Should I Travel-Size it?

Knowing which products to bring travelling is hard enough, without worrying about how much to take. Should you just bring a travel-sized amount with you to keep the weight of your backpack down and top up when you’re out there? Or should you stock up on enough toiletries to last the duration of your trip? These are the 2 extremes of packing for your trip, and I think the key is to find the right balance.

Everyday Toiletries

Everyday Toiletries

For the products you are going to use daily, I don’t really see the point of taking travel-size bottles. For shampoo, conditioner and shower gel, the travel-size bottles usually only last a couple of days anyway and wouldn’t cover a week’s holiday let alone a long-term trip. So I’m all about going full-size on these ones.

Sometimes its tempting to stock up and take enough of your favourite Aussie Miracle Moist Shampoo with you to last the duration of your trip. But all that’s going to do is take up space in your backpack and weigh you down. And even though your favourite brand may not be available India, Cambodia or Guatemala, everywhere in the world will sell shampoo! A full size bottle will suffice for sure.

Skincare Essentials

Skincare Essentials

Sun cream is a big one here. How much should you take of the many SPF variations? This is different for all of us as we all require such different levels of sun care. So I’ll just speak for myself here. I have olive skin that very rarely burns, so I go with SPF 20, applying it everyday when I’m travelling. I take a full-size bottle with me, and then take a travel-size bottle of SPF 50 that I only use on my most at-risk areas such as my nose and top of my forehead. I think this is the right amount as it lasts me a few months and doesn’t sacrifice too much bag space.

I also never scrimp on after sun and take a large bottle of Hawaiian Tropic with me. This is one product that does tend to last the duration of my trip. It tends to act as my body butter/lotion as well, so I reason that taking a big bottle is okay if it means not taking another product.

Last but not least, my trusty exfoliator – The Body Shop’s Vitamin C Microdermabrasion. The 75ml bottle is fairly small but large enough to last for a while if you exfoliate once or twice a week.

Carry-On Beauty Supplies

Carry-On Beauty Supplies

I feel like I’m allowed a few luxuries for long haul flights. The lack of sleep and the awful air con just completely dry out my skin, so I need a few products to help me out. These are the ones that are allowed to be travel-size in my opinion. I love the This Works Skin Defence moisturiser I reviewed last week (see post here), as well as The Body Shop Elderflower Eye Gel. Both take up hardly any space and make me feel a bit more human during long journeys.

Luxury Items

Luxury Items

If you have a luxury product that you really want to take but you’re not sure if you can warrant it, compromise by taking a travel-sized amount. For me, this is hand cream – the Bee Good Honey & Crambe Hand Cream is my current favourite. It’s just one of those things that makes me feel good! For others those luxury items may be hair serum or a face mask. You’re allowed to take those things you like, but by making it travel-sized you’re not using up too much space or making your backpack too heavy.

Okay, so here’s a summary of the size I think you should be taking…


After Sun




Shower Gel

Sun Cream SPF 20




Sun Cream SPF 50


Eye Gel

Hand Cream

What do you think? Anything I’ve missed?

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