Grooming & Style

How to Pack a Dopp Kit

by Rebecca McCusker January 27, 2019
ReadHow to Pack a Dopp Kit Image courtesy of Jack + Mulligan

If there’s one thing that can make your life easier, it’s preparedness. Whether you’re jetting off for a weekend trip, staying the night at your in-law’s, or wanting to stay fresh during your commute to the office, everyone can benefit from keeping a portable catch-all for daily necessities.

Enter the Dopp kit. This little bag of wonders makes it easy to tend to basic hygiene when you’re away from home.

What is a Dopp kit?

Otherwise known as a toiletry bag, a Dopp kit is a small bag (often made of waxed canvas or leather) that’s small enough to fit into a travel tote or a car’s center console. For usability’s sake, the Dopp kit shouldn’t be much larger than a pencil case.

Instead of toiletry items floating around a large tote or roller bag, a Dopp kit keeps your small hygiene items in one little spot so they’re easy to find.

What to include in a Dopp kit

Think of the Dopp kit as a first-aid kit—but for daily hygiene practices. Here’s a list of essentials that might save you from bad breath, hangnails, chapped lips, and other minor “emergencies.”

 A pocket comb and tweezers
Combs take up virtually no space, and it’s worth keeping one around for those hat-hair days. Tweezers come in handy for plucking unwanted hair, sure, but you also never know when you’re going to have to pluck a tick off yourself while on the trail.

A nail clipper and file
Nothing’s more annoying than a hangnail. Don’t be left stranded without proper accoutrements. (Also, on the off chance you like to strum the guitar, you probably know how difficult it is to strike a chord with long fingernails.)

A razor
Safety razors are perfect for Dopp kits because the razor pops off, making it easier to fit in small spaces.

It might be hard to find deodorant in travel sizes, but it’s worth the hunt for a comfier, fresher armpit.

Lip balm
Dry air is everywhere. Be prepared.

Body wash
Body wash often comes in tiny travel sizes, so pack sparingly and remember that a little bit goes a long way. Don’t forget to tighten that cap!

Shampoo + conditioner
When you’re on the road, you don’t need to bring huge bottles of shampoo and conditioner. Grab yourself a small travel vial or, better yet, grab a small palm-sized vial of dry shampoo. You don’t have to wash your hair every day, and dry shampoo can keep your hair looking fresh when you haven’t washed it for a while.

A foldable toothbrush and toothpaste
This one’s good to keep with you at all times so you can freshen up before an important work meeting, get that clean feeling between flights, or get minty fresh on a date.

Ear plugs
You never know if you’ll end up next to a chatty couple on a red-eye flight or if you’ll need to shut out the world to focus in an open-space office environment.

Necessary medications
Whether you take medications for a health condition or know you’ll regret not packing ibuprofen for hangovers, it’s important to remember which medications to take along.

When packing your Dopp kit, think through your daily routine and only take what you absolutely need. With one in tow, you’ll realize how much easier it is to stay fresh and clean.

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