Summer is all about relaxation for some, but for the wanderlust-ers in us all, it’s also the perfect time for a little vacation. I am admittedly a crazy planner about life, but that goes into overdrive with travel. However, that’s not always a bad thing! Letting work know ahead of time, scheduling blog posts and more happen before the suitcase even opens, but then I really kick into overdrive. Given that, I have become quite the expert in terms of packing plans that pack a punch. So here are my tips to pack for your summer vacay like a pro.
- Plan ahead for minimization
I’m a big fan of looking through my closet and making lists then laying things out together to make sure I am only bringing what I need. This helps with packing minimally, which Tina Aldatz, CEO of SAVVY TRAVELER, says is the best way to go.
“Forget packing everything and anything you can, which will weigh you down […] Aim to be a minimalist by packing the least amount of items you can, while still making sure you have the essentials for your vacation.”
- It’s all about full outfits
Designer and J.Crew collaborator Carla Sersale revealed to us that she places “everything neatly folded on my bed before I put it in my suitcase. This way I am able to recognize that there’s way too much stuff and put a few things back in my closet.”
It also helps your visualize outfits that can go together, pieces that can be used in multiple ways and make sure you have a consistent color scheme to make adding shoes and accessories easy. For more inspiration, Sersale’s summer packing list can be found here.
- No more than four pairs of shoes
Sorry ladies but this one is pretty straightforward and non-negotiable. Wear your biggest shoes, like boots or cute sneakers on the plane then pack two others. We recommend sturdy sandals for tours and sightseeing then a pair of low heels and/or dressy flats for nights out or more upscale day events.
- Lay as flat as a pancake
There are many schools of thought on this but as someone who has fit two weeks of clothing into a European-sized carry on with no issue, I can honestly say flat is best. Try and get as few folds as physically possible and use the bottom slat spaces, corners etc for your bras, underwear and other small items.
- Gym clothes and pajamas are multifunctional
Gym clothes and pajamas can overlap (depending on how fancy your bedroom attire) and this is a great way to double team space in your suitcase. Pack leggings you can travel and do yoga in, or tanks that can be worn with a skirt and then on an evening run. Just don’t use travel as an excuse to scrimp on sleep or your cardio. Aldatz reminded us that while relaxation is key, working out could be fun, especially on vacation.
“This is a great time to mix up your usual workout by adding in some swimming, hiking, kayaking, or other traditional summer recreational opportunities.”
- Use your shoes
There’s nothing worse that having a necklace break or bobby pins fly everywhere inside your suitcase. So wrap them carefully and place them inside your shoes for extra protection and organization. This also goes for small items like socks, sports bras water bottles or plastic bags for liquids. Make sure to included some great lotion here, as hotel varieties aren’t usually the best. We love derma e’s Hydrating Serum for the morning.
- Hit up the laundry room
Putting a dryer sheet or two in your suitcase will have your clothes coming out smelling like they’re freshly dry cleaned but also be sure to bring a travel sized Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus spray. This has been a godsend for me with getting wrinkles out of clothes fast or for freshening up an item I want to re-wear.
- Keep everyday items sleek
Your purse is going to get crowded with passports, tour vouchers, your camera etc so save room where you can. I love the Eyn smartphone case that doubles as a wallet with a built in secret compartment for cash and credit cards, plus a mirror. It’s exactly what you need to make sure you always have all your essentials (just don’t lose it!)
The same goes for cosmetic items like the Aromatherapy Miniature Bath & Shower Collection, which comes in a variety of heavenly scents that are travel size and can be used even outside the bathroom. They’re great for the shower of course, but a few drops can also double as perfume or be used to create sleek ponytails on the go.
- Never forget technology
Organize your chargers and all technology needs (tablet, laptop, phone, camera) ahead of time and pack them on top where they’re easy to reach. Using a smaller cosmetics bag for cords and chargers keeps things organized. To make sure you’ll never forget anything you put in the hotel safe (which many places recommend in foreign countries) put one shoe in the safe as well. You won’t be able to leave without your shoe – or your laptop!
- Dress for travel
Your outfit on the plane is just as important as the ones in your suitcase! Some of our favorite items for a stylish and comfortable travel outfit are:
– A caftan is super comfortable for almost all occasions and we love the colors of this J. Crew floral
– For travel, you can also pair the longer top with great slim pants like Signature Skinny from Aella in LA, which are a chic upgrade to leggings
– If you get cold on planes, this linen blend scarf (now on sale!) is a must-have
– You can never go wrong with a great pair of shades like these Kyme Sunglasses for a pop of color
– Lastly, travel can wreak havoc on your skin (the base of any great look) so complete your travel ensemble with derma e’s Evenly Radiant Brightening Serum to give you an enviable glow