I can’t believe it, but after a whirlwind week with the Starfish Project in Asia, I’m home! I arrived last night, and after a delicious dinner of Tex Mex (my cute parents picked me up from the airport and drove me straight to our favorite spot) jet lag set in. As in the “I’m never falling asleep ever again hooray so much energy!” side of jet lag.
With the trip being fresh on my mind, and sleep nowhere in sight, I thought I’d round up a list of the things I packed for the journey that I ended up being very grateful for. This was my first trip to Asia, and so much of the preparation, packing-wise, was a gamble on my end. I hope this list proves to be useful to you if you’re ever headed that way!
1. Arrow Boost Color Enhancing Lip Balm // This little stick ended up being a secret weapon of the trip! Not only was it handy for the plane-ride induced chapped lip problem, but it also gave my lips a gorgeous, natural boost of color. That meant I didn’t end up bothering with keeping track of lipsticks and lip glosses the whole trip. (Keeping lipstick and lip gloss in place on a fast-paced trip, not to mention keeping up with all of those little containers, can be a pain.) Highly recommended!
2. Pillow // Lest you think I’m crazy, let me start out by saying that before this trip, I thought bringing your sleeping pillow on the plane was the silliest thing. And true, it doesn’t really contribute to a chic airport ensemble. But after forgetting my little neck pillow on the trip to Asia, I had no choice for my flight back home! Since my friend Virginia mentioned doing this, I took my pillow out of my suitcase and lugged the thing aboard. Y’all… it made the. biggest. difference. I slept like a baby. Not only that, but it made the leg of the journey I was awake for even more comfortable! I know it’s not the easiest thing to haul on and off a plane, but if you can swing it I highly recommend it! (I was able to squash mine into my backpack.)
3. Kind Bars // Since I’m a really picky eater, I have a hard time eating plane food.. Ok if we’re being honest… I don’t eat it at all. These delicious dark chocolate almond & coconut kind bars made for a great replacement! They were perfectly filling, incredibly yummy, and super easy to pack up. I also brought these along for mid-day snacks when my energy was running low, and as a supplement to the many Asian lunches we ate!
4. J Brand Maria Skinny Jeans // I am all about J.Crew denim (their petites sizes fit my short legs really well) so I don’t normally venture into designer-denim land, but if there’s one pair I’d recommend investing in, it’s these. They’re really soft and very stretchy, but they don’t lose their shape easily! I wore these on the plane ride to Asia (since leggings can start feeling really uncomfortable after 10+ hours in the same position) along with three full days after that, and was shocked at how comfortable they were while holding their shape!
5. Cole Haan Sneakers // You’re looking at a girl who wears wedges whenever humanly possible, but I quickly learned the uneven urban terrain we were in was just not going to allow that sort of thing. Enter these darling sneakers! I had done some research and shopping before my trip, and had decided these would be the “go-to” pair of the trip. I’m happy to report that they exceeded my expectations! Super light, incredibly comfortable, and cute with all of the jean + tshirt + cardigan combinations I was wearing! I got lots of compliments on them too, which never hurts. (Heads up, these come in PINK!)
6. Steamer // Wrinkles love tightly packed suitcases, and I seriously don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t brought this little steamer along with me! It’s relatively small and easy to pack, and allowed me to get things straightened out super quickly. It’s $35 and I’m telling you, it’s a must have. (Just don’t forget your outlet converter if you’re going outside of the US!)
7. Face Mask // I’m not proud of this… but I packed along my favorite face mask for the plane ride over! Once the largest leg of the flight was over and the flight attendants started waking everyone up for breakfast, I threw this thing on for a few minutes. Yes, I may have scared everyone sitting around me, but it did wonders to energize and replenish my tired, dry, airplaney skin. Plus, it’s super small and easy to pack on a carry on!
8. Cozy Cardigan // I knew I’d want a sweater for the plane and cooler weather, but wanted something springy enough I could wear these next few months! I hit the home run with this one, which proved to be soft, warm, and in a darling blush shade perfect for April. I’d throw the front ends over my shoulders when bundling up on the plane, throw it on to run down to breakfast in the morning, and pack it in my backpack for unexpected temperature drops! This one in particular is selling out quick, but you’ll find a really similar and less expensive version here.
9. Backpack // I usually opt for a big tote bag for my carry on, but this backpack proved to be a life-saver. It was so helpful having plenty of different compartments for organizing headphones, snacks, my passport, etc, and the fact that I could wear it on my back instead of awkwardly lugging it through the narrow aisles was nice, too. I also ended up bringing this along for days we did sight-seeing!
10. Candy // I don’t know if it was the new country, new food, lack of energy or what, but having a stash of my favorite candy often came in as the perfect pick me up. It was also fun having something to share with the other friends on the trip. Curious as to what exactly I brought along? Sour patch watermelons, peanut butter m&ms, lots of gum and mini robins eggs! (Yes, I raided the Target Easter candy aisle in preparation.)
I’m excited and ready to process this trip now that I’m back home… there’s so much I want to share with y’all about the experience. I plan on working my way back into a normal sleep schedule this week (ha!) before the fun Easter weekend we have right ahead! As if that wasn’t enough, Thursday happens to also be my birthday (!!!) so I’ve got a good amount of motivation to kick this jet lag thing to the curb. Wish me luck!
Love from Texas,