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In Flight

6 years ago by

In Flight

I’m writing this on a flight as I’m starting to feel my feet swell, my rings tighten, and the puffiness around my face begin to worsen. It’s that point in my travels where I feel really uncomfortable and may have 1 hour or 12 hours left to go. I chug down water to release the retention, try to avoid salty foods (despite the Chinese food I had last night), and even spray some sort of mineral spray on my face (thinking, who knows, that may help!).

I’ve read several beauty blogs, magazines, and health reports on why my body reacts this way, reading a different verdict each time. I thought I’d come to you lovely readers to get some realistic advice. Does anyone experience similar symptoms? Is it too much to ask to arrive at my destination fresh-faced and ready to go (just like every super model/actress photographed at the airport)?


Add yours
  • Sheet masks! Look for something with hyaluronic acid and no alcohol. I see most people using them at the start of the flight, so your skin stays more hydrated throughout. You’ll also want to use something occlusive like a sleeping pack to seal everything in. When it’s closer to landing time, you can do a mini facial massage (just make sure you’re using something like an oil or cream) to help get rid of the swelling and improve blood circulation.

  • Voilà ce que je fais, avec de bons résultats (et pourtant je fais facilement de la rétention d’eau) : siège couloir pour pouvoir me lever et faire quelques pas une ou deux fois chaque heure; très régulièrement petits mouvements en rond des pieds et des mains; aucun vêtement serré; pas de bagues; je desserre ma montre et j’enlève mes chaussures; j’enfile des vieilles chaussettes très loose; je bois régulièrement – en principe un verre d’eau plate par heure, même si je n’ai pas soif (pas d’alcool, ou très très peu, pas de soda, très peu de café); crème hydratante pour le visage, les mains, le corps, les pieds, etc; régulièrement quelques étirements, soit dans le couloir, soit dans la cuisine. Comme ça, je m’en sors assez bien, surtout si on considère que je ne dors pratiquement pas en avion.
    Bon voyage

  • I always do Lisa Eldridge’s in flight spa routine for long hauls. It’s terribly luxurious, and gives you something to do. I have also been able to look at myself post flight. ?? It’s a game changer!

  • It is so liberating to write and fly!

  • This is a must try – flying and writing. Anything to pump creativity!

  • I also write/ illustrate on the sky, I feel it’s the best place to be crative just like the bathroom while taking a shower (excuse me, can’t help it). I was on a two hours flight yesterday and wrote the latest post of mine–Style Diaries http://www.fashionparadoxes.com/2016/12/02/style-diaries-no2/ and yes, I feel alllll the symptoms that you mentioned, especially swallowed feet! I still haven’t figured the cure for it, but I’ve been so tired ever since and I need help too!

  • I’ve read all kinds of tricks but they make no sense to me…

    1. Drink lots of water. And stand in the bathroom queue half the flight?
    2. Layer on a face mask or cream. I want to look good on my trip and I wear make up. How am I supposed to layer a mask or cream on top of that?

    I feel and look bad after flying but I still like the sense of travel joy that comes with it! Forget about the looks! (?)


  • Christina C December, 4 2016, 9:16 / Reply

    I do short haul (2-4 HR) round trip flights every other week for the last 18 months. I don’t normally have the water retention and the swelling except the few occasions I don’t do the following …

    1. I meditate 20 mins in the morning every day. Especially on flight day! Yes, even if I have to get up at 4 am to mediate to catch the 6 am flight. This is the first thing that makes the difference between stress vs non-stress flight.

    2. Sheet mask the morning of or night before the flight. Helps the skin tremendously whether I have make up on or not.

    3. No alcohol the night prior to flying or at the lounge (I can’t hold down alcohol period). If I have a few sips (because I had a bad bad day), I noticed significant swelling in my boots mid-flight. Every time!

    4. If it is that time of the month… I think hormones has a lot to do with swelling & air pressure fluctuations. It gets even worst if I haven’t slept well for the week due to stress and fly during the winter… I literally get hives and eczema breakout mid-flight.

    How to make it better… because you know that s*** happens and now I am swollen/breaking out/can’t sleep etc etc. These are some aruyvedic/Chinese medicine methods to relief the symptoms.

    1. Hot mineral salt bath (or at least a hot foot/lower leg soak). You can pre-pack yourself these cheap mineral salts from Costco into ziplock bags or little satchets from L’occitane or grocery store travel aisle will do. Do this after you get off a flight and it will help with all the tension and blood that is pooled in your legs from pressure. Make sure you spend enough time in the water that you sweat a little (you will sweat even if you only do your legs). It does wonder to calm down my hives/eczema breakout and makes you sleep very well.

    2. Ginger tea. Drink something hot and NOT caffeinated. Ginger have shown to help with digestive issues and ease those gassy/bloaty feeling you gain while flying. Yogi’s Tea makes some good ones for travel and they are organic (I think). Ginger Puhr-erh Tea also helps and is the perfect caffeinated choice in the morning. Do not drink coffee! It makes your digestive issues worst and dries out your skin – nails.

    3. Mediate. Or Yoga stretch. Enough said

    I’ve tried the In-flight spray, sheet mask etc etc. I find it extremely inconvenient. The best thing to do is to prep the night before or morning of the flight. Less mess (your moisten face will attract the pollutant in the air of the plane making you more susceptible to breakouts) and more comfort. And make sure you pat on a layer of La Mer face cream with a face oil of your choice, lots of lip balm, hand wipes (B/c planes are dirrty) and plenty of hand cream. And melatonin makes my eyes swell. So I just take a nap with a self dry-heat/steam eye mask you can get from the Japanese grocery market. It relief the eye strain you have from your screen time anyways. Take the time on the plane and recharge. I can never do any work on a plane ride.

  • I’ve always lived in New Zealand and Australia, and every flight is mid-long haul. We’re talking 7-14 hours minimum. And it’s awful at the best of times. Made worse by the fact I get severely motion sick – I will almost definitley be vomiting within a couple of hours!! I know a lot of people work on planes – for me, I block the time out and don’t even attempt anything that needs my brain. And I unfortunately have to travel a lot for work. So I have a whole regime set up. I carry a footrest and neck pillow with me, an eyemask, Bose noise cancelling headphones are a godsend, and always some sweet food and salty food so I’m not trapped if I can’t handle what they serve. And pre-flight, as soon as I have taken my seat, I use my travel wipes to disinfect the arm rests and tray tables, wash my hands, then lather my face in rosehip oil and lips with Lucas paw paw cream. My face is all shiny but usually when I land my skin has cleared and is not at all dry or oily! And worst case scenario, I always travel with sleeping pills and anti-nausea medication. I’m told though that if you get motion sick you are really likely to suffer form jet lag too, as these symptoms all come from the same part of the brain.

  • Alana veira December, 29 2016, 4:35 / Reply

    Like most people I think the only things you can do are drink lots of water, avoid salty foods, wear compression socks(I think that’s what they’re called) don’t wear makeup on the flight. There isn’t really much else you can do.

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