The Bare Essentials: Aliya-Jasmine Sovani shares travel tips for beauty-on-the-go and shopping like a pro!
In our new blog series “Shopping Cart Confessions”, we invite style icons and local celebrities to give us the scoop on all things shopping. Get the “who, what, and where” behind some of our favourite celebrity fashion, beauty and lifestyle choices.
From covering MTV pop culture and sports to documentary work and environmental journalism, Canadian celebrity Aliya-Jasmine Sovani has travelled the world as a TV host, producer and journalist. Now based in LA, Sovani took a break from saving the world – one YouTube video at a time – to share with us her best travel tips, including what’s in her luggage and how not to be a travel shopping hoarder.
How much travel is involved with your work? What destinations has your career taken you to over the years?
I travel a ton for work, it’s one of the aspects of the job I was most attracted to! Journalism has taken me all over the world, but some of the stand-out moments were travelling to Haiti after the tragic earthquake; to South Sudan after the civil war; and to the middle of a remote rainforest to investigate a controversial pipeline.
What are some of your most memorable travel destinations?
My best friend and I took a trip to Italy for my 30th birthday, and we spent a week in Sicily. The food we ate, the friends we met, the incredible memories we made – that was definitely one of my best vacations ever.
Do you have any destinations or hotels on your bucket list?
I am eager to visit Greece as I’ve never been there and I also want to go to Uganda, which is where my parents are from. My dream is to take a family trip there so my parents can show me where they grew up.
Beauty can sometimes be tricky with travel. Any tips?
Don’t use random samples or you’ll mess up your skin! Invest in a little case of travel size bottles and squeeze your favourite product into them. That being said, I do believe we are much closer to being our ‘true selves’ when we travel – without having to conform to expectations of who we need to be or how we should behave at home – and I believe that should extend to our vacation beauty regime too. Skip all the stuff you normally wear to work, and keep makeup to a bare minimum. Let your natural beauty shine through when you travel. Plus, it’s way easier to pack that way!
What is the most exciting part about travelling?
Definitely the food! I love trying new cuisines. I grew up in the back kitchens of restaurants my entire childhood because my father was a restauranteur, so I absolutely treasure the experience of going off the beaten path and trying local, family-owned joints in new cities.
How do you find the best travel deals or hotels?
I travel in off-season. I know it’s not always ideal for the weather – but for me, it’s worth it to avoid line-ups, crowds, and jacked up rates!
What are the first things to get packed in your luggage?
My camera and my sunglasses! I feel that I could travel the world successfully with only those two things.
Where do you stock up on your travel essentials?
Dermalogica. I’ve been using their facial products for years, and especially with all the travel I do for work, I swear by them. My skin gets really dry after so many flights in a row and I find that between their moisturizers and just drinking a ton of water, I’m able to keep my skin from breaking out.
Tell us your best shopping tip when it comes to travel.
Shop wisely! A few times I’ve bought random things while travelling that I never ended up wearing or using. Can anyone relate? When I bought my first home I decided that every time I travelled I would only buy one item from each destination that was for my house. Whether it was a brass hook shaped as a horse from Vienna, a rug from Turkey, or a wine bottle opener from Italy, I would have memories all over my home, but without the clutter! I suggest sticking to a shopping theme; maybe buy a photo frame from each place you visit, or an accessory.
What is the best way to accommodate everyone when travelling with a group? (Family or friends)
Scheduled downtime is key. I recently planned a family vacation to Las Vegas for my father’s 60th birthday. I made an incredible 4-day itinerary with all the major reservations scheduled, but in between daytime and evening activities I also planned a few hours of down time. So the boys hit the casino, the girls went shopping, I took a nap – in any case, it kept us all happy.
Who is your favourite travel companion?
My camera! I could travel the world taking photos and be content. I feel totally lost without my Canon.
Quick fire questions: Beach or mountains? Hot or cold? Relaxing or adventurous?
Beach! Hot! And Relaxing – my life is already adventure in overdrive, my vacations are for chilling!