When you’re staring into the void of an empty suitcase on your bed, it’s hard to know where to start—or how to prevent one of those Home Alone moments, when you only remember you forgot something important, like leggings or contact lenses, as your plane takes off. Fortunately, Danielle Synder, co-founder of fashion favorite accessories line Dannijo, has a foolproof method for preventing that from happening. “Because I travel so much, I actually have a list of all my essentials,” she says. That way, you don’t land in Mexico and realize your deodorant is still sitting on your dresser.
She and her sister/business partner, Jodie Snyder Morel, travel at least once a month for work. Besides bouncing between Los Angeles and New York City on the reg, they’re often jetting off to Ibiza, Paris, Cuba, and other hot spots around the globe to draw inspiration for their designs. Think: chunky cuffs, door-knocker earrings, and ornate necklaces. So how exactly do they manage to pack all their statement-making must-haves?
Scroll down for Dannijo designer Danielle Snyder’s best packing tips.
Start with a little vacation visualization
After her essentials are pulled aside, Synder really gets down to business. “The way I decide what to bring is by mentally going through my trip, day by day,” she says. “After I decide on what I’m going to wear each day, then I add in some extras, like the perfect white tee or my denim jacket that works for day or night,” she says. “Last, I add in items that are related to activities I’m doing, like my swimsuit and sunscreen.”
“I add in some extras, like the perfect white tee or my denim jacket that works for day or night.”
When it comes to jewelry, Synder says she doesn’t typically plan out what she’s pairing with her outfits—unless it’s a special occasion, like a friend’s wedding. “The great thing about Dannijo is that there are statement pieces that work in any environment, day or night,” she says, citing the doma cuff and shelton earrings as two of her favorites.
Now the big question: How does she get all her carefully chosen outfits into her suitcase? “I start with pants, laying half the pant legs over the edge of the suitcase and then toward the end of packing, I fold it back over so it holds everything together,” Snyder says. Genius, right? For shirts and dresses that wrinkle easily, she carefully folds them, but for basic tees, she rolls ’em up to save space.
Then comes perhaps the hardest thing to pack: shoes! Snyder’s pro tip: Put them around the edges of your suitcase and in the corners. As for her other beloved accessories—jewelry of course—she keeps it all in her carry-on. She’s not risking any chance of them getting crushed or broken.
Her low-maintenance travel beauty plan
Looking inside Snyder’s beauty bag, you can tell her routine is pretty minimal. But she does have a few go-tos: “Dry shampoo and lip balm are my two travel musts,” she says. “Lip balm is great because flying can be so drying. And I like the dry shampoo because then I don’t have to pack shampoo and conditioner, and also then I don’t have to wash my hair every day.” If she has extra room, she packs a Bumble & Bumble Surf Spray, too.
Her skincare routine is equally easy. Image Skincare’s Ageless Total Pure Hyaluronic Filler, Hydrating Anti-Aging Serum, and Daily Ultimate Protection Moisturizer are her faves. As for fragrance, she’s all about Blanc De Courreges. For makeup, she relies on two staples: red lipstick and an eyelash curler. “I love a good eyelash curler,” she gushes. “It makes you feel more awake, which is essential after a red eye.”
Overall, her packing philosophy is pretty simple: Bring items you know work and keep your options versatile. Then, you can focus on something more fun, like your trip!
While you’re perfecting your packing, check out these smart, flight attendant-approved carry-on hacks. And if you take a lot of supplements, here’s how to travel with them.