Travel: Carry-On Packing


If there’s one thing I know after the past year- it’s packing for long haul flights. After logging close to 100,000 air miles this year I know a few tricks of the trade. Unless you’re a millionaire or celebrity flying first class, sitting in a small seat for upwards of 10 hours straight can be rough. I’d say I’ve got it down about what to pack in your carry-on to make the flight as painless as possible.

Obviously there’s the basics- I always bring my computer, phone, ipad etc. But lets talk about the other things I don’t leave home without:

Photo 1:
Notepad & Pen: You’re gonna need a pen to fill out customs documents. Too many times I had to ask the weirdo sitting next to me whos coughing all over his pen to borrow it. Won’t make that mistake again. Sitting still for 7 to 15 hours leaves you with a lot of time to think. I always use the time to set out my goals and to-do lists so make sure to have a notepad to jot it all down. I love my “It’s only Fashion (But I like it)” notepad from Smythson!
Puku Portable Charger: I love this thing. It can recharge my phone like 10 times. A must!
Good Book & Magazine: I recently read Gone Girl and actually spent the whole 11 hour flight reading it front to back. I really thought it was that good I couldn’t even put it down. Wasn’t the best use or distribution of time, but hopefully you’ll manage the time better than me.
Lip Balm: Probably the thing I use most on the plane! The recirculating air and altitude make the plane extremely dry, I find myself layering on lip balm from EOS constantly!
Headphones: Of course they always have a pair for you to use on the plane, but they are usually uncomfortable and have a 50% chance of being broken. I prefer to bring my own! Love a good leather pair like these from Barbara Bui.

Photo 2:
Hairbrush: After sleeping in the strangest positions imaginable that you didn’t even know your body could fit into you’ll need a hairbrush! My brush of choice- Mason Pearson.
Oribe Anti Humidity Spray: It’s not a hairspray but helps your hair from getting frizzy and out of place, especially good if you’re going somewhere tropical!
Face Wash: I try to always go fresh faced make-up free on the plane if I’m flying more than 7 hours or so. When I wear makeup and let it sit for long periods of time I find myself breaking out. Towards the end of the flight I always take a water bottle (of course I’d never put the plane water on my face) and wash my face off in the bathroom beford landing. I love something refreshing like Bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash.
Hand Sanitizer: I use this constantly. After everything I touch. Germaphob!
Bobbi Brown Tinted Moisturizing Balm: This is great for after you wash your face. It’s extremely moisturizing (you’ll need it) and also has a good tint. Not make up, not lotion but somewhere in between.
Lip Balm: Obviously I explained this one already! Super important had to add it twice. I love the little colored lip balm smooth sphere eggs from EOS.
Toothbrush & Paste: An absolute must have. Don’t forget this one
Mints: That on and off sleeping with mouth wide open- believe me you’ll be thankful you have these!
Face Mask: If you have the guts to actually wear one of these SK-II masks in the plane, your skin will thank you forever. Be prepared for the weird stares you will look like Jason Voorhees from Friday the 13th lol. A less obtrusive option- Skyn Iceland Eye Patchs!
Eye Drops: When I get off the plane my eyes are so dry and red (that damn recirculating air) you’d think I just left a party with Snoop Dogg. Another absolute must.
Eye Mask: I can’t sleep unless it’s pitch black. My luck always getting the neighbor who wants to keep his light on the entire 10 hour flight I’ve realized it’s best to just have one of these to keep all the light out.
Vitamin Pack: I love Bliss Glow Sticks, they’re Powder packs full of Vitamin C and immunity building nutrients and minerals. You can go for emergen-c, airborne, etc. But make sure to have a couple of these!

Photo 3:
Backpack: I’ve found that a backpack is my favorite type of carryon. Too many times lugging a non-roller bag running late through the airport with red marks all over my arm because it weighs like 30 lbs. Backpack is the way to go. Love my favorite leopard bag from Simone Camille.
Head pillow: It’s just not possible to sleep with the flimsy “pillow” you get on the plane. Better to have something of your own.
Travel country/city book: It’s always great to have a book about the city you’re going to visit with you on the plane. You can set out a plan and of course just make yourself more excited.

A couple other tricks not pictured– I always bring some snacks of my own. Crackers, nuts, etc. But weirdly I love bringing an avocado and a mango or two. They’re great plane food because they don’t need to be refrigerated. Avocado makes any meal better (you have no idea how jealous the seat neighbors are when I start slicing mine up), and a mango is so much better and more healthy than the chocolate sludge you get otherwise.

I really hope you guys enjoyed my packing tips! If you did please share with your friends it would mean a lot to me. And if you have any tips I didn’t think of PLEASE share them with me. Believe me I need all the tips I can get.

Happy Monday!!


  1. Thanks for all the tips! I’ll be utilizing them next week!
    LOVE LOVE LOVE the leopard backpack…functional and chic!

    In thigh high boots…


  2. Gorgeous tips Shea, I always pack a face mask and eye drops !
    XX Luba


  3. carol says:

    wow you really did a lot of travelling :-) nice tips and tricks, thanks for that ! :-) even if i dont travel a lot its always useful :-)

  4. Caitlin says:

    I’m obsessed with that backpack! So cute! Definitely going to read Gone Girl too I heard it’s awesome!

  5. love thiss!!
    thank you for sharing. A good book is always good!

    Belen new post! :)

  6. Pauline says:

    I have very similar must haves for flying! And you made me remeber that I still haven’t read Gone Girl!!! Long overdue!!

  7. Cheyenne says:

    Thanks for sharing all of your tips. I really have to bring an avocado on my next plane, I never thought of that.

  8. You have so much EOS lip balms, looovveee it ;)) And your backpack is amazing xoxo
    New Post – Pointastic

  9. Q says:

    I read Gone Girl in the summer!… I agree, it was a very good read!…

  10. Kacie says:

    Your head phones are amazing, so cute and I’m dying over your backpack too!

  11. Leslie says:

    Just finished reading “Gone Girl” it’s a good read !

  12. VELVETPAPER says:

    Thanks for this Xo

  13. Christina says:

    This is great!! I’m going away this weekend and was thinking of doing a post like this of my own. Awesome pictures and very helpful post!!

    Christina @

  14. Your little notebook by Smythson is tres cute!! I hate cramped seats on long haul flights too … I get very restless after the first hour lol!!

    Where are you off to on your travels next?

    Laura xx

    P.s. I am hosting a Michael Kors watch giveaway on the blog this week. If you are feeling lucky, check it out:

  15. Kareena says:

    love this post! i take almost all of those items with me too…

  16. jane says:

    Totally craving for the backpack <3 How cute!!

  17. I’ll be travelling soon and all these tips definitely HELP SO MUCH! And especially because you know how to pack in style. Keep going, girl!
    Your Friend, Jess

  18. Inga says:

    perfect organized :-)


    please have a look ♥

    xxxx Inga

  19. Fashion Snag says:

    Great idea with the avocado and mango. Gonna bring those next time to add to whatever crap they usually give out. LOL

  20. Kimberly Ann says:

    I wish I could be as prepared as you when I travel! These are some great tips – so helpful!


  21. Céline says:

    Thanks for this list that I’m gonna keep and share on my Pinterest.
    I’m going to Costa Rica (from France) in a month so your list will perfectly help me to complete mine ;)
    If I can add something, I would recommend to always travel with a big scarf such as a pashmina because it’s often too cold in planes and the provided blankets are not very big and thick.

  22. Eva says:

    Nice selection and what a cool bag! xx

  23. Moncika says:

    important think that you need is traveller compression socks. try one flight with it and you will see (feel!) the difference.

  24. A great packing guide, I will use this for my next trip. ;)

  25. LEA HUDSON says:

    Thanks for all the tips !!! My tip is that I braid my hair, it’s more comfortable than a pony tail which is usually annoying with the seat, and it better prevents my hair from getting tangled. Hope it will help :)


    Lea Hudson, fashion & nail art blog

  26. Tara says:

    Good tips for travelling, never usually know what to take and always forget to pack something! really interesting and helpful.

    The TROVEA Blog

    Discover and shop emerging designers from around the world

  27. Susann says:

    I love this, so many great tips! I’m flying from California to Norway in December so they’ll definitely come in handy :)


  28. Elaine says:

    Love all of these items, especially the headphones!! Check out my fashion blog!!

  29. Jessica Rose says:

    We use to sell the EOS in Space NK and although I really liked them, they never took off in the store so we reduced them in price ;((
    Next time get your initials engraved…its a Smythsons tradition!! Happy and safe flying. x

  30. albert says:

    I’m really in love with your headphones and the bag!!!
    xx from

  31. C.C. says:

    Oh my goodness, you carry so much but they all sound so useful!

    We will definitely keep these in mind for our europe trip!

  32. Elise says:

    Such a helpful post, I will definitely be referring back to this when it’s time to pack for my next adventure!



  33. celyne glam says:

    great blog

    wonderful photos

    do you want follow each other?


  34. Kier Mellour says:

    This is SUCH a great idea! I love your chic packing list – I’m definitely reviewing it the next time I fly.

    With Love From Hollywood,
    Fashion Addict LA
    Recent DIY: DIY Lucite Perfume Clutch
    Recent post: Leisure Society Fall Picnic at Riley’s Farm

  35. I heard the overnight masks such as clinique moisture surge and amore pacific ones are a good alternative to the sheet masks. I find that the sheet masks always mess up my hairline (gets totally matted) so I might try the overnight masks the next time I’m on a flight. Might still get stares since they’re a bit shiny. ha. Thanks for all the tips and so drooling over that gorgeous backpack you got!!

  36. Daniella says:

    great post! would you like to follow eachother?

  37. Joy says:

    I like this post a lot, great tips. I must try the avocado thing next time. Ever since I got my eye mask and Bose noise cancellation headphones I’ve been able to rest so much better on the plane. Another tip I would add is to refrain from drinking too much wine or alcohol. Sure the free wine is tempting but it dehydrates even more, make your mouth taste weird, and a hangover is not a good thing to have upon arrival.

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