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    40 Incredibly Useful Things To Keep In Your Bag

    Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.

    We asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us the thing that they ~always~ carry with them (and added a few suggestions of our own). Here are are helpful results:

    1. A pack of 100% natural Burt's Bees lip balm so you can keep a tube in every bag.

    2. An dual-port external battery to keep your phone (and the phone of your bestie) fully charged for any situation.

    The phone-sized external battery, plugged into a phone, in a hand, and being put into a purse

    3. A couple of ponytail holders to get your hair off your face ASAP — especially when the mercury is pushing 100°.

    The pack of black ponytail holders

    4. Stylish earbuds that don't take up a ton of room, but provide excellent sound quality.

    The wood grain headphones

    5. A Swiss army knife for any situation; it's a classic for a reason.

    The red swiss army knife showing the various tools

    6. A mini keychain bottle of Sriracha so you can always have hot sauce in your bag. Swag.

    Two sizes of the to-go squeeze bottles

    7. An aloe and rosewater facial spray to refresh and hydrate your face whenever you need a pick-me-up.

    The spray bottle

    8. A handy dandy Tide to-go stick so you don't have to sit around the office all day with tomato sauce on your shirt. Again.

    A three-pack of the pens

    9. A tube of pawpaw ointment with papaya extract to help heal scrapes, rashes, rough skin, and more.

    10. A teensy compact first aid kit chock full of necessities like bandaids, alcohol pads, antiseptic towelettes, and more!

    A hand with the first aid kit in a zip-pack

    11. Chewable Pepto-Bismol tablets to solve any mysterious tummy problems before they turn into disasters.

    The box of tablets

    12. A travel-friendly sunscreen set to protect your skin and soothe it after sun exposure. You're supposed to reapply every two hours, you know.

    The pack

    13. A ride-or-die lippie that'll save you when you forget to bring your shade of the day with you.

    Swatches of 20 of the shades on three arms with different skintones

    14. A container of Evian facial spray so you can stay hydrated and refreshed on even the longest travel hauls.

    The two bottles

    15. A couple of lactase pills so you don't have to miss out on the ice cream run.

    The box of caplets

    16. A pair of wireless Bluetooth earbuds that are waterproof, come with multiple silicone earbuds so you can find your perfect size, and happen to be just as good as more expensive headphones on the market at a fraction of the cost (*cough AirPods cough*). What better way to enjoy your favorite songs, podcasts, and audiobooks?

    Promising review: "Best decision! These are the greatest headphones ever! I saw them on TikTok months ago and added them to my wishlist. I got a new phone that doesn't have the headphone port so I decided it was time to finally buy them. They are amazing and I probably won't ever take them out of my ears! 😂" —Kate Arnold

    Get it from Amazon $23.99+ (available in three colors).

    17. A migraine stick to potentially help stop painful migraines in their tracks. As a migraine sufferer myself, I know how difficult it is to accomplish anything when a migraine hits, and there just aren't enough hours in the day to waste them on nursing yourself back to a fully functioning human when you get one.

    A customer review photo of the Migrastil Migraine Stick
    A customer review photo of the application of the Migrastil Migraine Stick

    Promising review: "If you suffer from any type of headache, BUY THIS. It is totally worth the money. It lessens the pain and leaves you with the ability to think/process. For me, that is the most difficult to deal with, as I often have to power through a migraine while I am either teaching high school English or corralling a 4-year-old and an 18-month-old. This will take away the nausea and the throbbing, but you do still feel out of sorts. Better than the full migraine though, so go for it!" —Scout

    Get it from Amazon for $12.95.

    Check out our Migrastil Migraine Stick review to learn more!

    18. A Wallet Ninja — a card-sized tool that can be used as a bottle/can opener, a phone stand, a screwdriver, a fruit peeler, and more! It's gonna have you wondering how you ever got by without it!

    the credit-card shaped tool being used as a bottle opener
    the same card being used as a phone stand

    Promising review: "This is definitely helpful to have on hand! The Ninja is small and slim but punches above its weight class in terms of usefulness. The tools are all things you might find yourself searching through a drawer for and are useful in a pinch. It fits comfortably in your wallet and will help you open a beer or tighten a screw. The coolest feature that I couldn't find on most other similar products was the credit card phone stand. It is great for planes and other travel applications (I haven't had trouble bringing this on a plane anywhere I have traveled, FYI)." —Mary

    Get it from Amazon for $14.98 (also available in packs of two, three, and five).

    19. A mini emergency kit for getting you through the little problems life may throw your way when you're not home, like realizing your breath needs a minty refresh before going on a first date, your hair refusing to cooperate (aka stay in place) the day of a big work presentation, or an extra stressful day causing your deodorant to wear off faster than usual...just to name a few.

    A small pink sparkly kit zippered shut
    The kit with all its contents laid out

    Pinch Provisions is a sister-owned small business run by Jamie and Stephanie Kaplan.

    This kit comes with earring backs, a safety pin, an adhesive bandage, double-sided tape, pain relief medication, breath drops, a mending kit, dental floss, clear nail polish, hair spray, an emery board, extra buttons, lip balm, clear elastics, stain remover, and a deodorant towelette all packed in a super pretty carrying case. 

    Promising review: "I received this as a gift from a dinner guest and then quickly sent one to a cousin just for fun! It's excellent to send as a thank you gift or "I'm just thinking about you" gift!" —Bonnie

    Get it from Amazon for $20.99+ (available in 15 colors). 

    20. A 3-in-1 foldable charging station capable of juicing up iPhones, AirPods, and Apple Watches at the SAME time. The future is here and it's beautiful, people!!!

    The white charger pad laid out to charge a phone, watch, and AirPods
    Reviewer pulling out the black version from its compact size all the way out to the three part mat

    It's compatible with iPhone series 12–14, Apple Watch (except series 1), and AirPods (except AirPods 2nd gen). Also note, this is only compatible with the mentioned Apple products — other brands are not supported. 

    Promising review: "I use this product to charge my iPhone 13, AirPods, and Apple Watch. Prior to this 3-in-1 compact purchase, I have purchased three different kinds of 3-in-1 chargers — I frequently travel between school and home with carry-on bags on airlines and all of the previous stand version chargers don't fit well in my bags or I am always worried I will break them. This is compact and folds so well that I can fit in my carry-on or in any zipper pockets without having to worry about breaking anything. Charger works really well and it is the best compact one you can find in market. Love it and been using it for two months now and no issues!!" —SBREDDY

    Get it from Amazon for $33.99+ (available in nine colors). 

    21. An acupressure anti-nausea wristband that claims to ward off motion sickness and nausea, minus the drowsiness side effect found in most nausea medications. If public transportation and rideshare trips to/from work, social outings, and home turn you into this emoji: 🤢, then you may wanna keep these on hand!

    Promising review: "These were awesome! My entire family suffers from motion sickness, especially car sickness. My little one gets sick in the car on a regular car ride through the city. So I knew that a long road trip was going to be a disaster. I was amazed at how well these bands worked for everyone! Not one single person complained about being sick for 12 hours in the car. At one point I did have one child remove their bands because they said they were getting too tight. But after only a few minutes without them, a headache started to come on, so they immediately put them back on and the relief was instant. I have suffered for decades and now I know better. I will never travel without mine again!" —1SmartCookie

    Get a set of two from Amazon for $8.53.

    22. A 4-in-1 makeup pen for an eyeliner, brow liner, lip liner, and highlighter all in one fabulous little tool reminiscent of those retractable pens you may have used in your school days. This little bb is perfect for on the go touch-ups!

    A GIF of a hand pressing down to release the slim eyeliner tip
    buzzfeed editor genevieve scarano holding the makeup pen
    Alleyoop, Genevieve Scarano / BuzzFeed

    This is cruelty- and paraben-free and vegan! Plus, it comes in recyclable packaging. Alleyoop is a woman-owned small biz selling a wonderful assortment of beauty products.

    Promising review: "I love the ease of this product. It’s so perfect and the colors are great for all looks — casual, fancy, quarantine extra, everything! I love how effortless it is and how easy it is to use. I’m serious that as a makeup novice, these colors are impossible to mess up. I love it! " —Stephanie H.

    Get it from Alleyoop or Amazon for $25 (available in three shades).

    23. A pair of retro-style sunnies that'll have you channeling your inner rockstar 24/7. 

    reviewer wears retro rectangle-style tortoise shell sunglasses
    reviewer wears same style sunglasses while wearing a white bucket hat

    Promising review: "I had originally seen these pair of glasses on TikTok and was very eager to buy them and let me tell you, they did NOT disappoint. They are very sturdy, fashionable, and look like a high-end pair of glasses." —Alejandra Larios

    Get them from Amazon for $11.95+ (available in 18 colors and packs of 2).

    24. And some Nerdwax for ensuring those sunnies don't fall victim to slipping off your face when the sun has you feeling a bit sweaty. This anti-slip wax keeps your glasses perched up where they belong (and works great for regular glasses as well).

    person applying the wax from a lip balm-like tube to the glasses

    Promising review: "We saw this on Shark Tank, and thought we'd give it a shot. The lip balm-sized tube is perfect for travel. Walking on a beach with sunglasses on, sweat makes them slide down. Just a couple of dabs of this Nerdwax keeps them in place. It also worked well keeping glasses up during snow blowing in a recent blizzard. So while I'd rather use it walking on a beach, it did the job when I was shoveling snow as well. Is it costly? Yes. But does it work? Yes!" —DeFelice Family

    Get a four-pack from Amazon for $25.99.

    25. A reusable oil-absorbing face roller that'll be a lifesaver for anyone who tends to get extra oily. Just glide it over your face, it's THAT easy. 

    a reviewer hand holding the oil roller
    Gif of reviewer using Revlon oil-absorbing volcanic face roller

    Promising review: "First off, if you have extremely oily skin, this. is. it. I was so tired of getting blotting powder/wipes. It felt wasteful and always left residue on my face. I saw this on TikTok and NEEDED it. It was backordered but then I got an email saying it was in stock and I was SO excited. Not only is it affordable, but it's washable, which helps you save money and be less wasteful." —Kelsey B.

    Get it from Amazon for $12.99

    26. Glossier Invisible Shield — a daily sunscreen if you're someone who hates wearing sunscreen (which I'm convinced must be all of us). It features a lightweight water-gel formula and won't leave behind a greasy film or white cast. Sun protection to make you feel like you're just applying a daily moisturizer? Yes please!

    bottle of Invisible shield next to a tube of balm dot com and a glossier water bottle
    model applying sunscreen to their face

    Plus, this SPF 35 sunscreen is cruelty-free and vegan!

    Promising review: "I am a dermatologist. I have been searching for a facial sunscreen like Glossier for a long time. It is perfection!! The ingredients act as a radiation UV block/screen: UVB (radiation that causes burning) and UVA (radiation that causes aging). It goes on gently, without greasiness, and with a light summer scent. So happy with the product !!" —Michael D.

    Get it from Glossier for $25.

    27. Or Black Girl Sunscreen — a moisturizing SPF 30 broad spectrum sunscreen crafted for people of color. Its lightweight formula contains ingredients like avocado, jojoba, cacao, carrot juice, and sunflower oil to soothe, protect, hydrate, and heal skin, all without leaving behind a white residue.

    A person squeezing the Black Girl Sunscreen out of a tube onto their hand

    This is paraben-, fragrance-, oxybenzone-, octinoxate-, silicone-, and aluminum-free. Plus, it's vegan and cruelty-free! Black Girl Sunscreen is a Black-owned brand that was created to a natural, nonwhite residue sunscreen for women of color. Be sure to also check out their BGS Kids SPF 50 Sunscreen!

    Promising review: "I’ve tried many, many sunscreens that claim to blend and not leave a white cast when applied. This was so much better than I expected. A nickel-sized amount goes a long way and blends into a smooth, dewy finish. I also didn’t notice a scent so there was no worries of walking around smelling like sunscreen." —Target Customer

    Get it from Target for $15.99.

    28. A water bottle featuring a side pill organizer compartment so you can easily bring your medication on the go (and ensure you have water to wash it down with). 

    reviewer showing the open pill box at the side of their water bottle
    reviewer holding the pink water bottle

    Promising review: "This water bottle has helped me so much with the convenience of taking my meds at night. I always forget or say I’ll do it later because I have to grab a drink for the meds. So I have a daily alarm now and my meds and water are right at my bedside. No issues whatsoever. I love that I can stand the bottle or lay it down, it doesn’t spill or leak, and the top doubles as a cup. Worth every penny." —Natalie Hayes

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99+ (available in two colors).

    29. A studded Starbucks cup-inspired straw cover perfect for putting on your next venti caramel macchiato during your morning commute so it doesn't spill or worse...a little buggy flies into your overpriced drink. 

    various straws with the starbucks cups inspired covers on them
    Luxury Creations Co / Etsy

    Luxury Creations Co. is a small biz that sells nail art decals, keychains, and other cute gifts! 

    Promising review: "This is really cute and functional. I use them on all of my cups!" —Karen Bribiesca

    Get it from Luxury Creations Co. on Etsy for $5 (available in 13 colors).

    30. An ultra-compact mini umbrella because we don't want you to have to choose between lugging around something to keep you dry when it's rainy outside and getting soaked because you didn't have room for an umbrella in your bag. 

    A small sage green umbrella in a compact carrying case
    A blue version of it open and protecting a reviewer from the sun

    Promising review: "Bought this cheap, lightweight umbrella for an autumn trip to Edinburgh. It worked perfectly!! It was really windy there, and it did pop inside-out a few times, but I just pushed it back into place. The pod holder is really great for folding it up when wet and keeping your bag safe from it!" —Lynn Thompson

    Get it from Amazon for $13.95+ (available in 11 colors and packs of two). 

    31. A lovely set of flower hair claw clips for the prettiest and cutest way to keep your locks away from your face. 

    reviewer wearing the red floral clip in their hair
    reviewer wearing the tan floral clip in their hair

    Promising review: "These are so different, and I get a lot of compliments. People keep asking me where I got them. I use it wherever and it holds my thick hair with no problem." —Bellap

    Get a set of six from Amazon for $9.97+ (available in six color combinations).