Five Grooming Hacks For Frequent Flyers

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Five Grooming Hacks For Frequent Flyers

Words by Mr Ahmed Zambarakji

7 January 2019

Moisturise Intelligently

A mere three hours in the air will deprive your body of 1.5 litres of water, most of which is lost through respiration. Rehydrating in every conceivable way should become a top priority. Cut back on diuretics such as salt and coffee, guzzle water like it’s going out of fashion and apply a hyaluronic acid-based serum, which will bind to any moisturising product you layer on top of it. A facial mist is a great alternative to a cream, provided the formula you choose contains enough humectants (Lavett & Chin’s mist contains coconut and honey extracts) and isn’t just water in a spray can.

Better yet, wait for the cabin lights to dim before applying 111Skin’s Rose Gold Brightening Facial Treatment, a hydrogel sheet mask that will saturate the skin in moisturising actives while terrifying other passengers. It contains 24-carat gold, damask rose extract and silk amino acids that brighten jet-lagged skin in less than 20 minutes.

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Eye Rescue

Cabin air has a knack of drying out mucus membranes (hello, nosebleeds) and causing the eyes to become red and itchy. While discomfort is easily remedied with eye drops, you still need to contend with the paper-thin skin surrounding your peepers, as it will be particularly prone to irritation, puffiness and dark circles.

The Hyaluronic Marine Dew It All Eye Gel by Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare combines caffeine with sarsaparilla root and optical diffusers to reverse the cavernous shadows caused by a sleepless journey in a hypoxic environment. It also contains hyaluronic acid to prevent the delicate layers of skin from wrinkling.

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Don't Fly Too Close To The Sun

It may sound reasonable to save your sunscreen until you reach your final destination, but being physically closer to the sun, albeit in a giant metal tube, increases your chances of UV-related damage. Be sure to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen, as those rays will work their way into the cabin along with other forms of cosmic radiation, if Nasa-funded research is to be believed.

When choosing a sunscreen, know that the difference in protection between an SPF30 and an SPF50 is nominal. An SPF50 offers about one per cent more protection, and it does so by including a disproportionately large amount of chemicals. Sisley - Paris Sunleÿa GE Age Minimizing Global Sun Care SPF30 should be adequate and, as an added bonus, it contains shea butter and plant glycerine to keep skin hydrated. Or you could just close the window blind.

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Beat The Bloat

Of all the physiological effects that result from pressurised cabin air, it is water retention and bloating that seem to be the hardest to control. Any swelling is often exacerbated by a salt imbalance, most likely caused by scarfing 15 miniature bags of pretzels before take-off. Before long, your feet are bursting out of the cushioned interior of your Air Max 95s and feel like they’ve been cemented to the ground.

There are remedies, though. To regulate your salt levels, simply up your potassium intake by eating a banana. Compression tights worn underneath your trousers will also do some good. The squeeze they provide around the calves will ensure that fluid can’t build up in the tissue and blood is encouraged to flow back towards the heart.

Fake Sleep

There’s little chance of looking bright-eyed and bushy-tailed after you’ve jumped through multiple time zones. But jet lag isn’t the only reason your face takes a beating on long-haul flights. Commercial aircraft are pressurised to between 6,000 and 8,000ft and, the higher the altitude, the less blood flow there is to the skin. More than anything, it is a lack of circulation that leaves you looking dull and lifeless.

Fortunately, a healthy glow can be faked by way of self-tanning face wipes, such as Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Glow Pads. Simply swipe over the cheeks and forehead about four hours before your descent for a deceptively fresh complexion. Alternatively, apply the Bright Future Sleeping Facial by Allies of Skin, a chemical peel-cum-hydrating mask that is packed with brightening agents as well as medical-grade manuka honey to reduce inflammation.

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Friends in High Places

Illustrations by Mr Ilya Milstein