By Jamie Roberts
Packing for a trip, no matter how long you will be away, is always a daunting task. It is likely your least favorite thing about getting out of town, whether it be on vacation or for work – I know it’s mine!
Since we are all so busy these days, we need to employ special methods to organize our lives. Organization is practically a CRAZE these days, with sites like www.getorganizednow.com helping us get it all together. Here at Beauty News NYC, we like to travel ‘in style’ and in order to have all the things a high-maintenance girl needs, we need a system to pack it all up.
I travel a lot for business and I used to procrastinate and pack the morning of my trip. I would often forget things that I really needed and wanted. With my taste in cosmetics and skin care products (the things most often and easily forgotten) it was nearly impossible to replace my treasures at local stores wherever I would be going. Since I want to make certain I have everything I need, I now get started a week before my trip. I thought my process might help my girlfriends (like you) so read on…
7 days prior – Observe your own daily process – what you use, when you use it – and write it down. Think about what things you will be doing during this trip (with climate taken into consideration) and what more you might need because of it (sunblock, etc) and include that on the list.
6 days prior – Re-fill your travel-size containers and buy more of whatever you’re short on. Pack purses and other little items that you wont need before you leave. Preferably good travel purses that have lots of pockets. For an evening bag, you can’t beat Elements by Madge’s GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT bag (www.madgecosmetics.com) with a tiny mirror, an eyeshadow trio for smoky eyes and a lip gloss. This cute red, white and black mini-bag can also hold your keys, ID and cash! Don’t forget to make your nail appointment today for 1 to 2 days before the trip!
5 days prior – Go to www.weather.com and print out the 10-day forecast. Any seasonal clothing that you may need (not the season you are in at home) fish out of storage or go buy.
4 days prior – Sit down and make a list that looks like this?
and so on. If you know that you are doing something specific on any given day, and it is something that will dictate what you need, write it next to the day of the week, like this?
Monday: (golfing and fancy dinner with other travelers)
Day – green golf shirt, green and white golf shorts, visor, green socks, golf shoes, fanny pack, sunblock
Evening – little black dress, black strappy heels, red, white and black evening bag, strapless bra, shimmery lotion
3 days prior – Put all the clothing (with complementary undergarments) on your list into SPACE BAGS (www.spacebag.com) according to what day you will wear them on. Each day should have its own bag. There should be one additional bag for extra outfits – one casual, one sport and one evening – just in case. If there is anything that you need that is in the laundry or at the cleaners, write what it is on a post-it and put it inside the bag. Launder any items that you might need today.
2 days prior – Get your nails done for the trip! Go over the list of toiletries and cosmetics on the list you made 5 days ago, collect the items and put them in one place – all together, so you wont forget any one of them. Include the kit your nail place uses to work on you, take it before you leave there today if you usually store it at the shop. Collect your laundered or dry-cleaned items and put them in their proper space-bags. Close and roll the air out of the space bags and arrange them in your suitcase. Put your travel-outfit on a hanger on the doorknob of your closet. Remember to make your travel outfit a layered outfit – a t-shirt with a jacket or a sweat suit so you can adjust to the changing climate (cold on the plane to hot at your destination).
1 day prior – Put your shoes in a plastic bag and into your suitcase. Throw in any last-minute clothing items. Gather cosmetics / toiletries and put them in your cosmetic travel bag – I got mine at Sephora (its large with a plastic interior, find it at www.sephora.com) – and leave it open so you can use your things in the morning – but make sure you put them back when you are done! Also – assemble your pertinent documents and such (passport/license, plane tickets, car rental paperwork, printed confirmation from hotel, singles to tip baggage handlers with, etc) and put them where you can see them (near the door or near your packed suitcase).
Of course you can condense these steps and do it in fewer days, but why stress yourself out? Gradual packing enables you to be more thorough and gives you a chance to remember what might be forgotten. You want to be as serene as possible on a vacation and you need to be able to roll with the punches on a business trip, so this enables you to not worry about your ‘stuff.’ Of course, as prepared as we try to be, we do forget things. In future columns, I will let you know where to find them by destination!