With all the traveling I’ve done, especially this year, I discovered a few tips on how little details can keep you on point, and less stressed, for any trip.

  1. Get your nails done before departing
    1. I don’t mean you have to get some intense acrylic on. I actually tend to get gel, which is my real nails with legit polish. Regular manicures chip too quick for me, but I digress. During my most recent trip to Iceland, I ended up with 8 broken fingernails. I originally planned to wait until after I got back for a trip to the salon but it would have protected my nails prior to with that thick coating. It also peels off when you’re ready to move on from it so, win/win.
  2. Decide on an interchangeable look
    1. It’s so easy to get lost in the world of infinite makeup possibilities but it should be kept at home when you have plenty of time and counter space. You’re on vacation! Don’t spend half of it in front of a mirror. Worst case scenario, there’s no look that can’t be fixed with a filter later. So, pick a look and take the minimum, 1 of each product you need (blush, shadow, lips, etc.).
  3. Check the amenities of your hotel before booking
    1. 20161201_142500
      Making light of vegetable hair

      This has happened to me a few times but the most memorable was in Amsterdam last December. I’m way too used to being in hotels where shampoo, conditioner, soap, and hair dryer are just there. I made the mistake of not researching better and landed in Amsterdam excited to get in the shower! My schedule was tight because I had someone extremely important to meet, which means I wanted to be maximum cute. However, just so happens that I got in my room and saw only 1 small bar of vegetable soap. Vegetable. Soap. I asked the attendant if they had any extras, hoping it meant my room was accidentally skipped. It wasn’t. I was referred to the vending machines which had ALL of the things I needed. Except it only took euros and I was fresh faced in a new country, so I had none. Also 0 time to get any. I washed my hair in said veggie soap and had to let the winter air dry it on my way out (I ended up losing my voice).

  4. Leave the toiletries at home
    1. 20170525_221617
      Best Western – San Antonio, TX

      After you thoroughly implement tip 3, make your necessities list. If there’s a product you can’t live without, by all means condense and pack it up. For the normal things, toothpaste, shampoo, contact solution, etc, don’t waste space in your luggage! You can pick up travel sized options at the airport or any local convenience store and get just enough for your time there. I have definitely brought way more than I needed then lost out on precious souvenir space. Don’t let my left behind collectibles be forgotten in vain!

  5. Pack smarter, not harder
    1. Take 2 pairs of pants that can be worn with several thin, easy to squish shirts. Yes, even if it’s cold, because you’ll have a coat. If you have jewelry, take 1 set that can match everything so you reduce the possibility of losing any. Use a compression bag set that gives your clothing the extra squish so no souvenir will be left behind.

Most of these tips apply can apply to everyone but I have found that most of the women I’ve known have a tendency to over analyze their needs for the road. I have been there many times and probably will be there again. I’m the worst when it comes to road trips, I bring everything with the kitchen sink just because I can. However, when it comes to air travel, it’s best to approach packing from a different mindset. If not, you’ll be over paying and over packing, much to your carrying demise.

Got some tips of your own? Tell me about your travel hacks in the comments and be sure to follow me on Instagram @QuEeNMeRaNdA for a new travel photo daily.

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