Despite traveling for my entire life, I am still a lazy packer.  It’s not uncommon for me to realize that I’ve arrived in country without any sandals, or that I’ve packed 7 pairs of jeans but not a single sweater.  So when I do find a new travel packing essential, I get pretty excited. 

These are the best travel-related purchases I made in 2017. 


North Face Laney Trench II

Waterproof, packs down small, and versatile, the North Face Laney Trench saw me through fall’s cooler temperatures in Sweden and Iceland, as well as early winter in Pennsylvania.  It’s currently my daily coat choice here in the DC-area. 

Teva De La Vina

Before I found these stylish, yet waterproof, flat boots, I didn’t know Teva even made boots.  Well they do, and now I barely take them off.  Perfect for walking around European cities in the winter. 


Fleece Lined Leggings

Leggings are a travel multi-tasking must – and I love this fleece-lined pair from 90 Degree.  I layered a pair under skinny jeans while in Iceland this September and was super toasty.   I have both the capri and full-length options. 

Long Tanks/t-shirts

I picked these inexpensive tanks and t-shirts up in multi-packs on  Amazon prior to my Sweden trip this year.  I need to buy another pack, because when they are all in the laundry, I am sad.  Perfect for layering. 



Shiraleah Convertible Tote

I have had a “big black bag” as a travel tote and carry-on for years.  I love it because it transitions easily to a purse.  My old version was open at the top, so after the 5000th time of accidentally dumping my purse contents out on the floor, I broke down and purchased the Shiraleah Convertible tote.  It has a zippered closure, and can be worn with the shoulder straps or like a cross-body messenger bag.  Perfection!  

eBags TLS Mother Lode 21 inch

I have been on the prowl for the perfect wheeled carry-on since forever.  I recently purchased the eBags TLS Mother Lode and gave it a whirl on a recent trip to Pennsylvania.  It’s pretty stylish and it does NOT fall over when left upright, which is my ultimate pet peeve when it comes to luggage.  




Tosowoong Enzyme Powder Wash

Because I’m always on trend (yeah, right), I’ve been using Tosowoong’s powder face wash,  a Korean beauty product that’s all the rage these days.  Full disclosure: It showed up in one of those beauty boxes I still subscribe to, and I thought, Hey! This is perfect for traveling – no slimy spills.  I sorta like the detergent-y smell, also. 



CozyPhones Sleep Headphones

This one is not going to win any style awards.  Folks, I prowled the r/insomnia subreddit at 2am, so you don’t have to.  That’s where I discovered this crazy combination. You’re welcome.  I wear this most nights,  and they’ll be great on a long plane journey.  


Severin Travel Kettle

At some point in my mid-30s, I became super uptight about my bedtime rituals, and even if I’m abroad, I need a cozy beverage before sleep.  I think we can safely call this middle-age.  I like this travel kettle because it came with not only two little mugs that tuck inside the kettle, but also two spoons!  


If you have a recent travel purchase you think I should know about, let me know in the comments!