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I had just barely parted the pages of my book and settled into the semi-uncomfortable bus seat when I noticed the reason for delay in departure — my roommate had sprinted up the road barefoot with heels tucked in her arm. Fumbling for her Hokie passport as she breathlessly hopped onto the bus, I sighed and closed my book while gently patting the empty seat next to me.
She had her hands full but was still all smiles.
“When were you supposed to be there?” I asked.
“Like 10 minutes ago…You know you should really write an article about the things women don’t think they need but actually do.”
After explaining her reasons, I realized she was totally correct, so here we are. As much as women like to think we have it all figured out, we are bound to be the one sprinting to catch up at some point. So, here’s how you can get ahead — be prepared for anything and everything with a few sleek essentials.
Photographs courtesy of Jason Hall of Blacksburg Photography.
1. A book for your morning commute
As easy as it is to plug in your headphones and fill your ears with a catchy tune, it’s similarly simple to slip into a new plot line, characters and scenarios with your imagination as your guide. Read a book. Reading is one of those things we can secretly love more than anything but never make time for in our busy lives. (Which is understandable because textbooks can make us forget what pleasure reading is..) The best way to incorporate reading into your routine is on your morning commute, applicable for public transit users. Unfortunately, if you bike or drive to campus, this is best avoided. Some recommended reads include Adulthood Is a Myth and The Roommate Book, both offering advice and laughs for either “adulting” or living with roommates respectively.
Bonus* Read our article about The Art of Staying “Froomies.”
2. A water bottle, always
The importance of water should be shocking to no one. With benefits like maintaing a healthy fluid balance, controlling caloric intake, keeping your skin looking great and energizing muscles according to WebMd — there is ample cause to drink up! With all the ambling around campus, you need a bottle that is spill proof and stylish. The best way to do this is find a bottle that does both, like the CamelBak – Forge Divide Mug. This is no ordinary bottle. With a leak proof cap and the intention of also holding tea and coffee, this is what you didn’t know you needed.
3. Where there is need for beverage, there is also need for Koozie.
There’s nothing worse than too many cups and never knowing which one is yours. Cue Flying Colors Apparel – Koozies. Call it impatience or risk aversion, but I’d rather not spend time guessing which drink is mine. It’s all about making it easy, and now I know the delight of koozies.
4. That extra beauty boost
Of course, there’s no substitute for inner beauty. But, if we are talking about a few fun little treats to boost your day, then let’s look at a few options.
For the face:
A post-exam face mask
Her Campus VT knows the importance of treating youself, as indicated in A College Girl’s Pamper Routine, but let’s get into a few scenarios. Say you just got out of a late exam, mentally and physically— you’re exhausted, so take the time to pamper yourself with a face mask. With unique beauty benefits from healing botanicals such as avocado, oatmeal, cucumber, charcoal, black sugar and apple cider vinegar — you’re sure to make a full recovery from that accounting exam.
Personally, I use the Feeling Beautiful Charcoal & Black Sugar Polishing Mask whenever I feel my skin is looking dull.
To have fun getting ready in the morning
In another scenario, let’s say you make the conscious effort to listen to Beyoncé while getting ready in the morning. Well, prior you didn’t intend on putting on makeup, but something about Bey makes a woman want to doll up. So, if you’re already doing it, choose something that will let the impact linger past the fade out of Formation. Whether you knew it or not through experience: find mascara, eyeliner and lipstick with staying power and the boldness to strut across the Drillfield like it is your runway.
- Shop some products here: Freeman Beauty masks, Rimmel London – 24HR Supercurler Mascara, Colour Precise Eyeliner and The Only 1 Lipstick.
For the body:
Your signature scent
What’s the first thing you put on after the shower? For me, it’s perfume. Likely, you may have found your scent. But if you haven’t, you must discover the delight of fragrance samplers – you may not think you need you signature fragrace, but there’s joy in having others recognize it and lavish you in approval. By testing a fragrance, you save money and can experience fruity notes like mandarin and floral jasmines with minimal commitment.
A confidence boost
Of course, the best thing a woman can wear every day is confidence, but if you are in need of an extra boost – try a bra that shapes and lifts more than your typical bra. With side shape and a push-in design, Maidenform offers smooth comfort and support. I can think of numerous scenarios where posture plays into my overall demeanor, so what harm is a boost here and there to aid confidence?
Likewise, many college women dismiss the idea of panty hose, thinking of a foreign garment from generations past. However, women wishing to present a more professional look for a business event in Pamplin or a job interview, may look into stepping into a pair. Feeling confident in a professional setting is crucial to performing your best and the right pair will visibly tone and smooth your legs. And as the temperatures are dropping, panty hose adds that extra sheer layer between you and the unknown.
- Shop some product here: Maidenform – Maidenform Love the Lift® Push Up & In Satin Demi Bra OR Maidenform Love the Lift® Push Up & In Lace Demi Bra, L’eggs – Sheer Energy Sheer Panty Medium Support and Juicy Couture – I ♥ JUICY COUTURE Fragrance Sample.
5. That emergency fix
The funny thing here is women know they have periods and have to deal with such inconveniences each month, but the problem is what to use. There’s the women who have used one brand consistently for their entire womanhood, there’s the women who buy whatever and there’s the women who are always seeking something different and more convenient. If you are in the third group, consider The Diva Cup, which is a menstrual cup that collects rather than absorbs, allowing it to be worn up to 12 hours all day and overnight. Convenience and cost is highly important.
Jumping off of that, another popular dinner and first date conversation is yeast infections, (only kidding). Contrary to popular belief, they are treatable without a prescription, with Monistat as the #1 Doctor Recommended OTC yeast infection treatment.
“Safety first” is a common slogan that has permeated through generations of watchful parents. But when our protectors are gone and we are on our own, who’s going to be looking out for us? Let’s be realistic, women face more threats because of perceived weakness and stigma and that has further ingrained a sense of caution, especially when alone. Luckily for VT students, Virginia Tech has a staggering 89 blue light safety phones spread throughout campus and the surrounding area, with connection to the campus 911 emergency operator. But what if you aren’t within this vicinity? Wearsafe is a wearble call button that enables you to click a button and be connected to your loved ones, providing location and audio recording and a private chat to ensure help can be delivered in the case of emergency. Wearsafe includes the Wearsafe Adventure Box, including Wearsafe Tags and 6 months of Wearsafe service.
As a runner, the added peace of mind of wearing this is beneficial for myself and my loved ones. Since Virginia Tech is a host for recreational activity, with runners, bikers and everything in between — the Wearsafe is the perfect addition to extend those runs a little further.