10 Ways to Look and Feel Fresh After a Long Flight

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Flying can suck sometimes. You've got the red-eye flights, overnight flights, really long flights, and of course the never-ending layovers. All of these flights have something in common - they leave you sticky in some places, dry in other places and overall jet-lagged when you finally arrive at your destination. After 15 years of traveling the world, I feel that I've mastered the art of feeling fresh while flying, so I can arrive in my destination feeling and looking good. The days of smelling and looking like a stinky gym bag are no more. Here are my 10 ways to look and feel fresh after a long flight:

How to Look and Feel Good After a Long Flight

10. Wear an Overnight Face Mask

If you want to feel fresh after a long flight, where an overnight mask. Yes men, I'm talking to you too. Overnight face masks keep your skin hydrated on that very dry airplane and are a skin care product I won't travel without. One of my favourite overnight face masks is Origins Drink Up Intensive because:

1) It's clear so no one will even know you're wearing it.

2) It makes your face feel like it just drank a litre of water.

You can leave this on throughout your entire flight and then just wipe it off with a wet cloth just before you land. To save money and reduce waste, I get the 3.4 ounce bottle of the Origins Drink Up Intensive and squeeze enough into a 100ml bottle that will last me throughout my trip.

9. Kleenex Wet Wipes

Throughout my years of travel, I've learned that wet wipes are a must have travel essential to feel fresh while flying. They come in handy in so many situations, including the journey to your destination. I use Kleenex Wet Wipes to clean up after a meal (I eat like a 5-year old child) and to take an "in-flight seat shower" by wiping myself down from head to toe.  What I like about Kleenex Wet Wipes is they are soft, thick and don't use any harsh chemicals.

8. Hydrate with an In-Flight Drink

There are drinks that are made specifically to help fight jet lag and make you feel refreshed when you get to your destination. They are packed with antioxidants, vitamins and electrolytes that help support your energy. The one I've tried and can recommend is called 1Above. I tried it the first time when I was flying from Fiji to France. It was a 30+ hour journey, but instead of feeling exhausted when I arrived at my destination, my energy was high, and I felt ready to explore. Another product I've tried that works well is No-Jet-Lag. It's a homeopathic remedy made into tablet form which can be taken with water every couple of hours during your flight. The outcome is essentially the same as 1Above but I found 1Above to be slightly more effective.

7. Stay Away from Caffeine and Alcohol

Replace any alcohol or caffeinated drinks with H2O. If you can skip any processed sugary drinks including juices they serve in flight, even better. Just keeping it simple by sticking to water. If you're a nervous flyer, add some herbal teas like lavender and chamomile to the mix. Peppermint and green tea are also really great for reducing inflammation (perfect on a long flight). Even though green tea has caffeine in it, it acts differently than coffee. Instead of giving you the jitters, green tea has a relaxing effect and has a smoother effect on energy – ideal for a late-afternoon boost that won’t disturb your sleep.

6. Plan your Sleep

Before a flight, I set my watch to the time in my final destination. This way, I know when I need to sleep and when I need to stay awake on the flight. For example, if I'm traveling to Australia and will arrive in the late evening, I'll get some rest at the beginning of my flight and stay up towards the end. When I finally arrive in Australia, it will be easier for me to fall asleep since I've already begin to train my body for that time zone. When it comes to sleeping on a flight, it can be a little tricky. Bring items that are gonna help you relax like a neck pillow, eye mask, ear plugs, headphones, relaxing music and melatonin (a natural sleep aid). Anything that's gonna help you unwind and fall asleep faster.

5. Keep Essentials on Hand

Want to feel fresh while flying? Keep your essentials on hand! I'm talking about a toothbrush, dental floss, gum, deodorant, make-up and anything else that's gonna help you feel and look good for when arrive at your destination. Keep all of these items in a small toiletry bag to take with you on the plane. About 45 minutes before you land in your destination, head to the plane washroom to "refresh" yourself. If you wait longer than 45 minutes, you're bound to encounter a line up and feel pressure to speed up your time in the washroom.

4. Move Around

During your flight, it's important to move your body. Stretch, do some yoga or do a funny dance in the aisle (you may receive a few weird looks but life's about having fun)! Getting that circulation flowing is especially important on a long haul flight. When you sit for too long, you're susceptible to Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), which is a blood clot (thrombus) in a deep vein, usually in the legs. Moving your body often (at least every couple of hours) can prevent blood clots and other things like muscle soreness and stiffness. It also gives you more energy which is a great thing to have if you're arriving at your destination in the morning or afternoon.

3. Bring a Change of Clothes

If you're anything like me, then you look like a 9-month old baby when you eat. Adult body bibs should be a thing...

Even if you're a clean eater, flying can leave you feeling sweaty and stinky. Bringing a change of clothes, including clean underwear, is highly recommended to help you feel fresh when you arrive at your destination. I always bring a hat with me because sometimes I can't muster up the energy to do my hair. On the days I do have an extra 5 minutes, I do one of these 3 quick and easy hairstyles.

2. Pack Snacks

Snacks are life. I cannot, and will not, travel without a bag of snacks. Most airlines serve food full of processed carbs, sugars and unhealthy fats, which can leave you with backed up bowls and make you feel sluggish once you arrive at your destination. For this reason, I always pack nuts, fruits, crackers, veggies and dark chocolate. I like knowing I have an endless supply of healthy goodies I can munch on throughout my flight.

1. Spritz on Some Rose Water

Have you ever smelled rose water? It's delightful! I use Fresh Rose Water every morning on my face to help me wake up. Not only does it leave your face feeling refreshed, it hydrates too.

Bonus Tip!

Take advantage of airport lounges! This is especially true if you have a long layover. It will be a game changer for you. A few years ago, Siya and I got a Priority Pass, which is one of the many perks of signing up for the American Express Platinum Card, and it gives you access to over 1000+ lounges in hundreds of cities. Airport lounges come equipped with a place to sit, sleep, eat (who doesn't love a buffet), get your drink on, connect to the internet and sometimes even shower. Overall, they are a nice place to unwind away from the chaos that is the airport.

It is my hope that with these tips you'll enjoy the journey of getting to your destination as much as actually.

Do you have any tips for looking and feeling fresh during a long flight? Share with us below!

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3 Comments

  1. November 12, 2019 / 11:40 pm

    Tea!!! I also love both but I couldn’t live without tea. I try to stay away from caffeine so that makes my options slightly more limited, and tea has so many more choices for decaf than coffee does (I also prefer iced coffee over hot). Teavana teas are my favorite. I love anything fruity, decaf green tea, and lemon black tea. There are very few teas that I dislike other than chai!

  2. September 21, 2019 / 4:29 am

    Great blog thanks for sharing this blog.

  3. July 19, 2019 / 12:24 am

    Great tips Kristen!

    I usually lather on moisturiser on my long-haul flights, but I love your idea of using a proper face mask! Good idea to stay away from too much caffeine too… I find it hard so I think I\’ll just switch from a coffee to a green tea like you suggested!

    The biggest tip I have for a long haul flight is to wear your comfiest pair of socks – it makes such a difference! 🙂