Leaving for study abroad, or any long trip, is a stressful experience. You have to figure out where you're going, how to get there and what to bring. That could mean getting plane tickets, applying for a visa, getting your passport or coordinating with travel buddies. Suffice to say, the getting there part of the journey is strenuous. I find packing particularly challenging, because I'm the kind of person who over-packs, even when I try not to. I constantly worry that I'm going to need something and not have it, so my solution is to bring everything. However, this solution just causes more problems and more bags for me to carry. I tend to do this especially with my makeup, even though I end up not using half of the stuff I bring. So, in order to pack for study abroad, I set up some guidelines for myself that will hopefully help you too!
1. Identify your ride or die products
Think about what you use most frequently. Seriously, go through all your stuff, one by one, and ask yourself "when was the last time I used this?" If you can't remember, it's safe to say you probably won't need it for your trip. Try and stick to what you wear everyday, and bring the stuff you know you like. If you just bought something new that you aren't certain you'll love, leave it behind. It's better to bring makeup that you know for certain you'll use.
2. How long will you be gone?
The length of your trip will determine how much you need of every product. Obviously different products will last different amounts of time depending on how much you use them, so I can't really give you a perfect formula. However, I do tend to go through liquid products much quicker than powder ones. This includes things like concealer, foundation, primer and liquid eyeliners. Therefore, if I bring extra anything, it should probably be that kind of stuff.
3. Are your RoD products available where you're going?
Some kinds of makeup aren't available everywhere, so don't rely on buying a particular brand unless you check to see if you can get it wherever you're going. For some people, switching brands is no big deal. For others, it can cause breakouts and irritate the skin. If you fall into the latter category, consider bringing more backups for your usual products. You'll save your skin a lot of trouble.
4. What will you be doing at your destination?
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Consider what activities you'll be doing once you get where you're going. Do you have to go to a lot of formal events? Will you be camping and hiking most of the time? Once you figure out your itinerary, it'll be easier to decide what kind of makeup you'll need.
5. Go for the two-in-ones
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Many makeup products have multiple uses. There are eyeshadows that can double as a highlight and lip tints that can be used blush. And that's just brushing the surface of the multi-use makeup world. Plus, monochromatic looks are totally making a comeback.
6. Mix and match
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Once you have your RoD products, make sure you can make a cohesive look that you like out of them. Just because they are your favs doesn't mean they necessarily go together. If you have time in all the pre-departure madness, try restricting yourself to the stuff you're planning on bringing, to make sure you can work with it.