Processed with VSCOcam with p5 preset

Do you consider your purse an essential part of your wardrobe? Many women do. You probably have your life in there, from your cell phone to your house keys. It can be difficult to decide what to carry with you each day. Unless you want to lug around a giant bag that hurts your shoulder, you may want to consider paring down a bit. Here are five must-haves you need in your handbag.


A pen is an indispensable tool to keep on you at all times. You never know when you may need to make a note for later, write down an idea or add to your shopping list. Getting caught in a work meeting without one can be embarrassing. Having a pen on hand is also helpful if your boss or co-worker finds themselves in need of one. You’ll save the day and score points. 

In addition, pens can be used as an impromptu letter opener or to hold your hair in a bun. You might not want to carry your favorite or most expensive pen in your purse in case it gets lost or someone forgets to return it.

Dental Floss

How many times has a friend or a kind stranger let you know you have something stuck between your teeth? That moment can be quite frustrating if you don’t have an implement to remove the food. It can also be painful. 

Dental floss is compact and easy to carry around, so it makes sense to keep some in your purse. You can choose the traditional kind, but you may also want to consider dental floss picks for convenience. There are ways to organize your bag to keep track of little things like this so that they’re easy to find when you need them.

Lip Balm

Dry or chapped lips are such a bother. Nothing seems to make them feel better than a good lip balm. Once you’ve found the world’s best lip balm, you’ll want to be sure to stick one in the pocket of your handbag so you can reach for it as needed. If you’re like a lot of women, chances are good you’ve got one of your favorites stashed at home, in your car, and in your office as well.

Lip balm is one of those versatile items that can be used for a multitude of purposes. Use it to tame your eyebrows if they’re out of control. It can be a substitute for a lotion to soothe dry hands. It can also be a buffer between a blister and your shoe or help to release a stuck zipper.

Hand Sanitizer

Germs are everywhere. Carrying hand sanitizer with you at all times can be a real lifesaver. This is especially true in the time of Covid-19, as well as during cold and flu season. Using it throughout your day can help lessen the risk of picking up a virus through touching surfaces and can kill anything living in droplets that may have been sprayed within touching distance. 

You’ll want to rub some on your hands after coming into contact with things like the water cooler, break room refrigerator handle, or other high-touch items. A small bottle of hand sanitizer can also be your best friend if you should find yourself in a public restroom that’s out of soap.


Perhaps the most multi-tasking and useful thing you can keep in your handbag is a pack of tissues. They’re particularly needed if you suffer from allergies. You’ll definitely want them with you during the cold season. You’ll be glad you have them for those times the bathroom runs out of toilet paper. Tissues can serve as a napkin for your hands in a pinch or to wipe up spills on the fly. You might also want to blot your makeup before a meeting or lunch date. 

If you have children, it might be a good idea to carry two packs with you. Kids are constantly sniffly or sticky.

Having these must-haves in your handbag will come in handy and make your life easier. Keep them in mind when you decide to organize your purse. You can’t prepare for every unforeseen event, but keeping the essentials with you will go a long way.