Trying My Hand at Travelling Light


Let me say it from the get-go, travelling light is not an easy feat. Especially if you’re used to big bags, and packing extra items “just to be on the safe side” – i.e. me. But this holiday, I was determined to travel lightly (if only to practice). After having read Perpetually Chic‘s article on “How to Pack Two Weeks in a Carry-On“, I was inspired, and so, with Lauren’s advice, and advice I made up along the way, here are the results of my efforts.


The trip: 3 hour flight to Houston, TX

Duration: 5 days

Biggest Challenge: Reducing the amount of overall liquids I usually carry with me. Also, shoes!

Best Tip: Roll your clothes really tightly. Really, really tightly.

What I Travelled With:

On the way there: Travel-sized luggage and my Longchamp “Le Pliage” tote in the large size. I have this bag in three colours, and it is an absolute staple in my closet. Water resistant, incredibly roomy, easy to clean, fits everything. I use it almost every time I travel, carry my office supplies in it, as well as my school supplies back when I was in grad school.


On the way back: My sister surprised me with a stunning bag for Christmas which met me in Houston when we arrived on Christmas day! It’s the “O.G” by Lo & Sons – go and watch the video linked it the name, it’s incredible. This overnight/travel tote is definitely a new favourite and very much rave-worthy. I’ll review it in a later post, but all to say this is a great multi-functional bag.

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What I wore:

When it comes to travel, I believe in layers. This way, you can adjust your outfit to stay as comfortable as possible. My outfit included leggings, a thin tank top, a long cozy sweater, a large scarf (which doubles as a blanket!), and Sperry’s.

What I Packed:

In the luggage –

Considering this was a winter trip, my bag was stuffed to capacity due to packing several thick woollen sweaters, along with thicker pants, boots, and the like. Winter gear takes up a lot more room than summer gear, so that took up quite a lot of space that could have been dedicated to other things, like leaving extra room for presents and the spoils of shopping.

Here we go : 8 tops (some on the thinner side, some woollen) | 2 thicker sweaters | 3 pairs of leggings | 2 pairs of pants |  1 fancy blazer (check it out, it’s beautiful) | 1 pair of black suede booties (it goes well with a lot of the outfits I took) | 1 pair of walking moccasins | makeup and toiletries bag (see below for how I sorted this out) | travelling jewellery box | paddle brush | night mask | socks, underwear, and the like | slippers | Laptop and phone chargers (I made sure they were fully charged before leaving so I wouldn’t need to plug in at the airport)


In the tote bag – 


Laptop | iPad | book I’m currently reading (The Casual Vacancy, J.K. Rowling) | headphones | wallet | sunglasses | extra pair of socks! (it’s always cold on planes) | makeup bag with dry/solid items | Ziploc bag with liquids (not pictured, but expanded upon below)

Makeup bag in the tote – 


Blum oil absorbing tissues (because these are always good to have handy) | regular tissues | green tea bag | disposable tooth brush | compact mirror | comb | powder | Aveda lip definer (awesome, awesome product. I’ve featured it in a “Commodity Fetishism” post before, check it out) | travel-size brush set | dental floss, because, who knows, right? | travel-size nail file | eye pencil | Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment in “Honey” | extra pair of contact lenses (but these were actually in my liquids bag)

A bit of cheating, too – 

Like I mentioned earlier, travelling light was no easy feat for me. It was more so an exercise in “clothes Tetris” to see how much I could fit in such a little space. While I was mostly successful, and overall impressed at what could actually fit in a carry-on luggage, I cheated a bit on the liquids. Since I was travelling with family, I stowed the extra liquids I couldn’t manage to fit in my sister’s luggage… and one pair of shoes! To be fair, this was a practice run…

Makeup and Toiletries Bag Breakdown otherwise known as the challenge of choosing which liquids to bring along and which to leave behind.


Liquids: Mouthwash | toothpaste | Aveda line minimizer | Aveda Hand Relief hand creme | Styling-prep for my hair | hairspray | cleanser | moisturizer | serum | masque (I used water to tone, so no need for toner) | Dot by Marc Jacobs (packaged in a Travalo, a TSA-friendly liquid container that allows you to pump perfume into a travel-size bottle and is leak proof) | hand sanitizer | Hourglass Veil Primer | Marc Jacobs mascara | Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua foundation and concealer | Aveda eye creme | OPI Avoplex nail oil | Anastasia brow gel | Systane gel eye drops (airplane air is SO drying – do yourself a favour and purchase drops before your flight) | Gimme Brow by Benefit | Caudalie Beauty Elixir (this stuff is great – it’s like spritzing yourself into a hydrating and spa-like environment… i.e. awesome for pretending you’re not on a plane) | Bioderma makeup remover | saline solution | extra pair of daily contacts, just in case (not pictured)

Dry/Solids: Aveda “Pink Blossom” blush | Naked 2 palette by Urban Decay | Diorskin Shimmer Star in “Amber Diamond” (awesome product, by the way) | a selection of lipsticks, eye pencils, and my brush set.

Biggest tip: Embrace travel-size everything. I bought travel-sized Bioderma,  facial products, styling products, mouth wash, tooth paste, saline solution, nail oil, primer, brow gel, hand creme, hand sanitizer, brushes, brushes, nail file, etc. Makeup bottles are usually pretty compact, so not too much trouble there. In the end, the Bioderma bottle was still a little too large for my bag, so I stowed that with my sister. Next time, I might just purchase some makeup removal cloths instead (thinner, thus easier to place in the bag).

Have any other questions that I haven’t covered in this marathon of a post? Feel free to ask in the comment section below. Better yet, have a tip for me the next time I travel (maybe don’t bring the masque along on a five day trip…)? Please post that too!

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