Upcoming Travel – Quart Bag Packing Plans

It isn’t often that I have to travel for work. When I do, I find myself in a prep frenzy in the weeks prior; since it isn’t routine for me, I get a little neurotic about it. I’m attending a conference in Texas … so I need to survive Texas, which is contrary to my mid-Atlantic nature.

 

Carry On

I’ll only be gone for a few days, so I’m not checking luggage. My colleague is, but I can’t fathom checking a bag for a day to, two days at, and a day from. I’m fortunate to work for a company who will reimburse for checked baggage fees, but I don’t care for the hassle. You have to get to the airport earlier, you have to wait at the baggage claim, and there’s risk of loss when you have connecting flights (I do).

My last trip was the same duration and I got by with just my SwissGear laptop backpack and my purse. Granted, I had the backpack packed to the gills (laptop, tablet, surprisingly heavy tablet keyboard, clothing, shoes, toiletries, note binder, etc etc etc.) and it was a bit much to carry on my back for extended periods of time – but I did it. I knew this bag wouldn’t let me down; I carry this bag every day for work (with a lighter load, of course!). It has held up to almost eight years of abuse wonderfully, and I wouldn’t hesitate for a moment to repurchase when I wear this one out.

This time, I’ll be bringing a small carry-on suitcase (this one is similar) and that same backpack. For a purse, I’ll throw this inexpensive Giani Bernini packable tote (I have a burgundy one) in the suitcase and pop it out for use between the to-and-from travel. The tote is big enough to carry my laptop if I don’t want to bring the backpack to the conference (jury is still out on that).

Disclaimer: None of this is “cute.” I work in a technical field and am utilitarian to (nearly) a fault. When it comes to bags (in general but especially for travel) if it isn’t practical, I don’t want it in my life. If you’re here for chic luggage advice, regrettably you’ve come to the wrong place.

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Still Love the Wet Brush

A few years ago I discovered the joys of The Wet Brush. This inexpensive brush is great for long and/or tangle-prone hair. Since I wrote that, the line has expanded considerably! They have so many fun colors and different brush styles now. I’ve gifted a bunch of them (and plan to gift more). Their original form-factor includes the original that I wrote about as a style with mixed bristles intended for improving shine.

Pop-Fold

My silver-haired friend (who showed me The Wet Brush in the first place) alerted me to the fact that they have a fold-up version. Using a gift card (and therefore not violating my No Buy), I picked one up. I love it!

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September 2017 Favorites

 

September 2017 Favorites
Boots Botanics Hot Cloth Cleansing Balm, $10 / Washcloths, $14 / La Croix Passionfruit, varies / Octopus Jaw Clips, $4

Details on my September 2017 Favorites after the jump.

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TPDTY: Hair Strobing is Odd

Hair StrobingImage from PopSugar

When I read the title of this Popsugar article on Hair Strobing, my face lit up. In spite of being a boring (mostly) professional, I have a love for glitter – and hey, why not my hair?

Then, though, I read the article itself and took in its photos.

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What I Learned About My Hair

What I Learned About My Hair

Ever learn something and go, “How did it take me so long to figure this out?” Yeah – that’s was me, this past Saturday, in disbelief about what I learned about my hair.

What Isn’t New

My ambition simply does not extend to my hair. If I could just wash-and-wear every day, I would. I don’t have much love for the tedium of blow-drying, not to mention using heat less often makes for healthier hair.

In fact, I do it more often than I should. I’m sure my lazy approach to my hair is my most-common detractor from my professional appearance.

It’s a catch-22 – and that’s why I adopted my simpler haircut. It’s easier for me to coax into being presentable.

What I Learned About My Hair

My main objection to styling is that it is time consuming. And that’s true – it is, but only when you have to do it. I already knew I didn’t have to bother every day.

What I learned, however, was that I can easily go longer between washes when I do something with my hair than when I wash-and-wear. That something can be just blowing it out (nothing remotely fancy, mostly a rough-dry with some smoothing to finish) with mousse. When I do that, I get more mileage out of a wash – enhanced, of course, with dry shampoo. Using the same dry shampoo at the same interval on air-dried hair, however, doesn’t allow me to go as far.

The Bottom Line

Applying what I learned about my hair to my approach to this will make it feel like less of an imposition on my, “free,” time. Applying heat to my hair 2-3x per week should only result in about 2-2.5 combined hours, tops, of active time spent on my hair. In all, that seems like low-ish effort to appear put-together for work.