From airplane acne to your skin rebelling against your beach destination – why is there such a strong reaction during trips? Breakouts can dampen your holiday. Here is a look at why they occur, and what you can do about it to keep your skin healthy and vibrant:
The air in planes is notorious for being dry, and it irritates the skin regardless of the skin type. It has 10 to 20% less humidity compared to the conditions you’re used to while on the ground. For those who are already battling dry skin, the conditions in the plane will exacerbate things. If you have oily skin, then there will be increased sebum production as your skin works to counteract the dryness.
So, boarding when your skin has already been cleaned and freshened up will give you the best fighting chance – as well as having a moisturizer on standby to use during the flight. Refraining from having on makeup while on the plane will be of help, to avoid clogging your skin pores – or at the very least, use non-comedogenic makeup. After the flight, give the skin a good cleanse to wash away the impurities and moisturize it to keep that healthy glow and recover from the impact of the flight.
Your skin takes a hit when you change climates. Moving from warmer climates to cooler ones, or vice versa, will have its effect. For instance, if you travel from a hot and humid location to a cold and dry region, then you can end up getting rough patches on the skin, and those with conditions like eczema or psoriasis could experience flareups. If it’s the other way, where you’re escaping a cold dry environment to a hot and humid holiday destination, then the skin can end up producing more oil and sweat, and chances of acne are higher. Washing your face more frequently with gentle cleansers, and applying moisturiser daily, will help in this.
Handling the logistics involved with your trip, all the packing and last-minute dash to catch the flight, language hurdles for those travelling to parts of the world with different dialects, hiccups with the booking systems, rides, hotels, short-term rentals or other aspects of the trip - it can be a stressful period. This causes the body to produce cortisol - the stress hormone. For those with skin conditions like acne, eczema and psoriasis, cortisol exacerbates them. For instance, with acne, more cortisol flowing through the body causes the sebaceous glands to produce more oil - triggering breakouts.
Taking measures to calm and relax you through the trip goes a long way. What works varies from one person to the next. Aromatherapy, using meditation apps, to flying with noise-cancelling headphones as you listen to your favourite music or podcasts – it all works to put you in a healthier mental state.
Add factors like your internal body clock being messed up as you hop between different time zones and interrupt your sleep schedule, to the adjustments that come when trying out new cuisines - it can take a toll on your skin. Be proactive by carrying a light skin-care pack with you to exfoliate, moisturize and soothe your skin during your trip, get more selective with your meal choices while trying out those new dishes, and drink lots of water.