how to carry-on your entire beauty routine – TSA approved

We’re heading into the busiest travel season of the year and if you don’t want to scrimp on any of the necessaries in your beauty ritual because you can’t fit it in that TSA approved sized bag then I have a solution for you.  I’m going to tell you how  to get ALL of your liquid,gel and aerosol toiletries into the one TSA approved bag, no pairing down required!

Fit an entire regimen into one TSA approved carry on

If you’ve ever traveled by air during the Thanksgiving holiday, you know that the airport chaos can be maddening. The last thing you want to do is stand at the baggage carousel waiting for a bag to show up. Even worse? If you stand there and the bag doesn’t show up! Ugh! Carrying your luggage on seems to be a great alternative, but if you’re like me your beauty routine is heavy on the liquid, gel and aerosols and you don’t want to leave anything behind. 

I admittedly don’t travel by air that much, but recently needed to make a long weekend jaunt for a special event and I carried on for the first time. (gasp) I just never wanted to be bothered with it before.

These days it takes a lot more effort to look this naturally beautiful ;-). Well, seriously I have some skin issues that make my skin really sensitive and not all the time-tested products I use come in travel sized packaging. I also require a couple of prescriptions that come in larger tubes. Your beauty rituals may less than mine or you don’t mind pairing down for a few days, but if you want it ALL with you here are my secrets.

Fit all of your travel products into one TSA approved bag

this bag isn’t going to close anytime soon

Those little sample containers from your favorite cosmetics store!

Yep, it’s really that simple! I have cleaned out a few that I had brought home with samples in them. And I’m not too proud to say that I did begged a few empty containers from the store and you might be willing to do that too.


these daily face wash cloths are travel friendly

However, I’m afraid if we all start doing that, they’ll be on to us. So here is a link for some of the 3 gram sized and here is the one for the 5 gram ones. You may not be able to get 10 days worth into one container, but they are so small you could take  2 containers for the items you use more of. Don’t forget to label them! If you have a label maker… go crazy. If not? A Sharpie will do.    

Use sample containers to get all your toiletries in a TSA approved bag

I really have ALL of this AND more in that bag below with room to spare. Including, hair spray, texture spray, tooth paste, hair smoothing serum and mousse. You could even squeeze in that hand sanitizer rolling around in the bottom of your purse.

EVERY liquid item I need in one TSA approved bag, with room to spare

I hope you have a happy and safe holiday season, whether you’re traveling or staying home. And that if you decide not to check your bag, it arrives when you do.




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  1. Maureen

    I’m not sure how that met TSA guidelines. The bottles are not clear and they seem to exceed the volume requirements. Good tips for light traveling if you’re checking your bag but, what you pictured above might result in having to discard the containers. Also, things like toothpaste (in tubes) and mascara are considered liquids.

    • Paula

      Hi Maureen,
      I have never had any issue carrying on the quart sized bag with the travel-sized toothpaste and hairsprays and the small little sample-sized jars. All the bigger tubes and bottles were placed into the tiny sample containers, which hold enough for a long weekend getaway. Maybe I should have made it more clear in the photo (by photographing it next to a ruler or something) that the bag was quart-sized and TSA approved. 😉

      It’s a pretty good little travel hack to condense all the big things down so you can fit the travel-sized items and a full-sized tube of mascara if need be. Also, if I’m carrying on, I’ll often switch from my CC Foundation cream to a pan/powder makeup palette by Maskcara cosmetics. That way, I’m not carrying any additional liquids.

      Hugs and Happy Travels,

  2. Marijo

    I always use contact cases, which work really well and I’ve never had a problem with either TSA or with leaks! The sample containers are a great idea! Happy travels!

    • Paula

      Contact cases, BRILLIANT idea Marijo!

      All the best,

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