The Carry-On Essentials You’ll Never Leave Without



I love all kinds of travel but, I particularly love airports. There has always been something so poetic about a place where everyone could be headed off to an adventure or waiting for someone to come home to them.

I also love packing. It’s the first thing that really makes a trip feel like it’s actually happening. So, you can imagine the perfect storm of combination of excited emotions that came over me as I prepared for my most recent trip to Ireland. As I sat on the floor of my room with my carry on packed (after losing a suitcase for 12 days I refuse to check a bag ever again) I thought about the things I needed to throw in my tote bag to keep handy for the 5+ hour redeye flight.

The first thing I can guarantee I will always have in my bag are butter socks. They are fuzzy socks kicked up a notch with some Shea butter blended into them. I wear my slip-on Top Shop sneakers when I fly (to make it easier to deal with security). No matter how long the flight is, the best feeling is slipping on butter socks to get comfortable. You can snag a pair here from Nordstrom for $6 a pair.

Kind of along the same lines is my oversized scarf. The one I am currently obsessing over is this one from Free People. It actually ends up being a small sized blanket when unwrapped and spread out and is one of the warmest scarves I’ve ever had. It’s perfect for when the plane is chilly or you want to get some shut eye.

This is something I learned as a tween watching Michelle Phan which I swear by. I always have a face mask with me on the plane. Recycled air dries your skin out unlike anything else and for someone like me, it’s a wonder my face doesn’t crack into a million pieces after a long flight. I pick a few of the Montagne Jeunesse brand up every time I stop by Ulta since they’re pretty cheap ($1.99). Grab the ones that are the paper masks, throw it in your bag, and put it on when you’re ready to relax! You might look like a crazy person for 20 minutes or so but, if you don’t want to look too insane just take it out and wipe your face with the mask. To help your skin also bring a big bottle of water, chapstick, and a travel sized moisturizer.

After the face mask I throw on some of these under eye recovery patches from Earth Therapeutics. The dehydration caused by the recycled air can cause puffiness under your eye and if sleeping on red-eye flights is hard for you these will also help with dark circles in the morning before you land.

My current snack obsession is sweet potato chips. I HATE sweet potatoes but seriously these chips are the best thing I’ve ever had. I can eat an entire bag in one sitting. Grab a small bag of  these babies to open on the plane when you get hungry and need to munch. My favorite brand is Food Should Taste Good.

I’m one of those people that can’t sleep on planes because I’m too excited to end up where I’m headed so, I always have my Kindle with me full of books I haven’t read yet. On the last flight I was on I read the American Sniper autobiography and Looking for Alaska by John Green. Getting to read two books and not have to carry them both with me always reminds me why the Kindle is so awesome.

An interesting thought for anyone traveling internationally; bring your own pen. This way you can easily fill out customs forms before you land or declarations papers when returning home. Plus, it never hurts to have a pen in general.

And there you have it! Beyond the obvious travel carry-ons, these are the things you will find in my black hole tote bag every time I am out on an adventure somewhere.