The secret to packing smart
will not be found in a YouTube tutorial. (Rolling socks? How innovative!) The real trick, as our perpetually on-the-road editors will tell you, is to find those brilliantly designed lifesavers, like a natural hand sanitizer
that won’t offend the entire cabin, headphones that will make coach as silent as a Zen garden, and these other balms, bags, and gear we can’t stop talking about.
(Source: Conde Nast Traveler – October 1, 2018) This story was originally published in May 2017 and has been updated with new information.
Fake a Good Night Sleep: “For those of us too vain to get on an overnight flight sans makeup, these wipes clean, exfoliate, hydrate, and prep skin for that pre-landing swipe of bronzer.” — Rebecca Misner, West Coast Editor
Buy Now: Ursa Major, Essential Face Wipes, $24 for pack of 20, huckberry.com
Three Products In One:
“I use this balm as a makeup remover, face cleanser, and moisturizer. Also it smells like vacation: a not-too-sweet blend of coconut, vanilla, and mango.” — Lauren DeCarlo, Deputy Editor
Buy Now: One Love Organics, Skin Savior Multi-Tasking Wonder Balm, $49, thedetoxmarket.com
Like Q-Tips, But Better:
“Twist the swab and the tip becomes moistened with a cleanser that gently removes eye makeup.” — R.M.
Buy Now: Too Cool for School, Dinoplatz Magic Wand, $12.90, amazon.com
“Unlike most face serums that reek of essential oils, this one has a nice nutty smell and dispenses neatly through a tiny pump.” — Alex Postman, Features Director
Buy Now: Malaya Organics, Rejuvenating Face Serum, $75, amazon.com
Keep It Healthy
If You’re Headed to the Zika Zone:
“I love that this organic, essential oil-based bug spray—which actually works—smells like cedar, geranium, and rosemary instead of a high school chem lab.” — R.M.
Buy Now: Zoe Organics, Insect Repellent, $19.95, dermstore.com
For the Germophobe:
“I semi-obsessively use this sanitizer on my seat and tray table every time I fly. Nobody minds, though: the light scent of mandarin rind and rosemary leaf are quite welcome in economy.” — Mara Balagtas, Style Editor
Buy Now: Aesop, Resurrection Rinse-Free Hand Wash, $10, shop.nordstrom.com
Yep, We Are Pro–Fanny Pack:
“Say what you will, but a flush-against-your-hip bag like this is the easiest place to stash your boarding pass and phone.” — Pilar Guzmán, Editor in Chief
Buy Now: Clare V., Fannypack, $259, clarev.com
The Packable Brim:
“Finally a Panama hat sturdy enough to survive getting crammed in an overhead bin.” — M.B.
Buy Now: Janessa Leoné, Adriana, $207, janessaleone.comom
The Classic Shades:
“The original folding pair of lenses that pack super small; in tortoiseshell they go with everything.” — P.G.
Buy Now: Persol, PO714, $370, sunglasshut.com
“Head-spinningly light, they pack down to almost nothing so I don’t have to give up my morning run.” — Erin Florio, Senior Editor
Buy Now: APL ‘Techloom Pro’ Running Shoe, $139.95, shop.nordstrom.comm
High and Low Tech
Make Movie Magic:
“So long to shaky hands and bad vacation videos: This gimbal keeps your smartphone shots Kubrick smooth.” — Phil Falino, Video Producer
Buy Now: DJI, Osmo Mobile 2, $139, store.dji.com
Dance Party in Room 204:
“It’s got tremendous sound and nearly endless battery life, but the real kicker is that this waterproof Bluetooth speaker floats.” — Paul Brady, Articles Editor
Buy Now: Ultimate Ears, Wonderboom, $67.99, amazon.com
The Best Way to Stay Charged, Period:
“You never know where that hotel room outlet is going to turn up, so I carry extra-long twin-head cables that can charge my phone and a speaker.” — Paulie Dibner, Managing Editor
Buy Now: Native Union, Belt Cable Twin Head, $39.99, nativeunion.com
What to Wear
“This classic shape, with a little stretch, pulls together a look, particularly if you’re rushing off the plane to a meeting.” — M.B.
Buy Now: J. Crew, Regent Blazer, $198, jcrew.com
No Breaking In Necessary:
“These ultra lightweight boots feel like your most comfortable sneakers right out of the box, so there’s no need to spend the week before your trip breaking them in.“ — Andrea Whittle, Contributor
Buy Now: Danner Women’s Mountain 600, $200, danner.com
Maybe the Best Airplane Pants Ever:
“These pants were made for travel. They’re flexible enough incase you find yourself sprinting to your gate and comfortable enough to withstand an 8-hour flight. I love to throw them on in the morning while I’m running out to the nearest cafe to grab a coffee. — A.W.
Buy Now: Lululemon, On the Fly Pant, $98, shop.lululemon.com
“Not only do they make you a far better packer, but packing cubes are ideal for multi-city vacations. Plus, you can snap them up in fun, eye-popping colors.” — Lale Arikoglu, Digital Lifestyle Editor
Buy Now: Paravel, Packing Cube Trio, $55, tourparavel.com
A Solution for Swim Trunks:
“When you’re roadtripping with kids who can’t resist a hotel pool, these waterproof totes are everything.” — A.P.
Buy Now: Flight 001, Go Clean Wet Suit Bag, $18, amazon.com
Tame Carry-On Clutter:
“I keep receipts, business cards, and other stuff tidy in this textured vinyl pouch—in sunflower yellow—that looks like Comme des Garçons.” — E.F.
Buy Now: Delfonics, Quitterie Pouch, $22.10, amazon.com
All products featured in this story are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.