Chances are you know what lipstick or mascara you like to carry with you, so our list of the top five purse essentials for women skips the makeup advice. After all, women make up almost 49 percent of the American workforce (and that number is climbing), so our suggestions for what to put in a purse are designed to keep you on the go and allow you to focus on what matters—getting work done. Whether you’re a CEO, a stay-at-home mom, an artist or a student, your work matters and these essential purse items will make sure nothing gets in your way.
Stick to the Plan
Gone are the days of oversized planners designed to live on your desk. There are numerous compact day planners that will fit in your purse, from Moleskine to Passion Planner. Never miss an appointment, play date or scheduled massage again. Bonus points if your planner comes with an attached pen, which can also come in handy.
You never know where your day (or night) will take you, so it’s a good idea to keep a phone charger close to ensure you never miss an email, text or photo op. Alternatively, you can invest in wearable tech—a purse or bag that will charge your phone automatically, marrying fashion with function.
Store Your Files the Portable Way
Small enough to clip onto your keychain or slide into your purse’s inner pocket, a USB flash drive can save the day when you're traveling or giving a presentation out of the office or in the classroom.
When You Need to Keep Your Hair in Check
Sometimes you need to roll up your sleeves…or put your hair up. Ideal for the mid-day yoga class or for when you’re hunched over a pile of paperwork, hair ties are essential for every woman on the go (unless you have a pixie cut, then maybe not). Even if you don’t end up using it, you can be the hero when one of your friends or colleagues asks for one.
Keeping Track of It All
Never lose your purse again with the help of Cube Tracker, a Bluetooth tracker and easy-to-use-app that helps you find everyday items quickly. Simply attach the Cube to your purse and ping it via Bluetooth from your phone to find it in an instant. Cube Tracker also comes with Crowd Find functionality that allows you send a notification to an entire Cube network, so they can help you look for your lost item. After all, what’s the point of purse essentials without a purse?
Erica Garza is an author and essayist from Los Angeles. Her writing has appeared in TIME, Health, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Women's Health and VICE.