7 free beauty treatments at the airport

Here’s a twist: Wouldn’t it be great to arrive at the airport and be happy to lose your bags? You can if that means your under-eye bags, along with dull skin, lackluster makeup and scaly hands.


Jenography with suitcases

Packed, ready to fly but in need of pampering?


I recently discovered fantastic shortie beauty treatment that you can get at the airport and best of all, they are all complimentary. When you arrive at the airport a little flustered, having packed your suitcases and the kids’, organised the itinerary, triple-checked the passports, undressed and redressed at security and secreted some snacks/games/diversions in your handbag, you can actually take some time for yourself without spending a sou.

The treatments can range in length from a 3-minute beauty boost to a 20-minute skin energiser and everywhere in-between.

I explored some of these treatments with the folks at Estee Lauder Travel Beauty, which  alongside Estee Lauder incorporates brands like Smashbox, Jo Malone, Bobbi Brown, Clinique, MAC and Creme de la Mer.

Look out for these top treatments at the airport — just go to the counter and ask the friendly and knowledgeable staff. They’re not going to give you the hard sell (although if you ask about the marvelous products they’re using, they’ll happily tell you). It’s all about getting you to experience the brands to see what they can do for you.

Estee Lauder makeup - Jenography

1. Estee Lauder brightening and beautifying

From this heritage brand you can find up-to-date shades and services ranging from a 3-minute makeup refresh and hydration to the Estee Lauder 5-Step Face in just 10 minutes. With expert foundation matching you can try their famous Double Wear foundation, perfect when mixed in with Advanced Night Repair to battle dry in-flight conditions.


UKAfrolista at Bobbi Brown - Jenography

I snapped this picture of @UKAfrolista getting a smoky eye, a transformation that took minutes

2. Bobbi Brown natural, impactful makeup

I wouldn’t leave the house without my favourite Bobbi Brown face powder, but I’ve never tried their eye makeup. So I sat down in the makeup artist’s chair and 5 minutes later I got up with a dramatic smoky eye. This is possible. She showed me each step: shading, liquid liner blended up with a short stubby brush, more shadow, the right amount of mascara. Blend it to “make it look like sunrise”. This is one standard service at the Bobbi Brown counter — perfect for when you want to arrive ready for a day or evening at your destination. You can also opt for a neutral eye with a vivid lip, try their sparkle shadows designed to be applied with a finger or other looks. They all use Bobbi Brown’s fantastic natural shades and gorgeous textures for a sophisticated finish. Of course the products will fit in your carry-on. Sadly you can’t stuff the makeup artists into it as well.


Jo Malone airport massage - Jenography

Pick your favourite poison then settle in for a massage

3. Jo Malone hand and arm massage

Sometimes it seems almost impossible to visit someone’s house without catching a whiff of Lime Basil and Mandarin or Pomegranate Noir. Jo Malone’s fresh but complex scents are irresistible. You can carry them onto the plane by having a hand and arm massage at Jo Malone. They feel so luxurious and left my hands feeling so nurturing that I elaborately gesticulated for the rest of the day so everyone would notice. Pamper those mitts that have been toting and lifting for hours in the run-up to check-in.


Creme de la Mer products

4. La Mer skin hydration

From my time at Allure beauty magazine in New York City, I’ve known Creme de la Mer to be one of the beauty brands that makes beauty editors coo. I remember one flame-haired senior editor declaring “I want to marry Creme de la Mer”. English Mum describes getting the “arrive hydrated” treament in her post. I love the sound of Aging Interrupted and Deep Calm (both 5 mins).The low humidity environment on an airplane means your skin can really suffer. You should always be moisturising, even using one of those little hydration spritzes (I confess — I love them). But to also be preparing your skin with top-of-line ingredients from a luxury skin brand — Well, who wouldn’t?


Clinique travel exclusive - Jenography

The exclusive travel set features 3 products perfect for flight

5. Clinique skin saviours

I love the thoughtful approach Clinique takes to its offerings and fliers. For example, the Clinique men’s set includes quantities all under 100ml, so you can carry them on in the future. There’s also a travel set, available exclusively at the airport, including Moisture Surge, Eye Serum, and Hydration Spray (yes!). Clinique is all about making sure your skin is in top condition and looking fresh and finished. Try out their “Wow Nows”, the “Moisture Makeover” or “Wake up Makeup” — perfect for those early morning departures.


Smashbox liptsticks - Jenography

6. Smashbox makeup tricks

Smashbox is all about on-trend colours and impactful looks for the beauty mad. Try their mouth-watering array of lipsticks or get instruction in the things that will take your look up a notch. Brow: Define and Perfect gets your face perfectly framed in 5 minutes. Ever wonder how to employ contouring? Contour & Strobe is all about master highlighting. With Prime Time, learn how to use primers in 10 minutes. Or Spend a quarter hour making your features pop with #ShapeMatters. Pick up duty-free exclusive items while you’re here.


MAC Look in the Box - Jenography

Everything you need for your MAC makeover in one place

7. MAC makeovers

We all like the idea of renewal when we go away. With MAC you can remake your look by getting a MAC makeover in the airport or take it with you with MAC’s Look in a Box. You’ll have an original new look in one go. It’s a kit that covers lips, eyes, lashes, lids, and skin, with MAC’s covetable products. All this and it can fit into the side pocket of my handbag, making up for anything that I left sitting on the bathroom counter at home.


Jenography and English Mum airport pampering

Camera-ready post-pampering, with English Mum


So next time you fly, get to the airport early and enjoy some time with free beauty pampering, surefire skin and makeup tips and a chance to try out products you’ve always dreamed of. Not every treatment is available at every airport, so check it out — let me know which ones you’ve tried and loved, and where!

Never mind the threat of missing your flight — this is the reason to get the kids up and out the door early the next time you fly.


Pin for later!


free airport beauty treatments pin



I’m a journalist and blogger. Previously I was The Times’s online lifestyle editor and Alpha Mummy blogger. Now I’m co-founder of BritMums and BritMums Live! – our annual blogging conference that draws hundreds. Follow me on Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter and Google Profile+



  1. March 3, 2017 / 2:52 pm

    OMG – I have to do the hand and arm massage at Jo Malone!!! Literally every time I go to the airport I am going to get that done. Thanks for the tip!

    • March 3, 2017 / 2:58 pm

      Susan, it is sooo fabulous, especially since you have your choice of all the wonderful Jo Malone scented lotions.

  2. March 3, 2017 / 3:51 pm

    I don’t fly very often but when I do I will remember about this. I’ll just leave the children with my husband and be pampered for a short while.

    • March 3, 2017 / 4:19 pm

      Lydia, that’s the great thing. You can literally stop by for 5 minutes to have a little break. (Maybe just tell them you’re going to the newstand and make a small detour…)

  3. March 3, 2017 / 8:51 pm

    I never knew you could get this done at the airport, I’m off in a few weeks, so think I may be stopping off before I board

    • March 6, 2017 / 10:28 am

      The only problem, Lindsey, is deciding *which* treatment you’d like to do!

  4. March 4, 2017 / 6:22 am

    I will certainly look out for this next time I travel. I tend to buy my make-up at duty free anyway……..after leaving hubby and kids in the play area 😉

  5. March 4, 2017 / 9:57 am

    woooow! I didn’t know this! I need to get to the airport sooner next time and check! hahaha thanks for sharing x

    • March 6, 2017 / 9:48 am

      Ha, that’s a funny idea. Think it’s worth hanging out Departures just to take advantage? 😉

  6. March 5, 2017 / 8:50 pm

    I’m making a mental note of this for our trip to Italy later this year. Thanks for this!

    • March 6, 2017 / 9:47 am

      Emma, would love to hear what you think of it and what you opt for!

      • Rabia
        March 6, 2017 / 4:56 pm

        ooh good to know, I always end up with swag when I go through the airport and I am game for a little makeover pre-flight.

        • March 10, 2017 / 7:55 pm

          Considering how much you fly, Rabia, you really should take advantage! x

  7. April 1, 2017 / 10:48 pm

    Wow, have to admit such treats were not on my airport list since the kids arrived! Thanks for the wake up call Jen!

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