Before I committed to a traveler’s lifestyle, I had a high maintenance beauty regimen. I had platinum locks that required a salon appointment every five weeks. I regularly waxed my brows and had my nails done. I often bought excessive makeup kits that I never even used. I realized I spent a lot of money on beauty products and services, and I decided I needed to cut those expenses in order to save money for traveling. Now that I work as a freelance writer as I travel Europe, my beauty regimen has drastically changed, which in turn impacted the way I see myself in the mirror.

how travel changed my life

Travel has changed my life in many ways than I could actually think of. Every small change travel brought to my life, it always lead me to more happiness, and being at peace with my self.

Cutting My Old Habits

When I committed to a traveler’s lifestyle, I just had to be realistic with myself. I have to save in every way possible so I can buy flight tickets, tickets to UNESCO sites, you know, things that drive the purpose of my travels. For women, a lot of saving can happen in the beauty department if one has the will to do so. Reflecting back on my investments in my hair and makeup, I do not feel bad because those things, however minor they may be to someone else, made me feel great about myself and made me feel like my best self at the time. Originally, this journey began simply as a way to cut costs, but over time I grew to have a new admiration for how I look naturally. Now, the adventures I have while traveling makes me my best self.

Looks Matter Less When Traveling

I know what you may be thinking. But, oh, the Instagram photos! You have to look cute for those! Well, even though that’s not what matters, it is still possible! Here’s the thing – You’re already cute! Travel photos of myself in my natural habitat, so to speak, helped me view myself in a different light. Plus, when you’re 80 years old reflecting on your youthful adventures, you’re not going to look at that photo of yourself on a mountainside and think, “Damn, wish I would’ve put some makeup on that day.” You’re going to think,Wow, I’m so thankful I seized that opportunity.

Forget about being 80 years old! You should have that mindset now!

Habits May Change, But Style is Eternal

Besides consuming less, my personal style has not changed much. I have become a bit of a minimalist in the fashion department, but as far as hair and makeup, I find that I invest much less time and money on that. I have learned to depend less on the makeup here. It’s often very hot and not worth the time. In fact, the heat melts the makeup and makes me feel less confident because I’m never quite sure if my lipstick is actually on my mouth or if my mascara is on my eyelashes. I prefer to go barefaced, with sunscreen of course, to spare myself the melting makeup issues. And I spend a lot of time at the beach; Running, writing, drinking coffee, having picnics. The beach bum life is better without a ton of beauty products. The sunshine has brought my freckles out in full force, and I adore them.

I also spend much less time with my hair. In the beginning, my “dirty” blonde roots felt unbearable. As my hair continued to grow and my natural color became more and more visible, people began to take notice. And every single person told me they preferred my natural color. I had been highlighting my hair since eighth grade. I haven’t had completely natural color since I was seventeen. I was feeling frustrated with my hair, but I only received compliments. While I don’t depend on others for self-confidence, their compliments certainly helped me to look lovingly upon my roots. Plus my hair has gotten so long and healthy because I have not dyed it or heat styled it for six months. Braids have become my best friends and the sea spray is my new hairspray.

Nothing Can Replace The Glow of Pure Happiness

Nothing can replace the glow of pure happiness. Yes, and which is what traveling has given to me. Recently I went on a trip to a neighboring beach town with my boyfriend, completely makeup free. We spent the day hiking twelve miles up and down a gorgeous river in the mountains. When we finished I quickly changed into a dress and took out my Dutch braids and swapped it for a bun. I had not a trace of makeup, and yet, while we spent our remaining hours walking along the shore, I felt so radiant.

When hiking up a hillside in Granada, admiring the beauty of La Alhambra, taking in the surrounding Spanish white town, I don’t care what I look like. All that matters is that moment. Not the shade of my hair or the quality or quantity of my makeup collection.

Has travel impacted your life in any way? Please share your experiences with me.

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