If ever there was a girl capable of whipping your mane into shape it’s the one-and-only Jen Atkin—and she’s got a pretty major client list to prove it (Kim Kardashian, Sofia Vergara, Nicole Richie, Jennifer Lopez, Katy Perry, Christie Brinkley, Gwen Stefani, Karlie Kloss…the list is seriously a mile long!). Here, she talks to us about her favorite item from the hotel mini bar, the foreign beauty products she loves, and the stolen suitcases that are gone and lost forever (a moment of silence, please).
How often do you travel?
Every other week….I’m a true ‘frequent flyer’!
When you want to escape, where are your favorite places to go?
Viceroy Zihuatanejo in Mexico and Viceroy Anguilla in the Caribbean.
What brand of luggage do you use?
What about your carry-on bag?
I use a Chanel roller.
What are the must-have travel items that you never leave town without?
A neck pillow, an eye mask, and luggage tags.
Are you an aisle or a window?
Aisle—I drink a lot of water.
What’s your preferred in-flight beverage?
Tomato juice with ice.
How do you entertain yourself at 35,000 feet?
I don’t watch movies on airplanes—it’s my time to read. I’m currently reading The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. I always read Fast Company, and of course all the beauty mags.
What are the beauty-essentials you can’t travel without?
For my hair I bring products from Clear Total Care and Oribe Gold Lust Oil. I also pack Child perfume, Lorac makeup, Charlotte Ronson eyeshadow, SK-II masks, body lotion, Intraceuticals B5 Atoxelene Serum, eye drops and lip balm. And I always have fish oil pills, collagen pills, and B5 vitamins.
Is there any special way you pack your products?
Sonia Kashuk travel cases and Rimowa luggage. I also use Henri Bendel grooming bags.
What’s the one surprising thing you always pack?
Would you say you’re an over-packer or an under-packer?
Both—it really just depends on the season.
Have you ever discovered a foreign beauty product while you were traveling that you fell in love with?
I found an Indian hair oil called Kesari, Rose Veil hair serum in Japan, and an over-the-counter sleeping aid called Donormyl which you can get in France.
You clearly know a thing or two about hair, so what’s your personal hair routine when you travel?
Ponytails and buns!
If your luggage was lost, what are the 5 items you’d buy at the local drugstore?
Toothpaste, dry shampoo, lipstick, hairspray, and chocolate!
Fess up, do you exercise while you’re traveling or do you skip it?
I do my LekFit, ModelFit and JJ Dancer routines. All of those trainers have given me tools to do workouts on my own when I’m away. I also travel with a resistance band so I can do my arm workouts. I pack New Balance sneakers and Under Armour gear to workout in.
What’s the very first thing you do when you get into your hotel room?
The goodies in the hotel mini-bar are hard to resist…what’s your favorite item?
What’s your favorite meal to order from room service?
I love ordering breakfast—cut grapefruit with salt on top.
Have you ever had a travel disaster?
My first year working at Paris Fashion Week, I had 3 Tumi suitcases stolen at London Heathrow Airport. I had just bought my first pair of Alaia shoes and my first Rick Owens jacket. All of it was gone! Heartbreaking.
What destinations are still on your travel bucket-list?
Turks and Caicos, Bali, the Maldives, Morocco, and South America.
Jen Atkin photographed in Dubai