7 Steps to Curating the Perfect Gym Bag with EVERY Base Covered

everything gym bag essentials
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I’d tried everything. The nylon totes un-precious enough to toss sweaty gear in, the fancy bags in sizes so huge you could fit a small to medium sized dog. And yet still, my efforts to leave the house with one bag, ready to take me from work to the gym and even back again, have failed me time and time again. Sure, it’s what one may call a princess problem–not pressing by any real standards, but the fact is, buying your eighth mini deodorant in a month is a pain. So, when I set out on my Detox Diaries adventure, I decided to create the perfect gym bag–one fit for, well a princess.

Here’s what it takes:

1. Amped up tech-cessories and hydration. I’m unaware of brand that makes a more perfect water bottle than S’well (and trust, I’ve tried many). A S’well bottle keeps your water cold for 24 hours, or your tea hot for 12. Not to mention the sleek design. I packed a mini in one of their new styles, Blanc Crocodile.

And I’m just a little obsessed with those Frends mini headphones with their mother-of-pearl design and white leather. Small enough for the gym, stylish enough for the streets.

2. The right undies. Because sweaty cotton is never chic. As we would only wear the best wicking-fabric leggings to spin in, I deemed undergarments step up to the same level, and while a few sportswear brands make “workout undies,” nothing is quite on the level of Dear Kates, a supercool by-women-for-women brand. Find the Hazel Sport Thong here.

dear kates

3. And socks. Because it’s the little things. As mentioned, I’d made Exhale’s Central Park South location my haven, so naturally I picked their special edition breast cancer month barre socks, with $2.00 from every purchase going to breast cancer research to “sock it to cancer!” 

dear kates eve lom.

In the spirit of giving back, I kept all my socks philanthropic thanks to Bombas, a sock company I recently discovered and fell in love with. Bombas works with a 1:1 model with nonprofit Hannah’s Socks to donate a pair for each pair purchased, because, little did I know, that “socks are the number one most requested clothing item at homeless shelters.” But they also pack a high-quality punch for fitness-snobs–special blister tabs, which I’ve learned the hard way are a necessity. Try their ankle socks, you won’t regret it. You can see my pink ones peeking out of my tote.

4. Someplace organized for those sweaty unmentionables. Curating a super gym bag is all about efficiency. Travel brand Flight 001 makes it easy with their gym gear bag. It looks like a simple pouch, until you unzip and discover a lightweight backpack with individual compartments for your sneaks and more.

closeup gbe

5. Your own personal glamsquad/dermatologist. (In a perfect pouch, of course.) Sweat can lead to skin imperfections which makes for a very unglamorous and unwanted side effect to your hard work kicking-ass at the barre, on the bike, or wherever (you do you). 

The first thing your power-pouch calls for is excellent skincare, always and forever one of my favorite categories. 

The first necessity is Jillian Wright’s new Breakout Blocker. Breakout Blocker helps to reduce redness and bacteria build up with probiotics, Chinese Herbs and tea tree oil. It’s light weight and absorbent so you don’t feel slick or overly greasy after a strenuous workout. It’s non-irritating and helps brighten your skin with plant-based brighteners.

exhale bag  eve lom travel

Eve Lom’s minis, sold in a travel set, are truly compact and make sure the sweat is washed away even in the least glamorous of locker rooms.

malin : mio

The nicest, freshest smelling (eucalyptus!) , and natural (no aluminum here) deodorant via apothecary-chic brand Malin + Goetz and Mio’s Workout Wonder cooling cream for aching muscles if you’ve pushed yourself extra hard–or just ’cause.

6. Emergency hair touchups via Drybar. I picked the appropriately named Detox dry shampoo in it’s mini form, and an adorable yellow mini-brush (for those times when your sweaty hair is really just unpresentable), but a fuller set (with shampoo + conditioner) can be found here.

7. And–pictured above–the best facial wipes in existence via Koh Gen Do for a luxe refresh or just a rush out the door & Tata Harper’s new lip/blush double for a very quick dab of color.

Did you get all that? When I was finally done collecting (I’d gotten very excited and stowed everything away until I was sure the collection was complete) I have to say, I was pretty self-satisfied. This collection truly covers all your bases. Go forth and sweat, pretty lil things.

Read more of the Detox Diaries here.