How to keep restricted items to a minimum:

Liquid makeup foundation: If you must have it, transfer to a small (under 100 ml) leak proof bottle for travel. This might be the time to experiment with one of the many mineral based powder foundations, which are not subject to liquid limitations. For those who still suntan, buy one light and one dark to create a custom formula for your changing skin tones.

Lipstick: Solid lipsticks are exempt from size/volume restrictions, so use regular lipstick and put it in your makeup or travel kit. Lip balms and gels go in the security baggie.

Mascara: Believe it or not, this travels in the security baggie. It may not take up a lot of space but take a smaller sample size if you can get one. Solid cake mascara, if you feel like experimenting, is OK, though you may rather slip a slim tube into the baggie rather than carry a bulky box in your other kit. Another option: have your eyelashes professionally dyed before you leave.

Eyeshadow: Liquid, cream or gel eye shadows must travel in your security baggie. The same applies to liquid eyeliner. Powdered or cake shadows can go in your travel kit. Consider streamlining – bring pencils.

Hair Care: Most hotels have shampoo and sometimes conditioner. If you can, leave your shampoo at home and bring other products you can’t live without. Use the local water as an excuse for any bad hair days.

I can tolerate almost any shampoo but I must have my own conditioner. Experiment at home to see how little you really need. It might be less thank you think. I used a blob of conditioner the size of a lima bean when I had to pack light for a barge vacation.


Perfume: Pick up a sample size of your favourite scent or one you’d like to try. Those tiny vials hold enough for a few days plus they really are leak proof. You just might fall in love with a new fragrance that you can stock up on at Duty Free on the way home. But if that’s not the case, rinse out the vial and add your own fragrance. Perfume goes further than eau de cologne or toilet water. And some shops sell tiny spray pump perfume containers, though they may or may not have a tight seal.

Toothpaste: This goes into the security baggie and many drug stores carry travel-sized tubes. I use fluoride-free toothpaste that’s not available in a small size, so I fill a regulation-sized jar.

Deodorant: Solid and powdered deodorants are exempt from size/volume restrictions.

Nail Polish: The last time I checked, both polish and polish removers are still very liquid. But doesn’t a salon manicure last so much longer than one you do at home? If you must, bring a small bottle of clear topcoat for daily touch ups and double-bag it.

Shaving Cream: You could bring a cake of shaving soap and a brush but unless it’s your regular habit, don’t bother. Foams and gels are restricted so zip them into your security baggie or consider waxing a day or two before you go.

FA TIP: If you are checking suitcases, downsizing may not be necessary, though I strongly recommend you bring at least enough supplies for one or two nights in your carry-on in case your luggage doesn’t arrive with you.

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