London-based Laura Bailey has a pretty impressive résumé: she’s a model, writer, contributing editor at British Vogue, brand ambassador for Chanel, cultural ambassador for the British Fashion Council, and collaborator on the jewelry label Loquet London. But of course we’re most impressed with the way she oozes impeccable jet-set style. Case and point: her luggage is Prada, her shades are Chanel and her remedy for jet lag is a combo of “sunshine and espressos” (ummm, we seriously need to take a holiday with this girl!).
City you call home?
How often do you travel?
As often as possible.
Favorite destinations to travel to?
The Amalfi Coast, Italy
Where’s your “happy place” to visit?
What brand of luggage do you use?
A beloved, old, Prada suitcase that’s cream with a navy trim. It was the first present my boyfriend ever gave me, when I was flying back and forth from NYC all the time. More recently, I’ve added a couple of classic, navy Globetrotter trunks to my collection, though I travel light when I can.
And for your carry-on bag?
I use a Prada, navy wheelie-case or scarlet holdall as hand-luggage only. And I usually carry my passport and bare essentials in the skinniest vintage Chanel chain-bag, worn cross-body.
Do you travel with a camera?
Yes, I bring an Olympus Stylus 1, and an old Contax (it takes film!) that I bought on Ebay.
Heathrow, because it represents home. But my favorite places to arrive also include St. Barths and North Eleuthra, in the Bahamas. I also love tiny, one-track runways in remote areas of Kenya or Tanzania.
What are your in-flight travel essentials?
I used to try to watch as many movies as possible. Now I prefer to read, and sleep. So I always pack a book, (The last book I read in the air was Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie), a cashmere shawl or blanket, and beauty treats. In flight favorites include Creme de la Mer and Sisley-Paris skincare—and I’ll pack a Chanel blush compact to wake up my skin on arrival.
Aisle or window?
The window seat so I can sleep…perchance even dream.
Preferred in-flight beverage?
Water. And the occasional glass of champagne.
What music is on your travel playlist?
Neneh Cherry, Leona Naess, Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, Beyonce, Ibeyi….
Gadget you can’t leave home without?
Do you use any travel apps?
Do you have any travel rituals or superstitions?
I always pack a swimsuit (plain, black Chanel) and a favorite navy jumper by Folk.
How do you entertain yourself at 35,000 feet?
Reading mostly. But my kids and I all loved The Lego Movie which we watched somewhere in the sky at Christmas.
What’s your go-to uniform for the plane?
What’s the one item you never leave town without?
How do you deal with jet lag?
Sunshine and espressos.
What’s your exercise routine when you’re on the road?
Depends where I am. I love biking and hiking in LA, walking in Paris, and swimming in the Mediterranean.
How do you manage your health + eating routine when you’re away from home?
I just try to eat local and seasonal, but without strict rules. As a strict vegetarian LA is the easiest.
What’s the first thing you do when you get into your hotel room?
Look out the window.
Are you an over-packer or under-packer?
Do you have a packing strategy?
I’m spontaneous, mood-driven, and emotional about my packing.
One surprising thing you always pack?
A polaroid of my dog Frankie when he was a puppy, whom I hate leaving behind.
What are your favorite items to travel with?
Frame Denim dungarees
Bella Freud skinny slogan knits
Basic vests and tees by Celine and Gap
Vintage print sundress
Little, white dress by Valentino…or from the Mexican market
Miu Miu anorak
Shorts and sportswear by Stella McCartney
Burberry trench coat
Bikinis by Lisa Marie Fernandez
Bodas short pajamas
What beauty-essentials do you travel with?
For my haircare routine I tend to travel with an eclectic mix. I use Josh Wood Colour for Marks and Spencer and Bumble and Bumble (I love their Surf Spray!) . Phylia de M. products are miraculous, and I’m currently trying a new brand called Living Proof. My skincare routine includes This Works cleanser, Kiehl’s Cucumber Herbal Alcohol-Free Toner, and Creme de la Mer. Plus I bring Charlotte Tilbury’s eye make-up remover and clay mask. For my makeup I pack Chanel blush as well as their Les Beiges compact. Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow and Charlotte Tilbury Colour Chameleon eye pencils (I use ‘Bronzed Garnet’ for green eyes) are a must, and I also bring a lip pencil by Nars in Red Square. Pre-holiday I like to use The Face and Body Gradual Tan by Creme de la Mer. I also love Aesop body scrub. Kiehl’s classic Creme de Corps is also a must-have when I’m traveling. My perfume is Chanel no 19. For sun care I use Sisley-Paris products. I also love to pack a few special ‘treats’ for myself like Mauli Rituals bath salts + oils, and Elemis treatment eye masks.
Favorite item to order from room service?
Breakfast. Boiled eggs and soldiers.
Favorite item from the hotel mini-bar?
Have you ever had a travel disaster?
Well there was the time a bottle of bright, red nail polish exploded in transit all over a favorite vintage dress. Lesson learned.
If your luggage was lost, what are the 5 items you’d buy at the drugstore?
Cotton balls, moisturizer, mascara, lip balm, and a bar of soap.
Favorite find/souvenir from your travels?
My favorite ever holiday shopping was in a flea market outside St. Tropez. An old lady I met in the post office gave me directions, and my haul included vintage Chanel earrings and a navy linen tablecloth, whilst my kids treasure-hunted amidst vintage toy cars and Disney miniature figurines.
Favorite childhood memory of traveling?
Edinburgh, where my dad lived for much of my childhood. I’d catch the overnight bus from London (thrilled by midnight stops at neon-lit service stations en route) and he’d pick me up at dawn on his bike. Trips were spent trawling bookshops, climbing Arthur’s Seat and diving from ever-higher springboards at the Royal Commonwealth pool.
Travel destinations on your bucket-list?
The west coast of Ireland
Laura Bailey photographed in Bodrum, Turkey