Travel…remember when we all did that? I miss those days! BUT..things are starting to get back to normal and I’m ready to go…everywhere!
For the most part I’m a minimalist packer. For the past 15-20 years, I have only checked my luggage once. There are a couple reasons for this. First, an airline has lost a piece of my luggage and I have never seen it again. Second, I have had to wait until almost midnight for a piece of luggage to show up at my hotel after a long day of travel and adventuring. This was the absolute last thing I wanted to do that evening. Most importantly though, to me, is that packing only in a carry on allows me to have complete control of my possessions at all times and keeps me from overpacking. Is there really anything worse than overpacking when you travel? I mean, who wants to tote around a large piece of heavy luggage only to return home and realize you didn’t wear half of the things you packed. You simply didn’t need them.
You may be wondering how I manage to pack everything in a carry on. Well, I’m going to start by sharing what’s in my toiletries bag. I think this is where a lot of people struggle when packing. They like special shampoo, “need” a specific lotion, have an eye shadow pallet the size of a small state…😂. I think you get the point.
First of all, it’s a must to get a TSA approved quart sized liquids bag. Yes, you can use a simple ziploc bag. But…you will not be able to fit as many items in a ziplock bag and it will definitely not be as durable. The bag I use is linked here. The amount of items I can fit in this bag is crazy! I’ve used them on countless trips. They can be cleaned easily and for $7 you get three.
I’ve broken the contents of my bag into three categories: make-up, hair, and hygiene.
Let’s start with hygiene.
Beginning on the left…1. a sandwich sized bag with make-up remover wipes. I only take as many as I will need for the trip. 2. Daily vitamins – allergy pill, multi-vitamin, biotin: I place all the vitamins I need for the trip in a snack size ziploc bag. 3. Lens wipes: these are to clean my glasses. I also keeps a few of these in my personal item bag/purse. 4. Deodorant 5. Body Lotion – I don’t always pack this. All hotels provide lotion and you can typically find out which brand of products they leave in the rooms for guests from their website. You can always call as well before you travel. 6. Q-tips: these are not typically left in hotel rooms and I like to have some on hand. 7. Small bottle of perfume: around the Christmas holidays store will often sell these miniature bottles of perfume in gift sets. I always buy at least one. These little bottles are perfect for travel plus you get to try several different scents. Bonus! 8. Dental Floss & Toothpaste 9. Band-aides 10. Eye cream 11. Contact case: BUT, I don’t wear contacts. 😉 This case is filled on one side with face cleanser and the other side with face cream. A little bit of these products go a long way. this is the perfect way to take just the amount you need. 12. Toothbrush
My make-up is fairly standard even when I’m at home but when I travel I like to keep it simple and classic. A little over a year ago I discovered Maskcara make-up and it has changed my life. Those two rectangular boxes include my foundation, bronzer, contour, blush, highlight, eyeshadow, and a lip conditioner. It’s the BEST makeup! I’ll do a separate post on this make-up at a later date. Also included is eyeliner in that little pot which comes with it’s own applicator brush, eyebrow pencil, mascara, face primer, long lasting lipstick, and a special glitter eyeshadow I really like. I do not pack the make-up brushes in my toiletries bag. They get packed in a quart size ziploc bag. That’s it! Simple!
Lastly, let’s go over my hair products. Again, I keep it simple when I travel. I almost always wear my hair straight when I travel. I do this for a couple of reasons. One, straight hair looks better on me when I want to wear a hat. Two, it’s simple to do in a short amount of time – blow dry and flat iron. I have a small travel flat iron from Chi that is dual voltage and works great on my very thick hair. Shampoo and conditioner – At home I have a much more extensive hair care routine mainly because I color my hair a very light, icy blond. I do this extensive routine the day I leave for a trip. This way I have fresh hair on day one. Then, depending on the length of the trip, I may only have to wash my hair 1-2 times. These small travel pouches of shampoo are more than enough. I also have hair cream and serum, dry shampoo, and hair spray. A neutral color hair tie, bobby pins, hair barrettes, and a hair clip cover all the possibilities of how I might want to wear my hair.
That’s it! All of those items fit neatly in my toiletries bag. Now, it’s true that the majority of those items don’t actually have to go into my TSA liquids bag but I like to have everything in one bag. That one bag, the ziploc of make-up brushes, my flat iron, and a hair brush round everything I need to get ready in the morning for a day of adventuring. One other thing I’d like to mention is that I do not typically pack a hair dryer. I do have a great travel hair dryer that is dual voltage that I love but hotels almost always have hair dryers. I don’t like to take up precious luggage space with something the hotel will have there for me to use. Now…I do have medium length, very thick hair. Does it take me a little longer to dry my hair using a hotel hair dryer? Yes. I just plan accordingly while I’m on vacation.
I hope this helps you all! Now…let’s get traveling!