Travel // Packing Essentials, Part II

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It's safe to say that I have spent a considerable amount of time on the road this year, and I like to think I've got the traveling thing down to a pretty exact science.  Of course, your system might not look anything like mine, but it's one of my more asked about topics, so I thought I'd share some of my current must-haves with you... just in time for summer vacation!  Keep reading to find out about a few of the things that I just can't go without when I travel...Update: Totally forgot that I did another similar post last year, so be sure to check out Part I of my travel essentials as well!

  • Leggings - Whether I'm traveling by plane or car, I'm usually wearing an outfit planned around either leggings or a maxi skirt and then adapted to fit wherever it is I'm going.  For summer, I like these cotton-spandex leggings from We Love Colors because they are high-waisted, super opaque and are full-length but can easily be scrunched up at the bottom if I want a shorter length for the cropped look.  (Note: I've noticed they tend to run small/tight and don't stretch out or get baggy like a lot of other spandex version I've tried, so definitely take this into account if you snatch some up for yourself.)
  • Reusable water bottle - I hate feeling thirsty or dehydrated when I'm on the road, and although they are the most convenient, I try to stay away from buying/tossing disposable water bottles.  This little guy is with me at all times, and I love the filter feature so that I don't feel weird about filling it up hotel tap water or at airport drinking fountains - just remember to do so AFTER you've gone through security!
  • Notepad/pen - I'm rarely without access to any of my online/electronic organizational systems, but many times I find that my most dynamic ideas come to me and are developed when I'm unplugged from my devices and have no access to the internet. (I'll never know what it is about airplane take-off and landing that gets my creative juices flowing so well!)  Whether you're intentionally trying to avoid the internet for relaxation purposes, or your hotel's WiFi is down and then power goes out (AHEM - BAZAAR on Air in Miami...), having a good ol' fashioned way of taking notes has gotten me through many a plane-ride and one very unfortunate tropical storm (I'm looking at you, Beryl).  This note set by Orla Kiely is currently on my wishlist and would be perfect for jotting down ideas on the go, and this colored pen set from target is one of the best recent purchases I've made.
  • Eye Drops - especially handy when I'm traveling for on-air appearances and need to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed first thing in the am.  My eyes seem to get really bloodshot when I travel by plane, but a few drops of Visine Redness Relief in each peeper before applying my make up in the morning never fails to do just the trick.
  • No-show socks - Have you ever been skittering through security in your chic little ballet flats or latest summer sandal when you realized that when the shoes come off, your bare feet will have to walk across a very disgusting stretch of floor?  I've only made that mistake once, and I was so grossed out by the sweaty footprints on the ground in front of me, that it will never happen again.  Boots + socks in the winter do the trick just fine, but in the summer, I keep a pack of these nude no-show socklets with me to wear with closed toe flats (you can kind of see them in the photo above!) and that way I don't have to worry about catching some weird foot fungus (or worse?!)
  • Stickable shoe inserts - Not just for high heels, these little self-adhesive pads, by Stiletto Hardware, are something that I usually keep in the purse version of my makeup bag at all times.  They've saved me from many a blister on long days of trekking through NYC, but are equally great if you're visiting a place sans-car and will be doing lots of walking or using mass transit.

Speaking of traveling... I did a fun guest post over at Running on Happiness yesterday, so head over to see my feature on a variation of my perfect travel outfit, and be sure to tell her I said hello!Now, it's your turn to share: What are your must-haves for survival on the road? Share your favorite trips in the comments below and I'll share a few on our Facebook page this weekend!Top to Bottom:Earrings - Early JewelryTank - Urban Outfitters (similar)Sweater - Dolce VitaSkirt - c/o Shavonne De'AnnBracelet (on sale!) - c/o Ann TaylorBangles - Vintage variousTote (obsessed with this thing!) - c/o Trina Turk for Banana RepublicSuitcase - DVF (from this collection)Flats - Sam Edelman (similar)Pin It!