Manis On The Go- The Travelin’ Gal’s Guide To Keeping Her Mani Fresh!!

A couple of days ago, Jess and I were discussing an opportunity she has coming up, and how that opportunity could lead to a lot of traveling. And she was wondering how she would be able to do manicure upkeep while on the road. I got really excited, possibly did my giddy seal clap, and asked if I could write a post on this. You see, I’m fairly well-traveled. I lived abroad for a year, traveled extensively within that year, and have gone back to Europe every year since then to visit my friends and see things I missed. Plus, I’ve got a trip to England in April (wedding) and Antigua in October (Birthday and World Cup Qualifying) and I will definitely want to keep my nails in tip-top shape. Trying to do this while traveling light is a challenge, but not impossible. You just need to apply the same rules of packing your suitcase to packing your mani kit. Especially if you are like me, and tend to travel carry-on only, and with just a backpack.

Start with a bag that has a plastic coating. That way if anything leaks, god forbid, you have a better chance of avoiding ruining other items in your suitcase. Size is a personal preference, and the smaller you can go, the better. It depends on what tools and how many bottles of polish you take.

You’ll need a base coat and top coat. Go with a quick dry top coat, because when traveling, you may not have the luxury of being able to let your mani fully dry. I prefer Seche above all, but I know you can get OPI and Essie top coats in mini size. I suggest only taking one or two colors on your trip. Again, this is personal preference, but not lugging around several polishes has its benefits. Mostly, the less you take, the less you have to lose. The trick to choosing a color is to pack something that will go with just about everything you pack to wear. When I travel, I wear a lot of black/gray/tan stuff. Everything goes with those colors. The nail polish should be the same. Here I have two nudes and a “red.” These colors work in any situation. From sightseeing, to the theater, to tea with the Queen (hey, you never know). If you don’t like having your nail polish show chips, a nude polish is a must.

Tools are a personal preference. At home, I use nail scissors, but I travel with nail clippers. A) they are carry-on friendly and B) they don’t poke holes in stuff. I also don’t travel with a cuticle pusher, but I didn’t realize it was in my set until I was editing pictures. Just do your cuticles before you go if you need to, and leave that stuff at home. Nail files are the thing I NEVER leave home without. I travel with an emery board, and a metal pointed tip nail file. One is used for actual filing, one is used to remove dirt from under my nails at the end of the day. Traveling is rough on your nails, and you never know when you’ll need to file down a broken nail. The other necessary tool is cuticle cream. Previously, I’ve taken Burt’s Bees Lemon Cuticle Creme because it’s in a small tin. In the future I’ll be travelling with Lemony Flutter. I’ll be getting a small tub from LUSH the next time I’m there, however, because the 1.5oz size is a bit bulky. Remember, the smaller the better! I also like to take nail polish remover wipes. They aren’t quite as quick and efficient as acetone and a cotton ball, but they are individually wrapped, don’t take up much space, and I have ease of mind by not having to worry if my mini bottle of acetone has leaked everywhere. As for the cotton squares, I just like having some on me. You never know when or what you could need them for. You could nick yourself while clipping or filing, you could need to wipe some errant nail polish off and you don’t want to open a brand new wipe to do so, who knows?

Keep in mind, manicure upkeep while travelling is all about personal preference. I travel with a max of two colors, and try to combine tools so I can carry less. This is just a good starting point for a travel kit. It’s always nice to have nice tips while traveling. Although, sometimes I travel with cuticle cream and a nail file. I know, I’m sort of ashamed when I do so. Either way, maintenance is as easy or as difficult as you make it. Keeping it simple is the way forward if you ask me. Have fun traveling!!

**Biggie Ups to my Wifey, Michaela, for the picture of me with my backpack. Nothing else better captures my travel style than that picture. She took it when we went to England this past February. We had just landed in Manchester at stupid o’clock AM, and were walking to catch the train to Liverpool. 

About Melissa

I am awesomesauce. Just ask anyone who's met me.

Posted on November 21, 2011, in Tips and Tricks and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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