Travel in The Current Climate: 12 Skin-Saving Tips

Last year at this time you may have been planning your winter getaway, jet-setting someplace warm and exotic the moment the deep chill sets in. But this year, in the midst of a pandemic, you may be feeling, well, a bit more grounded. Traveling in the time of Covid-19 is tricky, but it doesn’t have to be non-existent if you do it safely (i.e. socially-distancing and wearing a mask in public). Plus, there are exciting ways to get away without stepping foot on an airplane – like hopping in an RV and driving to a destination.

What hasn’t changed whether you’re road-tripping or flying? Climate shock on your skin. Going from one extreme temp to another can make your skin breakout, dry out, or turn red and sensitive. And now, you’ve got a few additional skin challenges to contend with — wearing a mask, for one (maybe you’ve heard of – or even experienced – maskne, breakouts from your face covering). To help your skin transition and recover on your next getaway, we asked dermatologists for their best skin travel tips on how to have better skin – depending on where you’re headed – and then matched them up to the Pour Moi Climate-Smart® skincare products that will protect your complexion, no matter where you go, or how you get there.

Skin Tips for Travel During Covid

As we said, the pandemic brings a unique set of skin issues when traveling. Here’s how to shield your skin while protecting yourself from germs.

Prevent mask irritation.

Whether you’re flying and have to wear a mask for the duration of the flight, or visiting a public spot where masks are a must, your skin may be affected. Increased humidity under your mask can trigger breakouts, a.k.a. maskne, says Avnee Shah, M.D. a dermatologist in New York and New Jersey. Rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis can also flare due to heat and moisture buildup. And even just irritation due to mask friction can leave skin stinging. To prevent it:

  • Cleanse gently and use a Pour Moi Day Cream that will balance the humidity levels affecting your skin. (Keep reading to find the right cream for your skin.)
  • Skip the makeup when wearing masks for long periods of time. “The less product under the new humid climate created under your mask, the better,” says Shah.
  • Try a skin-friendly mask. Pour Moi Wearable Smart Masks follows CDC guidelines for masks, and is made of material that helps control moisture and prevent bacterial growth. Choose one for the destination you’re heading to, and wash it often.

Stop sanitizer dry-out.

Loading up your hands up with alcohol-based sanitizer while traveling will kill germs, but also all your essential moisture. To replenish, moisturize immediately after cleansing or sanitizing, says Shah. “You want to keep a steady level of hydration for the skin as going from wet to dry over and over and possibly switching climates while traveling can be a trigger for dry skin,” she says.

Stop touching your face!

No matter where you’re heading or how you’re getting there, you’ll likely encounter some shared surfaces. So, hands off your skin; there’s no quicker way to introduce bacteria. “I have started to tell patients to wear a bright colored band on their wrists to call attention to when their hands are close to their face,” she says. For some, the visual reminder is enough to make you stop. Or, you can snap the rubber band to break the habit over time.

Skincare Tips Based on Your Destination

If you’re hitting a humid climate…

Lighten up. 

Driving to the ocean? Hot temps and humid air mean your skin doesn’t need the same type of rich moisturizers it needs in your colder home base. Pour Moi is the only skincare brand to develop a Climate-Smart® strategy with lightweight products that deliver the hydration you need per climate situation. The Tropical Day Cream is ideal for warm-weather environment. It contains humectants that draw moisture in your skin, without feeling heavy or greasy. Plus, pore-purifying coconut acid.

Deep clean.

Cleansing and exfoliating dead skin becomes extremely important in humid locales. “The oils will start to increase so you want to keep pores clear,” says Shah. Pour Moi Clarifying Polish starts off as a jelly-like balm that melts away makeup and dirt then turns milky as you rinse it all away. Plus, exfoliating crystals whisk away dead skin. The Hydrating Balancer contains glycolic to get rid of pure-clogging dead skin. Apply the Balancer twice a day after cleansing your skin to help retain a proper pH level plus condition, hydrate and soften your skin. Then, follow with Blue Serum, an ultra-light serum formulated specifically for humid conditions.

If you’re going to a cold climate…

Give your skin a head start.

You can easily social distance on the ski slopes, but you’ll have to get your skin ready for the challenge. A few days before your trip, prep your skin for the chilly temps by increasing its moisture content, says Shah. That means choosing a formula that’s designed to nourish skin in a colder environment. The point is to help strengthen your skin barrier, and also allow it to be able to capture the moisture it needs from the environment and from what you drink. Like the other  Climate-Smart® creams, the Polar Day Cream contains Geo-hydraDynamic complex, which uses three sizes of hyaluronic acid molecules to keep your skin optimally hydrated, plus ingredients like Shea Butter and Squalane Oil that will prevent Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL), which can increase by 25 percent in cold, polar climates, as well as antioxidants to help protect skin’s barrier against both natural and manmade elements.

Pack a humidifier.

Whether you’re staying in an Airbnb home, a hotel, or the inside of your RV, indoor heat can dehydrate skin. Debra Jaliman, M.D., a dermatologist in New York City and author of Skin Rules: Tips from a New York City Dermatologist recommends putting a travel humidifier in your room to add skin-plumping moisture back into the air.

Skip the super-hot shower.

It’s tempting to warm up after a day on the slopes with a piping hot shower, but long, steamy showers strip skin of its essential moisture, says Shah. “The hotter the water and longer the shower, the drier your skin will get,” she says. Think warm, not hot, and limit your time under the spray to less than 10 minutes.

If you’re heading to a dry climate…

Boost your cleanser.

Sneak some more moisture into your skin while cleansing. After using the hydrating, honey-like Clarifying Polish, treat skin to some extra moisture via the Secret Flower Jasmine Mask.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

It’s not just cold weather that dries out skin; high heat (temps above 75 degrees) with low humidity (levels below 45%) can also leave skin incredibly dehydrated. The Desert Day Cream is formulated for this arid climate and contains Squalane oil to fortify skin’s lipid barrier, helping skin retain its moisture. Plus, it contains bio-actives to help your skin deal with changes between air-conditioning and spending time outdoors.

Krista Bennett DeMaio
About the Author: The daughter of a hairdresser, Krista Bennett DeMaio likes to say she has beauty in her blood. She has well over a decade of beauty editorial experience. The former magazine-editor-turned-freelance writer has covered all things beauty from anti-aging skincare to NYFW runway trends. Her work has appeared in national publications and websites including Women's Health, Redbook, Shape, bhg.com, makeup.com, and prevention.com.