Picking a travel destination is about much more than just going online and booking a couple of plane tickets, a hotel, and maybe a rental car. It’s about finding a place where you can express your own unique sense of style, even if that place is two hundred or two thousand miles from your home.

You should feel good about how you look on vacation. The optimum way to achieve your style goals is to do some research on the area you’re visiting, then craft a plan based on both what you find and what makes you comfortable.

Local customs

Cowboy boots are considered a fashion faux pas in some parts of the country and an essential staple in other places. Context matters tremendously. You wouldn’t wear winter boots to see a Broadway show in August, but you might look weird not wearing them in Montana in February.

If you’re planning a trip to a tropical or semi-tropical place like Hawaii, remember to bring lots of lightweight fabrics. This is not the time or place for a wool sweater; you’ll just be itchy and sweaty. Hawaiian shirts are also perfectly acceptable, but don’t get too weird or wacky; that screams “tourist.” Stick to the traditional floral patterns and other related designs. Don’t tuck that shirt in, either; this is Hawaii, not your office.

Women (or men) can use a Hawaiian vacation to wear a traditional muumuu, which is flowy dress that’s much easier to wear than it is to spell. As for makeup, wear as much or as little as you’re comfortable with, but make sure to bring some of your own supply.

Many visitors leave the mainland and are shocked by how expensive things are in places like Honolulu.

It makes sense when you think about how isolated the island is and how much effort it takes to ship supplies there, but it’s better to leave your spending money for things like food and souvenirs. Head to a cosmetics site like Sweet Sparkle to buy makeup; it might be just what you need to (figuratively) shine during those evening luaus.

Remember that you don’t have to go out with a full face of makeup every morning, though.

There are times when it simply won’t be practical, including the days when you’re taking surf lessons on the beaches of Waikiki, HI. Even waterproof mascara can only do so much in situations where it’s you against the ocean.


What to take back

It’s tempting to go to a new place and buy a ton of local clothes to take back with you on the plane. Limit yourself to one or two items, especially if you’re looking at some far-out fashions. Las Vegas is the home of excess, and there are shops that sell outrageous items that you may want to take home for yourself.

But can you wear a pink feather boa to your baby nephew’s baptism? Probably not.

If you buy something you can’t wear out in public, don’t spend a ton of money on it. Your dog is great, but he probably won’t know how to react to a fashion show featuring fancy clothes you bought on a European cruise. An aviation t-shirt, cool necklace, or keychain may be a better way to signal to others that you had a great time on vacation.

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