Natural Hair & Weekend Travel: Back to the Basics
‘Tis the season to explore + travel, fa la la la la, la la la la! I really do love this time of year when the school year comes to a close, the sun shines for hours on end and there bargains from our favorite European airlines! I live for bargains, really. This summer, I’m heading to San Sebastián, Nantes, France and beautiful Sevilla. (I’m very open to tips on these cities, as I’ve never been before). Almost all of these trips are 3 to 4 day getaways, and naturally, I’ll be carrying a tote versus checking in a suitcase.
Now, the question remains: how can you keep your hair photo-ready and healthy while traveling with just carry-on size amounts of your holy grail hair products? I’ll share my routine below, and a few tips and tricks I’ve picked up along the way.
Let's Get Back To The Basics
Early morning & late-night flights: Listen, if my flight leaves before 8am or after 20h, you can catch me in twists, braids, or maybe even some sort of scarf style I’ve found courtesy of a Youtube video that I may have started and stopped 20-63 times.
Wash: I will wash my hair — shampoo, condition and deep condition—before any trip, or at most two days before if the goal is to have stretched hair. This way, unless it’s a beach trip, I won’t need to pack shampoo, and can make space for other products.
Tools: I pack a wide-tooth comb, a boar’s hair brush (in case I’ll be pulling my hair back at any point), 2 butterfly clips, at least 10 bobby pins and two elastic hair bands. To be honest, my hair bands have slowly become a permanent fixture on my wrists, so I don’t necessarily “pack” them.
Accessories: Depending on mow much space I have—I try to fit all my hair tools and accessories in one medium cosmetic bag. I’ll pack a silk scarf that can also double as a protector while I sleep, some sort of flower clip or headband, a bun maker, and earrings. Yes, you read correctly. Some days, I’m in a high-bun or pineapple type of mood and the earrings make the look deliberate. Smoke and mirrors, dear friends. Turn “I can’t be bothered this morning” to “I woke up like this” (the dubstep remix).
This is where things can get a bit complicated. This isn’t to say that my routine is insane, but I will say that I have my own couple of shelves in the bathroom. So when trying to choose, it’s like choosing between my babies, you know? Jane Carter, Shea Moisture, Kinky Curly, Eco Styler, who gets voted off the island? In order to avoid the heartache to keep it straightforward, I found travel products. These products are cheaper, readily available in my home country (in this case, Spain) and quite possibly available in other European countries, you know, just in case. I do it this way because every time I start to see the bottom of a Shea Moisture container—knowing that I can’t get it in Spain easily—I shed real tears.
Herbal Essences Naked 0%
Eco Styler Olive Oil Gel
Empty spray bottle to put water in
Almond/Olive/Coconut/Tea Tree Oil
Salerm 21 Silk Protein
That’s all she wrote, folks. I use the gel, the water and oil to refresh twist-outs. I use the Salerm when pulling my hair back in a bun, with the gel to smooth my edges. Last but not least, I give my hair a once over with the conditioner, especially if I’m going to a beach destination or spending a lot of time in the sun. I also pack a floppy hat, just in case. Choosing four of these products and putting them into travel size containers has been a lifesaver. That, and my hair thanks me for thinking about it while on holiday. It’s also really satisfying coming home, and knowing that my holy grail product stash is still intact. #productjunkieproblems
Danni, Community Director at Las Morenas de España, is a twenty-something, Chicago native currently residing in Madrid. Lover of language, words, and travel, she's managed to combine all of her passions through her work. In her free time, you can find her exploring the winding streets of Madrid, hunting down good flight deals, planning her next adventure and writing & researching for LMDES. Danni loves spicy food, natural hair, music and of course, her wonderful life partner. If you need to find her, she’s the girl with huge hair and her face buried in her Kindle.