California dreaming: Highlights from my travel makeup bag for LA

I feel like if there’s one place people would be surprised that I haven’t visited yet, it would be Los Angeles. The city of angels is a place I’ve always wanted to go to, but for some reason I haven’t gotten farther than outside the doors of LAX.

I’m heading there for the Easter long weekend and couldn’t be more excited. We have the itinerary down (The Grove, Beverly Hills, Morphe Store, Universal Studios, Santa Monica Pier, etc.) and I have all my appointments set for next week (sugaring, pedicure, etc.), so I wanted to share some of the must-have items that I’ll be packing for the sunshine state.

Since it’ll be mid-April and the temperatures should be hot, showing lots of skin is mandatory. Coming from Canada means I’ll still be naturally ghostly white, however, as always, I like to fake it with a spray tan or an at-home self tanner. You guys know I absolutely love St. Tropez, this tanning product comes in a variety of different formulas and they are always coming out with new ones as well.

For an awesome bronze look (yes, bronze, not orange), I was quite surprised with the St. Tropez Gradual Tan Classic. I’ve only ever really used the Self Tan Classic Bronzing Mousse before so when I saw the word “gradual” on the bottle, I was a bit disappointed, thinking it would be like the Jergen’s one, where you have to use it for like a week before you get a suitable colour. Well, I was wrong. The formula in this one comes out like hair mousse (a fluffy, whipped texture) and is white, so unfortunately you can’t see where you’re putting the product. I used a self-tanning glove, however, they mention you can use your hands, which if you choose to go that route, make sure you wash them really well after application. I always apply this stuff before I go to bed after showering (make sure you also exfoliate in the shower to get rid of dead skin cells, I’ve been digging the Sephora Collection Smooth Finisher Exfoliating Bath Mitt) so when I wake up I’m nice and bronzed.  For being billed as a “gradual” product, you actually end up with a nice glow after just one use, although if you are travelling, I would apply this at least two to three nights in advance so you are really nice and bronzed.

To maintain that glow on vacay, pack the St. Tropez In-Shower Gradual Tan. This one I was also skeptical about since you leave the product on for a short amount of time before rinsing it off. Once you’re done washing yo’ self in the shower, turn off the water and apply this formula all over your body. Wait three minutes then rinse it off using warm water.

I wouldn’t recommend using this product to build your tan from scratch as it really didn’t add much colour to my skin (if at all), but using it to maintain my existing tan seemed to make the product more efficient. They do recommend leaving this guy on for three minutes, however, I’ve read that the longer you have it on, the deeper your tan would be.  This is efficient to pack since you don’t have to wear it during the day or night (self tanner does have the tendency to smell). It’s a sneaky and efficient way of getting your tan in there.

Finally, since it’s the sunshine state, a sunscreen is a must. Self tanner doesn’t add any SPF to the skin, so I’ll be packing TarteGuard SPF 30 for some major sun protection (plus that cute bottle is to die for). I also use sunscreen during the day as my makeup primer for my face.  They recommend using sunscreen daily to prevent aging and wrinkles (oh, and sunburns too, obviously!).

To really highlight that California look, a bronzer is a must. I’ll be packing this giant Stila All Day Bronzer for Face and Body. This matte bronzer is perfect for contouring, as well as adding that allover LA glow. I like this guy because the formula is really soft on your face, making it easy to add a little (for that daytime bronzing look) or build up the colour (to sculpt the cheeks for a night out).

Speaking of nights out, when I got the Stila Magnificant Metals Glitter & Glow Liquid Eyeshadow in Karma Kitten I just knew I had to pack this for LA. This liquid eyeshadow is as bright as wannabe actors’ dreams to be movie stars. Although this product is a showstopper, there are numerous ways to wear it. You can do a glitter lid or you can layer it with a deep black cat eye for a wink of shine (like seen below).

Finally, since I travel so often, I can never have enough travel skincare products. These Sephora Collection Green Tea travel bottles are perfect for your carry on since they are 100 ml. The Micellar Cleansing Water & Milk in Green Tea washes off all that makeup at the end of the day, and the Sephora Collection Cleansing & Exfoliating Cleansing Cream washes and exfoliates your skin, leaving it ready for serums and moisturizers.  This product comes in a variety of different ingredients but the green tea one mattifies and fights blemishes, making it perfect for that hot, smoggy LA air and weather.

To say I am excited is certainly an understatement. Since we’ll be checking out some LA hotspots, I’ll be packing a ton of different makeup products (my travel makeup bag is not going to cut it this trip, I’m bringing all the big guns). Let me know what you guys would bring on a trip to Los Angeles, as well as some places I need to check out when I’m there!

Also, make sure you follow me on Instagram and Snapchat (apopofcolour) for highlights from my trip!

What do you pack for travel?

Please note, products provided by PR. All opinions are my own!

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