Backstage

Organizing Your Purse

We’ve all been there: the moment when your fabulous bag mysteriously transforms into a black hole, and nothing you could swear you put in there can be found. “There’s nothing worse than rummaging through your purse while someone looks on, witness to your disorganization,” says Resourceful Consultants owner Barbara Reich, a professional organizer who has been featured on The Today Show and in The New York Times. “When your purse is organized and you know where to locate everything important to you, you feel in control and more powerful.” We’ve asked Reich to provide her top tips for keeping your purse organized—and to break down the essential items each woman should keep in her bag.

• Never buy a bag that doesn’t have at least two internal pockets. You need one for your cell phone and one for keys and other items that you access often.

• Avoid bags with dark linings. It’s very difficult to find things when they’re inside a dark bag.

• Add some color. Use brightly hued cosmetic bags for smaller items such as lip gloss, Band-Aids and ibuprofen.

• Carry only what you truly need. Bags get heavy, so eliminate what’s unnecessary. You don’t need five pens, two phone chargers or six packs of gum. Here’s an idea of what you should always have with you:

     Regular bag: wallet, Smartphone, keys, cosmetic bag (containing ibuprofen, Band-Aids,      nail file, travel size of hair product, safety pin), pen and small pad
     Work bag: wallet, Smartphone, keys, cosmetic bag, pen, and pad, iPad, hard copy of any      current presentations or projects
     Beach Bag: wallet, Smartphone, keys, sun block, lip protection, hat, baby powder
     Clutch: money, credit card, phone, keys, lip gloss

• Don’t save unimportant receipts. Don’t clutter your bag with receipts for small amounts of money, like those from your morning Starbucks run.

• Carry store credits in your bag. You can’t use them if there are home in your night table drawer.

• Make a photocopy of everything in your wallet (front and back). In the unfortunate event that your wallet is stolen, you’ll have a record of what you’re missing and what credit cards you need to call.
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