Discover the multitasking beauty items to pack, a lightweight cabin case that looks good and lasts – plus your chance to WIN a complete set of stylish luggage …
We’re always on the lookout for good luggage, whether for summer holidays or weekend getaways. And at the moment the queues to check in luggage – and the number of cases going missing en route – make it a seriously bad idea. So a great carry-on – one that’s actually light enough to carry, and yet spacious enough to bring what you need – really comes into its own this year.
We’ve learned a lot of packing lessons along the way. The main one being – take less. Travel is so much more enjoyable when you’re not lugging 90 per cent of your belongings around the place. I was away for two weeks with only the liquid contents of one small plastic bag, and found multitasking items such as L’Occitane’s Almond Shower Oil and Arden Eight Hour Cream the most useful, plus mini samples of useful things such as Aveda Leave-In Conditioner and Clarins Eau Dynamisante. Also, refillable lipsticks (I love Sisley’s Phyto Rouge Shine) or lip/cheek balms – ideally Chanel’s Red Camellia Revitalising in Berry Boost. You could also consider a deodorant such as The Handmade Soap Company’s new solid Anam stick, rather than a big, planet-unfriendly aerosol.
Also, packing cubes are very popular at the moment – my 19-year-old has adopted this, via social media, and has become adept at rolling rather than folding clothes, even for interrailing. Boots.ie has some packing cubes that are less pricey than Muji, and check out Take Monday Paris (www.takemonday.fr), too, for clever transparent bags and cases to help keep some order in your packing.
I’ve tried all kinds of carry-on bags, from leather holdall bags (look great but so heavy on the shoulder) to deep bucket bags (mean you’re forever delving to the bottom to find your passport). Something light on wheels is the way to go. Recently I’ve been admiring these Antler cases, which seem to bring back a little old-school glamour to the whole idea of travel. First, they look good – matte, sleek, slimline, elegant yet robust. There’s a range of colours, from matte black to a rather lovely mineral blue, taupe or pale pink, and the hard polycarbonate shell wipes clean easily.
And they are well kitted-out: the Clifton Cabin with pocket case is especially brilliant for work travel, being the right size for budget airline requirements, as well as being extremely light and easy to manoeuvre (it weighs 2.8kg). Plus it has a pull-out front pocket that’s specially padded in order to store your laptop and keep it safe in transit; I haven’t seen this on a case before, and it makes a lot of sense.
You can also maximise space and store all your beauty accessories separately by adding a matching Vanity Case to the mix – its detachable strap means you can carry it, or else slot it over the suitcase handle attach it to the suitcase handle. Antler also have a range of overnight bags and rucksacks to match, plus accessories such as packing cubes. The European website (though they are made in the UK) offers free delivery and returns, plus a hefty 10-year warranty. From now on, we’re travelling light …