As we’ve seen, an overfilled bag is one of the quickest routes to looking like you’re not at all put-together. While other outfit fixes are relatively quick and easy to achieve, lightening the load you tote around in your handbag can be one of the more challenging tasks.
We women have a bad tendency to think of our bags as extensions of ourselves and of our closets. If it’s small enough to fit inside, it will probably at some point end up living in there. But in reality, there are a relatively small number of items we actually need to tote around at any given time.
We’re shocked at ourselves for being able to say we’ve narrowed the list down to just eight things you need in your bag at all times. Keep scrolling to find out how you can cut down on your bag clutter right now!
If we had a dollar for every time we wished we had a fan on our person, we’d be rich. You never know when you might end up in an environment that’s a bit hotter than you’d prefer—and those little electric fans are not a good look. Foldout paper fans, on the other hand, are a great accessory to keep on-hand—they’re pretty, unexpected, and functional.
True, most of us now use our phones or tablets as our primary planners—but what happens if your battery dies or for some reason your device is malfunctioning? A good, old-fashioned paper planner will save you in the event of either of these catastrophes.
Moleskin Extra-Small Hardcover 2015 Planner ($12)
Even if you tend to prefer a bright red or poppy pink lipstick, every woman needs a solid muted shade in her bag at all times. You never know when you might be in a situation where bright lipstick would be inappropriate. For example, if you get called into an important business meeting unexpectedly, a sharp red could come across as garish, but going without any color at all can make you look unprepared. Always keep a nude, light pink, or neutral shade in your bag.
Clinique Chubby Stick in Curviest Caramel ($17)
Maybelline Baby Lips Moisturizing Lip Balm ($3)
Perhaps it’s not the most glamorous beauty product, but Vaseline is one of the most versatile. It can do so many things—keep lipstick from sticking to your teeth, moisturize the skin around your mouth, and make your eyebrows look way more manicured than they are. The possibilities are endless. And if you end up scraping your leg or get blisters from your shoes, it can help in that department, too.
In a perfect world, we’d all have phones that never lost their charge (and shoes that never hurt our feet). In reality, a smart woman comes prepared—by stocking up on small, portable phone chargers that are relatively easy to toss in your bag and aren’t as cumbersome as charging cords.
Urban Outfitters Printed Portable Phone Charger ($24)
A stylish woman with bad breath is a stylish woman no more; make sure you have in your bag a good supply of gum, Altoids, or whatever your mint of choice is. This will save you if you ever have a particularly fragrant meal before an important event.
Sometimes a girl just needs a little candy to uplift her day. Not only is it a nice treat for yourself, but if you haven’t had a chance to eat for a long period of time, some candy will help keep your blood sugar levels stabilized. Practical and tasty: the ultimate combo!
Yummy Earth Organic Lollipops ($8)
What do you always keep in your bag? Tell us in the comments below!
Panda All-Natural Raspberry Licorice Chews ($34)
A woman without a pen is like a man without, well, a pen—even though we live in the digital age and can largely survive using the pads of our fingers to write things down, sometimes you will have to resort to your paper planner to keep your life in order. A stylish pen is a must-have at all times.