Rosacea Travel Tips: My Skincare And Make Up Favourites

For those who don’t know, I spent most of May in Japan. It was my third trip and Aaron’s fifth and we are already trying to work out when we can go back. Obviously we love the food, the culture, the people, the architecture, but for me, another highlight is the beauty shopping. I’m planning a few posts about the exciting things I got while I was there, but today’s post is about my holiday skincare and make up: the products I took, the ones I used up, and the products I bought and put on my face immediately.

As with everything I share on here, this is what works for me. I am sharing this so you can take inspiration, do more research, and apply what you know about your skin to find something that works for you.

This post is split into four sections: what I took on the plane; the products I finished while I was on holiday; the skincare I used while I was there (including things I bought there); and the make up I used (including new bits). Products with a * next to them were PR samples, everything else I bought myself. Links may be affiliate, which means if you buy using the link, I’ll receive a small percentage, at no extra cost to you. It’s a great way to support the work I do here.


The flight was about 14 hours and, even though my chair converted into a bed, I only managed about 4 hours of sleep. I watched a truly baffling film (‘Let’s Go Karaoke’ for anyone interested), listened to two audiobooks, and faffed on my phone a lot. And, of course, did my skincare and drank a lot of water. Here are the products I used in-flight:

  • Cleansers: DHC Cleansing Oil (mini) for makeup and sunscreen removal in the plane bathroom as soon as possible; and Bioderma Micellar Water (the pink lid) decanted into a mini bottle and used with cotton pads for refreshing my skin before we got off the plane.
  • Spritz: Avene Thermal Spring Water to use as a hydrating ‘toner’ step before other skincare and to calm my skin if it’s feeling a little stressed.
  • Moisturiser: the Dr Sam’s Flawless Intensive Moisturiser* (not pictured) is the perfect moisturising step with a little extra oomph. My skin loves this stuff and you only need a small amount. (Note: you can get 10% off everything on the Dr Sam site if you shop using that link!)
  • Facial oil: The By Sarah London Hero Facial Oil* is a fantastic product. After moisturiser, I put a few drops of oil into my palms and pressed it into my skin to help form a barrier over all the lovely hydration. If you want to skip a step, you could just mix the moisturiser and oil in your hand then apply. FYI, this is the old packaging, have a nosey at the new version because it’s lovely.
  • Eye drops/spray: My eyes are dry enough on land (thanks Ocular Rosacea!), so on a plane I need some extra help. Obviously, I wear my glasses and not contact lenses which helps, but I sprayed this whenever my eyes felt gritty or dry. It’s out of stock at the moment, but this is a similar product at a better price.
  • Lip balm: As above, my lips really suffer on planes so I had some Nivea Hydro Care balm to hand.
  • Hand cream: This one is from M&S and smells flipping unbelievable (although it looks like they don’t sell the handbag-sized one on the website which is odd). If you haven’t had a wander around a M&S beauty section, I highly recommend it and you should start in their own brand section.
  • Electrolyte powder: Not technically skincare, but I got a multi-pack of electrolyte powders to add to water on our travelling days (the exact ones I got are no longer available but I think they’re much of a muchness). I drank one the night before the flight, one on the flight, and one when we arrived and I definitely felt less raisin-like on arrival than in previous years. Another tip if you’re going to Japan is to pick up bottles of Pocari Sweat, a soft drink that helps to rehydrate you. Some people think it tastes odd, but I really like it and I was drinking it for the whole time we were there.
  • The eagle-eyed among you will notice there’s also a face mask here. I wore it, I really loved it, and I’ve just discovered it’s discontinued so it’s utterly pointless to rave about how great it is! But I recommend looking for hydrogel masks as they are less messy and are so cooling on the skin.


When I was packing my bag, I purposely chose products that were nearly empty. I knew I would be buying lots of products in Japan and so I wanted to do whatever I could to maximise suitcase space when we were coming home. Please note: this only works if you know you’ll be able to find products your skin will approve of while you’re over there, otherwise you’ll end up with an angry face and a steep bill when you need to buy replacements.

  • Beauty Pie Happy Face Extreme Relief Cica Moisture Cream* – I’m so sad that this is empty because it’s such a great product to have in my stash. This is what I use if I’ve had a flare up, if my skin is feeling battered by the weather, if I’ve had a reaction to something. If you find La Roche-Posay Cicaplast too thick and greasy but want something to fill a similar gap, I think you’d love this.
  • Ultra Violette Supreme Screen SPF50+ – A lovely hydrating sunscreen that looks great on the skin and gives a lasting comfortable feel. I really rate the Ultra Violette sunscreens, they have lots of different finishes and formulas so it’s worth having a look through the range.
  • Dr Jart+ Cicapair Intensive Soothing Repair Serum* – If you like your serums lightweight and liquid-y, this is a good one for you. I like the whole Cicapair range in general, and I would definitely use this serum again.
  • Living Proof Perfect Hair Day (mini) – I’ve spoken a lot about this dry shampoo before, and yes it’s pricey but you don’t need a lot and it actually leaves your hair feeling clean, rather than the cheaper ones that make your hair feel a bit dusty and coated. When I’m at home I tend to use Batiste on the bulk of my hair and this one for the parting and fringe. This was in my holiday handbag for on-the-go sweaty fringe correction.
  • Beauty Pie Japanfusion Pure Transforming Cleanser* – this is my go-to travel cleanser. Both me and my friend Jamie use and love it, so when we travel together we share a tube to save space in our suitcases! It’s a squeezable balm but, when applied to the face, it melts into an oil, and when you add water it changes into a milky liquid that’s easily removed. It tackles heavy mascara, matte lipstick, and multiple layers of sunscreen with no problems.
  • Megababe Thigh Rescue – I wrote about this after we went to Turkey last summer. It’s miraculous. If your thighs rub together and get sore, this is your answer. It also works on any spots where your shoes rub, or anything where friction is causing issues, and comes in a handy twist-up stick that you can chuck in your bag.


Obviously the above products are included in this, but here are the extras including the products I bought and used while I was away:

Skincare I Brought With Me:

  • Dr Jart+ Intensive Soothing Repair Treatment Lotion* – I haven’t seen many people talking about this product, which surprises me as it’s great, and I think it’s because people don’t really get what it is or where it fits into their routine. A lotion – sometimes referred to as an essence – is a really popular step in Japanese and Korean skincare routines but it hasn’t really caught on over here. I’d describe it as halfway between a toner and a serum, with the texture being like a really runny serum. I apply it after cleansing and before moisturiser, shaking a few drops into my palm and patting over my skin. If my skin needs more hydration, I’ll use a serum afterwards as well. This Dr Jart+ one is really nice and one I am still using – the bottle is huge considering you’re only using a few drops a day, so it’ll last ages.
  • Dr Sam’s Flawless Brightly Serum* (10% discount link) – A multitasking moisturiser that contains Azelaic Acid, Niacinamide, Vitamin C and Bakuchiol. I introduced this to my skin slowly (which is always a good idea with actives of any kind), using it twice a week and then slowly building up to everyday when I knew my skin was okay with it. This is such a great formula that is really gentle on my sensitive skin. If you would like to introduce actives to combat texture, pigmentation, redness, and congestion, but can’t be faffed with adding more steps to your routine, this is a really great option.
  • Dr Sam’s Flawless Gossamer Untinted Sunscreen SPF 50* (10% discount link) – If you’re subscribed to my newsletter, you’ll have already seen me recommend this (if you’re not subscribed and would like to be, you can sign up here). There is also a tinted version but I’m not a fan of tinted sunscreens in general.

Skincare I Bought In Japan And Used Immediately:

  • Curel Deep Moisture Spray – You can get this in the UK but it was so much cheaper in Japan, I just couldn’t resist. This is a hydrating mist that my skin LOVES – I spritz it on after cleansing and before moisturiser. It’s such a fine mist that I also applied it over make up to refresh it if I had no time between our daytime plans and our evening plans.
  • Beauty Of Joseon Relief Sun – Another product you can get in the UK but at three times the price (it’s still very affordable though!). This is probably my dream sunscreen: so light it’s like applying a gel moisturiser and leaves my skin feeling comfortable and happy. I’ll definitely pay UK prices for this when it runs out.
  • I also tried a Biore sunscreen mist which smelt exactly like I was spraying pure alcohol on my face. I wish I had a video of the comically horrified faces both my husband and I made when we smelt it, we were both so sure it was going to irritate my rosacea. Luckily my skin was absolutely fined, but I don’t think I can recommend it here when it is likely to irritate others.


I tried to be really minimal with my make up on this trip (I appreciate this may not be minimal for you, but I usually like to have choices so this is restrained for me!) so I focused on long-lasting products I wouldn’t need to top up or worry about over long days. I didn’t take a single base product with me on this holiday which is a huge deal considering I used to refuse to be seen without foundation!

Make Up I Brought With Me

You’ll recognise most of these if you’ve followed me for a while, I like to rely on trusted favourites when I’m travelling as I’m trying to keep as much of my routine as possible:

  • Clinique Even Better Concealer – this gives a really natural look, which is good when you don’t wear foundation – some of the higher coverage concealers look truly bonkers when you contrast them against the naturally red skin on my cheeks.
  • IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Pores* – A very fine loose powder that keeps my oiliness in check and sets my make up. This is another product that lasts ages so is worth the money, in my opinion.
  • Beauty Pie Mascara – This is new to me and I really like it, it’s a tubing mascara so doesn’t smudge around my eyes and you remove it with water.
  • Clinique Quickliner For Brows* – A great brow pencil if you like a tiny nib.
  • Rare Beauty Positive Light Liquid Highlighter – As you will know from this post, I love getting bang for my buck, but I’m going to say it… this product does not need to be this big. It’s ridiculous. I love it (glowy not glittery) but I’ll be using it until I’m 50!
  • Clinique Chubby Stick Cheek* – Easy to use, easy to blend, gives skin a really pretty glow and wash of colour.
  • Sephora eyeshadow monos – These mono eyeshadows are great if you find you always go for the same shades in a palette – this way you can take only the colours you really use. I have a taupe, a burnt orange, and a mauve which cover all my bases.
  • Milk Make Up Hydro Grip Primer (mini) – I’d heard such good things about this so I bought it with this holiday in mind. It seemed to really help with the longevity of my make up, even in the humidity, without making my skin feel tight or dry.

Make Up I Bought In Japan And Used Immediately:

  • CanMake Petit Palette Eyes – I saw this on day 3 and couldn’t resist. Sparkles, warm tones, and it’s tiny? Sold.
  • Heroine Make Micro Mascara Advanced Film – This mascara range is hugely popular, for a reason. I’ve bought multiple tubes of various versions every time I’ve been to Japan so this had to be done. It’s long-lasting, doesn’t smudge, and makes my eyelashes look amazing (no mean feat as I have terribly straight, blonde eyelashes)
  • Roma&nd Juicy Lasting Tint (‘Corni Soda’) – I bought so many different lip stains and I don’t think any of them are quite right (I wanted something that truly stained the lips) but this is a lovely colour, left my lips feeling hydrated, and lasted quite well.

What are your travel must-haves, whether that’s skincare or make up? Does anything here catch your eye? Let me know in the comments below!



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