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Top 10 Tips For Packing Your Toiletries When Traveling

It is amazing how our bathroom cabinets and drawers quickly overflow with bottles, cleanser, moisturiser and shampoo. This isn’t a particular problem when you’re at home but you need to leave this clutter behind when travelling. With this in mind here are some ideas for organising your cosmetics, toiletries and other essentials when travelling.

  1. If you use a hairdryer or straightening irons it’s best to take these with you. There’s nothing worse than trying to make do with the useless underpowered hairdryers found in many hotel rooms. Spend sometime selecting a good travel hairdryer, which is not too big or heavy.
  2. Whatever pampering products you use there are usually samples available. Samples that are packaged in sachets are great for overnight stays. Samples packaged in tiny bottles are great for a mini-break weekend or a week away.
  3. If you can’t get hold of samples, or you are still worried that these tiny packets might run out before your holiday ends, then decant your lotions and potions in to small travelling pots. Most department stores and chemists have an assortment to choose from. Look for pump action tops for cleansers, small bottles for toner and eye makeup remover and pots for creams. Whilst the thought of decanting can be fiddly it will be well worth it when your beauty essentials fit into one neat washbag.
  4. When you get home from your travels make sure you use up the remaining cleanser and moisturiser and then wash out the bottles and pots. It’s not a good idea to store unfinished amounts of cosmetic products in these bottles for the next time you are away unless you travel frequently as they can go off.
  5. Store your washed bottles in your travel wash bag so everything is where you will be able to quickly find it, the next time you need it.
  6. It’s best not to pack bottles and containers, when they are completely full.   When you fly the increased air pressure or weight on full bottle can cause them to leak. It’s best to have a bottle which is about half to three quarters full, to allow some empty space to allow for expansion – and if the worst happens so you have less shampoo leaking everywhere.
  7. As for shampoo and conditioner, many brands also make smaller travel size versions. Again, you can decant into smaller pump action bottles, but do label them if your shampoo and conditioner look similar.
  8. If your budget will allow get yourself good quality travel wash bags and toiletries bags because cheaper alternatives are a false economy. I once had a set of clear see through wash bags which were great in theory as they let you easily see where everything is stored. In practice the plastic turned out to be cheap and soon split, and the Velcro fastening simply didn’t stay shut resulting in bottles being flung out into my suitcase – not helpful when they then leaked. The best wash bags are durable, wipe clean, have zip fastenings and will not fall apart however much you try to force in them.
  9. If you’re only away from home for a few nights or you’re touring it’s best not to unpack all your toiletries and cosmetics when you get to your hotel room. Just ask anyone who’s ever worked in a hotel about the vast quantities of lost property people leave behind when they rush to checkout in the morning and you’ll see why you should never unpack more than you need to in a hotel room. If you travel frequently on business or plan a touring holiday then look for a good quality hanging washbag. Hanging Washbags have a number of zipped compartments and come with a hook which means they can be hung on the back of a bathroom door or shower rail. If you do this make sure you always check on the back of the bathroom door before you checkout of your hotel room!
  10. Different sizes of washbags and toiletries bags are available and it’s best to have two or three different sizes for different occasions. There is no point in travelling with a washbag that’s any larger than you need. A smaller holdall might be fine for the gym or an overnight stay whereas the hanging bag types are great for longer periods away from home.
It wasn’t that long ago when the only washbags and toiletries bags available were drawstring bags that looked like something your dad might use or hideously flowery bags that only your Grandma would use.   Today the best designer washbags such as those from the Australian designer Uchi have beautifully patterns, vibrant colourful designs, are strong, can be wiped clean and have clear sections and compartments so you can see exactly what you are looking for.If your cosmetics and other essentials are normally all over the place when you are away from home for a few nights plan ahead now and look into purchasing yourself a new washbag or toiletries bag. If you know someone else who does a lot of travelling, designer washbag make a perfect Birthday gift or Christmas Present for men and women of all ages.

Linda Garrould