Confession: I once forgot to get my suits dry cleaned before a business trip so I ended up shopping for new ones the night before my flight. Hashtag fashion fail.
Packing the essentials
I like to pack the minimum while ensuring I have all my bases covered. Depending on how long your travel is & the types of meetings you’ll be attending should determine the number of suits you pack.
I like to pack one to two suits in the same color family so I can mix & match the jackets on a less formal day. You may prefer to pack one suit with a pant & skirt option. Viola, two suits in one. With a suit in tow, I add a few colored or patterned tops. These can be worn during the day with the suit or at night/on weekends with a comfy bottom option. I also always pack a conservative white button down dress shirt.
With the tops you’ve packed paired with a few pant options, a shift dress, & the comfy but classic outfit you wore on the plane, you should be covered for any after hours plans.
DS travel tip: When in doubt, pack the dressier pieces. Ain’t nobody got time for an underdressed businesswoman. On my first ever business trip, I met my team to head to dinner wearing short heels, a shift dress, & a blazer. Some of the guys were wearing jeans. While I was a little embarrased I was so overdressed, I was happy to be comfortable & well-dressed in my shift when the big boss ended up joining us last minute.
I tend to don earrings, a statement necklace, & go easy on the bracelets when I’m at work. Too easily could my bangles get caught on something or make far too much noise than is appropriate. Especially for those more formal meetings, I like to layer more dainty necklaces. I keep all my pieces in one place while traveling & love my SJTraveler. It’s just big enough for all the pieces I need for work & play & still small enough to fit in my carry-on.
Hair & Beauty
As far as hair & beauty products go, you know what you need in the morning & what is just superfluous crap, if you will. Pack what is actually part of your am routine. This is also a great opportunity to use all of those travel size sample products you have stashed under your bathroom sink. If you must purchase the 3 oz. version of your favorites, I suggest the travel-friendly site: 3floz. For those of us who travel on the reg, this site is a l.i.f.e.s.a.v.e.r.
If you’re anything like me you live & breathe for dry shampoo but seldom does it come in less than a 3 ounce bottle although I’m hopeful Pssst will get on this & invent a travel-friendly spray soon. This would be the time to invest in a travel size. This is my tried & true favorite.
DS travel tip: Most hotels will provide you gratis bath products. I always take them up on a razor & shaving cream.
The first thing I do when I get to the hotel is hang my suits, unpack my toiletries & take a shower. I can’t stress how much I dislike the after-plane feeling. I hang my suits in the bathroom so the steam lets a few of the wrinkles out before I iron. Ironing the night before makes for a less stressful morning.
A few days before you leave town make sure you’ve taken care of your dry cleaning, any pet accomodations, & taking out a few bucks for travel. I also like to clean my apartment before a trip so I come home to a de-cluttered home & clean sheets.
Reader tip: If you have the means you may want to hire a cleaning crew to tidy up the mess you left while packing. Nothing beats coming home to a clean place after you’ve been away! ~ Casie
Have a reader tip you want to submit? Tweet to @districtsparkle with hashtag #DSTravel
Make sure to check back tomorrow for in-flight outfits & carry-on essentials in part 2 of this [how to]