My Bag Kit, Everyday Essentials

30th January 2014

This is my purse kit, and I use it several times a day, especially when I’m traveling. Everything pictured fits in that tiny pencil case on the left, and I move it from bag to bag so I always have a little packet of musts. Here’s what’s in it:

• Tampon, whether I need it or not, because I’m a sister.
• Fugly earphones that have a microphone for calls in the car or Spotify while I’m on a walk.
• Bobby pin
• Safety pin
• Single-serve eye drops, did you even know these existed? Best.
Tide to Go pen, which is some sort of stain-removing witchcraft, highly recommend.
• Eye liner
• Dental floss, both the circular white container and the wand.
Pilot G-TEC-C4 pen, which is smaller and has a much finer pen than my beloved Pilot Precise
• Perfume
• Burt’s Bees Lip Balm, so pepperminty and tingly.
• My two favorite shades of Maybelline Super Stay (Keep Up the Flame and Spice), which never ever comes off in a way that will startle you.
• Homemade teeny packets of SPF and concealer, which I have heat sealed in a straw because I am MacGyver. These make me crazy happy.
• Two bandaids and some fashion tape, which I use for fixing blown hems or holes in clothing, secured with a binder clip.
• Hair band
• Packet of asprin
• Tube of Weleda Skin Food, which I’m always pushing on people because it smells so good and makes your hands velvety.
• The pencil case is by Danica Studio.

All of the things, at your fingertips my friend. So good. Am I the only one who does this?

28 thoughts on “My Bag Kit, Everyday Essentials

  1. Erin

    I have one of these two, with almost all of the same things, except subtract the SPF, concealer and lipstick and trade it in for cuticle cream, hand sanitizer and a usb stick.

  2. Sig

    Oh I love seeing this! I used to carry various versions of these around myself. First iteration was the Party Girl, had tooth brush, tooth paste, floss, condoms, lube, and ibuprofen. Then was the Overboard edition, which included many of your items, plus nail clippers, paper clips, sewing kit, Tums, a little CPR booklet, tiny flashlight – it was pretty over the top. My last version was greatly slimmed down, was just like eye drops, lip balm, a couple bobby pins, and ear plugs. I tell you, ear plugs are key. But someone stole it out of my bag – a shame too, the pouch was really super cute.

  3. Amber Marlow, theAmberShow

    I do this, but I use a clear vinyl pouch so I can see through it. The straw thing with sunscreen and concealor is amazing.

    I also have bandaids held together with a paper clip, tissues, wet naps, extra contact lenses just in case, and hair ties.

  4. adriana

    thank you for this! i’ve been meaning to streamline mine as it currently unnecessarily contains a watch with a broken battery, a mondo bottle of lotion, and like three bottles of nail polish for god knows what reason. i’d recommend one of those teeny squeezable hand sanitizer bottles to round out the kit.

  5. Pictou

    I have a tin in my car’s glove box that has many essentials for being stranded including band-aids, dental floss, screwdriver and a quarter because I think I might use a pay phone!

    Next up, I’ll build one for my purse but without tampons as I gave all of those to food bank when I no longer needed them.

  6. Susan

    Small pair of scissors! Indispensable for cutting coupons in the grocery store. Sample size of Aveda Hand Therapy. Paper clips, ibuprofen, toothpaste, travel toothbrush, a Kind bar, sewing kit swiped from a hotel bathroom, barrettes, nosebleed clamp (my daughter was famous), bandaids of course.

  7. Kristen

    I’m working on one of these. Hand sanitizer is a must for me, especially when traveling. (Came in handy in Japan, where they don’t provide paper towels.) I was using a zippered pouch, but I think a pen case is smarter for smaller bags. Questions about the heat sealing: 1) How did you do that?; and 2) Are you sure the straw protects the sunscreen from degrading? I read somewhere that certain lotions, for example, need to have just the right kind of sun-resistant packaging. I agree, sunscreen’s a must. Little sample packets are good for this, too (e.g., from the Kiehl’s counter).

  8. Diane

    An extra pair of contact lenses labelled L and R. When it comes time to change my lenses I use the pair in my bag and put a new pair in.

  9. Justine @ The Lone Home Ranger

    I’m a birth doula and absolutely adore being a voyeur into others’ pencil bags of wonder, so thanks for the glimpse and for the laugh. LOVE those heat-sealed straws! I genuinely LOLed twice while reading this post (“I’m a sister” and “I’m MacGyver”), which is saying a lot because I usually stifle laugher to avoid piquing the curiosity of the beasts/children in the other room.

  10. Doug LeMoine

    Maggie, I would like to offer a high-five to you on your choice of Futura for the title in that image. I guess it’s possible that the homage to Wes Anderson is coincidental, but either way, I am delighted by the Rushmore-ish-ness of it. Thank you.

  11. hippittee

    the straws…brilliant! how do you seal them???

    my version also contains a charging block/stick…because my iPhone battery is as necessary as any of these items.

  12. Traci

    I love that pencil case! I always carry bandaids in my wallet, and I often have to replace my stash–I guess I hurt myself a lot, but I’m always the person to provide a bandaid to the random person who has a cut on their finger.

  13. Christina

    You ARE MacGyver! Explain the straws, please, as envision puddles of hot sunscreen splattered around my table if I attempt this without explicit instruction.

  14. Kelly

    Love this! I too have a bag that moves, many of the same items. I don’t wear contacts but glasses- so I have glass wipes and a mini eyeglass screwdriver kit thingy with extra pads! (you don’t realize how important that is until you’re 2 hours from a conference in a strange city, trying to find a replacement!) I love the kiehls samples and they’re the perfect size for my purse kit. Lip balm, nail clippers, cuticle cream…

  15. Cathi

    …”which I have heat sealed in a straw…”

    I’m feeling a little amateurish for reserving samples sizes for purse use. CRAZY good, as usual. This post made my day.

  16. liz

    I have two cases in my bag — one a school supply kit, in case we need to do homework in the car. Scissors, pen, pencil, markers, eraser, glue stick, and wipes. Then a personal one — eyeglass cleaner towelette, lipgloss, cute hair tie, earplugs, motion sickness pill, tide stick, aspirin, ear plugs, energy bar/snack. (My son keeps finding the snack.)

  17. Kate L.

    Yup, I love my little girl kit! (That is what I call it.) I also keep a small bag of airplane peanuts, a bag of tea, and a packet of sugar in mine. I also have a folded-up napkin and a teeny tube of mascara in there, too.

  18. Brenda

    You neglected tweezers and a nail clipper (or manicure scissors). As a female who is now 40, I always seem to find those “OMG, where did that black hair come from??!?” hairs on my face when I look in the car mirror. Thus. Tweezers.

    Otherwise, I have nearly the same collection in my own purse.

  19. Alyce

    This is very well edited.

    I find I had all the best intentions but then mine has been overcome with every lipgloss in the world when what I most grab for is the empty Chapstick. Also, it I s now sadly lacking the bandaid I needed yesterday – where did it go? This is a great reminder to stock up and refine.

    One must have for me, depending on bag size: translucent powder and a kabuki brush or a pack of oil blotting papers (my favorites are from the body shop; no powder).

    And thirteening the request for instruction on the straw sealing. Ingenius regardless.

  20. JudyR

    Love this! I have those things scattered in my purse. Will have to make a pencil bag to make a kit like this. I like some of the additions your readers have suggested. Ditto the hopes for a straw sealing tute.

  21. jenny

    I should have known you were a Girl Scout alum. Do you also have a hand-woven ornament featuring your 2nd grade photo to hang on your Christmas tree?

  22. Julie

    Oh yes. I have one of these. Known as my bag of tricks.
    That lip color in Spice…’s no longer! Now what??

  23. Deanna

    I do this, have 2 cases that I move around. My only question is where are the condoms and sewing kit? Staples for me and somehow elude you? I just got the STD Speech from my Doc, because I’m just about to become sexually active again after a long term break up a year and a half ago. She tells me that although we ladies in our 40s don’t need to worry so much about pregnancy but we do need to worry about those STD’s. In fact she goes on to quote the ‘age bracket’ I’m in now. Specifically STD’s are on the rise in ages 40-70. Wow, that’s a box I never thought I would have to check.

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