I just returned from shooting a campaign with a dear client in Laguna Niguel, California. The weather and views are permanently burned into my brain. Utterly beautiful!
What I wish was equally as beautiful is the stress of packing a respectable session kit and not worrying about leaving important tools behind. Even more terrifying would be that something would break or spill.
The TSA does not allow liquids, sharp objects, or aerosols on your carry on which means you will have to check your bag. Depending on the carrier, this can make you incur charges for each flight. The weight limit of each bag is 50 lbs with charges of $100+ for weight overages PLUS the check bag fee. Insane. I know!
I have traveled before with only a makeup kit or only a hairstyling kit. This trip required both which meant a lot of tools. Heavy tools. With the help of my assistant, I decided to use two luggage bags and disperse the weight evenly to avoid additional charges.
Take a look at some smart packing tips I learned along the way!
I learned to use zipper bags to compactly store hair products. This ensures that they stay securely flat and if one were to spill or burst, it is contained. My go to bags for hair products are the Züca Large Utility Bags. They are sturdy and surprisingly fit a large quantity of hair products.
I prefer KatKit Road Aircraft Bags for makeup for their beautiful compartments.
I like to keep my brushes stored upright as I work in order to maximize my counter space. This caddy has been a life saver since I am able to carry my used brushes back home in one container. That way I can leave the unused brushes in my brush belt and take this canister into the studio and sanitize the used ones. The Dany’s Pouch by Makeup Forever is affordable and a great size.
The scariest thing for me is to either run out of a product or it breaking in transit. I learned to roll my foundation bottles in padded bubble wrap and then placing them into a clear bag by KaitKat. Works perfectly!
I have learned to pack a magnet strip in my kit to securely hold bobby grips, clips and needles while I am on set. This minimizes the need to carry tons of pins and frees up space while on set. This one a kitchen knife magnet from Food Service Warehouse.
If my job calls for involved hairdressing, I will travel with a tackle box from the hardware store to keep my grips and pins separate and ready to go.
I like to use jewelry holder bags that have compartments and a hook on the end to hang off a table or door while working. This one is The Resort Hanging Bag by The Container Store. I like to store combs, razors, neck strips for haircuts, capes, and clippers. I also use them for makeup disposables like cotton buds, cotton pads, and mascara wands.
Have you ever packed your brush belt only to find that ALL of your brushes have made their way out into your luggage? Ziploc bags are perfect for traveling. Secure your brush belt and avoid your brushes flying everywhere by storing it one.
I always travel with extensions and wigs and I used to carry them in their original packaging.
Now, I like to store wigs, padding, or hair filler in Ziploc bags. They also keep your brushes intact and out of the way.
I always have to give a trim or cut a wig on set therefore I have to travel with my shears and razors. I keep mine safe in a pencil pouch from the office supply store.
Simple makeup cases from the drug store make a great place to store multiple palettes and products. This particular one was a gift from Lancôme Cosmetics but the SoHo Case by Target is the virtually the same. I stack my Z-Palettes for shadows and lip colors all in the bottom compartment. The rest is packed with pots, stick concealers, and smaller palettes.
One of the easiest things to do to save space is to properly wind up your tool cords. This makes them compact and protects the cord itself from bending. I love using Velcro Cord Ties in different colors to easily identify my tools.
Velcro is a life saver! I used the roll of it and sewed one strip to the lining of my luggage and stuck the matching side to the plastic clear bag to avoid them shuffling during transit. It’s a neat way to maximize the use of your space.
Try adding Velcro strips to your mirror as shown so it won’t shift. I placed it inside a makeup bag similar to the one mentioned above. This option allows me to carry a full sized mirror to have on set.
This same type of case holds my skincare products. I keep them separate from my powders (ie: shadows, pressed powders, pigments) to avoid disaster. I bought mine from http://www.katkitroad.com.
Instead of traveling with multiple heavy curling irons, I invested in a set of ceramic wands that feature interchangeable rods. This way, I can roll 3 irons in one simple method. Check out NuMe Curling Wand Sets for an awesome value.
If you must travel with a lot of lashes, I recommend removing the majority of the plastic packaging and collapsing them onto one another as shown. I keep one plastic cover to keep the front one sanitized. I then load them into a rectangle zip bag also from KatKit.
Lastly, I always pack my go-bys, inspiration, tear sheets, and face charts so I can have them available on set with me. Keep your magazines together in a cardboard holder as shown. I buy tons of them at the $1 aisle at Target. I place all of my tears and face charts in a file folder and into the same magazine holder.
Phew!! Now, if I could only find a solution to not procrastinating….