Managing the Side Effects of Travel…Sustainably

“Have passport, will travel” is the unofficial motto of Dubai. Made up of over 80% of expatriates, there is typically a mass exodus when Spring Break, or any holiday, rolls around. However, after the excitement of the trip is over and before being able to comfortably transition back into a routine, there is always a horrid hurdle to clear. No, it’s not passport control. It’s jet lag. The evil reminder of all the time zones that we have crossed.

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Ask anyone what the worst part of a long-haul flight is and jet lag ranks close to number one. If your eyes are popping open ready to start the day at 2:37 a.m. chances are you have this unwanted side effect of travel.  While we aren’t scientists, and we may not have implemented the golden standard of a double-blind study, we have conducted our own survey asking airline staff, our many muses, business people who have earned the most elite frequent flyer cards and our closest friends the age-old question: “So, what’s your jet lag remedy?” The answers are varied and range from drinking a few beers before bed, taking melatonin (we are not advocating that you take these together) and just “sucking it up,” to not wearing sunglasses for a few weeks so the natural light can get your circadian rhythm back on track.

On the other hand, the medical community offers different advice. They say to avoid alcohol and caffeine, and drink plenty of water. They aren’t any fun!

No_alcohol-1.svgThe latest remedy on our radar is an app called Stop Jet Lag. Based on your itinerary, they offer easy-to-follow individualized plans using a natural approach to reset your body clock.  They claim it’s all about correctly timing your meals and drinks, sleep, exposure to light and melatonin supplements. At a cost of $35 for an individual plan, they offer to refund your money if it doesn’t work. As Cathy gets ready to hop across the pond from Europe to the U.S and then back to Dubai over the next few weeks, we are considering having her “take one for the team” to try it out. Of course, you can count on a full report in a future post.

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Sometimes the right travel products can ease the pain of jet lag. On a recent visit to Portland, Oregon, ethical muse was delighted to receive the most genius turn-down amenity from the Hotel deLuxe; a travel kit overflowing with a mix of items from Saje Natural Wellness, A.P.C./Aesop and Liddell. Full of natural remedies that do everything from moisturizing altitude induced dry skin to making the airplane bathroom smell fresh if you have to poop, sustainability for both of these companies is as important as it is to us.

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So many great products, but we wanted to share our top three recommendations.

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Being that one of us C’s is a bit of a freak about germs,  Safe Hands Antimicrobial Hand Lotion is a must have. The medicinal ingredients of lavender, niaouli, patchouli, cajeput, pine, tea tree and white thyme disinfect, moisturize and protect our hands without the drying effects of other alcohol based products. Move over Purell, there is a new kid on the block that has captured our attention in the most natural of ways!

The globe-trotting C, who wishes to maintain her perky personality no matter what time zone she is in, advocates Ginger Flight Therapy. Perfect for stress, and nausea too, it has an exotic, warm and spicy aroma. She’s even used it as a perfume stand-in.

Saving the best for last… with a name like Post-Poo Drops, one clearly and quickly understands the power behind those three little words. Perhaps airlines should routinely keep this in their bathrooms. And, A.P.C./Aesop, here is our request. A small discrete 20 mL size that we can pop into our hand or pocket on our way to those public bathrooms would be perfect to flush away any public-pooing anxiety.

Whether the after-glow of travel has us battling dry skin, jet lag or even post-holiday weight gain, one thing is certain; you won’t see us standing with our feet firmly planted on the ground for long. While airline travel is not necessarily considered sustainable, we make sure our remedies for the side effects always are.