9 Must-Haves for Your Bag

Stash these key items in your purse and you’re ready for anything!

Cell phone? Check. Keys? Check. Wallet? Check. Besides the basics, keep these everyday purse essentials on hand and you’ll be prepared for whatever comes your way.

1. Emergency Numbers
For many of us, our cell phone is like another appendage. But if you were to misplace it, do you know anyone’s number by heart? Keep a short list of key phone numbers — your child’s school, the pediatrician, spouse’s cell phone and close family members and friends — should you find yourself in a jam with a damaged or lost phone.

2. Ponytail holders
You may start the day with a put-together do, but once weather takes its toll, you might be stuck with more of a mop. Keep a few ponytail holders and bobby pins in your purse so you can take action when a hairy situation arises.

3. Key Cosmetics
No need to lug around a fully stocked make-up case. Just stash a few key items in your bag so you can refresh your face throughout the day. On the list of what to put in your purse: lip balm, concealer (to cover a sudden zit or under eye circles) and blotting paper or towelettes to soak up excess oil in a flash. Got dry skin? Consider a travel-sized bottle of moisturizer, too.

4. Pain Killers
Headaches can hit when you least expect them so be ready with a travel-size container of your painkiller of choice. Buy a mini bottle of meds or invest in a pretty pillbox (and don’t forget to refill it every so often.)

5. Sunglasses
Overexposure to UV rays can harm more than your skin — it can damage your eyes as well. To reduce your chances of cataracts, macular degeneration and skin cancer on your lids, a pair of sunglasses should be on top of the what-to-put-in-your-purse list (and don’t forget a lightweight case to keep your shades from getting scratched).

6. Tampons
It’s one thing to borrow a pen from a stranger or ask a colleague for a stick of gum but it’s a lot more personal to ask for a tampon. Avoid that situation by always having these purse essentials on hand in case of a surprise visitor.

7. Phone charger
From making calls to checking email to searching online for shoes, your smart phone goes through a lot of juice in a day. Don’t leave yourself vulnerable to the dreaded out-of-battery blues by keeping a charger in your bag at all times.

8. Tissues
From wiping a toddler’s nose to fixing your eye make-up on the go to filling in for that empty toilet-paper roll at the mall, a pack of tissues in your purse means a soft solution to these issues and more.

9. Nail File
A jagged nail is a real nuisance — it could catch on your sweater or hose, scratch your child or yourself, or break off at a lower point (ouch!). Repair that damaged digit by keeping a smooth nail file within easy reach.


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