please advise

Dear Wendi Mc-C: How Do I Organize My Rat’s Nest of a Purse?

What I do weekly.

Wendi McLendon-Covey isn’t just a comedian and performer. As we discovered in her What I Can’t Live Without, she’s a savvy shopper, too. Now, the GoldbergsBridesmaids, and Reno 911! actress is also a Strategist columnist, tackling your burning questions about what to buy and where to buy it. Welcome to Dear Wendi Mc-C.

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Dear Wendi Mc-C,

Despite my best efforts, my purse is a rat’s nest, and I live in fear of losing small things, like my keys and AirPods, in the mess. Any suggestions to help keep my bag organized?


Dear Overwhelmed,

In the movie Amélie, Amélie’s mother was so fastidious that she dumped out her purse once a week, vacuumed it, and put everything back in an orderly fashion. That’s me.

I can’t stand having a messy purse, and it makes me anxious to watch other people dig through their messy purses (especially if it’s an expensive designer bag! Don’t treat your Chanel like a trash can).

Here’s what I do — I’ll dump everything out and literally use a tiny vacuum cleaner inside my purse and my makeup bag. The Ushonk I found was made for computer keyboards, but it works perfectly for my weekly purse-cleaning ritual in a way that other vacuum cleaners are a bit too cumbersome to. Ushonk makes a USB-chargeable version, too, if you prefer.

As for storage, get yourself to Target right now and pick up a few makeup bags from Sonia Kashuk. They come in different colors, shapes, and materials, and are useful for so much more than just makeup.

These flatter, foliolike ones are good for iPads or Kindles, and even passports when you’re traveling.

I love the barrel-shaped case for things like chargers and cords because it’s got real structure.

The longer bag is handy for makeup brushes, mascaras, and eyeliners, or even just pencils and pens.

And I love the clear bags for makeup, so I find what I need quickly. This one comes with refillable bottles that are perfectly sized for TSA requirements, but there are clear bags for all kinds of other purposes, too. Your purse shouldn’t stress you out, so conquer the clutter, and conquer your LIFE.

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Dear Wendi Mc-C: How Do I Organize My Rat’s Nest of a Purse?