[HOW TO] Pack For Your Summer Holiday

Suitcase holidays travel

My hubby (still feels strange to write that!) and I have just got back from our Italian honeymoon. We spent two and a half weeks touring the islands in the  Bay of Naples and the Amalfi coast. It was wonderful. But moving around every few days with a heavy suitcase has made me reassess how I pack for my holidays.


This post from Garance Doré totally sums up my attitude to holiday packing. Wicker baskets – lovely idea but how?? Beach towels – great in theory, HEAVY and BIG in practice. Straw hat – stylish but impossible to pack. Toiletries – bulky, heavy but oh-so necessary! Souvenirs? How do you even begin to fit your holiday purchases in?

Holiday purchases carpisa purse

The answer to these holiday packing dilemmas? Here’s what I’ve learnt (if you want to read Garance’s take, you can find it here):

  • Wicker baskets – great for weekend trips and picnics at home, when taking the car! Not for holidays. Unless you can snag a really cheap version at your destination.
  • Beach towels – leave them at home! A Pareo or Hamman style towel which are much thinner and, therefore, lighter are the way to go – plus, as they are cotton, they work as a sarong/cover-up too. I spotted these everywhere on the Amalfi coast but my suitcase was already so full and heavy that even a light towel/sarong was too much. Instead, I’ve hunted out some reasonably priced versions at Notonthehighstreet.com.
  • Straw hat – wear it, don’t pack it. This is not the approach favoured by Garance but I am still quite attached to the look, so wear my hat for my trip.
  • Toiletries – if you can do without your usual brand, buy abroad. If you’re travelling with friends/partners/family, share the load and the bottles. Alternatively, order them online at Boots, to pick up at the airport, after security and ditch anything left before heading home.
  • Holiday purchases. This is a trickier one. Leaving space in a suitcase can feel like a waste but also means no room for those inevitable purchases. One way I do it, is ditching the toiletries I packed and making room for them. Alternatively, throw in a couple of rolls of loo roll – they’ll come in handy on your travels and are surprisingly big – you could certainly fill the space they leave with a pair of new holiday sandals and a few pieces of holiday clothing!

What are your top travelling tips?

[MOST WANTED] Beach Bags

I’m obsessed with finding a beach bag for my honeymoon right now. I want one that will double as a carry-on bag for the flight too.

We’re off to the south of Italy for two and a half weeks and will be splitting our time between city sight-seeing and lazy beach days, so the bag needs to double up for both destinations.

I love the wicker basket option, favoured by celebs like Kate Moss, but want something a little less beachy so that it’ll work further afield too.

I’ve hunted the internet for a few options:

beach bags

  1. When I think of a beach bag, I think of a bright patterned bag which will hold everything!
  2. Stripes are totally beach worthy and this Next beach bag has two handle options and three inside pockets, so it’ll definitely work for the plane too.
  3. For something fun, for a girly beach holiday, this New Look Beach Please bag is spot on!
  4. This wicker-style bright orange tote from H&M is a slightly more practical take on the basket.
  5. This block print tote bag by Accessorize will work when you’re back from your holidays too.

What do you carry on holiday?

[HOW TO] Do Your Make-Up In The Summer Heat


On holiday I rarely wear make-up. In the heat, I hate the feeling of anything on my skin so I leave it at home. But when I’m off to work in the summer heat, I like to wear some, even if only a little. Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve honed my ability to do summer make-up.

The base is the heaviest part I find, so I either use a light dusting of bronzer or I mix a little foundation with an SPF moisturiser.

I usually leave the eye shadow at home and instead throw on a little colourful eyeliner – green is my current favourite.

And finally I good coat of blackest black mascara. Currently I’m using Boots 17’s newest mascara: Back Lash. Which is great for adding volume and colour for wow eyes!

I’m using my Boots No7 BB lip balm to add a little colour and keep my lips moisturised.

What make-up do you wear in the summer heat?

[BEAUTY] Boots No7 BB Lips Beauty Balm


I’m not hugely great with lipsticks. I love to wear them but I forget to reapply them and end up bare lipped by the end of the day. Likewise, I usually forget to put lip balm on and end up with dry and cracked lips. So it’s something of a surprise that I’ve been using Boots No7’s BB Lip Balm religiously now for the past few weeks. I had seen it a few times and then decided to use my £3 voucher to treat myself. I bought the ballerina shade as it’s the most natural and it wouldn’t notice so much when I forgot to reapply!

It’s lovely and moisturising and the hint of colour is a nice addition. The added bonus of an SPF means that it will be perfect for holidays and sunnier days too. It’s almost like a lip-gloss but a little less sticky in consistency.

It comes in a wide selection of shades, with pinks, corals and reds. I’d recommend the nude ballerina shade for everyday use but a lovely bright shade for your summer holiday make-up bag. And right now, if you spend £5 in Boots, you’ll get a £3 off voucher. And, it’s also currently buy 1 get a 2nd half price on Boots No7 make-up – which you can take advantage of with your voucher. So you can get both a nude and a bright shade, or one for your handbag and one for your night stand!

Have you tried the Boots No7 Lips Beauty Balm yet?

[HOW TO] Pack For A Weekend In The Sun


If you’re fed up with the current absence of summer in the UK, you might be thinking about snagging a bargain flight to somewhere warmer. The costs can quickly add up once you start adding in baggage fares and so packing your hand baggage wisely will help to save the pennies.

I’ve picked out 10 pieces that are all you need to pack for four days away:

  • Sunglasses: the bigger, the better – either for hiding the signs of the night before or keeping your peepers protected
  • Playsuit: perfect for day-to-night
  • Roxy bikini: cos it’s not a holiday without one!
  • Jumper by Vero Moda: if the temperature drops a little in the evening you’ll need something to throw on – the mesh effect of this jumper also makes it ideal for throwing over a bikini at the pool
  • Kaftan: can be worn by the pool or add wedges and statement earrings for an evening at a beach-side bar
  • Earrings: update your daytime look for night time glamour with a sparkly pair of statement earrings
  • Wedges: for night time, add a little height with wedge heels
  • Vest: make it oversized and a vest can either be worn alone as a mini dress or with your shorts for daytime activities
  • Shorts: what’s a holiday in the sun without a pair of shorts?
  • Flip flops: for daytime activities and on the beach, keep your shoes flat and functional – but that doesn’t mean they have to be boring!

What do you pack for a weekend away?