Packing Makeup for Air Travel

Published Categorized as Makeup Tips, Travel Tips

With all the rules that have been put in place by the TSA, many questions have arisen, especially about feminine products. How do you travel with makeup? How do you pack makeup, so it doesn’t break or leak all over your bag? Do we know how to pack makeup for air travel properly?

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These are great questions to consider before embarking on your trip. Though there is no one solution that fits all, there are definitely a few things you should know when it comes to traveling with your beauty kit.

So, to help you out we thought we would look at just how you should pack a makeup bag for travel, as well as what you can carry on the plane and what must be stowed in your checked luggage.

By being in the know, you’ll be able to save time and decrease the risk of being late for the flight. Or worse yet, having to dump some product before even making it to the gate. Nobody wants that.

So, sit back and make sure your trays are in the locked and upright position. Let’s break down the rules and guidelines that’ll help you get to where you’re going and look good once you’re there.

Table of Contents

packing your makeup for air travel is easy, if you follow the rules of air travel authorities

Can You Pack Makeup in a Carry-On Bag?

You can, of course, pack your makeup bag and bring it on your flight.

You simply must understand the TSA liquids rule when it comes to liquid foundations and other liquid products.

TSA Rules

TSA Guidelines When it Comes to Liquids in a Carry-On

You must abide by the 3-1-1 rule when it comes to any liquids brought on the plane, and that includes your liquid beauty products.

You will want to make sure that your makeup isn’t larger than 3.4 oz. You’ll also need to check that all your gear fits in one quart-sized plastic bag. This will usually have to be removed as you go through security.

Can You Bring Eyeshadow Palettes on the Plane?

Powder-based makeup have no limitation when it comes to carry-ons, according to the TSA.

This means you can pack them neatly in your cosmetics bag or favorite designer train case and not have to worry about repacking after security.

How to Pack Your Makeup for Air Travel Properly – Carry On

In order to pack your kit up well though we have a few key tips that will help you out and save space.

The first is to make sure you have your favorite large makeup organizer bag. The one you choose should be an organizer that has enough space for all the essentials.

If you’re using any liquid makeup and you do not meet the minimum ounces, you may want to invest in small, clear, travel-size containers.

Once you have your bottles full of your liquids, you will want to pack them in a separate case. You can also save time and put them in a clear ziploc bag as you will have to remove them anyway when you get to security.

You May Want to Limit Your Kit Down to the Essentials

We can hear you now: ‘How do I protect my makeup palettes when flying?’

There are a lot of great tips, but one is to use your clothes as padding. That means don’t place your makeup bag in the front pocket. Instead, house it in between thick clothes will save you a lot of hassle.

If you aren’t traveling for long or want to challenge yourself, maybe try to pare down the kit you usually use. You can also try to use products that can be used for multiple applications, and this will save space.

You will also want to make sure you protect your compacts from being broken. You can use extra pads or socks to help cushion them from impact.

Can You Pack Makeup in Your Checked Luggage?

So now that we have tackled the carry-on conundrum for you, what about checked luggage?

The truth is that it is a lot easier to manage than the carry-on, but it does come with some extra added dangers, like luggage transfer and such.

Sometimes you must check your baggage in, and if so, you wonder if you can put all your make-up in your luggage without any problems. Once again, the answer is yes.

If you are traveling for a long time and have large bottles of whatever makeup, then traveling with them in checked luggage is the way to go.

How to Pack Your Makeup for Air Travel in Checked Luggage

The truth of the matter is you may want to put a little more care into packing for your checked luggage than you would in a carry-on. After all, you won’t be the only one dealing with your checked-in luggage.

We all know that perhaps our luggage isn’t handled with quite as much care once checked in as it would be in our own care.

So, take time to secure and cushion all your makeup when checking baggage.

Here are a few tips:

  • Make sure all liquids are in a plastic bag. That way if they happen to burst, it isn’t all over your clothes. It doesn’t hurt to keep powder products inside a bag as well! Powder or liquid foundation and other liquid makeup products can be hard to clean up if something unfortunate happens.
  • Any items that can break or smash, use old socks or your clothes to give them a little extra padding
  • Make sure you have a makeup case with padding and protection. It should also be one that offers a way to keep all your stuff in one place and not floating randomly around your suitcase
How do you pack makeup in your check-in luggage?

Should You Pack Your Makeup in your Luggage or Carry-On?

So, where do you put your makeup when flying?

In the end, the trick to knowing how to pack makeup for air travel comes down to two questions. How long are you traveling for? And how in-depth is your make-up routine?

There are ways you can manage both options. It merely takes a little planning and an urge to get to your destination!

Share you favorite ways to pack makeup for air travel with us!

By Ellis James

We design luxuriously glamorous bags, organizers and life essentials for you. At Ellis James Designs, it’s all about YOU. Your bag, Your way. Our exclusive designs are timeless, indulgent and most importantly inspired by you. What will be your first Ellis James Design?


  1. Packing and securing your favorite products is very essential indeed! And liquid stuff is definitely better placed in your checked luggage – with ample security!

  2. I usually put all my make up in hold luggage so I don’t have to worry about the size of the liquid foundations etc in my hand luggage. I agree re: limiting what you actually take with you. Accidents happen and no one wants to open their suitcase to find smashed eyeshadow everywhere! xo

  3. Oh no, what happened if you’d care to share?

    And thanks so much for stopping by! One can be travelling for years and still be quite mixed up, what with new rules (myself included).

  4. Oh I found out the hard way that you really need to put your shampoos and other liquids into a plastic Ziploc bag before packing them as part of your check-in luggage. These are all great tips and a timely reminder since I’m flying in a couple of weeks!


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