Postcard Series: April Franzino's favorite travel spot might surprise you...

Beauty Director at Good Housekeeping

Travel- hate it, love it? Love it! Experiencing new (or even not-so-new) places never gets old. I love the opportunity to feel refreshed and gain a new perspective. 

It’s not a vacation unless…there’s maximum sleep…and minimal phone usage.  

Planes, trains or automobiles? All of the above! There’s nothing like a great road trip for scenery and unique experiences, but I’m one of the few who actually enjoys flights, too. I love having the time and lack of distraction to knock out an entire book in one sitting. And I can sleep anywhere!

Checked bags or carry on? Because of the beauty product situation, I used to always check my bags. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve become a really minimal packer— my friends actually laugh at how I can pack for days-long trips in a little tote— so now I try to carry on whenever possible. I feel more free traveling light— and I like knowing that my bags are with me!

Travel beauty- bare or elaborate? As bare as it can possibly be for a beauty director! I try to be strategic and only bring what I absolutely need, so I pare down my usual skincare routine to cleansing wipes, a serum I can use morning and night, a sunscreen for face and body, and a rich moisturizer I works as a night cream or allover hydrator on the plane. For makeup, I leave behind the crazier, nonessential colors and stick with basics, with maybe one or two pop-y lip shades for fun.

In general my beauty routine is…pretty balanced. For makeup, I usually do either an allover neutral look, or a pop of bright or dark color, like an orange-red or berry, on lips, with minimal other color. Every once in a while I’ll emphasize my eyes with swipe of black liner or a smoky lid instead of the bold lip. But I am serious about doing the same skincare routine every day. I start with a peel pad or essence first thing in the morning, antioxidant serum, eye cream, face sunscreen, and BB cream or tinted moisturizer, and then at night, cleanser, retinol, eye cream, and night cream or face oil. In between, I use a cleansing balm and face mask every time I shower for an extra boost. I’m convinced that consistency is the key to great skin. I’m the most low-maintenance about my hair: I wash it every few days, using a mask instead of conditioner because it’s colored and heat-damaged, and only air-dry (I don’t even have a blowdryer— talk about a beauty editor confession!). Post-shower, I apply a leave-in conditioner to combat dryness and damage and a volumizing mist since my hair is on the finer side. Once dry, on workdays I’ll smooth my waves a bit with a curling iron or a few swipes of a flat iron, and touch up with a lightweight hair cream.

I must pack __________ when traveling? My cashmere travel blanket. I wrap up in it on chilly planes or in the car, and it can double as a scarf or even a pillow. And I always love having an extra supersoft blanket of my own in any hotel— I have a thing with cozy blankets.

Best travel tip? Pack multitasking beauty products in your purse or carry on — things like a portable moisturizing balm than can be your lip treatment, face lotion (or mask if you really load it on!), body moisturizer, or even hair smoother in a pinch, and a multi-use lip and cheek tint, like Wander Beauty’s Carryon Lip and Cheek Gel, to perk up your skin when you arrive. You can use a neutral color even on eyes, too, and apply with your fingers. With just these two products, you’ll feel pampered and pretty without extra luggage. Something slightly more indulgent but that I can’t travel without is a mini face mist: It refreshes tired travel face in two seconds.

Upon arrival at my destination…I immediately unpack! I’m that person— knowing everything is in its place makes me feel settled and calm.

Favorite travel spot? Lake George, New York in the Adirondack Mountains. I grew up visiting every summer with my family, and no matter how many exotic places I’ve been lucky enough to visit— St. Tropez, London, Munich, Paris, Zurich, Riviera Maya, Rome, the Caribbean, South Korea— my heart belongs to Lake George.

What are your 3 must see/do things in this city? Swim, boat, or kayak on the lake— I love vastness and peacefulness of the pristine water surrounded by mountains and trees. Stress just vanishes. Then, a hearty, warm meal at one of the cozy local log cabin restaurants with my family. And last, of course, a campfire!

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