Overbooked flights. Train delays. Stinky seatmates. No one said holiday travel was easy, but it would be nice if it didn’t crush your body as well as your spirit. We asked Melisse Gelula, wellness expert and co-founder of Well+Good NYC, for advice on how to stay happy and healthy during the busiest travel season. Turns out it’s easier than you think.
Eat at home beforehand
“You’re surrounded by high-carb, prepackaged foods at airports and train stations,” says Gelula. “So I eat a really healthy meal at home beforehand, like a kale salad with avocado and almonds.” A light, well-balanced meal will curb the impulse to reach for that in-flight Chex Mix freebie. To satisfy a mid-journey snack attack, reach for smart-but-tasty option like Lärabar’s ϋber bar.
Dress your face in layers
To prevent dry skin and breakouts, Gelula shared this travel trick, which she learned from a facialist many years ago: Layer on hydrating formulas before your flight. “It’s like a souped-up facial treatment without adding time to your routine.” She recommends first cleansing with a nourishing product that’s milky or oil-based. Then, use a toner that gives your skin another boost of hydration with ingredients like hyaluronic acid. Follow with an oil (we love NUXE Huile Prodigieuse Multi-Usage Dry Oil) and top with a moisturizer or BB cream. Another trick? Put on a clear facial mask that people can’t see, remove it halfway through the flight, and follow up with moisturizer.
Tote your tea stash
“Planes can be an airlock of unhealthiness,” Gelula admits. To cut through the stale air and promote digestion (important when sitting for long periods of time), she brings her favorite Yogi Tea in Egyptian licorice mint and asks for hot water. “It’s like an aromatherapy session each time I take one out!” Green tea in a bright flavor is another great choice: “It’s a multitasker that’s good for health and beauty.”
Make your workout portable
A packed travel schedule is no excuse to ditch your workout entirely. In fact, a little exercise can help fortify your system against illness and prevent your feet from swelling during long flights. “It’s a circulation booster—like you’re giving yourself a little oil change.” Gelula also recommends checking out a yoga class or grabbing a gym guest pass in the town you’re visiting for the holidays. Or stream a workout online from a site: GaiamTV.com offers Netflix-type access to yoga, meditation, and exercise classes with some of the industry’s best, and fitness hotspot Physique57 just launched a series of digital workouts.
Larkin Clark is a writer and photographer based in New York City, and an editor at DailyCandy.
Want more wellness? See Gelula’s holiday party tips in the Birchbox Magazine.