There’s a downside to living in the lucky country. Being Australians, we have the unfortunate experience of having to sit through a flight that can take anywhere from six to 35 hours, depending on exactly where you’re going and how many stopovers it’s going to require.
Here’s my foolproof guide to getting through a long-distance flight and still looking relatively human (and even pretty!) by the end of it.
Before the flight
1. Plan your flying outfit.
Comfort and convenience is key here. You want layers, as planes are cold, and shoes that are easy to slip on and off. Always go for flats as there’s no telling what can potentially go wrong. Delays and cancellations can leave you standing in queues for hours, or sprinting from one end of the airport to the other in order to avoid missing a plane.
I always go for leggings, a long singlet, a cardigan, a giant scarf and Converse. A soft, wireless, comfy bra is also a great idea.
2. Pack smart.
Take a change of clothes (or several) in your carry on, as well as the bare essentials of toiletries that you’ll need. Take only small versions of your basic, favourite products, and make sure that they’re intensely moisturising. Products that can do more than one job are extra helpful.
Here are the toiletries I pack…
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Facewipes (you can get little travel packs from Priceline), disinfectant wipes, hand sanitiser, deodorant
- A light but nice BB cream (mine is Maybelline)
- An epic moisturiser that moisturises like nobody's business (mine is a travel size of the Clinique Moisture Surge extended thirst relief)
- An equally epic lip gloss (mine is from thisworks and also works on dry cuticles, elbows and heels)
- Mascara, blush and an illuminator (I use the waterproof mascara from Covergirl and Benefit's Benetint and High Beam. Benetint works as a blush and as a lip colour), (Post continues after gallery.)
3. Get a blowdry.
I know this sounds extravagant but oh my, it's worth it. Getting a blowdry before a long-ass flight means that your hair will still look and feel nice when you finally arrive at your destination. Tell your hairdresser that you're getting on a plane and ask for something soft with not too much product (you don't want it too crunchy).
On the flight
4. Drink up.
Drink as much water as humanly possible. Buy yourself a huge bottle before you get on the plane and attempt to get through it by the time you step off your plane. This is especially achievable if you nab an aisle seat, so you don't need to squeeze past someone every 30 minutes when going to the loo.
5. Catch zzzs (if you can).
Sleep as much as you can. Do whatever works for you – sleeping tablets (consult your doc beforehand), neck cushions, whatever. I take a Relax and Unwind tablet from the Michelle Bridges' Blackmores range, plug Bon Iver into my headphones and settle down for a big, long nap.
6. Use hand sanitiser.
Keep yourself healthy. Never mind that your neighbours will think you an uptight germphobe: just slosh around the hand sanitiser and scrub everything around you with disinfecting wipes. A recent study found that germs can live for up to eight days in seat pockets and on tray tables. Eeeeurgh.
While you're waiting for the bathroom or just walking around the plane, stretch out your body and strike a few yoga poses. This works especially well when it's the "middle of the night" and the lights have been dimmed on the plane. Or else you can just show off.
Try these yoga moves from Paper Tiger. (Post continues after video.)
After the flight
8. Adopt the ol' baby wipes shower approach.
After going through customs and immigration and all that, find your nearest bathroom and get changed into a fresh set of clothes: socks, undies, everything. Give yourself a mini-shower with face wipes and then use your small supply of make-up to freshen up your face. You'll feel like a completely new person.
Try to get yourself upgraded to first class, or at least business. There's a great way to pretty much guarantee that you'll be stepping off the plane feeling nice and fresh.
Do you have any long-distance flying tips to share?