When the year began I was looking forward to a variety of adventures around the country and the globe. Now I find myself making Pinterest boards and wishlists of things to collect for my next set of adventures when the world opens up again. Just because we can’t travel right now doesn’t mean we can’t dream about it, right? So I’ve put together a list of fifteen different travel essentials to get you to dream pack for your journey.
There is no shortage of amazing luggage brands out there, but Speck is my go-to suitcase brand right now. My Speck ($200+) hardshell carry-on is collecting stickers from the adventures we take together and is my best travel pal. With a built-in, TSA approved lock, the bag can easily go from carry-on to checked in seconds. You don’t have to worry about packing a lock or worry that this little suitcase isn’t durable. Speck products are built to experience the rough trave life and still keep your valuables safe.
When it comes to natural pain relief, Healist ($39.99+) is my newest best friend. I have pretty consistent knee pain and it only gets worse when I travel. Between not hydrating enough, sitting too long, or a variety of other changes that happen when you travel, pain can derail even the best day. Their pain patches are amazing, but I prefer the pain relief body lotion. Healist keeps my knee pain at bay and is perfect for those long walking, exploration days. (Like with any products with CBD you must know the latest airline or travel restrictions if you’re traveling out of the U.S.)
Don’t let the name fool you, Mermaid Straw ($3+) is much more than a reusable straw company. They’re here to replace all those disposable things you use when traveling. Utensils and straws are two of the worst ecological offenders the plastic industry has to offer. When you invest in Mermaid Straw products you’re not only saving thousands of pieces of plastic from hitting landfills, you’re also getting gorgeous alternatives. I’m a sucker for ombre and these rainbow beauties do not disappoint. The collapsible straws are my favorite to tuck into a purse or even attach to a bag with a handy carabiner.
I’ll be totally honest with you, I hate disposable makeup wipes. They sting my eyes, which have always been overly sensitive, and they’re terrible for the environment. I’ve used reusable cotton rounds for a while and Makeup Eraser ($12+) has changed my life. Makeup Eraser gets rid of even the most stubborn makeup with just water. They’re machine washable, super portable, and are amazing little travel buddies. You can get big ones or minis and never have to use a disposable wipe again. Ever traveled somewhere and had your wipes dried out on you? Never again.
Tucked away in the humid Midwest summer I’ve been dreaming of the white sand beaches far from my home in the Windy City. And what’s the best friend for sandy beaches? A sand-free, gorgeous towel to keep you comfy on the beach without bringing it home with you. Tesalate ($59+), an Australian born brand, has perfected the art of the beach towel. Not only do they have an aesthetic to die for, but they’re also quick drying and repel sand. Compared to a standard beach towel Tesalate towels take up way less space in your luggage and are ready to go wherever you go. While you’re dreaming of that next relaxing adventure make sure a Tesalate is on your wishlist, you won’t regret it.
I’m a huge sucker for cute things. And Arcasian ($4+) is about as cute as they come. This Etsy shop has the cutest accessories to tag along on all of your future journeys. Stickers for your gadgets, precious passport holders, pop sockets, enamel pins, and more. Travel gear doesn’t have to be bland and boring, spruce your collection up with some cute additions from Arcasian! I fell in love with the visuals of Arcasian when I first saw their space rabbits on Instagram and I’ve been smitten ever since. I know you will be too and you can use TAKE10 to get 10% off your purchase!
Sunday Forever ($28+) has a little bit of everything, but their coconut body products are to die for. Their perfumes are sweet enough to keep you smelling lovely all day without being overpowering. They have travel sizes too, so no need to spray your coconut goodness into a travel-sized bottle. But be careful, sometimes rollerball perfumes can evaporate on airplanes. The pressure can affect the way the ball keeps the perfume in the bottle and you don’t want to lose a drop of this heavenly scent.
If you’re still using disposable cotton swabs or Q-tips, get ready for another environmentally friendly object swap. LastSwab ($12) is a reusable cotton swab alternative that is hygienic and can replace more than 1000 disposable swabs. LastSwabs come with their own little holders and are perfect to tuck into any bathroom essentials bag. It’s super easy to wash LastSwab after each use, even the most stubborn makeup comes right out. Using LastSwab makes your luggage a little less full and your ecological soul a little purer.
What’s a vacay without killer sunglasses? When you’re wishing for the sea-soaked breeze why not bring along a rad new pair of sunnies? Yunizon ($159+) offers top of the line sunglasses, handmade, in a variety of styles and colors to fit any aesthetic. Delivered with a hardshell case these sunnies are well protected and worth every penny. The quality in Yunizon glasses is obvious from the first glance. There is a style for everyone and the colors will have you looking Insta ready even if you’re just off of a redeye flight.
Before you jet-set off to your next destination when it’s safe, of course, you might want to stock up on NCLA ($14+) beauty products. You could fill your beauty bag with essentials like their Clean Hands sanitizers, So Rich cuticle oils, and Balm Babe lip balms. This cruelty-free and vegan company offers luxury at an economical price point. Their products are luscious while still being easily portable. I’m obsessed with their Balm Babe in champagne and I carry a lavender Clean Hands sanitizer everywhere. I’d much rather have my hands smelling like essential oils than stinging alcohol all day and I’m certain you will too.
Bookworm? Pet lover? Collector of travel memories? Whatever your quirky side entails Yoshi has an accessory for you. Their leather purses, bags, and accessories are certain to light up your travel gear collection. Ever wanted to travel to Shakespeare’s Globe with a collection of his greatest titles? No need to lug around tomes of The Bard, just get yourself a Shakespeare inspired work of leather art!
The size of women’s pockets should be a crime. That is, of course, if our pants or leggings or dresses even have pockets. So we’re usually stuck carrying purses or bags of some kind to keep our things with us, but fulFILL ($20) is one major step in the right direction. fulFILL is woman-owned and invented with 100% recycled plastic. The ingenious product is a revolutionary move in women’s’ accessories. I’m not doomed to be stuck with a giant purse forever after all! As a city dweller, in normal times, I’m usually out and about for hours at a time. Now, all it takes is a little swipe or dab and I’m ready for any adventure–bag free!
As its name implies, Woosh ($8+) is all about ease and speed. They’ve got classic essentials like The Fold Out Face Palette with everything you could possibly need. Compact and ready to go, the Fold Out is the perfect size for traveling. Everything I need is in one place while being the perfect size to put into a purse or carry-on. Even Woosh’s brushes are excellent tools that last even after multiple washes. Other brushes I’ve used have fallen apart after even one wash with cold water. These are tools and colors worth investing in whether you’re going to pack them or use them daily.
Something I’m always on the lookout for in accessories for travel is something that I can wear with any outfit. Mantraband ($11+) is exactly that piece of jewelry. Not only are they gorgeous, but each piece includes an inspirational quote or saying to keep you motivated. My personal favorite is “she believed she could so she did” which is always a good reminder to chase my dreams. After so many months in isolation, it’s important to remember to look up and believe in ourselves. When all of this has settled down, my Mantraband and I will be ready to jet.
Like so many businesses this year, SwaddleDesigns ($5.99+) pivoted their merchandise from kiddos/babies to masks. They’re still selling their other products as well, but their multilayered masks are amazing. With earloops large enough to wear with ear savers and multilayer protection, my Swaddle masks are going everywhere with me. Their masks are highly durable, breathable, and more comfortable than any others I’ve tried in 2020. I never thought I’d have opinions on cloth facemasks, but 2020 has been weird for us all.