Packing for South Africa | Safari, Surfing, Hiking, Beaches & Adventures.

In another instalment of “What’s in my Travel Makeup Bag”, I want to share with you what I packed for an adventurous trip to South Africa that I did recently. This trip was 2 weeks long and will see me go to interesting places, and doing all sorts of adventurous activities, so my makeup and skincare have to keep up with me.

My general rule of thumb is that, the simpler the better and the longer, the fewer items I should take with me. I need space for all that souvenirs and shopping I’m bringing home! Since I was going for two weeks, and multiple places mean that I need to shave off any non-essentials, and I was more than happy to. I find my skin to be in better condition when I am travelling (all that positive vibes make my skin happier and I always come home with a much better skin than I left with!) so I generally will leave the non-essentials at home. Since this was going to be an adventurous trip, I didn’t want to be bringing colourful eyeshadows or 10 lipstick shades that I wouldn’t wear anyhow!

Now, I totally didn’t realize this until I started writing, but I pack a lot of Make Up For Ever products! That’s just how good and reliable they are for any occasions!


If you’re interested in other posts where I talk about what I packed for my jaunts abroad, and general packing tips check them out here:

The Makeup

I always travel with as little makeup as possible so I try to only bring multi-purpose products with me. My foundation of choice is always the Make Up For EverMat Velvet+ Foundation #40 ($47, available here), which I’ve talked about constantly and is the foundation I travel with. The compact packaging, incredible formula (long-lasting, incredible coverage, and looks natural) makes is a staple in my travel bag. Since I was heading to a safari, I wanted something that will hold up against the elements, and this is a proven staple.

Just in case I get invited to something a little fancy or I want to look a little bit more put together, I brought along the Make Up For EverPro Sculpting Palette ($54, available here) which is perfect for travelling since it has all 4 colours that I need to complete any look. Plus, you can use the creamy highlighters (matte or shimmer) as a bit of colour on the lids, with the bronzer shade as the crease colour. I brought along 2 of the palettes I have, #20 and #30 because I like the contour shade from #20, and brought #30 as a backup. The slim and compact packaging makes these perfect for travel as they take up very little space!

For the eyes, I brought along waterproof eyeliner pencils, the Make Up For EverAquaXL Eye Pencil ($25, available here) or the StilaWaterproof Stay All Day Eyeliner ($29, available here) depending on my preference at the time. These two products are time-tested, and have proved themselves over and over again, irrespective of the activities I’m doing. Kickboxing, swear, and rain will not smudge any of these, and they last the whole day! As for the mascara, I brought another staple from Make Up For Ever – the Smoky Extravagant Mascara mini ($30, available here) which does not transfer, nor budge but gives the volume and lift that my lashes need.

I found a nifty little dupe to my another favourite travel companion of mine, the BenefitGimme Brow ($30, available here). After a while, this product has become too impractical to buy on a regular basis so I was quite ecstatic after finding a dupe from essence! The essenceMake Me Brow is a cheaper, and more accessible dupe with the same quality, colour selection, and wear.

For the lips, I wanted something that won’t smudge, transfer or require any maintenance at all, so I brought the MAC CosmeticsPatentpolish ($24, available here) in 2 shades. The hydrating formula, buildable colour, and comfortable wear means I can worry more about getting the right shots of the animals during my safari, over my makeup. Plus, I can always build up the colours in the event I was going to go to a more formal event/occasion.

Skincare & Others

I let mother nature take care of my skin when I travel so I try to take as little as possible. I have been using the BiodermaHydrabio Gel-Creme ($29.50, available here) a hydrating moisturizer with a super lightweight texture that my skin just drinks up! The convenient tube and pump packaging makes it leakage-proof, and convenient to travel with. The gel formula melts into my skin so it doesn’t feel heavy when I have to layer on sunscreen on top of it. I find the gel-cream formula to be a lot better for my skin as my skin absorbs it up so much better than a regular lotion. Since it’s not too rich or greasy, my skin feels so comfortable all day!

Not pictured in the above shot are 2 other essentials, a sunscreen and makeup remover. For the sunscreen, I decided to pack one that is safe to use for face and body as I didn’t want to take any chances of forgetting to wear one. I chose the BiodermaPhotoderm Spray with SPF40 ($29.95, available here) which is safe for the face, and body. It’s lightweight and non-oily formula pairs perfectly with the Hydrabio moisturizer underneath as it doesn’t clog my pores, nor affect how my makeup sits on top. The product is housed in a regular spray bottle rather than an aerosol bottle which makes it less likely to explore or leak in your bag. The generous 200ml size makes this one bottle more than enough for a 2-week trip!

As for the makeup remover, I cheated and only brought a makeup cloth. The SephoraBlack Magic Makeup Cloth ($15, available here) is one that just magically removes all traces of makeup – waterproof and all! I feel so comfortable in not using anything else to remove my makeup as it easily removes all skincare and sunscreen underneath.

I brought along a couple of sachets of shampoo/conditioner which proved incredibly valuable when I was staying in a safari tent or when I had to use shared public showers after my surfing classes as I can easily toss them out once I was done with them. Collecting these through the various Sephora purchases was a really good idea!

What do you bring with you when travelling?

Disclaimer: This post features product(s) provided for editorial consideration. All opinions are my own. For more information about my review policy, please click here.

Love this! 2 skincare suggestions for when you get to South Africa… make an order at Skoon Skincare ( – their gel-to-milk makeup remover is DREAMY. I also really love their Ruby Marine Overnight Hydrating Mask (and it smells wonderful to boot). You can get some amazing trial sizes from them as well in case you don’t want to buy full sizes. Another brand to try is Skin Creamery ( I am positively in LOVE with their Cleansing Facial Powder (and cutest packaging ever!) and over the weekend, I tried their Facial Hydrating Oil (and just wow…but I didn’t buy it. Maybe next time!)

Enjoy your time here!!

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