Fashion & Beauty Health & Wellness Packing

7 Must-Have Travel Toiletries for Dry Winter Weather

Skiing, snowboarding, and heading to winter wonderlands are great ways to spend those long months that separate the holidays and spring. But cold-weather travel is hard on skin and hair, and calls for the right travel toiletries.

Travel Toiletries for Dry Weather

If you’re prepared, it’s easy to keep skin hydrated and hair shiny with a few no-frills travel products. Here are the travel toiletries that defend against winter weather, plus some easy tips for better winter skin.

Travel-Sized Oil

argan oil hask travel toiletries

[st_content_ad]Don’t let the TSA’s 3-1-1 rule scare you away from packing liquid travel toiletries. Oils, like a trusty argan, jojoba, or tea-tree oil, are a must-have for hair and skin. Essential oils are a dry-weather lifesaver for men and women alike.

For both dry hair and dry skin, I always have a vial of Hask Argan Oil in my travel bag. Just a dab is perfect for taming frizz or soothing itchy skin—men can also use it as a beard oil or to calm razor burn. I use Hask because it has an easy-seal cap that won’t leak—but it’s not a bad idea to keep all oil-based travel toiletries in a sealed plastic bag, just in case.

Petroleum Jelly

petroleum jelly travel toiletries

First-aid petroleum jelly is one of the best travel toiletries for dry, cracked skin—and applying it daily is a good habit to have if you want to prevent those problems. Vaseline jelly comes in tiny travel sizes that will last you all winter. Keep a small jar in your purse, carry-on, and toiletry bag to smear on lips in transit, before bed, or at the start of each day. A tiny bit also goes a long way on dry hands, elbows, and even in frizzy hair.

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Face Cream

face cream travel toiletries

A face moisturizer tailored to your needs is better than using a general body cream on your face, especially if you have sensitive skin. To protect against wind burn or general flaking, travel with a healing face cream, like First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream. People who don’t wear makeup should opt for SPF travel toiletries like face cream with some added sun protection: Yes to Grapefruit Correct & Repair with SPF 15 protects, moisturizes, and brightens skin.

Natural Makeup with SPF

Tarte makeup travel toiletries

Don’t skimp on sun protection just because you won’t be lying on a beach. Travelers with a regular makeup regimen should invest in a brand of travel toiletries that’s comfortable and packs SPF. I use an all-natural tinted moisturizer that’s lightweight (so it won’t flake) and also protects me from the sun: Tarte’s Amazonian Clay BB Cream includes SPF 20, and a little bit goes a long way for even, fresh-faced skin. Plus, it’s a packable size.

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Saline Solutions

saline solution travel toiletries

Dry eyes and nasal passages are often an air travel issue, and in winter, dryness is compounded by chilly destinations. Pack saline-based travel toiletries like a small bottle of eyedrops—or simple contact solution if you’re a contact lens wearer—and a saline nasal spray in a travel-friendly size.

A Post-Shower Moisturizer

moisturizer travel toiletries

Use an unscented body moisturizer after you shower to prevent dry and sensitive skin. Showering in hot water can strip your skin of oils that prevent dryness. Restore what you lose in steamy showers with a natural, unscented moisturizer, like a travel-sized tube of Aveeno Daily Moisturizing Lotion. It’ll also come in handy for your dry hands on long plane journeys.

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Warm Accessories


All the creams and oils in the world won’t work if you’re not protecting yourself from the elements while outdoors. A hat, cozy gloves, and a thick scarf that can double as facial protection in strong wind will be your best defense against damaged skin. Don’t forget to use smartphone-friendly gloves so you won’t have to peel them off for every photo op: Acdyion offers sleek leather ones with discrete screen-compatible fingertips.

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Associate Editor Shannon McMahon writes about all things travel. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

Editor’s note: This story was originally published in 2017. It has been updated to reflect the most current information.

By Shannon McMahon

Editor Shannon McMahon is always planning her next trip and often writing in her travel journal. Follow her on Twitter @shanmcmahon_ and on Instagram @shanmcmahon.

Shannon joined SmarterTravel in 2015. A former news reporter, she's lived in the south of Spain, spotted elephants in Sri Lanka, gone spelunking in the Caribbean, hiked Jordan's Petra Basin, interviewed Sao Paulo's Michelin-Star chefs, and explored China via bullet train. Travel trends, news oddities, and her visits to up-and-coming destinations are some of her favorite things to write about.

Her stories have also appeared online on USA Today, The Sun, Huffington Post, Business Insider,,, and more. Her educational background is in journalism, art history, gender studies, Spanish, and film. She's been quoted as an expert travel source by CNBC,, MarketWatch, The Washington Post, USA Today, and more.

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "Plenty of extra thick hair elastics. They tame my frizzy curls and come in handy in a surprising number of packing and hotel dilemmas."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "Climbing (yes, climbing, it's steep!) the Great Wall of China before it's gone."

Travel Motto: "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain

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