How to Travel Lightly and Still Look Your Best

How to Travel Lightly and Still Look Your Best

I love to travel for many reasons, but perhaps one of my favorite aspects of travel is that it shifts my perspective and offers an opportunity to reflect on not only where I’m going in life, but how far I’ve already come.

As life gets full, it’s easy to always focus on the horizon ahead, and anticipate where we’re headed next. However, I invite you to reflect on how far you’ve already traveled, and how much you’ve already accomplished in this world.

You are an amazing human being, and it’s so important to check in with the magnitude of your incredible journey from infant, to adolescent, to adult.

Do you realize how much you’ve grown, both physically and emotionally? Think about that miracle for a moment.

You’ve “traveled” from being an infant who couldn’t speak, to an adult who can read this message, and share it with others. You’ve “traveled” a great distance from where you were just one year ago. You’ve learned so much, accomplished so much, and become so much!

So as you enjoy my practical “travel” tips below, I invite you to take in the beautiful perspective of how far you’ve already traveled.

Do you love to travel, but hate packing? Does it sometimes feel like you need two extra suitcases every time you leave town? Do you ever say to yourself, “Next time I’m packing less stuff!”?

You’re not alone. So many of my clients come to me with this same challenge. In this blog post, I’m going to share my best tips for making your next packing experience much easier and lighter.

Tip 1 – Create a Wardrobe Travel Log

You probably know which of your current, everyday outfits are your favorites right? These are your “staples,”  or the outfits that you seem to pull out again and again because they make you look great and feel great.

Take a photo of these outfits and add them to a travel log. Organize them by season, occasion, or dress code.  Then, when you’re getting ready for your next trip, you can check your itinerary, and plan ahead to make sure these items are clean and ready to pop in the suitcase. If you had a few of these “staple” items for various occasions ready to go, you will likely cut your packing time down significantly.  

Tip #2 – Packing Begins When You Shop!

If you are a frequent traveler, before you purchase a new clothing item, ask yourself how you can use it as a part of your travel outfits. Can you repurpose this for a few different occasions and outfits? Is it easy to pack? Can you use this item with different accessories and shoe combinations?

Of course, if you love the item, you can still buy it even if it doesn’t fit into your travel plans, but if you want to make the packing process easier and more fun, I highly recommend thinking ahead the next time you’re in the store!

Tip #3 – Always Have a “Column of Color”

If you’ve been around my campus for a while, you’ve heard me talk about “column of color” a lot. It’s a basic necessity of any outstanding wardrobe and refers to having color on the top that matches the color on the bottom.

Whether that means choosing a blouse with matching pants or having a blue blazer that closely matches the blue in your eyes, you want to create this consistent “column of color” and pack accordingly. By doing so, you will always have a solid base of options to build around. If it’s a formal occasion, you can wear a layer on top of your base “column” to give the outfit some glitz. If you’re headed to a casual affair, perhaps you can layer a scarf or shawl on top of your base “column.”

Bonus Tip!!


Packing and traveling can be enjoyable experiences, especially if you implement the three tips above. Instead of dreading the experience or waiting until the last minute, try approaching this process with the same level of play as I always recommend you use in your closet.

Enjoy the journey of travel from the moment you shop to the moment you unpack your suitcase after returning from the airport.

Until next time, happy travels!

In love and S.T.Y.L.E.,

About Liana Chaouli

President and Founder of Image Therapists International Inc. and a globally recognized thought leader, bestselling author, style expert and educator. Ms. Chaouli, provides transformation through the empowerment of wardrobe. She has spent two decades consulting CEOs, celebrities, and political figures on matters of self-image. As the developer of Image Therapy™, she works closely with her clients on their personal and professional presence using analysis, physical appearance, and education to adjust attitudes affecting self-esteem and overall sense of worth.