8 Travel Makeup Tips + Beauty Essentials For Travel

8 makeup travel tips + beauty essentials for travel
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If you’re as obsessed with beauty as I am, you probably wouldn’t be caught dead without mascara, sharp eyeliner, and powerful af liquid lipstick that doesn’t budge for anything. Bringing all that to another country or even another city can sometimes be a struggle, especially if you have enough makeup to feed a small town, if they ate makeup. When I embarked upon my trip to Ireland, it really took me some time to figure out what I was going to take and what was going to stay, and how I should organize things. I wanted to pack all my essentials so I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to purchase them abroad, but at the same time I didn’t want to feel like I was hoarding things into my carry on that didn’t need to be brought along. If you’re planning a trip and this totally sounds like something you’d fight yourself on, here are my tips for packing makeup. Oh, and by the way, I’m also sharing a short list of all the beauty essentials that are legit essentials that everyone should pack for a trip — whether you’re a makeup maven or a once-in-a-blue-mooner. It definitely helps to have these items, and some of them are things that people FORGET to pack!

1. Bring just three shades of lip color.

Can’t decide which of your 100 tubes of lipstick to bring along? A good rule of thumb that I like to follow is to always bring just three shades of any lip color: one natural; one “fun” color; one “sexy” color. The natural color is great for everyday wear and professional settings. The “fun” color is great for day trips and excursions, and going on best friend dates and other fun activities. It’s sometimes that color that your mom looks at you weird for wearing. And your “sexy” color is great for dinner at restaurants and just going out at night. This is NOT the time to bring that shade you never, ever wear even though it stares at you from your makeup bag. If you don’t wear it at home, you probably won’t wear it somewhere else. Save yourself the space.

Related: 7 Matte Lipsticks Under $8

2. Invest in makeup remover wipes.

These are AMAZING! They’re so great for quickly removing makeup after a long day of hiking, walking, running, and flying. My personal favorites are Elf makeup remover wipes ($3 at most stores) and the Neutrogena makeup remover wipes ($6.99 at some stores). I wear stubborn foundation that’s literally meant for 24-hour wear and these products actually manage to get it off. If you won’t be away for very long, purchase a mini pack of wipes. Makeup wipes aren’t something that you want to purchase in another country because they can be quite expensive, so make sure you pack a little more than what you think you’ll need. Q-tips are also a great thing to pack.

3. Read the TSA’s rules for traveling with liquids.

When I was preparing to travel to Ireland this winter, I read and re-read and then re-re-read these rules online because THEY TREAT CERTAIN MAKEUP PRODUCTS AS LIQUIDS and you need to be aware of this if you’re flying. Essentially, liquids must be kept in 3oz containers and all the containers need to be able to fit in a quart-sized resealable bag in your carry on. If you plan to carry more than 3oz of liquid, it MUST go in your suitcase. Don’t put yourself in a position where you have to leave behind a beloved product! The rules are very strict so make sure you pay attention to what you have. Items that count as liquids are: mascara, liquid or gel eyeliner, liquid lipsticks and lip gloss, liquid foundation and concealer, and primer. Basically, if you have to squeeze it, pump it, or stick a wand applicator in it, it counts as a liquid.

4. Don’t bring anything you’re afraid to lose.

I would probably lose my shit if I lost my Naked 2 eyeshadow palette because those do not come cheap! Plus, the palette is quite large, so of course I didn’t pack it. If you’re worried about losing a product you paid a lot of money for, then that’s probably your gut telling you to pack something else. I did pack an eyeshadow palette that I paid like $3.99 for and the shades were all super perfect.

5. Pack products that do more than one thing.

Instead of packing foundation AND moisturizer, pack a tinted BB or CC Cream. If you usually use several products to build up coverage, invest in one product that’s meant for full coverage so you aren’t packing extra bottles and adding extra weight.

6. Pack minis. 

Minis are such great space-savers! Plus, you won’t have to worry about losing your full-sized product because it’ll be safe and sound at home. I know some products may be hard to come by in mini form, but if you can find them, they’re definitely worth purchasing, especially if your trip isn’t going to be for more than one month.

7. Invest in a brush roll. 

This is probably the one thing I didn’t do when I travelled to Ireland and I definitely wish that I had. Brush rolls are great for organizing and storing your brushes. They’re the fancy cases that you see a lot of makeup artists sporting. I never realized how gross it can be to just toss your brushes in the same bag as your cosmetics. You run the risk of having them collect more germs this way. I’m definitely going to invest in one for my next trip.

8. Pack products that are already favorites. 

This is NOT the time to try out a new brand of foundation or a primer you’ve never used before. Stick to the things that you know already work great for you, because if while you’re away you find that the new product isn’t what you wanted it to be, you might end up spending extra money looking for something else to use in the meantime.


  • Dry shampoo
  • Bobby pins + hair ties
  • Sunscreen + face wash
  • Lip balm
  • Coconut oil (if you can)
  • Q-tips
  • Nail file

What are your makeup travel tips and beauty essentials? 

Related: 10 College Beauty Essentials, How To Be Money Smart While Studying Abroad

The Ultimate Study Abroad Packing List

study abroad packing list

So you decided to take the plunge: you applied to study abroad and you got accepted! This is definitely an exciting moment, but getting prepared to go abroad can also be quite nerve-racking. There are so many things you must prepare for before you study abroad, and honestly, it can feel pretty overwhelming. If you were already nervous about packing to go away for college, this is like twice as insane because you’re going to be in another country (unless you were already going away to college in another country. In this case, you probably already experienced all the insane nervousness).

As I’m packing to go on my study abroad trip in a few days, I want to triple check and then quadruple check that I remembered everything. So I’ve basically been researching all the things I need to take with me. My professor also emailed my group a packing list for the country we’re going to, and I’ve been thinking a lot about which items I personally need while I’m abroad. So I created this ultimate list of all the things you need to pack for your study abroad adventure to take some of the stress out of your packing! I think that sometimes people overpack and then they’re in trouble on the return flight because they purchased a bunch of gifts and things from the other country to bring back for family and friends, so they end up with overstuffed, overweight luggage and they have to pay extra money because of it. So without further ado, here’s what you should pack!


  • 3 pairs of pants
  • Sweaters/t-shirts (as you see fit)
  • Pajama tops + bottoms
  • Camis/tank tops
  • Underwear (enough underwear)
  • Bras
  • Socks
  • 2 party/formal outfits
  • Stockings
  • 1 pair of tights
  • Weatherproof/all-weather jacket
  • Waterproof boots
  • Sneakers
  • 1 pair of flip-flops + shower shoes
  • 1 pair of fancy shoes (flats, heels, etc.)
  • Touchscreen gloves
  • A hat and scarf


  • Face wash
  • Toothbrush + toothpaste + toothbrush holder
  • Face towel
  • Bath towel
  • Sunscreen
  • Shampoo + conditioner + body wash (in travel bottles)
  • Razor
  • Pads/underwear liners
  • Comb + brush
  • Dry shampoo
  • Hair ties
  • Sunscreen
  • Deodorant
  • Lotion
  • Makeup

School supplies: 

  • Tablet
  • Notebook
  • Pens + pencils
  • Textbook(s)
  • Journal


  • Plug + voltage adapters
  • Chargers for phone/tablet/laptop
  • Earbuds
  • Camera + SD Card
  • Portable charger


  • Travel Tylenol
  • Allergy medicine
  • Prescription medicine
  • Band-aids
  • Q-tips
  • Eyeglasses/contacts


  • Tide-to-Go pen
  • Wristlet/crossbody
  • Umbrella (unless an umbrella is no use against the weather)

Don’t leave without: 

  • Passport + passport holder (Visa if needed)
  • Boarding pass
  • Exchanged currency
  • State ID
  • School ID
  • Debit/Credit card
  • Insurance card
  • Emailed copies of important documents

Notice how I mentioned a “weatherproof” jacket and “waterproof” boots. I think people tend to go crazy with jackets and shoes and things — they spend money and use up space on different jackets for different weather changes, whereas buying one jacket that’s good for rain, snow, wind and even has a lighter detachable inner jacket is a much better investment. You don’t need to pack a raincoat, a winter jacket, and a spring jacket when you can get one jacket that does it all. This is the North Face 3-in-1 waterproof jacket that I bought for my trip to Ireland. I was told that bringing an umbrella is optional because they don’t stand a chance against the rain in Ireland, so I made sure I bought something that would keep me dry and warm.

If you’re only going away for a mini session (3-4 weeks) avoid bringing nail polish and nail polish remover. Nail polish remover is flammable (whether or not it contains acetone) and the TSA prohibits flammable liquids. Get a mani before you leave for trip and hope that it lasts! Also, I highly doubt you’d even want to stay inside and paint your nails when you could be exploring the city, meeting locals, and making memories. For a list of what you can and can’t bring on flights, check out the TSA’s website here.

Related Posts: 9 Things You Must Consider Before You Leave For Study Abroad, The Collegiate’s Ultimate College Packing List, 13 Things Not Allowed In Dorm Rooms + What To Bring Instead 

What’s on your study abroad packing list? 



9 Things You Must Consider Before You Leave For Study Abroad

9 things to consider before studying abroad

I’m studying abroad in Ireland this winter (yay!!!) and it’s going to be my first time traveling outside of the country since I was four years old, and I’m pretty darn excited. I’ve heard so many things about how life-changing study abroad is and how it’s “the experience every college student should have.” You’ve probably heard the same spiel that I have. I recently had my study abroad orientation at school and we covered so many things that I didn’t even think I’d have to think about while abroad. Honestly, the only things I prepared for prior to orientation were purchasing my ticket, converting the currency, and buying some travel essentials. If you’re studying abroad in another country in the near (or far) future, DON’T even so much as pack a suitcase without considering these things.

1. Your health insurance while abroad.

I got that “oh crap” feeling the moment the presentation turned to health insurance because guess whose mind insurance never even crossed…My school puts study abroad students on a special health insurance plan because accidents can happen and you need to know how much and what costs your insurance will cover. The plan makes it easy for us to report and check claims from our phones, and we can also find other services this way. Ask your school’s study abroad office if they offer an insurance plan that you can be put on.

2. Can you get your prescription medication in the country you’re traveling to?

One important thing to note is that while you’re abroad, you should not be changing anything in your routine. Some people who travel abroad during intersession think that it’s okay to not take their medicine because it’s “only three weeks.” Make sure you bring your medication and also see if you’re able to get it in the country you’re traveling to in case you lose it or something. This website called the Drug Translation Guide is great for figuring this out. Your medication may also come under a different name and dosage, so figure this out before you board a plane.

3. Your passport expiration date.

Did you know that if your passport expires within six months of your return date to the United States, you may not be able to get back into the country? Yeah, neither did I. I’m not travel expert, but this may be an important detail to take into account.

4. Currency conversions and payment options while abroad. 

Converting your currency is a huge thing to consider before traveling — how will you pay for meals and other things you’re going to purchase? You can convert your currency at your bank, but be aware that you may actually have to order the conversion in advanced, and the rate may change daily depending on your bank. Also inquire about any conversion fees. You definitely don’t want to just pick yourself up two days before your departure and go to the bank to try to convert your money. Another thing to consider would be whether or not you can use your debit card or any other cards while abroad. Be sure to find out which cards are accepted in that country. Leave yourself with enough time to consider money matters for your trip.

5. Packing a voltage and plug adapter. 

My heart practically fell when they told us not to bring straighteners on the trip because using a U.S. flat iron in Europe could practically set a floor on fire. Even with an adapter. The current isn’t the same in every country, so make sure you know what items you need in order to be able to use certain electronic devices. Essentially, you need a voltage adapter for anything that heats up — hair dryers, curling irons, and computers if they don’t have a built-in voltage adapter. This is probably one of the biggest items (besides your passport) that you can’t get away with not bringing with you. If you have any doubts, ask your study abroad office what electrical items are and aren’t allowed in the country you’re visiting.

6. The other country’s social etiquette. 

Another really surprising part of orientation came when we were discussing the social do’s and don’ts while abroad. What may be appropriate behavior and attire in your country may not be appropriate in another country. The professor my group has been traveling with has been taking students to Ireland for many years now, and is of Irish decent herself, so she was able to tell us a lot about what to expect and what not to wear. Let me tell you, I probably would have packed a couple of clothing items that I wouldn’t have been able to wear if she hadn’t told us otherwise. Getting a feel for the country’s social norms can really help you decide what to pack and what to leave at home, so do your research! Also research what gestures are considered rude in the other country. A peace sign with your fingers may be cute in your country, but in another country it can be highly offensive.

7. Alcohol. 

We were told that with a lot of students, alcohol consumption nearly doubled while they were abroad. This can do with the drinking age being different in another country, and everyone else around you may be drinking so you might think “why not?” I know that talking about alcohol isn’t all that fun and I like to talk about fun stuff, but it’s still something to be aware of. Make sure you continue to do what you need to do in order to look out for yourself and keep yourself safe.

8. Class materials such as textbooks. 

It is still STUDY abroad, aka you’re not on vacation and you still have classes to take and probably homework to do. Find out what things you’ll be expected to bring for class time. The only things I’m required to have are a textbook and a journal for documenting the trip, but make sure you know in advanced if you must order the textbook or if you can rent it or get it from your school’s bookstore.

Related: The Ultimate Guide To Buying Textbooks In College

9. Preserving the memories you make. 

Do you plan to bring a fancy DSLR? Will you just stick to using your phone? Do you want to have instant prints using an instant camera? Consider how you’re going to take photos while you’re away. I hope to purchase an instant camera from FUJIFILM before I leave so I can have adorable, tiny prints for my travel journal, so definitely let me know of any good deals on an Instax mini! Preserving memories isn’t just limited to taking photos. You can also start a free blog, a vlog on YouTube, a scrapbook, or a journal, to name a few.

What other things should you do before leaving for study abroad?