Before I became a travel writer, I was definitely pregnant with the beauty world; I grew up watching beauty YouTube videos instead of television and learned everything from my makeup artist sister. Actually one of my first jobs Ulta BeautyI’ve helped shoppers find the best products as I read and re-read labels on hundreds of products to learn everything there is to know about this vast world of makeup, skin care, and hair care.
Now, as an avid traveler, I’ve used this knowledge to create a list of amazing beauty essentials that I refuse to travel without. And at this point, I’ve tried hundreds (if not thousands) of makeup products, skin care products, hair care accessories, and more and compiled a must-have list to look and feel my best wherever I go. Whether one castless sunscreen or packaging satin pillowcase While staying at the hotel, these items never leave my bag to prevent blackheads and acne on my skin.
And because I love sharing all my beauty knowledge with shoppers during my beauty retail days, I’ve compiled a list of Ulta Beauty’s best products that are absolutely, without a doubt, worth it. Products start at just $6 and are among my top picks. non-irritating, waterproof mascara I’d like to send a message by e-mail revitalizing under eye cream this keeps my dark circles at bay; Read on to find your new makeup bag staples.
Good Molecules Yerba Mate Wake Up Eye Gel
Good Molecules was still relatively new when I worked at Ulta, but it quickly became a shopper favorite for its better-for-you products at affordable prices. This small but effective under-eye gel keeps in my travel bag, and it’s formulated with caffeine, peptides, and other skin-friendly ingredients to keep your eyes looking energized (as if you’ve just slept for more than eight hours (I just jumped off an overnight flight) And for just $6, you’ll get one every day. I recommend adding a few to your cart to keep in your travel bag and daily makeup counter.
Tula Protection + Glow Daily Sunscreen SPF 30
Tula is an editor-approved brand loved for its effective and beneficial formulas. This particular sunscreen is always first in my makeup bag because it not only protects my skin, but it’s also made with glow-enhancing ingredients that make it look amazing. And as someone who’s always looking to cut down on my packing list, I might as well leave my highlighter at home, as this sunscreen creates the same glowy effect. Also, as someone with tanned skin, I don’t have to worry about the dreaded white cast either, as it has a fast-absorbing gel formula.
The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid Serum
If you are prone to dryness while traveling, you should add hyaluronic acid to your skin care routine. Not only does it promote moisture retention in your skin (hello, plumpness!), but that same hydration can also reduce the appearance of wrinkles, acne scars, and more. I have combination skin that gets dry in the cold months and oily in the heat, and I use this serum year-round to address every concern I have. This particular product from The Ordinary is the real deal, and at just $9, it’s basically begging to be added to your cart.
La Roche Posay Toleriane Double Repair Facial Moisturizer with Niacinamide
This French skincare brand is a trusted choice Travel + Entertainment editors and one of my favorites because of its selection of moisturizing and nourishing products. I personally love that this travel-friendly moisturizer is formulated with niacinamide because it really locks in moisture and also helps keep my skin balanced without the need for extra serums.
Elf Cosmetics Paste Blush
Since anyone who likes powder blushes always looks splotchy, I was the first to try this trend when cream blushes started gaining popularity. And after a few years, I’m happy to say that this is not just a fad and this product from Elf Cosmetics is one of the best on the market. It is easy to apply with your fingers or a brush and will leave you looking radiant and rosy all day long. And at just $7, it’s an unbeatable deal.
Urban Decay All Nighter Waterproof Makeup Setting Spray Travel Size
If your makeup constantly needs an extra boost to go further, a setting spray should be in your makeup bag. And for this former Ulta employee, there’s no better product than the Urban Decay All-Nighter Setting Spray. A particularly fond memory of using this spray is applying it in the morning and then spending the day exploring London and Later going out all night (without touching anything). This spray made my makeup last very long. Really 24 hours a day and so I keep a travel sized one with me at all times.
It Cosmetics Bye Bye Under-Eye Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer
If you’re doing light packing and only prioritize products that do double (or in this case, triple) duty, you need this concealer. Not only does it provide smooth, full coverage under your eyes, it also reduces puffiness and is designed with a waterproof material to last all day. Plus, it doesn’t crease, so you don’t even need to powder your under eyes afterwards. It has maintained its status as a fan favorite for years, and for good reason.
St. Tropez Self Tanning Express Kit
My favorite travel tip for packing a lighter toiletry bag is to self-tan the night before your trip. St. I have long loved this kit from St. Tropez for its easy-to-use and quick applicator that never looks streaky and lasts more than a week. When I do this, I don’t have to worry about taking bronzer with me because it already gives me a warm, sun-kissed glow.
ZitSticka Mini Killa Deep Zit Microdart Patch
If you’re like me, the stress of travel and lack of routine can take a toll on your skin. After a long flight on recycled air, an unwanted blemish usually starts to grow on my cheek, forehead, you name it. I hate that acne keeps my mind from enjoying travel, so I always keep acne scars in my bag. This particular set includes patches that dissolve into your skin to keep early blemishes at bay.
Color Wow Dream Coat Supernatural Spray
I have curly hair and the moment I step outside, my strands instantly succumb to frizz. But thanks to this truly magical spray, my hair game has completely changed. I use this as a pre-styling treatment and it keeps my hair frizz-free all day long, even while visiting family in Florida. I’ve used countless styling sprays (and often more expensive ones) in the past, but none have managed to maintain this level of sleekness as effectively as this $12 spray.
Kitsch Satin Pillowcase
My friends used to make fun of me for keeping a satin pillowcase in my travel bag, but as someone with sensitive skin, I’ve learned that the best way to prevent flare-ups of acne or rashes from ruining a trip is to use a reliable pillowcase. satin pillowcase. It’s incredibly lightweight, takes up very little space, and the soft material keeps my skin happy and healthy (and now each of my friends travels with their own satin pillowcase, too). Even better, the luxurious feel adds elegance and comfort to any journey, regardless of location.
Clinique High Impact Waterproof Mascara
I love the original formula for daily use, but whenever I travel I always opt for the waterproof version for long-lasting, bleeding-free wear. And trust me, this waterproof mascara is one of the best on the market, especially if you’re like me and have allergies. Not only is this mascara long-wearing, but it also does not itch or irritate my eyes despite over 14 hours of wear time. My mom is a big fan too and I can’t recommend it enough.
Shark Beauty Air Styling and Drying System
In the past, I have sold over 100 of these highly-rated hair dryer-air styler hybrids, based on enthusiastic recommendations from colleagues and customers alike. But I wasn’t able to get one for myself until a few months ago, which makes me wonder how I lasted this long without it. My hair tends to frizz, and previous blow dryers often left my hair looking dry and flat. But this styling system not only keeps my hair hydrated (even on the highest heat setting), but my style lasts up to three days (without touch-ups). It’s great to pack away for worry-free, holiday-ready hair.
Honest Beauty Invisible Blurry Powder
Honest Beauty is known for makeup products that make users look and feel amazing. With the stagnant air of planes and fresh particles coming in from your destination, it’s always a good idea to have a light powder on to keep oiliness and shine at bay. I find that my skin is always at its oiliest when I travel, and this blurring powder not only controls shine but also adds a subtle but striking blurring effect. Sometimes when I’m in a rush I apply this and skip the foundation because it makes my skin look cool.
Smashbox Photo Finish Smooth and Blur Primer
If there’s one tip I learned from my makeup artist sister, it’s that if you want your makeup to last, you need a good primer. Smashbox offers some of the best on the market, and this Photo Finish Primer is not only my personal favorite, but also the product of choice for countless Ulta customers. I’ve danced for hours at weddings and sweated it out in new cities while wearing this trusty primer with no makeup budget. What’s more, its formula blurs the appearance of pores and eliminates dryness, resulting in plumper, brighter-looking skin.
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