My City Break Beauty Packing Guide

29 December, 2014 My City Break Beauty Packing Guide

Seeing as I’m heading to Paris (the motherland of beauty and skincare products), I thought I’d write a packing guide/breakdown of what I’m taking with me on my travels. For some people, this will be ridiculously excessive, and for others, a worryingly minimal amount of beauty booty. For my boyfriend, it means that the beast that is my dressing table is essentially following us across the Channel and into our hotel room. It all depends on your personal preference and what you feel comfortable bringing with you, but I thought this could be helpful if you’re heading off for a trip soon and are a little overwhelmed with what you might need. Please let me know what you take with you when you travel – I’m nosy like that.

The Skincare

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Skincare on holidays and trips is purely functional for me, rather than an indulgence. I might bring a little sample of a treatment for some overnight hydration (such as this teeny bottle of the Glamglow Thirstymud mask – £39 here), but other than that it’s a simple process of removing makeup, cleansing, toning and moisturising. I’m packing the Clarins Pure Melt Cleansing Gel (£20 here), a travel-size bottle of Fresh’s Soy Cleanser (£12.97 here), La Roche Posay’s Serozinc (£8.50 here) and the remnants of my Mario Badescu Facial Spray with Aloe, Herbs and Rosewater (£6.95 here). I can’t go anywhere without my Vitamin E Moisture Serum from The Body Shop (£12 here), so I’m popping that in, as well as my new Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturising Gel (£30 here). Along with that, I’ll be picking up a few bottles of Bioderma Sensible Micellar Water from City Pharma – is it weird that I’m excited to visit a pharmacy?

The Makeup

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I like to take two bases for when I I’m away – one for daytime, and one for evening outings. The Diorskin STAR Fluid Foundation in 020 (£32 here) is a firm favourite and a gorgeous, fresh base that lasts for ages, and has an SPF of 30. For evening makeup where I need slightly more mattifying coverage, the Vichy Dermablend Foundation in Nude (£15.30 here) is perfect. It’s the only base I can wear all night without turning into a sweaty, oily mess. I’ll use the L’Oreal Studio Secrets Resurfacing Primer (£14.50 here) underneath, and then set my base with the Bourjois Healthy Balance Powder in Beige Clair (£8.99 here) or my Soap & Glory One Heck Of A Blot (£12 here). I’ve rediscovered the L’Oreal primer recently and absolutely love it for creating a smooth, matte base without exposing any dry, flaky patches. Keep your eyes peeled for a ‘Shopping My Stash’ post soon! For everyday contouring and blush, The Body Shop’s Honey Bronzer in Medium Matte (£13 here) and Tarte’s Amazonian Clay Blusher in Exposed ($26 here) are great neutral shades. For the evenings, however, I’m bringing out the big guns in the form of my new NARS Virtual Domination palette (£45 here). Containing three blushers, a shimmery highlight and a full-size Laguna bronzer, it’s safe to say I won’t be panicking about a lack of choice (plus, the mirror is huge).

In case of any early starts or one too many gin and tonics, I’ll be reaching for my Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer, and for definition, it’s shadow sticks all the way. Charlotte Tilbury’s Colour Chameleon in Bronzed Garnet (£19 here) and By Terry’s Ombre Blackstar in Bronze Moon (£28 here) are joining me for the ride, as well as the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Liner (£11.70 here). Eyeshadows in pencil or crayon formats are so versatile and easy to use, and don’t take up much space in my makeup bag either. In my opinion, you only need one mascara, and that’s Max Factor’s Masterpiece Max (£9.99 here). It’s perfect for creating full, thick and curled lashes that won’t smudge, itch or flake. For brows, I love the Hourglass Arch Brow Sculpting Pencil in Blonde (£26 here). Anything that’s slim, easy to use and includes a spoolie will work well, as you don’t want to spend loads of time faffing with pots and pomades when there are hot chocolates to drink and museums to visit!

Lipstick time: I’m being good and only taking four options – I know, such restraint on my part! For easy, sheer and moisturising shades, it has to be Dior’s Addict Extreme lipstick in Incognito (£24 here), and Bobbi Brown’s Lipcolour in Blondie Pink (£19.50 here). For evening makeup looks, MAC’s Viva Glam I (£15.50 here) is a gorgeous deep wine-red, and MAC’s Mehr (also £15.50 here) is a Kylie Jenner-esque vintage mauve that looks good on anyone and suits any occasion.

The Extras

In terms of packing up my makeup and skincare, I’ll be keeping them in these three toiletry bags and pouches:

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The Cath Kidston large washable is perfect for bulky items like shampoo, conditioner and packs of cotton wool, and also has zipped sections for jewellery and more delicate items. I received this as a gift when I was about 16 so the design may be out of print, but she does loads of lovely ones! My Oliver Bonas makeup pouch (£12.50 here) is great to keep in my handbag for all my on-the-go essentials such as a touch-up powder, lipsticks and hairbands, and the Anya Hindmarch case (£150 here) is for all the products I’m lugging in my suitcase.

Bonus items include my Kindle (Nice Is Just A Place In France by the Betches is the ultimate Mean-Girls-esque read) and the ‘Serial’ podcast. I’m popping my Rayban Wayfarers in my hand luggage in case of any stray rays of sunshine, and my beloved Agent Provocateur Fatale Eau de Parfum/


Phew! That was a long one! Below I’ve included a list of links with a lot of the products I mentioned in this post either reviewed, swatched or shown on me, so you get a better idea of the things I like and what I recommend. If there’s anything you want me to elaborate more on, comment below or search for it at the top of the page!

Links to Reviewed Products

What’s New: Diorskin STAR Foundation.

What’s New: Fresh Soy Cleanser.

NARS Virtual Domination Palette in Birthday Beauty Bits.

La Roche Posay’s Serozinc in Top Six: French Pharmacy Favourites.

Dior’s Incognito Lipstick in A Boots Points Splurge.

Top Six: Long Term Beauty Loves (including Max Factor’s Masterpiece Max, Bobbi Brown’s Lipcolour in Blondie Pink, Stila’s Stay All Day Waterproof Liner and the Vitamin E Moisture Serum from The Body Shop).

Charlotte Tilbury’s Colour Chameleon in Bronzed Garnet in Treat Yo Self – A Charlotte Tilbury Haul.

Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Concealer in Undereye Concealers For Every Budget.

MAC Viva Glam I and Mehr in The Lip Product Addict Tag.

Tarte’s Amazonian Clay Blusher and Glamglow’s Thirstymud in Sephora Haul Part #2.

Agent Provocateur Fatale Eau de Parfum in An Unexpected Perfume Favourite.


I’ll be posting again on Wednesday and Friday whilst I’m away, and then back to my normal schedule of five days a week next Monday, but there will be plenty of tourist-y uploads on my Twitter (@MakingItUpBlog) and Instagram (@JMetliss) accounts in the meantime!

Are you jetting off somewhere nice over the New Year? Let me know in the comments below, as well as any questions, recommendations or thoughts you have for me!

Jess, X