The Essentials


I know I did an “In the Bag” purse-edition post once before. And maybe this is kind of similar to that, but I wanted to get a bit more in depth. I decided to focus on what I believe are essential items that every gal should carry with her at all times (though I totally understand the use of a clutch or even just a pocket when going out for the night). I’ve learned the hard way what I need/don’t need to have in my purse, and I think I’ve finally figured out the perfect mix of things I need to keep close to feel normal/fix issues quickly/stay prepared!


Let’s start with the most important things. I don’t know about you, but a day without lip balm is sort of the worst. If I can’t de-chap my lips at any given moment, I am a super grump. So I make sure to have one on me at all times (and a refill when it’s getting low, before it runs out). I also like to keep a lipstick in my bag. This Rimmel brand is a bright red, so it doesn’t get worn a lot, but it’s nice to know I could kick it up a notch if I so desired. At the top of this little group, I have a pill case. I usually try and keep it filled (though it can only handle so much) with some kind of pain reliever. Any pills you need or use frequently, this is a discreet and neat way to keep them close at hand so you never have to worry! I also am a big proponent of eye drops. I use Refresh Natural Tears, which come in little disposable, one-time-use dispensers and can be used with/without contacts. They are amazing. Topping off the group is a great hand combo. I’m not the biggest hand sanitizer freak around, but I am always so thankful when I have it and have made a point to keep it in stock. The Nivea Crème can be replaced with whatever hand lotion you like. However, this stuff is amazing. The tiny tin costs .99 cents and a little goes a long way. It’s sort of a miracle worker. I hate when I’m out and my hands go from freezing cold to crackling, or a public restroom has a super-drying soap. It goes hand-in-hand with my lip balm theory. If any part of me is dry or uncomfortable, I will have a terrible day.


Notebooks and pens are a recent addition to my bag, but I’d be lost without them. There’s always a moment when someone (me, usually) needs a pen. I keep two different lightweight notebooks in my bag as well. The Hello Kitty one is just for fun, a place to write down blog ideas, wish lists, party brainstorms. The bigger one beneath that is a journal of sorts, a place to keep track of my moods and write out my issues.


I find it really important these days to have reading material on me at all times. When work is slow, when I’m in a waiting room, whatever. It’s just a good thing to have. I am at the tail end of Mindy Kaling’s book (it’s adorable and funny, of course) so I’m showing it off here. Music is also super important. Most days of the week I am driving around 40-60 minutes total (whether to and from work or Brad’s), and I’d go crazy if it weren’t for my fully loaded Zune. The headphones are always with me, though they came with my iPhone. I use them pretty much everyday, so I can talk and text and tweet or whatever all at the same time. They have a built in microphone, so they are the best. Obvious but oft-forgot items are sunglasses (even in the winter…especially then, the sun glaring off the snow is soooo bright), chewing gum, and some throat lozenges. I get a tickly throat after singing loudly (alone in my car, all the time) or talking a lot and this helps soothe the discomfort.


Last but not least, the tech portion. I showcased my phone here, but basically I think everyone should have a camera on them at all times. It doesn’t have to be your phone (it’d probably be even better if it wasn’t), but you never know when memories will unfold. Yes, my phone is helpful in so many important ways, but I love that it takes great photos and video and I can capture sweet things at any given time. And finally, a flash drive. I’m so glad I started to keep mine with me. It’s easy to share music or photos with anyone because of this.

So there you have it! Michal Lynn’s suggestions for the essential purse/bag necessities.

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