How to Pack for Mexico in a Carry On

How to Pack for Mexico

Happy Monday!

Some of you may know that I am in Mexico {follow along via Instagram to see snaps from my trip!}. When Paolo and I began packing we couldn’t decide if we should check a bag or not … ok … I was the problem. We couldn’t decide if I was capable of packing for 7 days in a carry on. Well, challenge accepted {because who wouldn’t rather spend that $50 on a new dress?!}. I have decided to share my tips and tricks how to pack for Mexico in a carry on!

Decide on a Color Scheme

If you are actually going to pack Picture Perfect outfits for 7 days … in a carry on … there needs to be a method to your madness. So choose a color scheme that all of your looks can be accessorized with. I chose ‘Gold’. I knew I wanted to rock these amazing Flash Tattoos {c/o} on the beach and I am kind of obsessed with all things Gold right now. So my decision was easy. I also included, a gold belt, gold cross body purse, gold jewelry, and Nude wedges with gold details in my bag. By choosing a color scheme I can keep my accessories needed to a minimum to leave room for more clothes!

Dresses, Rompers, and Shoes

About a month ago, I began to ‘seriously’ shop all of my favorite boutiques end of season clearance.  I kept my search to dresses and rompers, because they don’t take up a lot of space and can easily be accessorized. I packed a dress for each night {plus some} along with day dresses/cover ups/shorts/crops/white pants {just in case}/and work out clothes … and yes there is still space for shoes!

Shoes can get a bit tricky to fit, especially wedges. If you can’t fit all of the pairs you desire {and your boyfriends suitcase is full} wear the ‘largest’ pair to the airport to free up space. I packed a total of 4 pairs : wedges / dressy leopard flats / tennis shoes / jack roger sandals. I would have loved to pack more, but, this was the bare minimum to get by for the week.

Guess what … there is still extra room!

Makeup & Beauty Products

A few Christmas’ back, my sweet sister gifted me a Hanging Organizer from Vera Bradley. I travel frequently for work and this has saved my life! There is a compartment for makeup / jewelry / odds && ends. Which makes organization on the road and in-between travel weeks seamless! However, for this trip, I did got through my makeup / beauty products previously packed and removed anything I don’t use on a daily bases {to save space}.

If you are anything like me, you can’t use hotel shampoos/soaps etc. Before you get the wrong idea, I really would love to be able to use their products … but my hair and skin do not play well with new products, so I have no choice but to pack my own. I re-use travel size bottles/sprays. Target also has a great selection of travel sized items {toothpaste / lotion / face wash etc.}. I always re-stock these before a trip.


With my parting words, I want to express how important it is to not alter your skin care routine while traveling. Especially, if you are flying and changing temperatures drastically. You can never be sure how your skin will react to different water / soaps used for hotel sheets and towels, but, Airplane air and pressure changes are the worst for your skin. I am sure you have felt that dried-out-bloated feeling after getting off of a plane. Just imagine what your skin is actually going through. This is why it is so important to continue your regular skin-care routine with your usual products. It will help restore your skin back to normal.

Last point {I promise} … if you are headed somewhere southern and very warm, you will most likely be layering on the sunscreen {hello clogged pores}. Yes, you can find sunscreen that is dermatologist approved etc. etc., but let’s be honest, you are putting it on your face with your hands that may not have been sanitized recently … recipe for disaster. How to combat this … a CLARISONIC! Yes, use your Clarisonic each and every night {charge it up before you take off}.

Well this ended up way longer than I intended! I would love to know your tips and tricks for packing for vacation! I’ll be back here in a week.

“Adiós and vaya con Dios

Yeah I’m leaving GA”


    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:05 pm

      Thank you so much Ivete! It was a blast!

    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:06 pm

      Punta Cana in January … oh my that sounds so much fun! I hope you have the time of your life!

    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:06 pm

      Thank you lovelies!

  1. November 12, 2014 / 12:49 pm

    I am very impressed by your packing strategy – very helpful! Hope you are having a fabulous trip!!

    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:08 pm

      Thank you sweet girls!!

    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:08 pm

      Thank you so much sweet girls!

  2. November 13, 2014 / 1:07 pm

    These are incredibly helpful tips. My husband insists that we only travel with carry-ons, and I usually stuff it to the brim. I love your color scheme idea….brilliant!

    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:10 pm

      Thank you Nicole! My Dad ended up bringing a ton of gifts for us, so we were sent home with a checked bag … and it was lost. It was a ‘fun’ process … so I completely agree with your Husband!

  3. November 14, 2014 / 11:49 pm

    Love this post! I just went to Mexico and I could not agree more with your packing suggestions. I always think taking a carry on is the best option, because then you do not waste time waiting for your bag to arrive.


    • Monique
      November 17, 2014 / 10:11 pm

      Thank you Chelsea! I completely agree! I hope you had a great time in Mexico too!

  4. Jaime
    August 25, 2015 / 3:10 pm

    What do you all suggest for bringing items back from Mexico? If we pack everything in our two carry on’s should we bring an extra bag to bring items back in? Tips would be helpful!