Paper Products That Make Packing A Whole Lot Easier


When it comes to traveling, I have a rule. Everything has to fit into a carry-on (who wants to pay extra to check a bag?!). And as if shaving down my wardrobe options wasn’t difficult enough, I also have to abide by TSA liquid regulations with my beauty products. So basically, it’s close to impossible to pack everything I need, which leaves me with a whole lot of tough decisions to make.

I can buy 3-oz. bottles and fill them up with my favorite full-size products, use whatever is available at the hotel or wherever I’m staying, or risk it all and try to get past security with my standard-size goods (I’m not saying you should, but I have made it through a few times without having anything confiscated!). 

If you ask me, all of these options are bad news. And after a lot of trial and error, I’ve come up with a packing strategy that works: I put my shampoo, conditioner, and face oil into little bottles, and then keep the rest of my toiletries compact by packing paper items (beyond the standard remover wipes and blotting papers, that is). Why? It’s impossible for them to open and spill onto my stuff, they take up virtually no space, and weigh almost nothing! Even if they’re not the exact items I use every day, they help me keep my skin looking and feeling fresh. Often, they come in multi-packs, so you’ll be set for several getaways! Here are a few of my on-the-go essentials, in paper-packet form.

Nail Polish Remover

Whenever I go out of town I always pack a nail polish (or two) to touch up or re-do my mani—I hate when my nails chip! So it’s nice to have a remover too, but in wipe form. It takes less than a minute to get color off and there’s no mess to clean up! 

RGB Nail Color Remove Pads

20 pads | $28 | shop it

These are far from your standard nail polish remover. Each small square packet contains one pad, pre-moistened with natural remover (soy-based and formulated with moisturizing oils), enough to tackle ten nails. Bonus: there’s no nasty nail polish remover scent; in fact, they don’t really have a scent at all, which means you can use them literally anywhere. Even at a train station! 

Cutex Nail Polish Remover Pads, Non-Acetone

10 pads | $3.99

A less-expensive alternative to the RGB pads (albeit less natural, too), but they’re a good pick if you want the quick-removal power of traditional removers on the go. You probably want to avoid using these anywhere public, but they work, and they're super-saturated—enough to get through fingers and toes with one pad. 

Facial Masks

No matter the length of my flight, after flying my skin always feels dry and looks dull. It can be hard whip my complexion back into shape, which is why I always pack a few treatment masks. Plus, using them requires me to chill out for ten minutes while giving my skin an instant boost—what could be better?

Freeman Feeling Beauty Facial Paper Masks

1 mask | $1.99

To help reduce dryness, dullness, and even breakouts after a long flight, these serum-enriched paper masks (for Hydrating, Brightening, or Purifying) masks are your new saviors. I’m partial to the Brightening, which is infused with Rose Extract that smells so nice! The white tea and licorice help even out skin tone, and it brightens up your whole face in just 5–10 minutes! 

Masque Bar by Look Beauty Brightening Sheet Mask

3 masks | $9.99

This mask is ideal before an event, party, or date, because it leaves you with a healthy glow. It takes 20–30 minutes for it to do its magic, but its well worth it.

Garnier Skin Renew Dark Spot Treatment Mask

6 masks | $16.99

More stretchy fabric than “paper,” the softness of these helps them mold easily to the shape of the face. The mask doesn’t dry out as it sets, and actually, when you’re done (about ten minutes) you can massage in any excess liquid into your skin for extra benefit—no need to rinse or wash! They’re a great pick-me-up.

Makeup Brush Cleaner

It’s always smart to have some sort of brush cleaner while traveling (think of all the germs!). Wipes in particular make it extra easy to sanitize your tools while out of town, so you have no excuse not to clean your brushes!

Parian Spirit Makeup Brush Cleaner Wipes

24 wipes | $17 | shop it

These wipes do the trick in seconds per brush—and you can take care of your entire kit with one sheet! You simply lay the wipe flat and rub the bristles back and forth to get all the embedded residue off. The formula is completely nontoxic and made with natural orange oils, so the scent is pleasantly citrusy.

What are some of your favorite TSA-friendly products? Tell us in the comments below!

Photo: Rafael Elias / Flickr

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