By Kate Cheng
Got a red eye coming up? We are beyond excited to team up with Olivia Gall from high flyer expert, UK-based Virgin Atlantic to bring you beauty and nutrition tips for before a flight, and while on board. Get ready to jet set away on that long haul, fully pampered and in tip-top wellness mode.
Prep Your Skin
Prep your skin the night or morning before flying. Thoroughly cleanse & exfoliate, and apply a hydrating mask packed full of essential rose oils, like this one from Aromatherapy Associates. Also, to ensure bright refreshed eyes, always use an eye cream. Soak cotton pads in eye cream, and place over eyes on nights before you fly, or even during overnight flights. This helps to brighten up your eyes and reduce redness, irritation and puffiness. You can even use an eye mask to keep them in place!
If lips are your thing (like they are at Virgin Atlantic!) it’s important to protect them in the air. A cream lipstick will keep your lips moisturized, and is less drying than long-lasting lipsticks or glosses; they also tend to stay on well without flaking. A multipurpose lip balm can also hydrate hands and cuticles. We love Dr. Hauschka’s lip balm - it’s organic and keeps your lips super moist.
Virgin offers a meditation channel on its inflight entertainment system to help passengers relax and decompress. Its new 787 Dreamliners have mood lighting that changes throughout the flight to help your body adjust to sleep and waking up so that you feel less jetlagged. They also have higher cabin humidity and improved air filtration. Its Clubhouse Spa at Heathrow has a Jacuzzi pool and sauna rooms – and both JFK and Heathrow Clubhouses have spas featuring treatments from world-renowned Dr. Hauschka skincare specialists. Stay tuned for in-flight relaxation exercises!
While it may be tempting to indulge in a few pre-flight cocktails before your journey, drinking water before, during, and after your flight is one of the most important things you can do to help keep jet-lag at bay. If you get bored with water, try grabbing a bottle of coconut water (which is also super hydrating) as soon as you get airside, as you can take this on board with you. Travel with digestion-aiding tea bags that contain Fennel & Peppermint (like our fave from Pukka) or you can always request a cup of peppermint tea after your inflight meal.
Eat Clean Before You Fly
Virgin introduced “Feel Good” Menu to its offerings at the London Gatwick Clubhouse, packed with superfoods and ingredients beneficial for flying. The airline also recently opened its first ever LAX Clubhouse this past April, which has its entire food and beverage concept based off healthy, clean West Coast living and local produce in collaboration with menu partners: The Juicery and local Century City restaurant Hinoki and the Bird.
Don’t over eat during the flight. It’s so tempting to snack and drink a lot while flying, but ultimately it doesn’t do your digestive system any favors. Grabbing a super food salad from the airport before boarding, or some healthy snacks like whole-grain cereal, dried fruits, and nuts are easy snacking alternatives, and are good for slow-releasing energy. Also, choose a fish meal option if it’s available – salmon or mackerel are rich in oils that help reduce the risk of blood clotting.
Get Your Vitamins and Minerals
Stock up on these beneficial foods before you go:
Bananas contain tryptophan, which helps the body to produce serotonin and has a calming effect on the brain (creates a stable mood), while also acting as a mild sedative.
Pineapple juice contains high levels of the antioxidant vitamin C that improve your immune system. Bromelain, a mixture of enzymes, also helps with digestive problems. It also acts as a natural diuretic that aids in flushing out the excess toxins from the liver and kidneys.
Wheatgrass powder contains Chlorophyll, the green pigment in plants, which can help detox the liver, and clean the digestive tract. As for your inflight selections, fruit juices have high levels of polyphenols (cranberry, pomegranate and apple juice) and help reduce risk of blood clots. The fluid in them also improves hydration.
Of course, fried and super-saturated dishes should be avoided. But even some foods that are labeled as healthy should be treated with caution. These include onions, cauliflower, and cabbage, which can make you feel uncomfortable or bloated at altitude.
Here’s to a happy and healthy flight!