Alyssa Barrie Weiss and Claire McCormack, of TravelBeauty.com.
Women tend to have a strict routine when it comes to our beauty regimes at home, not to mention a drawer full of products bursting from our cupboards, but when it comes to travel it’s not unusual for all of it to go out the window. Often you end up sacrificing on your favourite products because they’re not compact or you end up bringing too many products to make up for what one could potentially do. Not anymore.
Launched in late 2013, TravelBeauty.com was conceived when founder Alyssa Barrie Weiss discovered luxurious products in pharmacies and boutiques during her travels, wishing they were available at home in New York City. Not only that but she didn’t want her frequent travels to prevent her from sticking to her beauty regime.
Taking these pain points into consideration, TravelBeauty.com was born. Their mission is simple — create a hyper-curated list of the best luxury brands from around them globe and offer many of these favourite products in travel-friendly versions (3.4 fl oz or less!). While some of these brands may not be familiar to the everyday consumer, all of their products are vetted and curated by renowned beauty, skin care and hair experts, who also share tips, professional advice and guidance, making selecting products that much easier.
Travel & Style had the opportunity to chat with Weiss and TravelBeauty.com’s COO, Claire McCormack, to get the scoop on some of their favourite travel-friendly products, great brands and beauty tips for all of you frequent flyers.
What product on Travel Beauty do you consider to be your “must” when you’re travelling?
Alyssa: It is difficult to pick just one. Here are a few that are great multi-taskers:
Institut Esthederm Repair System Eye Contour Lift Patches
. Plane travel can be tiring and dry cabin air can cause swelling under the eyes. These under eye masks will make you look (if not feel) like you just stepped out of a spa and ready to take on the world. Once you remove them, you actually massage the remaining product into your under eye, so these multi-task as a mask and under eye cream all in one.
Cosmetics 27 Huile 27 by M.E. SkinLab
. This all natural reparative elixir can be used alone as a moisturizing face oil or mixed with your favorite face cream to create a moisturizing face treatment. Similarly, it can also be used as a body oil or mixed with your favorite body lotion to create an intense moisturizing emulsion for the body. It can also be used as a hair and cuticle treatment and even as a lip balm.
: Vine Minus Ion Care Water
is everyone’s favorite product they’ve never heard of. Due to its ability to kill bacteria, NASA used Care Water to treat lenses going into space. Negative ion water is also 170 times more absorbent than regular water, so it penetrates to the core of hair and skin. Because it is negatively charged, it bonds to hair and skin, killing bacteria and providing superior moisture. This miracle water helps to strengthen fine hair, making it feel thicker. It also boosts the strength of conditioners, treatments and styling aids, allowing the products to penetrate deeper and work better. Similarly, if applied before your toner, serum and/or moisturizer, it enhances the efficacy of your skin care products. It can also be used as a makeup remover, to clear up acne and you can even brush your teeth with it! It is the master multi-tasker!
Travel Beauty offers such a wide selection of brands, but not all might be familiar to the average traveller. Is there one brand you carry that people really need to know about and why?
: Institut Esthederm
. This brand was founded by Jean-Noël Thorel, a Pharmacist and Biologist. There’s real science behind this line of bio-cosmetics that takes a completely different approach to skin care. It works with aging skin’s biology and the sun’s properties, instead of against these factors. This is not only evident in its sun care products that are bar none — the best you can find on the market — but in its serums and moisturizers for the face. These products contain chemistry already present in the skin and infuse technology that literally repairs and creates new fresh skin. Very unique.
The beauty regimes women have in other countries are so varied because of climate, culture, etc. Is there any beauty product or routine that has surprised or excited you during your travels?
Claire: It has been really exciting to experience this trend of embracing traditional, natural- sometimes ancient- beauty secrets from around the world! The explosion of oils in skin care, hair care and body care products is a perfect example. Camellia oil, Argan oil, Paw Paw etc., have been used by women around the world for centuries, and the “green” movement in beauty has brought these multi-purpose wonder products to the rest of the world. We couldn’t be happier! Discovering how women use one product for so many different purposes is always a delight — I now condition my hair, soften my heels and cook with coconut oil!
We also love discovering women’s “off-label” uses of products. For example, our European friend told us her boyfriend will only shave with Elasticizer — a deep conditioning treatment for hair! We hear tips like this from women around the world often, and we love passing them on.
Alyssa: Cosmetics 27 by M.E. SkinLab, from Paris, has surprised and delighted me. It takes a traditional apothecary approach to skin care. The line is built on the premise that each individual is unique, so a skin care regimen should be custom-created. It has a small line of five basic products, specially formulated for even the most sensitive skin. Depending on your skin type, you will use a certain combination of the products to address your specific concerns. For example, if your skin is more mature or dry, you can add the face oil, Huile 27, to Baume 27, an already healing moisturizer to create a rich treatment for day and/or night. Conversely, if you have combination or normal skin, you may want to stick with Essence 27, a light moisturizing serum that can be layered under the Baume 27 moisturizer.
Are there any brands you are planning on introducing in the near future (that you can share!)?
Claire: Without spoiling any surprises, we will say that we are beefing up our natural/organic beauty selection! You’ll see more body care, skin care & men’s products — all very travel friendly. We recently added RGB Cosmetics nail care, whose formulas are free of the toxins found in traditional polishes. As a mom, I love that their products — including nail colour remover pads- are safe for my daughter to use.
We will also be expanding our product offerings to include more countries — going global on an even grander scale. Stay tuned!
What’s your best beauty tip for frequent flyers?
Alyssa: Keep your face regimen basic when flying, especially on longer flights. Cabin air tends to be dry which not only dehydrates skin but can cause water retention. Drink lots of water and rely on a moisturizing skin care regimen. In other words, use a serum, moisturizer and under eye cream and not much else, if possible. If you need to use an under eye concealer go ahead but I recommend staying away from eye makeup. It dries the delicate skin around the eye further and can even contribute to water retention resulting in greater swelling around the eyes.
Claire: I love highlighter pens for this reason — they provide light coverage and brightening, without the heaviness and drying that traditional concealers have. Just a few sweeps on top of my eye cream and I’m good to go.
Before flying, I also like to slather myself with a mix of body cream and body oil. (Truth be told I like to do this most days, but especially before a flight!) You want to create a barrier on your skin so the dry cabin doesn’t suck all the moisture out of you. It works!
I never travel without refreshing hand & face wipes — Elemis makes great ones for face and I love EO Organics Hand Sanitizing Wipes. If that plane water isn’t safe to drink, why would I want to wash my hands with it?!
I also never travel without a multi-purpose oil, like the aforementioned Huile 27, to moisturize my hands, cuticles and face.