The Secret to Free Travel Makeup
I'm sure you've seen it by now, but Shannon and I recently booked our 6 week backpacking trip to Europe! I got home from work the other day to find that my 35L Outdoor Pursuits backpack had finally been delivered, and that made it feel even more real! It also made me realize the pathetically small amount of space I had to fit 6 weeks of my life in. Cue panic. Not only do I have to fit all of my clothes in there, but I have at least 30 beauty products on a steady rotation and paring all that down is going to be a significant challenge.
While clothes are a completely different struggle (future article, Shan?), I think I've figured out the best ways to maximize my beauty products while minimizing how much space I use. Keep reading for some solid tips and tricks.
- Save complimentary hotel beauty products.
This one is a pretty much a no-brainer, and I'm pretty sure most people have been doing this since they were children (I really loved hoarding things). Granted, these products are usually pretty bad quality, but if your hair can handle them, they're great to have as a backup when trekking across a continent. Another great use for these is to dump out the hotel shampoo and refill the container with your good shampoo and conditioner from home. The bottles pass all flight regulations and take up very little room in your bag. Win-win.
- Check out your local Sephora.
Listen people. Sephora is pretty much heaven to any makeup lover. They have everything you could ever want and more. They are also amazing about letting customers try products before they buy. You can pretty much get a free sample of any cream or liquid product, and even some loose powders. While you definitely can't go in there and request an entire arsenal, you can probably get away with 3 or 4 samples per visit. This is perfect for liquid foundation, face cream, and serums. Depending on how much you use, each sample can probably last you a week or two! Head back on a different day (or to a different Sephora) to grab another sample if you need it.
- Order online.
Once you've grabbed a few samples and decided what products you like, head to Sephora's website and order some travel sized products (shampoo, conditioner, mascara, lotion, etc.). If you're signed up as a beauty insider, you can snag up to three free gifts with each online purchase. Sometimes, these are single products, and sometimes, they're mini makeup bags filled with a few products. Ulta also holds a lot of similar deals when you order online from them, but you usually have to spend a certain amount of money on a specific brand to get them. For example, last week I ordered some Bare Minerals Matte Powder and Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara from Sephora. In addition, I got 6 perfume samples, 2 lotions, 2 foundation testers, a face peel, a mini lipstick, a mini eyeliner, and 4 other random sample products all for free. The perfume testers are probably the best for traveling, because they each last a few days and take up very little space.