If you’ve been following me on Instagram (if you’re not, check a bella out), you already know I’ve been a traveling fool this year. Road trips, domestic trips, international travel — I’ve been doing it all, back to back for a few months. Right now I’m typing this on a plane ride back from LA to Chicago. During my last trip, I was complimented by one of my peers – “you’re a really prepared traveler,” she said. I’ll be that. Better safe than sorry, right? In a previous post, I’ve shared my travel packing list – click here to check that out and download if you need to! Here I’m gonna break down the travel bags and accessories that make the trip through the airport that much easier.

First things first – are you a chronic overpacker, or do you plan to bring home a bunch of souvenirs from your destination? You should grab your luggage scale . I try not to fly without mine. Rolling up to the airport knowing you won’t have to awkwardly unpack anything before checking your bag is a great feeling. Today my suitcase was exactly 50.0. I celebrated having that scale to keep me exactly where I needed to be before getting there!


Let’s talk about your carry on laptop bag. For many years I carried the Lo and Sons OG and I still do love that bag. But then I switched to the Booq Daypack — such a game changer! It’s sleek and some of the finishes it comes in are waterproof for added sleekness and security. It’s my favorite. If you’ve got hips and navigating the slender airplane aisles means bumping into folks, having a narrow backpack makes a difference in getting to your seat. Plus it has mad pockets – including two external pockets for a water bottle or still-wet swimsuit or something you don’t want touching your other stuff. AND it can slide under the seat in front of you or be placed in your overhead compartment easily.  I’m a fan.


You know I love my indie brands (#IndieBrandLove, baby) – so let me introduce you to Po Campo, a super cool Chicago-based, “mission driven, woman owned small company that makes bike bags and travel bags with weatherproof fabric and lots of pockets to fit your favorite devices.” It all began when industrial designer  Maria Boustead couldn’t find the perfect bike bag back in 2009. Now she’s got bags of all kinds, and for overnight travel I’m feeling their Po Campo weekender because of the multiple pockets, the shoe compartment, the yoga strap and the fact that a portion of all sales goes to delivering bicycles to schoolgirls in rural Africa through their partnership with World Bicycle Relief. Dope!


My go-to makeup bag for a minute now has been the Mocha Moon makeup bag — it’s luxe, compact, waterproof, has essential compartments and is made by an independent designer! Click here to read my 2012 review — it’s still going strong! But if you’re seeking something more retail accessible in a hurry for a trip that’s like, tomorrow, I’d recommend any of Sonia Kashuk’s excellent makeup bags at Target. Seriously, they are beautifully made, last forever, come in great patterns, are versatile and helpful as heck for chronic makeup overpackers like me. I ADORE her prints. So mad I missed the gorgeous summer palm print this year.

Right now I have a decent toiletry bag, but I’m in the market for an upgrade. On the Amazon Prime tip, I’m intrigued by the MelodySusie hanging toiletry/travel bag — those compartments look perfect for someone like me who NEEDS to pack a few full size products for longer trips. But I’ve read GREAT reviews about the eBags Pack-It-Flat toiletry kit, which lends itself to the kind of packing needs I struggle with (I need to streamline my toiletries, especially in the hair product department).



I used to think I didn’t need them, but then I saw the error of my ways, sucked it up and bought these TravelWise packing cubes. Travel GAMECHANGER. It’s just so easy to get to your destination and know exactly what is where when you use them. If you struggle with travel organization, I encourage you to upgrade your situation!

Those are some of the travel bags I’m using, recommending and admiring. Do you have a favorite, or should I know about one you love? Shout me out in the comments!


pets says:
November 16, 2016, 9:36 am
This gave me some excellent tips to use when next I travel! Thanks
Milaxx says:
November 16, 2016, 3:59 pm
I'm packing for my first airplane vacation in 7 years! I'd done trips to the shore and weekend warrior stuff, but it's easy to overpack when you don't have to worry about a plane. I remember when I traveled more frequently I was pretty good at it. This time around I have a fold up backpack. I use bot compression packing bags ( they are like giant ziplocs) and packing cubes.If all goes as planned I'm carrying on carry on case and travel bag.
Kiss & Make-up says:
November 17, 2016, 4:23 am
It's all about packing efficiently and being practical!