, braids, buns and even to settle flyaways along my part line when I straighten or curl my hair.
When you’re in countries with cooler climates, this is where you want to be busting out your good hairdos. You can never go past freshly washed, straightened hair, for a classic, timeless look that you won’t come to regret when you look back at your photos 20 years from now (the 80s? Anyone?)
Pro Tip: If you’re having a bad hair day, which happens to me all the time, throw on a hat or wrap a scarf or headband around ya noggin’ to hide oily roots or uncooperative, crazy hair… like this:
Watch my very average beauty tutorials on how to braid your hair like I do!
2. Use make-up that lasts all damn day
When I’m travelling I only have time to do my makeup once, with a few touch-ups during the day. So it’s really important you choose makeup that’s going to wear well and last all damn day… sunrise to sunset… then you can just hide in the shadows at night and no one will know! I always, always use a primer – that’s non-negotiable, and keep my makeup look simple and sweet. But, my real secret weapon is my foundation: L’Oréal Infallible 24 Hour Matte. I found out about this stuff by watching beauty tutorials on YouTube and seeing all the beauty gals rave about it, so I decided to try it out myself and, you guys, it’s magic. (They haven’t paid me to say this, my feelings for you are real, foundation!)
I do my makeup each morning before I set out, using a primer, concealer, the magic L’Oréal foundation, and powder, then just my usual brows, eyes, bronzer and blush, and I’ll tell you now, that foundation lasts all day. When I use it, even if I sweat like crazy or even if I go swimming, I know it’s going to stay on (as long as I don’t rub my face). It’s honestly my secret weapon… peep these two photos… on the left, fresh makeup and on the right, after swimming! The stuff STAYS put. For real.
There’s also something to be said for makeup setting sprays, which you spritz over you finished face. I used to use one a little while ago, but the spray thingy got a bit clogged and it made me look weird. That said, they really can help keep your makeup in place. Peep these ones for inspiration.
Pro Tip: Always carry your loose powder with you so you can touch up a little. I also take the time to ‘bake’ my face, just to stop it creasing and giving it a chance to last longer during the day (I bake while doing my hair). My other favourite cosmetic at the moment is my Designer Brands Beyond Amplifying Mascara, because it NEVER gives you panda eyes (even when you go swimming or wash it off, it just flakes away!) If you want to know all my favourite makeup products, let me know in the comments below and I’ll write a post about them.
Watch my go to, long-lasting makeup and skincare routine that I use whenever I’m travelling!
3. Put in the effort and don’t worry about what people think
I used to be so worried people would think I was trying too hard or was self-obsessed and I wouldn’t put any effort into my appearance. The thing is, I’d regret it because I’d see photos from my trip and be too embarrassed to share them cos I looked like a freaking yeti.
Look, it’s 2017… we live in a world where Kim Kardashian has literally published a book of selfies… it’s time to stop worrying about what other people think. The biggest thing I do now is to make sure I dress up really nice, so I feel comfortable and confident in what I’m wearing, and take the time to do my hair and makeup properly each day. It’s such a simple thing, but it makes a huge difference to my confidence.
Who cares if a bunch of legit backpackers thinks you look like a tourist? You’ll never see them again…. but you will see your travel photos of you looking hot has heck! So, wear that special dress or the skirt that shows your legs off, wear your favourite heels and go all glam if you want to – just be sure to put in the effort so you feel comfortable and confident, without worrying what anyone else thinks.
Pro Tip: When I’m out for a really long travel day or travelling in a particularly hot country, where I know I’ll be all sweaty, I pack a spare outfit. This ensures I get variation in my photos, particularly important for me work-wise. I just change my skirt or my top, so I get more use out of photos. I also change outfits if I’ve gotten all hot and yucky in what I’m wearing and need to freshen up.
Watch my very average beauty tutorials on how to curl your hair like I do!
Phoebe Lee is a travel writer and award-winning blogger with a love for storytelling. Phoebe creates practical, fun and engaging written content designed to inspire and energise travel-lovers and dreamers. Follow her and Matt’s adventures at home and around the world, right here on Little Grey Box, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube.