My Thanksgiving travel makeup kit

The holidays are sneaking up on me this year! For a lot people holidays = travel, so I thought maybe it would be handy to share what makeup I take with me when I’m traveling light. For short 3-4 day trips I try to take an absolute minimum of stuff, so my makeup all gets stuffed into this little 6″x8″ bag:

Thanksgiving makeup travel bag

So what exactly is in there?

Thanksgiving makeup travel bagMostly, minis of all the things. When I get a sample from Sephora, I hoard those containers like gold. They’re perfect for carrying a few days’ worth of foundation, concealer or primer. The same goes for deluxe samples – a couple baby lipsticks take up less room than one full-sized one, and mini mascaras are way smaller. Some products are especially travel-friendly too:

  • NARS blushes – the compact is small, slim and sturdy. They don’t come with mini brushes like a lot of blushes do, so they don’t take up more room than they need to. I take Dolce Vita because I like a deep pink as an everyday color.
  • Laura Mercier Artist Palette for Eyes – I mostly do a basic neutral eye when I’m visiting family, but I like to dress up a bit for dinner. The LM palette has a very nice range of colors and finishes that will work for most looks. As an added bonus, it’s small and compact. If you didn’t manage to snag one of these yet, the Lorac Pro palette is also a very versatile and travel-friendly option.
  • Hourglass Ambient Lighting Palette – I use Dim as an all-over finishing powder, and Incandescent or Radiant has a highlight (I’m leaning more toward Incandescent for winter).
  • Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder – I kind of wish they’d left out the brush with this because it makes the compact twice as long. But, it’s sturdy and flat, so it packs easily.

If you ever saw my normal morning routine you’d know that keeping my travel kit down to six brushes is a huge exercise in self-sacrifice. The ones that usually go with me are picked for versatility and easy packing.

  • Shiseido Foundation Brush – obviously it’s small, and it works well with every foundation I’ve tried.
  • Hakuhodo G5507 – this is my preferred flat brush for packing on lid color.
  • Hakuhodo G5514 – this is a tiny pencil brush, so I can use it to apply colors to the inner & outer corners of my lids and along the lashlines. It’s horse hair, so I can also use it for detailed concealing.
  • Wayne Goss 04 – I really love this pointed crease brush – it’s perfect for applying and blending at the same time.
  • Hakuhodo black fan – this brush is kitten soft, and doesn’t take up very much space. I mostly use it for my finishing powder, but it also works for blush and highlight.
  • Wayne Goss 02 – the WG02 (along with the Hakuhodo G5521, which is very similar) is one of the most versatile face brushes I own; blush, highlight, contour, it does it all.

What are your favorite travel-friendly makeup products? Tell us in the comments!


  1. Samantha M

    November 26, 2013 at 9:46 am

    That bag is adorable! Thanks for sharing, i’m nosey when it comes to these things so i love seeing what’s in other people’s travel bags ;)

    1. niccigilland

      November 26, 2013 at 10:01 am

      Thanks! I was pretty excited about my travel bags, I got a whole set for something like $10 at TJMaxx. And I’m always happy to satisfy nosiness ;-)

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.