I’ve been traveling with a carry-on for the past year, with each trip extending for more than a week. Traveling lightly is an amazing thing once you’ve tried it, especially if your trip entails several cities or perhaps even countries. You wouldn’t want to go around dragging a big bag, unpacking and packing again from each place to the other.

I understand that most of us like packing more, just to give themselves various options, but did you know that you end up wearing only 50-60% of the clothes you get with you?

Don’t worry, you can still have many options to pick from and look fashionable whilst packing smartly and lightly on your next summer trip.

1. Have a list of the basic staples you should pack: bras, panties, pajama, medicine bag, swimsuits, creams, makeup…etc. These items usually take very little space in your suitcase when added as the very first layer.

2. Make another list of the items you want to pack, and I’ll give you an example of how to do this one. Let’s say I’m traveling for 7 days. That probably means I’ll need around 14 outfits as a whole, as you normally consume two outfits per day. First off, pack bottoms which you can mix and match with different tops. I usually pack 2-3 dresses, 2 shorts which I wear more than once, 2 skirts, and one pair of jeans. That pair of jeans is also the one I travel with, to make sure it doesn’t take tons of space within my bag. Now it’s time for the tops, which have to be divided into two categories; ones for the mornings and then fancier ones for evenings. Go for 2-3 fancy tops, you won’t need more than that, and the rest (I’d say 4-5) should be tops that you’re comfortable going to the beach, sightseeing or strolling down the city in.

3. If you don’t normally wear it, don’t think that you will during your summer vacation. You generally go for items you’re more comfortable in.

4. When packing, don’t just fold clothes and add them on top of one another, that would probably fill your suitcase much faster. Instead, roll clothes and press with every layer to save up on space.

5. Now let’s talk shoes, you won’t need more than 3 pairs, and the ones I take with me are: a pair of sandals and/or flip-flops, a ballerina and sneakers. Roll each pair in a plastic bag, and add them to the side of your suitcase, as you’ll save up on space that way. One last tip, wear the heaviest or bulkiest of them while you’re traveling to avoid packing it.

6. Your hair-straightener should also be squeezed into one of the four sides of your suitcase.

7. Don’t over-pack accessories or makeup, just go for the simple pieces that would do the trick, and perhaps include just one statement piece. The accessories I get with me include a cuff, one simple necklace, another statement one, my watch and an anklet.

8. You will never need more than 2 bags for going out, go for the smaller ones with basic colors and perhaps designs, they would match everything.

In case you’ve decided to go for a carry-on and I’ve managed to convince you, here are a few things you have to know:

1. You won’t be able to pack scissors. A way around that is getting a nail file.

2. The liquids you have, cannot exceed 150 ml each. If your beauty items are more on the bulky side, you could always add them into smaller boxes or mini containers.

That’s it, happy vacationing!

Main Image Credits: Instagram @anastasija