Monday, August 1, 2011

7 Things Every Intern Should (And Shouldn't!) Carry In Their Bag

Happy Monday Edsters!

I’ve come a long way since my first (rainy) day at the Fashion Mag, and have learned tons about the fashion industry and New York City. Since this is my first internship, I came in not knowing what to expect at all. Now ten weeks have passed, and I’ve put together a list of essential items for the on-the-go intern. Many of you are on the search for your fall internship – refer back to this list once it starts!

My first week on the job, I carried enough items in my purse to fill a carry-on suitcase. Seriously, I would lug around my entire make-up case, jewelry, an umbrella, poncho (what was I thinking??), flats, a book, magazines, IPod, cell phone and charger, wallet, allergy and headache medication, contact lens solution, my glasses, band-aids, and tons of snacks, among other odds and ends.

Carrying all that around got old very quickly. Here’s all you need in your purse or messenger bag to survive a 12-hour day of interning:

1) iPod: Whether your commute is an hour on the train or 5 minutes walking, a bit of music in the morning will get you pumped up for your day and mellow you out at night. Also useful for runs to photo shoots and designers on the other side of town. I skip the books and magazines because they take up too much space and I never actually get around to reading them.

2) Wallet: I need to flash my ID every. single. time. I walk into my building. I have literally left and returned 30 seconds later; the doorman still needs to see my driver’s license. Don’t forget this.

3) Cell phone: To stay in contact with your editors all day, and to read the Intern Diaries on your smartphone on your lunch break! Unless your phone has terrible battery life, you can probably skip the charger.

4) Headache meds and bandages: These items are First Aid basics, and will come in handy when your shoes rub you the wrong way or a headache unexpectedly attacks. I stopped carrying my allergy meds because I didn’t really need them, but if you’re on a certain medication than by all means take it with you.

5) Facial blotting papers: I used to carry around my entire makeup bag at first, but after my second week I stopped because at the Fashion Mag, there’s no need to wear any heavy makeup that requires touching up! The editors and assistants here are big on natural beauty. However, facial blotting papers remove mid-day shine, and I always have some in my bag.

6) Snacks: Maybe this is just me, but I am always hungry! Whole grain pretzels, grapes, baby carrots and celery sticks get me through my day.

7) Flats or comfortable shoes: If you’re not wearing flats to begin with, be sure to carry around a comfy pair (many interns wear ballerina flats, but personally these hurt my heels) to slip into in case you need to go on a run – your feet will thank you.

The other stuff I do without because honestly, it’s unnecessary. For example, while its good to be prepared, I’ve never lost a contact lens before, making my glasses a waste of space. Same with the extra jewelry choices. Why I ever felt the need to bring backup rings and bracelets is beyond me. However, my exception is the umbrella. I carry that rain or shine – I still have flashbacks of rainy week 1 of my internship.

What’s in your bag? The bare essentials, or a whole department store?


Fashion Intern


  1. I don't think I carry a department store, especially after reading what YOU bring. My essentials consists of:

    1. Keys - (Nail clipper and filer are attached to the keychain.)
    2. Wallet
    3. lipstick
    4. small compact mirror
    5. pepper spray - (I never leave the house without it.)
    6. book - (My commute from brooklyn to the office takes an hour, so I actually do get use out of that.)
    7. ipod
    8. cell phone
    9. hand lotion

    I think that's about it. One time I brought perfume but that was only because I had a date after work. Though I tend to shvitz like a crazy throughout the day so it wouldn't be a bad idea to make that a habit. Anyway, those are essentials. Everything I carry to work are the same things I carry every day. The only difference is the book.

  2. I just picked up those new Fast Flats, foldable flats that you can tuck into your purse without them taking up too much room. They don't have much of a sole, but they could be good if you just need a little break from your heels. Like you, I also always have my iPod with me, along with noise cancelling ear phones so that if I have a major assignment, I don't get distracted. Thanks for your advice!

  3. Oh yes! My fast flats!! I left that out. I also carry round my Dr. Scholl's Fast Flats.

  4. Fast Flats are amazing! I love them! So comfortable.