We couldn't resist the picture of the cutie pie sitting in the above handbag, but no, we're not talking about keeping puppies in your purse. (Has a nice ring though!) Every woman, regardless of age, should have certain essentials in her purse. I already know you have make-up and a compact, right??? So I'm going beyond those things to the things you might not have thought about. If you don't have these things or you suspect a girlfriend doesn't, some of them would make great Christmas or Birthday gifts.
1. Battery Case or Portable Cell Phone Charger
I got busted by my husband just this week for not having one of these in my purse. I own two battery backup chargers and neither was with me when I needed it. However, I did remember to bring them for the last outdoor sporting event I attended. It was great not having to hunt down an electrical outlet.
Even better than the portable chargers, I really like the concept of the Battery Cases. You won't forget these at home and they seem to have more juice than the backup chargers. Both Samsung and Apple make them. Only problem I see with these is that of course they only fit a specific phone. In most cases, as soon as you buy a new phone you'll also have to buy a new charger case.
2. Swiss Army Knife
Swiss Army Knives used to make me think of boy scouts running around in the woods cutting branches and starting camp fires. I was so mistaken! I bought my own Swiss Army Knife after a friend reminded me of just how cool they are. Now I use it every chance I get. I've used the scissors to cut forgotten tags off of clothing. I've used the bottle opener for the old style bottle of Coca-Cola I sometimes buy at lunch. I've used the knife to cut up fruit at an impromptu picnic. My husband has even asked to borrow it at times. My Swiss Army Knife makes me look prepared for anything! There are many different types with different options. I bought the Fieldmaster but you can go crazy and get the ultra packed Evolution 10 Swiss Army Knife which has everything, even a compass. You can also get The MiniChamp, a slightly smaller version you could easily put on a keychain or you can jazz it up a little with Leopard and other prints.
3. Personal Alarm Keychains
Personal Alarm Keychains typically feature a loud piercing sound - we're talking 120 to 130 decibels - when activated, to help ward off a would be attacker. They're relatively small and can easily hang off of a purse or backpack. They even make them in very attractive shapes and sizes and are easily activated when needed. Whether they're for you, your friends, or your teenage daughter (or son) who may find themselves out late with friends or on their college campus, why wouldn't every woman have one of these? I'm buying them as gifts for my daughters and friends this year.
4. Credit Card Holder
I bought one of these recently as an impulse buy and now I really love it. I have a fairly large purse that just isn't convenient to take into every store or even the cafeteria at work. I put just a couple of credit cards and cash in my card wallet, (that's all that would fit anyway), and leave the big bag behind in the car if I just need to run into the grocery store.
5. Band aids and Sanitary Products
Once again, we're not talking a whole box of Band-Aids or Tampons. Just one or two for emergencies. Sometimes it isn't even your emergency that you're preparing for. Once I was in the bathroom stall at a museum and I heard the lady next to me let out an exasperated exclamation. I suspected immediately what the problem was. When I met up with her at the sink, she asked if I happened to have any sanitary products on me and luckily I did. Turns out she had a uterine condition that was causing her to bleed at unpredictable times and this was one of them. I was so very glad I was able to help her.
Yes, baggies, Not a whole box mind you, just one or two zipper seal sandwich or gallon size bags. I will tell you the truth. Children made me start carrying these baggies. Have you ever been to a theme park or other place with ridiculously priced food? Well my kid would take one bite and then want to throw away the $50 french fries because they weren't hungry any more. Then, NEVER FAIL, we're in the car headed home and now they're hungry. Arggghhh! Even the big kid (i.e. husband) is prone to do this.
The last time this happened to me was at the PA Renaissance Festival in Manheim, PA. I watched the amazing, scrumptious, $10 Smoked Turkey Leg of my very young daughter get thrown away because she couldn't finish it. The next year I whipped out my baggie and saved it for her for later. She finished that turkey leg in the car on the way home and was glad to have it. Baggies.
When you're not rescuing Turkey Legs, the baggies come in handy for jewelry, trash, little things that would get lost in your purse, etc.
7. Trial Size Hand Lotion
I wash my hands a lot throughout the day and have found that having a nice hand lotion in my purse definitely comes in handy. Neutrogena's Norwegian Formula Hand Cream has been the best by far for seriously dry hands. It softens and smooths even the driest skin and keeps working for hours. Aveeno's Daily Moisturizing Lotion is also a good choice.
8. Hand Sanitizer Wipes or Baby Wipes
I should probably start a campaign to get people to start carrying wet wipes with them. First, they kill germs. Second, they are a quick fix if you need to wash your hands and there's no bathroom available. Third, they're great for cleaning up kid (or grown up) messes while you're on the go. Personally I carry Wet Ones in my purse and in my car at all times. Supposedly they kill 99.99% of germs. Their flat packaging also makes them easy to fit in a medium sized purse. Purell also makes a similar product. If you're looking for a heavier wipe, there's always Pampers Baby Wipes. They aren't just for babies! I sometimes keep a package of these in the car as well for messes that need a bit more cleaning power.
9. Breath Mints
Let's see, you have the Broccoli & Spinach pizza for lunch with extra garlic? Or it's just one of those days when you'd like to make sure you're smelling minty fresh. Or you need to offer them to your close talking halitosis mouthed co-worker? Whatever the reason, always have some breath mints on you. When you need them you'll be so glad you have them. My personal favorite choice is the 'curiously strong' Altoids. I used to carry the larger Altoid's tin but now they have the Altoid's smalls which are even more conveniently packaged to fit in your purse. And true to their advertising, they really do seem to eliminate bad odors rather than just doing a bad job of covering them up.
Well ladies, long gone are the days when men carried handkerchiefs and would lend them to a damsel in distress who needed to wipe a tear away. We're big girls now and shouldn't be traveling without tissues. And we're more likely to use them to fix our make-up or blow our nose now that we can vote and stuff.
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File under: Cell phone charger, Swiss Army Knife, Gifts for Women, Gifts for Teen Girls, Gift Ideas, Cell Phone Battery Backup