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17 Different Types of Travel Toiletries

Conditioner, bath gel, and shampoo on the bathroom.

Are you getting ready for a long-awaited trip? You’re probably very excited about what you’re going to do and see during your travels, right? But since you’re here, you also know it’s important to plan properly and pack all the right toiletries for your trip.

Whether you’re traveling by plane, train, boat, or car, there are some basic types of toiletries you just can’t do without.

In this article, all the most important ones will be discussed, and I’ll also remind you why you need to add them to your list of must-haves.

Let’s go!

1. Toiletry Bag

A leather toiletry bag and a razor.

The very first item on my list should go without saying, but I just had to include it. You know, just in case it slipped your mind to buy a toiletry bag big and durable enough for all the toiletries you’re supposed to pack.

Be sure to choose a toiletry bag that isn’t just beautiful — it has to serve its purpose, after all. A toiletry bag with different compartments and pockets for various items is what I would suggest. Also, make sure it won’t leak if something inside happens to spill during your journey.

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2. Lotion

Taking care of your skin is important even when you’re traveling. In fact, I’d say it’s even more important when you’re out and about in a different state or country. Lotion is a must-have and you should have a pocket-sized bottle in your toiletry bag no matter where you travel.

Fortunately, all our favorite brands have travel-sized bottles available, so you should be able to find one or two at your nearest cosmetic store. 

Just make sure you choose a kind of lotion that is easily absorbed so you can focus more on having fun than working lotion into your skin!

3. Deodorant Towelettes

Pacifica Beauty, Coconut Milk & Essential Oils Underarm Deodorant Wipes, 30 Count, Remove Odor On-The-Go, Aluminum Free, Travel Friendly, Fresh Coconut Scent, 100% Vegan and Cruelty Free

This is a bit of a luxury, but I would definitely recommend that you add deodorant towelettes to your pre-travel shopping list. If you’re going to be in a place where you’ll sweat a bit and get all sticky and smelly, you’ll appreciate the value of deodorant towelettes.

Not only do they keep you clean and help you feel refreshed, but they’ll also help you cool down if it’s hot outside. Plus, they normally smell really nice and you can get them in different scents.

4. Facial Cleanser

It doesn’t matter where you’ll be heading for your travels, you’ll have to keep your face clean and protected. I suggest you choose a good facial cleanser that is easy to use and works when you’ve got little time to focus on daily cleaning routines.

I would also recommend that you go with a facial cleanser that has added ingredients to protect your skin such as aloe vera and Vitamin E. If you can buy a solid facial cleanser, absolutely do so. The fewer liquids you carry with you, the better!

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5. Toothbrush and Toothpaste

Of course, any traveler knows the importance of maintaining good hygiene while traveling, so a toothbrush and toothpaste definitely need to be on your list of toiletries. I recommend you buy a folding toothbrush to save on space and prevent struggling with a toothbrush that gets stuck in your toiletry bag.

Also, you don’t have to take toothpaste tubes with you — just buy toothpaste tablets! Pop one in your mouth, chew it for a bit, and then brush the toothpaste away. It’s as easy as that.

6. Sunscreen

Coppertone Pure & Simple For Face SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion, Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen Lotion, Water Resistant, Hypoallergenic, Travel Size 2 Ounce

No matter where you go, you absolutely need to pack sunscreen. Heading to the beach? Apply sunscreen. Going to hike through a forest and climb a mountain? Remember your sunscreen! Going to a ski lodge? You’ll still need sunscreen!

It’s best to choose a sunscreen that will protect you for at least eight hours and make sure it offers “broad spectrum” protection. If you plan to spend time swimming, select sunscreen that is properly water-resistant.

As for SPF, choose whatever makes sense for your destination.

7. Razor

If you’re planning to be traveling for more than a few days, you’ll have to include a razor in your toiletries. Choose a really small one that can easily fit into your toiletry bag. I wouldn’t recommend taking a standard razor with you because of its size.

There are many pocket-sized razors available, simply choose the one that suits your taste and preferences best.

8. Shampoo and Conditioner

Act+Acre Plant-Based Dry Shampoo - Natural and Unscented Powder Spray Shampoo with Fulvic Acid and Rice Refresh Oily Hair and Restore Volume - Dry Shampoo for All Hair Types - (Now 30% Bigger)

As you can tell by now, hygiene products make up the majority of what goes into a toiletry bag. Depending on how long you’ll be traveling, you’ll need to pack shampoo and conditioner too. You wouldn’t want your hair to suffer damage or look gross while on holiday, would you?

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You can choose the pocket-sized shampoo and conditioner bottles, or go for dry shampoo and leave-in conditioner. Dry shampoo is a really good option because you won’t have to bother with all the trouble that goes into washing your hair.

Leave-in conditioner is just so convenient, you’ll never want to use a normal conditioner while traveling again after trying it!

9. Travel Bottles

This is an item that you can add to your list if you want to bring some of your favorite products (shampoo, lotion, etc.) with you, but don’t have them in small containers. It’s a good idea to use leak-proof silicone travel bottles because they are really easy to fill and pack. Plus, squeezing the contents out is pretty effortless.

If you use silicone bottles, you also won’t have to worry about them popping open in your bag or cracking.

10. Makeup Case

A big box of make-up kit in front of the mirror.

If you use makeup at all, you can’t do without a makeup case. Makeup users know that these products can be really sensitive, especially powder foundation and eyeshadows. If you don’t want them to crumble, you’re going to have to store them safely in a quality makeup case.

It’s likely that you won’t have to bring along your entire makeup collection, but choose a makeup case that can keep everything neatly divided. The compartments will make it easy to store all your products logically and securely.

11. Makeup Removing Cleanser

Since you’re taking your makeup with you, you absolutely have to bring a good makeup removing cleanser. We all know how bad it is for you to sleep with makeup on, and using a good cleaner will not only clean your face but also help prevent your skin from drying out.

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If you have sensitive skin, make sure you go for a trusted brand that makes hypoallergenic and fragrance-free cleansers.

12. Hand Sanitizer

The Honest Company Hand Sanitizer Spray - Lavender Field - 2oz, 2 Fl Oz

We all know the importance of keeping our hands clean, and hand sanitizer is awesome for this purpose. Whether you’re traveling to a nearby location or going overseas, you have to maintain good hygiene, especially if you’re going to a place where Covid-19 may still be a problem.

I would suggest that you use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer because it works by evaporation, so you don’t have to end up with sticky hands or wait for the sanitizer to work its magic. You can even use sanitizing sprays. They’re typically very effective and smell amazing.

13. Toner

When traveling, we’re exposed to many different external and internal stresses that affect our skins. To keep your skin healthy and in good condition, I highly recommend you take a toner with you when you’re out and about traveling to destinations near and far.

Choose a good toner that freshens up your skin and helps rehydrate it at the same time. And yes, toners are often available in lovely smells.

14. Tide to Go Pen

Accidents happen, and they don’t take a break when you’re traveling, unfortunately. If you’re anything like me and you tend to make a mess when eating (the food just seems to jump off my fork!), you should definitely invest in a Tide to Go pen.

These pens will help you quickly get rid of stains, so you don’t have to ruin a whole outfit or change and worry about getting your clothes washed.

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15. Travel Towel

Twin girl running in the sea holding blue towel.

Microfiber travel towels are another must-have item when you’re traveling long distances. If you have the space, take a large towel for drying off after taking baths and a small one for drying your face.

These towels can be especially useful if you’re in a very warm location and you can dip them in cold water to place on your face and neck to cool off.

16. Hair Brush

Of course, you already know that you’re going to take your hairbrush with you if you have long hair. But do you really want the hassle of a standard-sized brush? No, you don’t! That’s why I recommend you take a small and compact brush like the Tangle Teezer.

Remember: when you’re traveling, small and lightweight is what you should aim for, so a small but firm brush is ideal.

17. Medication 

If you have medication that you have to take daily, you really can’t afford to forget it at home. Getting a dedicated container for all your daily or most important medications is a good idea. Keep in mind that you have to check the rules and regulations of the countries you’re visiting — they may not allow you to enter with certain medication.

You should also consider packing a small first-aid kit with the most important items like gauze pads and band-aids. This is especially important if you’re traveling long distances by car or by train.

What NOT to pack in your toiletry bag

A woman selecting toiletries on the bed.

Okay, you now know what travel toiletries you need to pack, but I’m going to give you a quick list of what you should NOT pack. Don’t pack the following items as they could cause serious problems on a flight and get you into trouble with the TSA. 

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These items really only matter if you’re going to fly to your destination.

Unsealed liquids

The last thing you would want is to open your toiletry bag and see that your sunscreen has exploded. Seal every bottle you have, and put all the liquids in a separate, waterproof bag.

Large bottles

The TSA doesn’t want anyone to carry bottles larger than 3 oz with them. Make sure you don’t break this rule or you’ll have to throw out your products.

Flammable items

This is a bad idea even if the TSA rules aren’t taken into consideration. Never take anything flammable with you on a flight!