Any Frequent Flyer will know the eternal struggle of having problematic skin when flying. Our skin reacts to being in ultra de-humidified air cabins with dry, recycled air - not to mention the pollutants circulating. When we travel, it’s hard to care for skin – long times between cleansing, stressing to catch connections, poor diet, too little water, etc etc.
Here are five things that happen to your skin when you fly;
First, Puffy Eyes and Under-Eye Bags.
Puffy eyes are classically associated with tiredness and fatigue, which can be made worse when travelling; especially if you are on a red-eye flight or travelling across time-zones, leaving you jetlagged. Puffy Eyes and the Under-Eye Bags can also be caused by being in high altitudes (hello, aeroplane flights!) resulting in a higher rate of fluid retention, causing swelling and puffy skin, especially around the eyes.
Secondly, when you fly, your skin rapidly Dehydrates.
When you’re flying, you lose a significant amount of water in your body. This can be attributed to the humidity on an aircraft; it is between 20 – 50% lower than the skin is generally comfortable with. Combined with the frequent consumption of alcohol during travel and flying, this swiftly dehydrates your skin, causing dryness and sensitisation.
Thirdly, let’s talk about Oily Skin
Ironically extremely de-humidified and dry air can actually cause skin to overcompensateand produce more oil in an attempt to hydrate. This oil is called ‘sebum’ and is produced by the sebaceous glands to lubricate skin and hair. When sebum is overproduced it can cause excessive amounts of oil on your skin, increasing the potential for breakouts.
We all know this feeling, feeling like your skin is dull, un-lively and just generally lacks a glow and lustre. This can be increased when flying because the high altitudes and pressure of the aircraft can significantly lower the blood flow to your skin. This is what strips your skin of your natural, dewy glow.
Lastly, but not least, when flying your skin has an Increased Sensitivity To The Sun
When you fly, you are significantly closer to the sun - by about 35, 000 feet or 10km (most commercial aeroplanes fly at 35, 000 feet)! This means you are a lot more susceptible to the suns damaging UV rays!
So, you’re not imagining things - flying actually provides extremely harsh conditions and is a significant challenge for your skin. Make sure you protect your skin when you’re flying – because your skin needs more, and deserves more, when you travel.
Check out our Long-Haul Hydration Mask – an invisible face mask that protects, nourishes and soothes your skin when you fly!
Article by Cat Catherall, In-Flight Magic Community Manager.