Hello, week № 51. This was a travel week, so these picks are all travel-related. We try to get in a good trip every two years or so, and the end of December is often our best travel window. This particular week we flew to Hawai’i and stayed on Oahu (Waikiki to be specific). I acclimated almost immediately to the heat and humidity. December is peak rainy season, and the first day of all rain and no sun we walked to H&M so I could buy a sweater…since it was so chilly at 73° Fahrenheit – haha!
Maybe one day I’ll win the lottery so we can spend more Decembers in paradise. Until then I guess I’ll just dream and write.
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Here are my picks of the week, week № 51.
- Lightweight hoodie
- Pocket leggings
- Convertible backpack
- AWAY carryon
- Hanging toiletry bag
— LIGHTWEIGHT HOODIE
This was mostly a happy accident!
I always travel with some versatile top, like a Lululemon Vinyasa scarf, or my favorite leather jacket. But I didn’t want something that warm for our Honolulu arrival, so I grabbed the galaxy-print hoodie that I have been loving for road trips lately.
☞ Related: Collection :: Travel Outfits
This was thrifted, and I would love to buy more…but the tag only specifies the size; S/M. What made this a travel staple is that it’s a smooth polyester – not a fleece hoodie. The smooth texture does NOT attract dog fur, and wrinkles never really set; wrinkles shake out immediately. Plus it washes easily and the multicolored print works with almost all of my pants. It may not be a great match for my red leggings, but too bad, I forced those two together and wasn’t fined by the fashion police (ssshhhhhh).
The kangaroo pocket was perfect for holding my plane tickets or phone. The fabric looked fresh and clean when it was not. Most importantly, it was the perfect lightweight dark cover for Hawai’i in December. I will periodically search the internet for more similar hoodies, and will update this post if I ever find this one or a similar product.
— POCKET LEGGINGS
Easy pick. Leggings with pockets. Finally, I can comfortably sit AND keep my phone handy.
I made a rule recently to buy pants with pockets only (no pocket-less purchases allowed when buying pants)- and thankfully pocket leggings already existed. These are seriously travel MVPs. Both comfortable and with useable pockets, I don’t know how these can go wrong.
My first volley of pocket legging purchases was in 2017. They were all mid-rise capris, and now I’ve been buying high rise 7/8 length (or full leg). The style change was a direct result of having a baby. Higher and longer leggings just feel better now that my body is larger. Leggings without pockets still seem to be the easiest to find, but usable phone-size pockets are plentiful if you look for them. I generally buy mine from Amazon, but I also have some from Aerie, Target, and Old Navy.
☞ Related: Public Note; re: leggings
If all of your leggings are without pockets – please pop online and spend $20-$35 to change that. Make sure to travel with them and you will not be disappointed.
— CONVERTIBLE BACKPACK
I have had my eye on this backpack for about two years. I bought it specifically for our Hawai’i trip and have been 100 percent pleased.
Like most purse carrying folks, I usually have a tote on one primary shoulder (and shift shoulders if it’s heavy). I decided that I’ll finally get a nice backpack to distribute the weight better between both shoulders. This gem is from Mark & Graham.
Most days I carried usual items like my wallet and lip color. But since it was an island in the winter I also carried sunscreen and a rain jacket. Since I had the space I was also carrying tea sachets, bar snacks, travel guides, a battery, plus my mirrorless camera and backup batteries (just in case). This bag handled everything perfectly.
When walking I wore it on my back as a backpack. If we were shopping or I wanted faster wallet access I wore it on my forearm (using both straps), or I wore it on one shoulder like a crossbody if I was only carrying it for a few moments. This bag braved airplane carpet, then was sat in sand. It clung to purse hooks, or I simply sat on it during meals if there wasn’t anywhere else to place it. After a solid week of use in many places it looks softer and friendlier. Weeks later this bag is still my daily driver, but now instead of sunscreen and rain jacket it has a spill-proof sippy cup and some toys for Baby Jupiter. 10/10 would buy again.
— AWAY CARRYON
I’ve been meaning to write about this one for a while. Sure it’s a little pricey, but AWAY’s carryon is still affordable, and I love traveling with it.
I splurged on this carryon a few years ago, just before flying to Tokyo. I didn’t want to check a bag, in fear that it would get lost and never be found again. I was attracted to the size, 360 wheels, built-in battery (that I still use every week), and the general look. I’m a big fan of simplicity and this carryon was the perfect blend of being unique while not sticking out like a sore thumb.
☞ Related: Food Photos from Tokyo Japan
The only downside is that AWAY has clearly gotten more popular, so I see them in airports all of the time now. But it is still perfect for me. The exterior is rigid but flexible, so it slides easily into overhead compartments or crams into the back of a Honda Element just fine. The bottom of mine got scraped in Tokyo (I managed to find all of the hills between the train station and my hotel), so it’s not perfect – but that doesn’t bother me.
The interior has two distinct sides. One side is meant to be compressed – so that’s where you put all of your clothes. The opposite side contains your non-compressible things like toiletries, shoes, chargers, and so on. I can easily pack for a week in this carryon! I roll my clothes instead of folding – it makes outfits easier to remember, and everything is easily compact.
— HANGING TOILETRY BAG
This one is new for me. Maybe I’m just late to the party, but this is my first hanging toiletry organizer and I love it.
I used to travel with a Lay-n-Go and love the simplicity of laying it flat. But that only worked when I actually had the counter space to do so. Most American hotels? Not a problem.
Hotels in Tokyo? Nice try. Also AirBnBs with only pedestal sinks are a no-go.
Regardless, I stopped wearing make up when I was pregnant. After searching for my holy grail foundation for 15+ years I just gave up and focused instead on keeping as perfect a complexion as possible. It took some getting used to, but it’s worth it. I bring this up because I don’t need a makeup bag per se, but I do travel with a few moisturizers, and tools.
☞ Related: Why I Stopped Wearing Makeup
I was always fond of my husband’s travel roll, but my containers were too big for a roll like his. I searched around and found this one on Amazon. It perfectly fit my moisturizers, tools, and jewelry. This was the perfect travel purchase because its first hotel bathroom had a very small counter top -we barely had space for our respective toothbrushes and toothpaste- so we needed the vertical space that we could find and I would have been super frustrated if I couldn’t organize my things.
Looking for something specific? Scan the Picks of the Week, Index.
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