Like all of our question series we answer everything separately and don’t read each others answers till we’re all done writing – keeps it more fun that way.
Here we go!
Kate: Em and I love reading “what’s in our purse” blogs so we thought we’d do one of our own! For me, I especially love to know what other people with chronic illness rely on and what products they love, so it’s a win-win if you like to read those things too!
Regardless of which purse I switch to, these are the 5 items that always stay with me!
Kate’s purse items:
1. Eye drops. – I have chronically dry eyes, which is pretty common with auto-immune issues. Also, I wear contacts (I have been since I was 15) so that tends to make my dry eyes even worse. I like to use Target’s up & up brand lubricating + rewetting eye drops. They work really well and they’re pretty inexpensive (under $2). I like buy a few bottles at a time to leave in different spots (purse, car, nightstand etc.)
2. Blood pressure monitor. This might seem like an odd item to keep in my purse (especially if you’re not a spoonie) but this is probably one of my favorite and most loved items I carry around. Like many with POTS, I suffer from super low blood pressure and a crazy fluctuating heart rate. Before I was on the proper doses of medication (which I finally feel like I’m on now) my numbers would be so inconsistent and would change so quickly that I developed really bad anxiety. Taking my blood pressure and getting an accurate reading of where “ I stood” gave me a lot of comfort and ease of mind. I don’t take it nearly as often as I used to, but it’s a great tool to use to double check when I’m dipping.
Plus it has a memory log so I can show my doctors what my numbers have been when they ask at my appointments. I’ve gone through a few different brands and types of bp monitors throughout the years, but the Omron Digital Wrist Blood Pressure Monitor – 7 Series is my favorite one by far. It’s so small and sleek that I can fit it in most small purses and I have found it to be extremely accurate.
3. Nifty pill case. I found this awesome pill case by Kestrel at Nordstrom Rack about 2 years ago (I’m not sure if they still sell it -I couldn’t find a link) and I knew I just had to have it. The cute outer case it comes in makes it super discrete – a feature I absolutely love. I used to carry around multiple medication bottles in my purse. Not only did that take up a lot of room, I hated that it looked like I had a mini pharmacy with me at all times. I use the generic longer looking Monday-Sunday pill cases for my nighttime and morning medications, but this smaller one is great for day time and for those extra pills you need to bring with you on vacations.
4. Concealer. I feel like I have permanently dark circles under my eyes. The fact that I rarely get in a good night’s sleep probably isn’t helping the problem, but at least with this awesome Double Duty Beauty Shape Tape Contour Concealer by Tarte, I’ve found a solution for hiding that. It’s hands down the best one I’ve found, it lasts all day and comes in a wide range of tones. It’s a little pricier than I usually like to spend on make-up but it’s defiantly worth every penny.
5. sunglasses. If you follow our Instagram account I’ve posted a few times about the fact that I suffer from chronic migraines. I even get Botox every 10 weeks to try to cut down on symptoms. I’m very sensitive to light so wearing sunglasses is a huge must for me when I’m outside. I got these Ray-Ban polarized aviators as a present a few years back and they’re still one of my favorite pairs.
Em’s purse items:
1. I have chronically super chapped lips so I always keep some lip balm with me. Currently using this Caudalie one which is great and smells like vanilla.
2. Gum probably beats out all my other items as my most important staple. Nausea is, unfortunately, a symptom I deal with from time to time and peppermint gum always gives me some relief.
3. I’ve mentioned a few times what a fan of I am Ultima. It’s a product I use daily and definitely feel the difference when I am without it. I always keep a couple of the individual packets stashed with me for convenience. My go to is grape!
4. I never take tons of makeup with me, but something I do carry is a concealer for touch ups throughout the day. This one by Maybelline is what I’ve been using lately, it’s super easy to apply and a little under my eyes half way through the day goes a long way.
5. Much like my big attachment to gum, I always keep peppermint oil with me (everything else is negotiable except these two items!). Whether I’m dealing with nausea, headaches, or a tight chest, peppermint oil is pretty much my answer to everything. I push this product on everyone because it’s something that gives me instant relief and has been my lifesaver many, many times. My favorite brand is Doterra; I’ve tried a bunch of different oils and feel this product is superior to others. I usually keep lavender with me as well as it relaxes me when I’m feeling particularly stressed or anxious.