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Grooming on the Go: Skincare for the Inveterate Traveler

by Mark Thompson
EDGE Style & Travel Editor
Wednesday Apr 11, 2012

It was the White Rabbit who ran around saying, "I'm late! I'm late!," which is a feeling that many of us relate to as we race from office to airport, trying to catch our next flight to rest and relaxation (and a return to sanity).

Of course, all that racing around takes a toll on one's equilibrium (Have you checked your pulse in the security line? Waiting and wondering if your toiletries are going to set off alarm bells?). And then there's the "recycled" air at 38,000 feet and sneezing children and wheezy adults and it's no wonder your face looks a fright upon disembarkation.

What you need while traveling is an arsenal of elixirs designed to calm your nerves and rectify the sins of airplane cuisine. Once you've arrived at your destination, avail yourself of some of these emollients recommended by intrepid travelers - and show up for dinner looking radiant.


Nickel: Bonne Gueule

There’s nothing like a sixteen-hour flight to wreak havoc with your complexion - and nothing like blotchy skin to make you wish for a paper bag. You’ve traveled halfway across the world to make a good impression and your skin’s acting up.

Relax. Step into the business class loo and apply Nickel Bonne Gueule to calm that overly-sensitive skin. Be gone, redness; hello, calm skin.

Nickel Bonne Gueule is ideally formulated for those of us who look a little ashen after a lengthy flight (and really, isn’t that all of us?). This light balm evens out skin tone and eliminates shine and oiliness.

Enriched with vitamin E and B5 for hyper-soothing moisturizing, Nickel Bonne Gueule also contains fruit acids such as sugar cane, citrus, apple, and green tea extracts to help banish pallor and boost radiance. The addition of oligo-elements including zinc, manganese, cobalt, and copper promotes natural cell renewal with a fresh matte finish.

(And let’s face it, it doesn’t hurt that Nickel Bonne Gueule has that fresh-scrubbed masculine smell - not unlike your college roommate after he was just showered and parading around the room in only a towel...)

PRICE: $37.00 / 2.6 oz (75 ml)
LINK: Nickel Bonne Gueule


Dirt for Men: Deep Face Wash

Some of us barely open our eyes before we wash our face each morning. Who needs to look at that mug after eight hours mashed into a pillow (or into the armpit of the one you love...)? What you want to do first thing each morning is cleanse the night from your skin so that when you open your eyes you’re not remaking "Fright Night."

Dirt for Men Deep Face Wash is made to tackle oily or difficult skin (even that of burgeoning vampires). This hardcore face wash penetrates deep into the skin, removing residue from the night before and leaving your skin as polished and luminous as another sunny day.

Dirt for Men was created for guys who want their products to look as masculine as their cave, hence the name. Nonetheless, Dirt for Men’s containers are unmistakably stylish with a twist-and-pump dispenser that is as clever as it is ready-made for a travel bag. Formulated with 100% natural ingredients (and never tested on animals), Dirt for Men products are designed to make skin care as easy and reliable as the man you share your bed with.

Get into Dirt for Men Deep Face Wash - and wash those nightmares away.

PRICE: $16.50 / 30 ml.
LINK: Dirt for Men: Deep Face Wash


Lush: Buffy Body Butter

Hotel soaps and shower gels can be so alluring - the deluxe packaging, the seductive names, the royal seals - but then your skin reacts. Far from home, your body is calling out for the familiar. What you need is Lush’s Buffy Body Butter to exfoliate all the speed bumps anxiously rising all over your skin.

Take Buffy into the shower or tub and buff away the bad things. Rub the two-in-one exfoliating and moisturizing vegan bar in a circular motion wherever you want your skin to be smooth and sexy. That’s right, all over your bum, all around your moneymaker. Slough off the dead skin and the tiny bumps and feel the softness return.

Formulated with ground adzuki beans, as well as ground rice and almonds, Buffy Body Butter is also loaded with shea and cocoa butter, so there’s no need for body lotion after Buffy slays away the bad. Parade around your hotel room in the buff and get to know your neighbors while you let your skin air dry. What better way to make friends in a new city, right? And when those new friends arrive at your hotel door, your freshly-exfoliated skin will be baby soft to the touch.

Let your new friend call you "Baby" - because Buffy made you that way.

PRICE: $11.95 / 3.3 oz
LINK: Lush Buffy Body Butter


Menaji: CAMO Magnum Concealer

When you’re traveling without your full arsenal of toiletries, it’s imperative that you have a secret weapon for those sudden eruptions provoked by jet lag, exhaustion, and indigestible airport food. Menaji CAMO Magnum Concealer is urban camouflage for your face - and exactly what you need to put your best face forward.

The first concealing agent designed for men, Menaji CAMO Magnum Concealer is a lip-balm sized applicator that is available in three skin tones to hide scars, bumps, blemishes and other of life’s indignities. Infused with grape seed oil, Menaji CAMO Magnum Concealer is rich in antioxidants, while the addition of pink grapefruit protects skin from UV damage.

In creating her own line, Michele Probst, founder of Menaji, focused on products that would enhance the natural healing properties of men’s skin. "Skincare For the Confident Man" is the company’s tagline.

Frequent flyer Bryan Batt, star of "Mad Men," swears that "Menaji 911 is my savior; there’s nothing else like it." Given that Mr. Batt usually looks as if he’s stepped off the cover of a magazine (rather than off a plane), we’re following his lead.

Carry Menaji CAMO Magnum Concealer in your pocket - and when TSA asks you what you’re packing, tell them it’s your secret weapon - for beauty.

PRICE: $26.00 / .25 oz / 7 g
LINK: Menaji CAMO Magnum Concealer


Kate Somerville: Moisture Milk Cleanser

After a long flight spent marinating in recycled fetid air, your face needs a cleaning. One of the joys of arriving at your hotel is the opportunity to wash your face like you truly mean it. None of those microwaved hot towels, you want to really cleanse your face of the travails of the previous eight hours.

Kate Somerville’s line of KateCeuticals just released Moisture Milk Cleanser, which is precisely the gentle, yet effective cleanser that your face needs and desires after a lengthy flight. The rich, triple-blend formula combines vitamins and natural plant extracts with bitter orange peel to gently exfoliate and brighten the complexion.

Unlike other exfoliating cleansers that strip your skin, Moisture Milk Cleanser is formulated with kukui, macadamia, and coconut oils to insure that your skin is immediately moisturized. Soybean extracts prevent dehydration and a brightening complex leaves your skin radiant, even after you rinse your face.

Based in West Hollywood, founder Kate Somerville partnered with dermatologists to open her own medi-spa skin clinic. A skincare consultant for the film industry, Somerville has worked with some of the most recognizable faces in the world.

Pack some Moisture Milk Cleanser for your next trip - and get ready for your close-up.

PRICE: $58.00 / available at Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman
LINK: Kate Somerville


A long-term New Yorker and a member of New York Travel Writers Association, Mark Thompson has also lived in San Francisco, Boston, Provincetown, D.C., Miami Beach and the south of France. The author of the novels WOLFCHILD and MY HAWAIIAN PENTHOUSE, he has a PhD in American Studies and is the recipient of fellowships at MacDowell, Yaddo, and Blue Mountain Center. His work has appeared in numerous publications.


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