So in case u haven’t noticed I never ever do things just bc “every other blogger is doing them.” I just do me. Hence why I’ve steered clear of the obligatory “what’s in my bag” blog post for so long. But nowadays I get this question quite a lot, so, ye ask and ye shall receive, beautiful ppl.
Here’s the deal. I’m a hands-free kinda gal. I like to be mobile & light & ready 4 action. You won’t see me walking lopsided hauling a suitcase-sized tote bag a-la-Olsen-twins 2011.
That’s why you always see me w tiny bags & I’m srsly obsessed w this new “belt bag” (aka fanny pack) trend.
[here are some tiny bags I own or am currently coveting…]
[& here are some belt bags I own or am currently coveting… happy shopping!]
Tbh though, I prefer not to carry a bag at all. The problem is women’s clothing never has adequate pocket space.
[PSA to women’s fashion designers: PLZ ADD POCKETS TO THINGS. And make them big enough to hold more than like one piece of gum. WE HAVE THINGS TO CARRY like our IDs and keys and five diff lipglosses. We resort to storing credit cards IN OUR BRAS (& some of us never wear bras so….) I mean come on POCKETS FOR ALL! – isn’t that a cause we can all get behind??]
Sry sry u know I can’t help but get a lil political. But srsly if my clothes had pockets I wouldn’t carry a purse at all. The only reason I have more than my phone, keys, and cards in my purse is bc I have to carry a bag in the first place, so why not.
Obviously when I’m carrying shit for work or travel, tiny little bags won’t cut it. As soon as u throw a laptop in the mix, u have to up your game (& let’s be real, I pretty much always have a laptop in the mix.) But again, much to my 12-year-old self’s chagrin, I’m not an Olsen twin.
*sigh* God I love them.
Anyway, I’m not an Olsen, and that’s why I fucking love backpacks. (If you’re a B/B fam OG, you already know this.)
Sadly, the struggle is v real when it comes to finding the perfect backpack. And let’s be picky bc as I learned in business school, WE DESERVE TO GET OUR NEEDS MET.
Here’s my list of backpack requirements:
- Chic af. This is not 2003 & I’m not rocking a Jansport. I want leather. I want gold hardware. This is an accessory ppl. It needs to have beautiful DETAILS.
- Functional. I want my backpack to help keep me organized. It should have enough pockets to keep from turning into a black hole, but only the RIGHT pockets (I don’t want tons of useless extra pockets I’m never going to use.) My backpack must keep my precious baby (my laptop) safe – my whole world is in there. It has to be comfortable and lightweight too. Oh, and durable. (I tend to throw my backpack around; I’m not a dainty flower.)
- Priced right. If u have a G to spend on your backpack, good for fuckin u gf… (treat yo self to one of the extravagant delicacies below.) Personally, I’m all about investing money back into my business, so I can’t justify spending more than $300 on a backpack.
The problem is that most laptop-functional backpacks are… I’m sorry but… hideous. Like. I do not want rubber material on or anywhere near my backpack. Don’t worry tho, I got us covered. Ever since I got my ISM backpack I pretty much haven’t taken it off. Dorky. But true.
Here’s why I love it (yes, it meets all my requirements):
- Chic af. This backpack is beautiful. It’s made with genuine leather and no silver hardware (I’m sorry but ew)… you get to choose black or gold! Just my style.
- Functional. This backpack is pocket perfection – just a few strategically placed compartments so it doesn’t turn into the Bermuda Triangle in there – nothing extra. There’s a totally separate PADDED & WATERPROOF zip pocket to protect my backpack!!! (… is it weird how excited I get about that?) It’s also super sturdy and well-made (thrown-across-the-floor-tested by yours truly), and the padded straps make it super comfortable to wear and provide back support (no one likes a hunchback.)
- Priced right. How is a genuine leather backpack only $235, u ask? Unlike many other luxury brands, ISM cuts out the middlewomen and sells directly to the consumer (just like Glossier and Article.)
So basically ISM is my backpack soulmate… kewt right? I treat it as such and thus refuse to fill it up with gum wrappers and old receipts and the lost city of Atlantis. I used to fill up my backpack with all the things I could ever need or want… or thought I could one day need or want. These days, I clean out my backpack at the end of every day (no brag) bc a disorganized backpack stresses me out… & stress just doesn’t go with my outfit (or lifestyle, for that matter.) For so long I thought I needed to be more organized, and now I know I just need to have less stuff & declutter & donate things I’m no longer using (more decluttering tips here.)
Anyway, I keep my backpack contents lean so everything in there is legit af if I do say so myself.
Here’s what’s in my backpack:
My backpack is essentially my mobile office – so let’s start with the most important stuff: tech.
Laptop + Case
I went for the 15in MacBook Pro bc the extra 2in honestly makes such a difference in helping me not hunch over my laptop at cafes. It’s also super powerful (& can actually handle the 100 programs & 1000 tabs I have going at once, unlike my previous MacBook Air). Just to be safe I keep it in this custom branded marble laptop case from Etsy. Obsessed.
Ok so, I’ll admit it, I used to be v anti-Airpods. I mean, they’re not the cutest look. But I’ve changed my tune bc the functionality is just THERE. I love being able to pop them in and out to pause music & I LOVE that they sync so seamlessly with my iPhone for coaching calls. Plus, u never have to deal with tangled cords again.
That being said, I don’t wear Airpods (or earplugs, which I used to wear while I worked) when I’m somewhere I could potentially meet people (like coffee shops). I keep my head up and smile and stay open – u never know who you might meet!
Along with my laptop charger, I also carry the ISM power bank (it fits perfectly with the backpack). I love the black vegan leather, but I love the fact that it’s a literal powerhouse even more. It can charge your phone up to THREE TIMES (so necessary.)
& then, of course, we have the non-tech essentials…
Wallet & Keys
I love my tiny Gigi New York wallet bc I can slip it in my pocket if I need to (plus I get to have my initials on it and who doesn’t love that?) I only carry my ID & cards (I rarely have cash with me.) My leather tassel keychain is also from Gigi (u can even customize your colors!) & I have a quartz crystal on there too bc positive vibes & the universe, ya know?
Somehow I can never have enough of these – but I keep it to just one pair at a time in my backpack. My current faves are Raen’s Mason frames (I have black on black and also the polarized green lenses – great for my sensitive eyes!) – u guys see me wear these all the time. I love the round frames and super lightweight feel.
Ppl. Plz stop buying plastic water bottles. I’m serious. It’s so, so bad for our planet. This super cute glass one is BKR, but I also love my S’well bottle because it keeps water super cold for 24hrs! … I’m rly wanting this Glacce crystal one tho (I know you’re not surprised.)
It’s December in LA which means sometimes I have to throw one of my fave leather jackets on over my crop top. Life is hard.
As lean as I try to keep my backpack (don’t want to have to do a deadlift just to pick it up), of course, I still have a bunch of odds and ends. I keep them in separate pouches so they don’t get lost in the abyss. Here’s what’s in the pouches… [Beware: this is going to look like one of those “White Girl Starter Pack” memes.]
In here we have:
- A notebook & chic pen: anyone that knows me knows – I’m constantly taking notes, jotting down ideas, drawing things, brainstorming, & making LOTS OF LISTS. I do it on my phone too, but some things just need to be done on paper, ya know?
- Black post-its & metallic Sharpies: this is kinda my thang. I like to leave ppl notes and the look is unique so they always know it’s from me!
- Business cards: never leave home without em! You never know who you might meet. I made mine square so that they stick out (literally) from the pack.
In here we have:
- Chapstick: yep, that’s rosebud salve (I can b basic sometimes) – need this at least 100 times a day.
- Gum: I just like to chew it. But also good for freshening up before meetings! This ginger Simply Gum is natural and *BONUS* – it helps with nausea (I get carsick all the time)
- Tampons & Midol: I used to seemingly always have 100 tampons in my bag EXCEPT for when I got my period – so now I just keep them in this pouch so I can always find them. I use all natural non-toxic tampons from Blume (remember, your body absorbs everything you put in it)!
- Hair Stuff: a mini Drybar Detox dry shampoo (I swear my hair gets greasy in like 12hrs), mini wet brush (anyone who has easily tangled hair MUST get one of these), no-snag hair elastics (treat your hair right!), clear hair elastics for braids, & rose gold bobby pins (I change my hairstyle like 10X per day in case you can’t tell.)
- Face wipes: I just like to feel fresh af, ya know? Patchology Clean AF face wipes are my absolute fave (I swear it’s not *just* bc of the name) bc they just get your face RLY clean – & that’s what we want. These are MUST HAVES for after workouts and while traveling.
- Peppermint essential oil: keeps me calm and grounded, & helps with headaches and nausea. I’ll put a little on my third eye, under my nose, and on the back of my neck. Plus, the peppermint tingles feel AMAZING.
- Crystals: always gonna throw a few of those in there – u never know when you’ll need one!
Is that what u thought would be inside this *wild* feminist’s backpack? Maybe a few more tampons? Welp, I try to keep it to just the essentials (plus or minus a book and sports bra.)
Have any of u found a backpack u just LOVE? What do u keep in it? DISH!