These Travel Makeup Bags Will Keep Your Beauty Essentials Secure and Organized

By Shauna Beni and Meaghan Kenny

16 Travel Makeup Bags That Will Keep Your Beauty Essentials Secure and Organized

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When it comes to packing beauty essentials, everyone has different preferences. Some focus on skincare, bringing along a haul of sunscreens , lotions, and serums. Others pack just about every compact, mascara , and cream they own (plus enough lipstick shades to match every outfit). Regardless of your must-haves, the right makeup bag is key to keeping cosmetics organized and safely stored away during your travels—and ensuring you don’t end up ruining all your things from spills and leaks in your suitcase .

Thankfully, there is an endless array of cosmetic bags to choose from. We've rounded up a list of the best travel makeup bags, which range in size from mini bags meant for an overnight stay to extra-large ones that will hold everything you need for an extended vacation. Wherever you're headed, they'll keep your most prized (and pricey) beauty essentials secure and safely tucked away. Keep scrolling to see a dozen-plus of our top travel makeup bags, and if you're looking for a new method for makeup removal, take a look at this editor-tested Grove Makeup Remover Towel .

This article has been updated with new information since its original publish date.

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If you’d like your makeup bag to function as a place to store all your beauty products even when you're not on vacation, or like to travel with a lot of makeup, we recommend a large catch-all like this Calpak toiletry bag . It comes in neutral hues like pink sand, black, and moss, and has multiple interior compartments—plus an exterior back pocket—to organize your different cosmetics. There's also a side handle, making it easier to tote back and forth when you need to.

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For travelers who have no desire to pack light, Calpak's oversized cosmetics case (closed, it's as big as a sheet of printer paper) will keep all your favorite products neat and visible. The clear makeup bag unzips fully so each side can lay flat, and has an extra mesh interior pocket to hold smaller items. Plus, a top handle makes for easy carrying or looping over a bathroom hook.

travel make up case

On the outside, this Béis bag looks like any other makeup bag; inside, it's obvious it was designed by someone who's traveled with a drugstore full of makeup once or twice. Inside, there's a larger-than-average compact mirror that slips out, a double-sided detachable brush holder to keep eye and lip brushes separate, and smaller compartments to store odds and ends, plus a spacious main compartment. Even better, the water-resistant lining makes it easy to wipe clean.

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If you're a fan of traveling with a color-coordinated or monogrammed luggage set , this cosmetic case is the one for you. The vintage-inspired bag is designed with a durable but lightweight shell exterior and is the perfect mini-match to the other Terminal 1 suitcases in the collection . It’s also small enough to pack inside of a suitcase but spacious enough to fit all your essentials. The internal pockets are a plus for keeping things like brushes, blush compacts, and lipsticks organized, while the top leather handle makes it easy to carry around in a hotel or Airbnb. Thanks to the zip-around outside closure, you won’t have to worry about any leaks or spills.

travel make up case

Without an organized cosmetic case, doing your makeup often involves rummaging around in a bag trying to find everything. This Lay-n-Go bag, though, is a dream come true. Instead of having to dump out all your products, the bag opens up by way of drawstrings, and can be laid out as a circle on any surface, allowing every product to be on display. When finished, pull the drawstring back together and watch it transform into the size of a clutch. It also comes with a zip pocket for storage and elastic brush loops, so nothing goes rolling off the bathroom counter.

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Available in a larger size as well, this small, sleek toiletry organizer with a carrying handle is ideal for quick one- to two-day getaways when you're packing the basics. The inside is completely lined with mesh and allows makeup products like foundation, setting spray, and serums to stand straight up in their own dividers, making them easier to find. There are also small loops on the side for mascara , lip gloss, or makeup brushes. 

travel make up case

Ideal for overnight or weekend stays, this Lululemon pouch is a bit smaller, providing you with just enough room to pack the essentials without being too heavy in your weekender bag . Made of water-repellent, recycled nylon, this pouch has a mesh interior pocket for items you want to keep separate, like your beauty sponge. Available in colors like raspberry, teal, pink, and black, all with the signature Lululemon logo, this is one makeup pouch you’ll have for years to come.

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An affordable option that's great for long family vacations , this Bagsmart hanging toiletry bag will fit all of your makeup products and toiletries in one. Hang it on the back of the bathroom door when you arrive and you’ll stay organized the rest of the trip. There are four separate clear sections that make finding what you need easy and prevent liquid products like shampoo and conditioner from spilling onto your makeup. Plus, the case itself has a top handle to make carrying it on-the-go even easier.

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Transparent bags are practical and efficient, allowing you to see what's inside while packing, and Paravel’s See-All vanity case offers all the style and space you need. This clear case makes finding the exact product you need easy, even smaller ones like eye creams or lip balm that typically fall to the bottom of the bag. Plus, the water-resistant (and eco-friendly) silicone coating means you don't have to worry about product spills.

travel make up case

If you’re already a fan of Away’s thoughtfully-designed luggage , the brand's makeup case definitely won’t disappoint. Not only does this one look chic sitting on your bathroom counter, it actually stores all of the makeup must-haves you'd need for an entire week's vacation. The main compartment is made of water-resistant nylon with transparent pockets that make finding what you need simple. My favorite part about this cosmetic bag is the detachable brush roll that snaps to the top lid to keep makeup brushes organized and give me easy access when I need them. The bag itself has a grab handle for easy carrying and a size that won't take up too much room in your suitcase .

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This lightweight cosmetic bag from MZ Wallace is the perfect size for any getaway . It’s large enough to store all of the makeup products you’d need for a week and features an interior pocket and lining to protect it against any leaks. When you’re not using it to pack your favorite makeup products, use it as an emergency kit to store beauty essentials at the office or in your gym bag.

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This roomy bag is machine washable, so there's no need to worry about the inevitable bronzer or powder that will appear inside—throw your makeup brushes right in. It’s easy to pile in extra products in there, too, making it an ideal bag for long weekend trips . It features two mesh side pockets inside for tweezers, a lipliner sharpener, or other small items you want to keep handy.

travel make up case

Sephora's cosmetic organizer really does let you pack it all. This spacious and sturdy organizer comes with two removable storage cubes ideal for products like eyeshadow, powder, and blushes. It also comes with a removable flat pouch for eyeliner or waterproof mascaras and small loops to keep your brushes in place. If you can never find what you’re looking for in your makeup bag, this one’s for you.

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This leather travel case set from Cuyana comes with two chic cases, one large bag that fits foundation, eyeshadow palettes, and skincare essentials as well as a smaller bag ideal for makeup brushes or tools like an eyelash curler. Both bags feature a microsuede interior that you can easily wipe clean after any accidental makeup spills.

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We love a hanging cosmetic bag, especially one that folds up as neatly as this Tumi travel case. With four separate compartments—three transparent, one detachable nylon pouch—it'll keep items separated and is roomy enough to act as both a Dopp kit and makeup bag. The case itself is made of easy-to-wipe-down nylon, and the handle is wrapped in leather trim.

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This petite cosmetic bag is great for day trips when you only need to bring a few essentials with you, like sunscreen , setting powder, and concealer for touch-ups. It fits easily into a tote bag or backpack without taking up too much room. Plus, its a temperature-stable bag with insulation, so your products will be protected even if you spend the day walking around in the heat—meaning you don't have to worry about melted lipstick.

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The 14 Best Makeup Bags to Keep Your Beauty Essentials Organized, Tested & Reviewed

You didn’t spend your paycheck on makeup just to have it squashed in your suitcase.

travel make up case

In This Article

  • Our Top Picks

Our Testing Process

What to keep in mind, your questions, answered, why shop with us.

InStyle/Leticia Almeida

Imagine: You’ve spent months, maybe even years, trying out way too many makeup products to count, and you’ve finally curated your perfect collection of formulas, shades, and tools. You’ve lined them all up across your vanity so beautifully that even a Sephora associate would envy the display. Then suddenly, you’re a week away from your vacation and reality hits: How can I get my makeup stash there safely? There is a simple solution: Makeup bags.

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  • lululemon Feeling Ready Mini Pouch Fleece is 24% off at
  • Dagne Dover Mila Toiletry Organizer is 25% off at
  • Sephora Collection Hanging Makeup Organizer Bag is 50% off at
  • Relavel Travel Large Makeup Train Case is 20% off at
  • Relavel Travel Small Makeup Train Case is 15% off at
  • Boacay Hanging Travel Toiletry Bag is 15% off at

Shop more makeup bags

By giving all your holy grail go-tos their own proper storage space within a designated makeup bag, you’ll be able to find what you need exactly when you need it. For those who lack organizational acumen, we did our best Marie Kondo to see which of the buzziest bags out there were actually useful by filling them with bottles of lotions, creams, sprays, brushes, and powders. Then, we pretended each one was a dodgeball and threw them all around our NYC-based lab. The makeup bags who emerged victorious, with the fewest number of spills, breaks, or explosions, were then judged for material quality and compressive ability. Plus, the amount of space it took up in a carry-on bag, design, usefulness of the compartments, and overall capacity. This list is composed of our highest-ranking makeup bags that we’d be happy to take with us for a long weekend or monthslong adventure (we wish!).

Best Overall

Béis the cosmetic case.

What We Love: It comes with a mirror.

What We Don’t Love: You can’t compartmentalize as much.

Out of all the makeup cases we tested, we found the Béis Cosmetic Case to be the most universally useful. It comes with a removable mirror that’s quite generous in size, unlike some of those itty bitty mirrors you often see that are big enough to reflect one eyelash. That’s definitely not the case here—this one stands upright to give us a view of our entire face so we could do our makeup on the go.

In terms of space, there’s a center section for brushes, which is removable, and we were able to get five brushes in comfortably without flattening the bristles. Then in the main compartment, we were able to fit all of our go-to makeup products with ease, never forcing us to leave anything behind for the sake of space. There’s even a shallow zippered section attached to the top lid where we slid in our powder compacts and palettes. Even the hardware holding everything together felt luxe and sturdy, not to mention easy to wipe clean, so we had peace of mind knowing our precious (not to mention expensive) makeup collection was well protected.

We also loved how the case opened up completely, putting everything on full display and easy to access. That being said, there weren’t many compartments or straps to organize our products—everything needed to be thrown in together. When we tossed the bag around, the items remained protected and safe without spilling or coming loose, and still, we wish we could compartmentalize a little better. 

Materials: Faux leather exterior, nylon lining interior | Compartments : None | Colors: 10 | Size: 9.5 inches x 4 inches x 7 inches

InStyle / Jhett Thompson

Best Budget

Narwey travel makeup bag.

What We Love: The quality feels much more high-end than what it’s priced at. 

What We Don’t Love: We wish it was slightly more cushioned.

We love a good budget option when the product feels much more high-end than what it’s priced at. That’s how we felt about this Narwey makeup case, available on Amazon. The lightweight option doesn’t lack in space, compartments, or even aesthetic appeal, making it a phenomenal option for everyday use.

Much like the previous Beis option, this bag opens up fully, giving us complete access to all our goods. On the lid-side of the bag, we could squeeze 20 brushes in the eight brush pockets (ranging in size) — there’s even a flap to cover and protect the brush heads. The bag comes with a fully removable pouch, where we kept our face palettes , a color correcting palette, three eyeliners, four lipsticks, a mascara, and a lash curler . Then in the main compartment, we stored our foundations, moisturizers, makeup removers, favorite dry shampoo , and more. Needless to say, nothing needs to be left behind with this bag, and yet it didn’t feel completely bulky—we were able to store this in our backpack and carry-on cases sans-problem. 

If we could tweak just one element, it would be to make the bag more cushioned. Although none of the makeup pieces weathered any damage during our rigorous throw test, we would feel more at ease knowing there was an additional layer of protection.

Materials: Water-resistant fabric | Compartments : 3 | Colors: 15 | Size: 9” x 6.7” x 3.5”

InStyle / Leticia Almeida

Best Hanging

Béis hanging cosmetic case.

What We Love: There’s a removable pouch, making it easy to take essential items along during day excursions. 

What We Don’t Love: It’s very bulky and large, making it harder to pack.

This is for the beauty guru who needs to bring their entire beauty routine with them on the go, even if it means sacrificing a sweater or two in their luggage space. The Beis Hanging Cosmetic Case was truly made for the expert—even professional makeup artists will find great usage out of all the space, compartments, and hanging ability.

We first noticed how the outside has a stiffer material, making it absorb any drops and protecting the contents inside. Meanwhile, the interior is quite slick, so we would have no quarrels giving it a good clean should any powder or creams ever get spilled. The bag flaps open into three sections and has a little hook to hang for when we don’t have any counter space to lay it out flat. Thanks to all the zippers and netted pouches, nothing would fall out while being perfectly visible in its vertical position. We fit absolutely everything we could think of here — moisturizers, creams, foundations, makeup palettes, four eyeliners, five lipsticks and glosses, and still had room to spare. The pouch in the middle is also removable, which we found to be very useful when we wanted to head out for the day and bring a few essentials along.

The biggest con was just how bulky it was. This definitely takes up a good chunk of space, and because of its semi-hard case, we couldn’t quite fold it or squish it down to save space.

Materials: Nylon, vegan leather | Compartments : 5 | Colors: 2 | Size: 9.75” x 7.25” x 6.5”

Best for Bottles

Dagne dover mila toiletry organizer.

Dagne Dover

What We Love: It comes with removable dividers to keep bottles cushioned and separated.

What We Don’t Love: We wish the handle could be opened and closed so that we may loop it on a towel rack and save counter space.

Do you have any delicate perfume bottles, creams, or foundations you want to keep properly cushioned and separated? Then it truly does not get better than (or cuter than) this toiletry organizer from Dagne Dover. The circular and upright bag has a cushioned mesh fabric all throughout the interior, with six adjustable compartments for you to place your individual items in securely. 

We found that the bag was much more spacious than it first appeared. More than just the six main compartments, we were able to place pencils and brushes (which fit perfectly upright) in the side slits as well. Then on the opening flap, we placed sunscreens , hair ties, lipsticks, and other miscellaneous items in the zippered mesh bag. Of course, removing the dividers altogether created even more space, but we liked how our glass bottles were protected inside the dividers — not even throwing the bag across the room could affect the interior. 

Because of the flexible cushiony material, it was easy to squish the bag down and save space in our luggage as well. This could easily fit in a backpack, carry-on, and check-in suitcase all the same. We wish the handle could clasp open and close so that we could hook it on a drying rack at the hotel to save counter space. 

Materials: Recycled polyester | Compartments : 11 | Colors: 4 | Size: 5.5” x 5.5” x 5.5”

Best for Travel

Away the cosmetics bag.

What We Love: There is a discreet hidden black pocket for anything you want to keep private. 

What We Don’t Love: The makeup brush compartment clips off, but we’re not sure why as it does not conceal an extra compartment or save space this way.

A good makeup case for travel should be able to endure the rough handling of TSA, flight turbulence, and rolling over cobblestone streets. For this reason, the hard yet cushioned shell of the Away Cosmetics Bag is ideal. The neoprene exterior felt luscious and high-end, which is very on par with all of Away's products. 

We loved the no-fuss simplicity of this option — there is a clear zippered main compartment, and underneath it hides a little black pouch, fit for eyeshadow palettes and medications. The clear compartment is spacious enough to hold just about anything, from creams to lash curlers to hydrating lipsticks . And because it’s made of plastic, it’s easy to wipe off any potential spills.

On the lid side of the bag is a detachable brush holder with five pockets, although we found we could squeeze at least two brushes in each pocket. We will say, however, that we’re uncertain why they made the brush holder detachable, as it doesn’t conceal anything underneath or even save a bunch of space. The holder alone is of no use without the case either. 

Materials: Nylon, neoprene | Compartments : 3 | Colors: 2 | Size: 8.3” x 6.3” x 3.9”

Relavel Travel Makeup Case

What We Love: The internal dividers can be adjusted to your liking.

What We Don’t Love: It's too big to fit into a backpack, and will take a lot of space in a suitcase.

If you’re a professional makeup artist and have to travel to see your clients, then this is the makeup case to opt for. More than just large, this case has been expertly designed with makeup artists in mind, giving us adjustable compartments made of mesh, smooth, and easy-to-clean material. 

We’re somewhat of organizational freaks (Marie Kondo is our saving grace), and we can’t begin to describe how satisfying it is to have our un-shamefully large collection of foundations, eyeshadow palettes, lip kits and more, properly stashed in their own compartments. The brush compartment on the internal divider had scrunch pockets, and the flap that goes over the brushes sufficiently covered all of them for protection. Whatever item of makeup we had, there was a slot for it here, requiring us to leave nothing behind. Thankfully, the bag itself is very lightweight, as the weight of all our products is already heavy enough. 

The bag came with an adjustable strap, which we could wear as a crossbody or even turn into a backpack, which makes this one of the most portable cases on the list. That being said, it’s a little too large to comfortably fit into a backpack. It can easily fit into a carry-on or checked luggage but be prepared for it to take up a good chunk of space.

Materials: Nylon | Compartments : 9 | Colors: 20 | Size: 10.3” x 9” x 3.6”

Best for Brushes

Relavel small makeup case.

What We Love: We could fit at least 15 brushes in the bag.

What We Don’t Love: There is no pouch over the brushes to protect them.

She may have small in the title, but this bag actually fits a ton of product — at least enough for your everyday makeup needs. The most notable feature of this bag however is how many slots there are for brushes. From big to small, there are two walls dedicated to just brushes, easily carrying at least 15 makeup brushes in various sizes . 

The interior divider features a row of brush holders on one side, and mesh pockets on the other. Once we flipped that over, we were met with a large (but not very deep) space for all of our creams and cases. It could fit plenty of mascaras and lip glosses for everyday wear, but if you wanted to go full glam you may feel it’s not spacious enough. For the average consumer, however, we believe the soft bag is perfectly sufficient for a casual week away. 

If there’s one thing we could alter, it would be to add a little flap over the brushes in order to protect them. 

Materials: Nylon | Compartments : 5 | Colors: 21 | Size: 8.9” x 5.1” x 5.1”

lululemon Go Getter Pouch

What We Love: It fits a lot more than it looks. 

What We Don’t Love: There aren’t any compartments to organize specific items into.

Not only is this makeup pouch small, but soft-shelled as well, making it easy to compress for travel. It’s made of the same materials as Lululemon’s infamous belt bag , which is water-repellent and durable. 

The pouch consists of one main compartment, with a mesh interior pocket and an exterior zipped pocket. It didn’t seem like much at first, but once we started placing our foundations, creams, powders, and beyond in it, we realized just how much it could hold, which is a lot (two liters of stuff, to be exact). Thanks to the nylon material, it's easy to clean should anything ever spill — and spill it might, as there isn’t really a hardcover protecting any of the contents. We advise against throwing this against any hard surfaces as the thin pouch didn’t do a great job at protecting our contents (RIP our favorite lipstick cap). This factor simultaneously does make it easier to pack, and should we not want to fill it up all the way, we could press out any air and make it more compact. There aren’t a plethora of compartments, and we did get a little lost trying to find specific items in what feels like a Mary Poppins bag, but we’re happy with how discreetly it can fit a bunch of items in a small size.

Materials: Recycled polyester, nylon | Compartments : 3 | Colors: 3 | Size: 8.7” x 3.3” x 6.3”

MZ Wallace Mica Cosmetic Case

What We Love: The cushiony exterior kept everything safe and protected.

What We Don’t Love: We wish there were one or two more compartments.

We selected this option as our best pouch pick not because of how much this bag can hold (although that is a big point), but because of its cushiony exterior. Instead of a hard shell, this quilted bag felt like a protective pillow around our valuables, while being flexible enough to press down in our suitcases.

The top zips open almost fully, making it easy to access all of our makeup. There are only two compartments — the main interior and a not so little side zip. We were flabbergasted at just how much could fit into this little black hole: three micellar waters , two travel-size shampoo bottles, a large liquid concealer, a bronzer, five lipsticks, and about seven brushes nestled next to each other, and the bag still didn’t feel like it was filled up. The bag was almost like a flexible fleece jacket to our goodies, easily accommodating our large collection of beauty products without taking too much luggage space. 

We only wish there were one or two more compartments in the pouch. Because the bag wasn't clear, we had to go on a hunt to find the creams and foundations that were sitting at the bottom. 

Materials: Leather, REC oxford | Compartments : 2 | Colors: 1 | Size: 9.49” x 4.02” x 5.98”

Best with Compartments

Sephora collection pack it all organizer.

What We Love: It’s big enough to carry both your toiletries and makeup.

What We Don’t Love: It’s too big to fit in a backpack comfortably.

With this option, you get two bags inside of one, a removable pouch, zippered compartments, and various brush holders. Needless to say, us neat-obsessives had a field day organizing all of our makeup products. And thanks to its large size, we couldn’t imagine a scenario where we wouldn’t be able to fit absolutely all of our makeup.

The top lid zips open completely, making it easy to access the various compartments. There were eight brush straps (five smaller and three larger) and a plastic flap to cover the brush heads. For celebrity makeup artist Katie Nova, having such a cover is vital, explaining that ”this separate case prevents bacterial growth, which can lead to skin irritation and inflammation.” 

Then we were met with two cubes where we separated our toiletries from our makeup products. Around the cubes we still had ample amount of space to store makeup wipes, supplements, eyeshadow palletes and more. When we threw it around, we were surprised to find everything pretty much unshaken on the inside, minus one cap that fell off. The top and the bottom of the bag is pretty solid, but the sides were softer, giving us the best of both worlds in protection and flexibility.

Be mindful that the bag is capital-L-Large. She may not fit well into a backpack, but she’ll do great at bringing absolutely all of your beauty needs on your two week trip to Italy, so long as she’s kept in a suitcase.

Materials: Nylon | Compartments : 3 | Colors: 1| Size: 10.25" x 8" x 5"

Best Train Set

Leatherology train case.


What We Love: There are organizational compartments on the interior side that don’t take up any space.

What We Don’t Love: It’s very tall, so it may sit awkwardly in a suitcase.

A classic train case is a stylish way to hold all your beauty products on the go. We tested several, but found this full grain leather option the most practical. While at a first glance it looks like any other spacious rectangular box, a closer look revealed that each of the walls had a different organizational perk. Two sides had a pocket sleeve with an elastic strap, one side had a slip pocket, and the last had a zippered pocket. There was even a mesh zippered pocket on the lid, where we kept eyeshadow palettes and mascaras. We loved how these compartments didn’t take up any additional space (like a divider would), while still giving us the opportunity to organize a little. 

The box is quite deep, so even our travel-size shampoos could stand upright. Unless we packed everything snugly side by side, these items would fall to their sides and look a little messy after travel. Not in a way that they would break, but simply look more disheveled than when we first packed it. Should anything spill, however, the water-resistant lining made it very easy to clean. And because the exterior is made of leather, it’s extremely sturdy and high-quality as well.

Materials: Leather, nylon | Compartments : 3 | Colors: 14 | Size: 7.5” x 5” x 5.2”

Best Organizer

Boacay hanging travel toiletry bag.

What We Love: The pockets are all clear, giving us good visibility into the interior.

What We Don’t Love: The cover is not that protective or sturdy.

It’s not enough for a bag to have great organizational capabilities, it needs to provide great visibility into our collection of products as well, and this bag does just that. It comes with a little rotating hook, which we used to hang the bag onto a towel rack.

Once fully folded open, it reveals four bagged compartments, all made of clear plastic (which by the way is easy to clean). The two center pockets are larger than the outer ones, so we stored our hair spray, body lotions , and all other cream products in there. In the smaller pouches we hid our brushes, eye creams , and any other miscellaneous items in. We had absolutely no problem storing all of our beauty products, leaving nothing behind. Although it looked stuffed to the brim, once closed it did not bulk up any more than it did while empty. It still folded easily and zippered closed without putting up a fight. Nova stresses how convenient it is to keep all her skincare and beauty products separate, but in the same container, “eliminating the need for a separate bag and simplifying my travel routine further.”

When we dropped the bag, none of the products broke due to the lightly cushioned exterior. That being said, we’d be apprehensive to do any aggressive tosses of the bag, as it’s not made of any durable or made of a hearty material. Still, with a water-repellent finish and light padding, it’s perfectly usable for everyday use.

Materials: Brushed, water-repellant | Compartments : 5 | Colors: 8 | Size: 11.4” x 3.8” x 7.5”

Best for Purses

Cuyana leather travel case set.

What We Love: It comes with two bags in one set.

What We Don’t Love: The leather exterior and interior are difficult to clean.

If you want to have your beauty items close to you while on the go, then a pouch small enough to fit in your purse is the way to go. This Cuyana set, which yes, comes with two different sized pouches, was quick to steal our hearts with its beautiful pebbled leather design. The bag opened up so wide, it was easy to pack all our essentials in and get quick access to them. The larger pouch has one slit pocket on the side, although we have to admit, it’s more for the aesthetics than any functional purpose. At most, it could fit a single palette (which to be fair, if you pick the best eyeshadow palette , that may be plenty.

The second pouch is merely a smaller version of the large one, without the slit interior pocket. At first, we wondered why we would need two of the same bag, but then came to realize how useful it is to keep one in our check-in luggage and the other in our backpacks and close to us on the plane. Together, we could easily bring our entire makeup routine with us wherever we go.

Because it’s made of full leather on the exterior and interior, it was difficult to clean the bag. One of our eyeshadow palettes popped open and stained the bag slightly. Luckily, Cuyana gives detailed instructions on how to care for the pouch .

Materials: Leather | Compartments : 2 | Colors: 16 | Size: Large pouch: 7” x 12” x 3.5”, small pouch: 5” x 8” x 2.5”

Best Customizable

Cuyana travel beauty case.

What We Love: You can add a personalized monogram.

What We Don’t Love: It’s only available in two colors.

Now onto something for the makeup gurus who don’t play about their beauty collection. The price of this travel case is on the higher side, but after thoroughly testing it we think it’s worth every penny. 

Let’s start with the luxurious material, stitch, and zips. This bag is about as sturdy as it gets without having a full-on hardshell makeup case. The leather is strong and sturdy, proving to us it would protect without taking on much damage itself. The zippers glide smoothly all the way around and open in a clam-shell style, which makes it easy to access all of our products in an organized manner. 

The lid portion features four loops for brushes and an elastic pocket to collect the ends. The leather divider in the middle helps to protect the brush heads from the items on the other side, where we placed our foundations, bronzers, blushes, and more. There was even a clippable pouch that we could remove and use on its own on a flight. Because of its sleek and long shape, we placed our waterproof mascaras , eyeliners, and brow products in there. We could even sneak in an eyeshadow brush as well.

Without going overboard, Cuyana managed to deliver a well-organized yet minimalistic makeup bag in superior design and quality. Knowing that it will last us well over a decade further makes this worth the investment. Slab on the fact that we could add a personalized monogram and it’s truly *chef’s kiss*. Now we only wonder why it’s only available in two colors.

Materials: Leather | Compartments : 4 | Colors: 2 | Size: 6.2” x 10.2” x 3.1”

First, we started by researching the most popular makeup cases, ranging from small hand held pouches to larger scale professional makeup cases. After honing our selection down to 26 pieces, we called each product into our testing site where our group of beauty editors and experts assessed each individual product. Each case had to hold at least four makeup brushes, two makeup palettes, a bottle of foundation, an eyelash curler, one mascara wand, a lipstick, four toiletry bottles, and a hairspray. All bags that could contain even more were given preferential treatment. 

We also took note of how many compartments were inside each of the bags, and whether or not they were useful and/or adjustable. We then threw the bag onto the ground to see whether any pieces came undone on the inside or broke on the journey. We then debated whether each bag was travel friendly, fitting into either a backpack, carry-on, and checked suitcase. From there, we selected the best 13 makeup cases that passed all our tests with flying colors.

Before committing to a makeup case, take a look at your beauty products and consider how much you actually use on a daily basis. Next, consider the location you’re hoping to transport them to, and ask yourself what you need there. The answer to these questions will determine how large your makeup case should be. We tested a range of makeup bags, and found some big enough to suit a professional makeup artist, in need of carrying a bunch of products in various shades (we’re looking at you Relavel Travel Makeup Train Case ), and simple pouches fit to hold a good chunk of essentials for a weekend getaway (hey MZ Wallace Mica Cosmetic Case ). 

You also want to consider how you will be transporting your makeup case. Some bags, including the Leatherology Small Train Case , are too large to fit in a backpack and take a ton of space in a carry-on, but will be great in a larger suitcase. Others were so small you could bring them onboard with you in a purse, like the Cuyana Travel Case Set , and they still fit an impressive amount of products in.

Makeup isn’t cheap, so you probably want the case to properly cushion and protect your collection. That being said, harder shells or even cushioned bags take up a lot of space in your luggage, so finding something that compromises between protective yet lightweight can be difficult. Factor in the ability to wash the bag, and it can become downright mathematical. The Beis The Cosmetic Case is made with a vegan leather exterior with a semi-hard lid and bottom. If needed, the sides were flexible enough to be pressed down, so that the bag could decompress inside a suitcase a little. It’s this type of bag that destination bridal makeup artist, Tia Codrington, finds the most useful. “The bag I use has some soft breathable areas and a hard shell in the back to protect the components inside.” 

The Cuyana Travel Case Set features quality leather all throughout the pouch, which certainly helps to protect the interior but is also more difficult to clean. If you are worried about spillage, something with a clear plastic case, like the BOACAY Hanging Travel Toiletry Bag would be much more efficient. Professional makeup artists J. Guerra remarks that “Bags made of nylon or other materials that are easy to wipe down in case of makeup spills while traveling are essential.” The Beis The Hanging Cosmetic Case , Away The Cosmetics Bag , and Relavel Small Makeup Bag are all made with Nylon in the interior.


If you don’t care too much for compartments and just need a spacious pouch to throw all your things in, look no further than the Cuyana Travel Case Set or Lululemon Go Getter Pouch . For everyone else who gets a kick out of neatly separating your liquids from your powders, consider all the organizational capabilities of your future makeup case. Guerra says that a “space for brushes, separate compartments for liquids (to comply with airport regulations), and dividers to stay organized prevent delicate powders or eyeshadow palettes from breaking apart.” So not only do compartments make packing neater, but safer for your goods as well. 

The bags that offer phenomenal compartmentalization are the Cuyana Travel Beauty Case , Beis The Hanging Cosmetic Case , and Sephora Collection Pack It All Organizer . “Some bags even have removable pouches or adjustable dividers for added safeguarding and flexibility, those are my favorite,” continues Guerra, and we have to agree. The Dagne Dover Mila Toiletry Organizer and Relavel Travel Makeup Train Case offered us just that, and we really appreciated how we could change the bag’s construction to match our situational needs.

What is the best way to pack makeup for travel?

There’s a lot to consider when traveling with makeup. On top of the above mentioned size, material, and compartments, you have to make sure you’re following TSA guidelines — like not including liquids that are more than 3.4 ounces and storing everything inside a clear container, if it’s coming with you in your carry-on luggage. Guerra, who frequently travels to meet his beauty clients, offers a few tips for traveling with makeup: “When flying, I’ll often wrap my powder palettes and compacts in bubble wrap or a small towel to prevent them from breaking en route.” If you’re absolutely worried about anything spilling, Guerra suggests “storing creams and liquids into Ziploc bags before placing them in your makeup case.” 

Codrington brings up the importance of having clear makeup cases again. Not only “has it helped me with organization, but it’s useful during security checks in the airport because security officers have a clear view of what’s inside the bag without having to go through all your stuff.” And we can all agree, there is nothing more horrifying than watching all the contents of your bag being spewed out by TSA. 

What is the best professional makeup case?

Professional makeup artists are going to need a lot more space to accommodate their wide range of products and shades. They also require easy access to their products, so bags must open wide or offer a clear case. “I typically go for bags that have a wide opening and transparent compartments. This allows me to easily see and quickly access items for red carpet touchups or makeup adjustments on-set,” says Guerra. We found that the Beis The Hanging Cosmetic Case , Relavel Travel Makeup Train Case , and Sephora Collection Pack It All Organizer , with their large size, ample amounts of compartments, and decent cushioning to be the best makeup cases for professional makeup artists. 

Bianca Kratky is a commerce writer at InStyle with three years of experience covering fashion and beauty stories. In order to write this story, she dove deep into the insights of the testers who each individually handled the makeup cases. She then consulted celebrity makeup artists J. Guerra and Katie Nova , as well as destination bridal makeup artist Tia Codrington , for further insight into what to look for when shopping for makeup cases. 

Related Articles

15 Travel Makeup Bags To Keep Your Full Routine Organized

These are just plain—and plane—chic.

9 travel makeup bags

Every item on this page was chosen by an ELLE editor. We may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy.

Travel is stressful, full stop. Add losing your eyelash curler or brand new lippies in your checked bag, and it's a disastrous tale. Take the unnecessary drama out of the situation and opt for an organized travel makeup bag that easily fits in your carry-on luggage— or will at the very least leave your checked back organized amidst the chaos.

Clear Cosmetics Case

Best for a long vacation

Calpak clear cosmetics case.

Clarity Jetset Case

Best for airport

Truffle co clarity jetset case.

Violet Vanity Case

Turns into a purse!

F&w style violet vanity case.

The Terry Cosmetic Clutch in Citron

Best for pool day

Beis the terry cosmetic clutch in citron.

Travel Vanity Case

Dior Travel Vanity Case

Hanging Toiletry Bag

Best for Small Bathrooms

Mossio hanging toiletry bag.

Vacationer Makeup Bag

Kusshi Vacationer Makeup Bag

Jumbo Zip Pouch

Proceeds go to charity

Pattern beauty jumbo zip pouch.

Beauty Bag

Best for full sized products

Glossier beauty bag.

Wash Bag

Best for Traveling Couples

Sarep and rose wash bag.

Happy travels.

This two-sided makeup bag is exactly what you need for a long trip. The handled bag unzips into two separate clear compartments, so staying organized is a breeze. It’s large enough to fit full-sized products if you don’t have travel-sized versions of your favorites. Bonus: the individual sides minimizes damage from any accidental product explosions.

This see-through makeup bag makes security at the airport a breeze. The clear design allows for quick and easy access to your favorite products, ditching the endless dig-for-lipstick scene on the runway.

F&W Style Violet Vanity Case

For the fastest "get ready with me" routine, opt for this see-through makeup case. Perfect for travel, its structured shape and gold feet can stand upright on any surface. Bonus: If you’re heading to a sports game or festival, add the chain and it can do double-duty as a handbag.

This bright terry cloth makeup bag can double as a clutch (just remove the strap) so you can take it from the beach to a night out. It’s also waterproof and Shay Mitchell approved!

Covered in the iconic designer print, this hard-shell vanity case has enough space to accommodate all your top shelf favorites. The interior pocket makes for convenient brush storage and the Italian crafted top handle makes it easy to take on the go!

All the functions of your dad’s old school dopp kit but much cuter. The bag hangs from a hook (perfect for a shower rod or back of door) so you don’t have to dump out all of your makeup products into the hotel sink. There are also storage compartments, breathable mesh, and a ton of fun color options.

With 23 different prints to choose from, this vacationer makeup bag can match your suitcase. The nylon versions are machine-washable bag (and there are vegan leather versions, too)—all of them open wide enough for you to easily see each and every one of your products without having to dig!

Pattern Beauty (and Tracee Ellis-Ross fans!) will love this oversized pouch with the brand's logo. Every sale supports organizations & programs that empower women & people of color.

Calling all Glossier stans—let the world know with this gorgeous pink and red cosmetic bag. The interior pouch and three side pockets allow you to store different products separately so you can stay organized. Bonus: coated cotton material makes it easy to wipe away any stains, even ones from the messiest of foundation spills.

Handmade out of nubuck leather, this kit has a 4 interior pockets making it effortless to separate your various products and tools. And the neutral design vibes make it a great gift for you beau, too.

Away The Cosmetics Bag

The Cosmetics Bag

Shaped just like a packing cube, this simple, yet stylish cosmetic bag has transparent pockets and neoprene compartments for all of your products! Our favorite feature is the detachable brush holder, which makes it easy to organize all of your beloved beauty tools.

OTM Cannes Bag

Cannes Bag

The first-to-market makeup bag with heat-protecting technology is here! Need a touch-up by the pool? Leave it directly in the sun and your makeup will never melt. This bag also has spacious storage compartments and a standout gold chain, making it both dashing and durable for even the hottest of summer days.

Saie Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag

Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag

This pastel bag is the perfect home for all your basics. The wraparound zipper, this roomy bag opens wide enough for you to see the full array.

Relavel Makeup Train Case

Makeup Train Case

With removable dividers, this durable case can fit palettes, lipsticks, brushes, etc. in a comfortable and customizable way.

ami cole The Pouch

The Pouch

Looking for a mini pouch to throw in any summer tote? Here it is! This clear cosmetic bag comes with a large zipper tag to help you grab your necessities in a flash for any on-the-go touch ups.

hearst owned

How do I pick the best makeup bag for travel?

hearst owned

Finding a makeup bag that fulfills your long list of needs can be done. When on the hunt, prioritize space. If it can’t fit all of our products then what’s the point? It’s best to look for a bag that caters to your specific makeup and preferences. Bigger full-sized items can be easily thrown in a spacious bag, whereas smaller items such as lipsticks, liners, individual shadows, etc. beg for a bag with pockets and dividers as opposed to a catch-all. At the end of the day, a makeup bag should keep you organized, happy, and sane!

What’s the best makeup bag material?

hearst owned

Anything water resistant! Most makeup bags are lined with water-resistant or waterproof materials such as clear plastic, nylon, or polyester.

How should I clean my makeup bag?

hearst owned

Beauty lovers know the danger of a loose cap. Though spills may be unavoidable, cleaning them up is something we all must learn to master. Turns out the secret is not so secret: antibacterial household spray! Any Clorox, Microband, or Cleansmart spray, etc. will do the trick. Tip: Make sure to bring makeup pads on every expedition, in case a spill decides to attempt destruction. Shop our favorite antibacterial reusable cotton rounds here .

How should I organize my makeup bag for travel?

hearst owned

When organizing your makeup for a trip, there are a few important things to keep in mind:

  • Try to leave full-sized products at home. If it's a short enough trip, go for the minis.
  • If you can, pick the combined products (for example: A bronzer + blush compact rather than bringing both bronzer and blush).
  • Check the amount of product you have left before packing. Arriving at your destination with only a drop left isn’t doing anyone any good!
  • If you don’t have mini versions of your fav moisturizers, primers, setting spray, shampoo, or conditioner, don’t fret. You can find travel-sized bottles here , which can save you from a last minute trip to the drug store! Plus, they’re TSA approved.
  • When packing, it’s helpful to do your full routine start-to-finish and place each beauty item in your makeup bag, and nothing else. This way, you can avoid the unnecessary-yet-tempting products!

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  • Travel Products

The 10 Best Clear Travel Makeup Bags of 2024

Almost all of our picks are 3-1-1 TSA-compliant.

Katherine Alex Beaven is a Los Angeles-based travel, food and drink, and culture writer.

travel make up case

In This Article

  • Our Top Picks
  • Tips for Buying

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why Trust T + L

Travel + Leisure

Hitting the road soon? A toiletry bag is an on-the-go essential, and if you’re flying with a carry-on only, you may be left scrambling with a quart-sized plastic one that can tear before you even reach your destination. When vetting the best clear makeup bags, we took into account features such as durability, function, style, and cost. Whether you travel a little or a lot, the best clear makeup and toiletry bags will be able to fit most, if not all, of your bathroom and makeup essentials and withstand the wear and tear that travel can impart.

The EzPacking Store’s TSA-approved 3-1-1 Travel Toiletry Bag came in as our best overall since it’s durable, spacious enough to fit ten 3.4-ounce containers, and takes the guesswork out of choosing the right-sized bag. Looking for something with reusable containers included? Maybe you’d rather have something a bit more stylish, or sturdy enough to survive weekly trips? We’ve got you covered with our top picks. Here are the best clear travel makeup bags to buy to keep your liquids, creams, and pastes in one place on the go.

Best Overall

Ezpacking store travel toiletry bag.

It’s TSA-compliant and big enough to fit up to ten travel-size containers. 

It’s just one main compartment with no organization options.

This spacious TSA-approved travel makeup bag takes the guesswork out of choosing liquids that will pass through the security screening point. We appreciate the fact that it has enough room to fit up to ten 3.4-ounce travel containers, so you don’t have to make sacrifices to bring the basics with you. It’s clear on five out of six sides, making it easy to find what you’re looking for without too much fishing. While we wonder if we might like the bag better if it had a clamshell design so we’d have two compartments to work with, the zip-around top lid does allow you to take advantage of as much available depth as possible. 

A bottom nylon panel, matching nylon trim lining, and a double-stitched carrying handle are available in 11 bright and bold colors for a pop of personality. Both the nylon and the clear plastic PVC window panels are splash-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about wiping down your shower toiletries before plopping them in the bag. For the price, durability, and color choices, this clear travel makeup bag is a great value.

The Details: PVC plastic, nylon | 6.5 x 6.5 x 2.5 inches

Best Budget

Sephora reusable bag.

It’s sturdy with soft, flexible sides and can be reused several times.

Going through security can be a gamble since the bag isn’t 100 percent clear.

If you’re inclined to just shove your toiletries into a plastic zipper-sealed quart bag to get through security, consider this Sephora travel pouch a worthwhile upgrade. Five bucks will give you a simple, soft, and sturdy pouch to securely store your basic travel-size toiletries or makeup, and you can feel good about saving landfills from single-use plastics since the pouch can be reused over and over. We like that the material is thick but not rigid and that you never have to worry if it’s closed all the way since it has a zipper closure with easy pull tabs. Plus, it’s leak-resistant and can safely hold glass cosmetic jars without concern. One drawback is that it may not get the green light from all security agents because the repeated Sephora text technically stops it from being completely clear. 

The Details: 7.5 x 8.25 inches

Best Customizable

Stoney clover lane travel pouch.

Stoney Clover Lane

It’s a fun way to make your makeup bag your own.

Being overly creative can get costly. 

Want a travel makeup bag that is definitively a little more you than the rest? Stoney Clover Lane’s Travel Pouch offers a gaggle of customization options by mixing, matching, and placing your choice of patches on the side of its standard clear, zippered makeup pouch. Choose from colorful numbers, letters, and seemingly endless patches of cartoon characters, sports teams, and shapes. (Hint: Use the search bar to save time.) Fair warning: customization can get pricey. Prices start at $38 with 14 color options for bag trim, plus a $15 blanket fee for customization and extra cost for each patch. But that’s a small price to pay for a one-of-a-kind makeup bag. Customize at your own risk — security may not appreciate your flare for design as much as the rest of us. 

The Details: Nylon, vinyl, metal | 4.5 x 7.75 x 2 inches

Best Hanging

Tanto hanging toiletry bag.

You can detach a small section to pack in your carry-on.

The main portion of the bag must be packed in checked luggage. 

If you’re the type of traveler that brings everything but the kitchen sink, this four-compartment clear makeup and toiletry bag is a godsend. The two main middle compartments are big enough to fit large items such as styling sprays, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, or full-sized makeup brushes. The top and bottom are two smaller zippered sleeves that are perfect for packing less bulky items like face masks, hair ties, travel makeup brushes, travel-sized containers, or makeup palettes. Because of the size of the main compartments, you’ll need to pack this in your checked luggage when flying, but you can detach the smaller bottom compartment to use as your clear TSA-approved liquids bag. 

The Details: PVC plastic, metal hook | 10.24 x 2.36 x 12.2 inches

Mark And Graham Clear Travel Cosmetic Case

Mark And Graham

It has a sophisticated design and is made with quality materials.

There are only two trim colors to choose from. 

The Mark & Graham Clear Travel Cosmetics Case is a go-to luxury travel makeup bag for travelers who can’t (or won’t) part with their big-bottle toiletries. You’ll get a whopping six inches of depth and 10 inches of length with this bag. We love how the trim only runs across the top and bottom but not the sides, a look that differentiates this bag from so many others that have trim tracing each corner. It’s spendy, but it’s big and made with upgraded materials like thick and durable TPU plastic windows and classy vegan leather trim. You also have the option to add one to three letters of vinyl decal personalization on the side for a flat charge of $12.50. Unfortunately, it’s only available in camel and navy — and the big size falls into the must-check category. 

The Details: TPU plastic, vegan leather | 10 x 6 x 5.5 inches

Morfone Store Travel Bottles Set

It’s a 15-piece set that covers all the essentials. 

The spray bottle tips are known to clog or be faulty.

This travel bottle set is so complete, it makes us feel like we’ve been putting up with less than we deserve for too long. This 25-piece set comes with four soft silicone squeeze bottles in two sizes, two spray bottles, and four screw-top containers in two sizes that can be used for gels, creams, or pills. You’ll also get a mini funnel, two small spoons to help transfer your products into the containers, and a small cleaning brush. Plus, everything fits easily into a TSA-approved clear plastic carrying case. We love that the bottles all come in black-and-white doubles, so it’s easy to keep track of what’s in which container (or to split the set between two people and still know whose is whose instantly). Sometimes, the spray bottles can get clogged, so definitely test them out before filling them with any product. 

The Details: BPA, food-grade silicone; plastic | 6.38 x 5.71 x 2.05 inches

Best with Handles

Wedama tsa approved toiletry bags 2 pack.

It comes with a TSA-compliant bag and a larger bag that can hold regular-sized toiletries. 

The PVC plastic windows can smudge quickly and may require frequent cleaning. 

We like the Wedama TSA-approved Toiletry Bag 2-pack because the handles have extra leeway, making them easy to grip and hold onto. You can even use the handles to hang them. This set comes with two bags: a larger bag big enough to fit most standard, regular-sized toiletry bottles and makeup brushes, and a smaller bag that complies with the TSA 3-1–1 rules for liquids. You’ll have to pack the larger bag in your checked luggage, but the smaller one is fine to go with you through security (just make sure the containers inside follow TSA guidelines, too). Plastic PVC windows on the top and bottom easily allow you to find what you need, but they also smudge easily and need to be wiped down. 

The Details: PVC plastic, waterproof fabric | 7.8 x 2.4 x 5.9 inches for medium, 10.8 x 3.6 x 7.6 inches for large

Best Splurge

Calpak small clear cosmetics case.

The design details really make it stand out.

Loading it up via the U-shaped interior zippers can feel a little weird at first. 

This Calpak Mini Clear Cosmetics Case is spendy, but if you’ve got the budget or travel frequently, it’s not likely to disappoint. It’s a TSA-compliant size with two zippered compartments separated in a clamshell design. Fully clear side front and back panels make it easy to spot what you need right away, even if the bag is closed. It’s the small details that make this bag stand out, as does the variety of colors to choose from. We also like the design pop created by the lines of the interior U-shaped loading compartment and how the faux leather accents and trim paired with polished gold metal hardware work to elevate the look. At this price point, we are a little disappointed with the use of PVC plastic windows and plastic zippers. 

The Details: Faux leather, PVC plastic | 8 x 4 x 6 inches

Best Durable

Aveniee makeup bag for women.

Reinforced sides and upgraded materials make this boxy makeup bag more resilient against the wear and tear of travel. 

It’s only available in black, pink, and cream. 

This simple but strong travel makeup bag swaps out flimsier materials for more durable upgrades like PU leather trim, thick vinyl windows, and heavy-duty metal zippers. It’s a top-loading design with a zip-around closure and features a stitched carry handle on one end. We like that the dual-sided large windows make it easy to locate whatever we’re looking for and that the large size is still TSA-compliant while being deep enough to fit standard travel-size containers without feeling overstuffed. The bag’s materials are waterproof, giving us peace of mind against accidental spills or splashes. Plus, keeping it clean is as easy as wiping it down with a damp cloth. We’d love to see this bag available in additional colors or even patterned designs. 

The Details: PU leather, vinyl | 9 x 6.5 x 3 inches

Best Organization

Diyoohomy clear makeup bag double layer.

It’s a versatile two-compartment bag with strap organization that is still TSA-compliant. 

You have to put a little more thought into how you’ll utilize the specific components. 

Finding a clear TSA-compliant makeup bag that also has decent organization features can be tough — things get bulky quickly and run the risk of exceeding TSA limits. Luckily, the Diyoohohmy Double Layer Makeup Bag checks all the boxes, if at a basic level. Instead of a two-sided clamshell design, this bag features two main compartments with zip-around top lids. The main compartment is approximately three inches deep and can hold multiple travel-size bottles and jars, shaving products, or a collection of makeup. Flip it over for access to a shallow side with built-in straps for holding makeup brushes, toothbrushes, razors, or similar items. This design won’t complement everyone’s needs, but it’s a nice option to have. 

The Details: PVC plastic, metal, PU leather | 6.3 x 9 x 3.5 inches

Tips for Buying Clear Travel Makeup Bags

Prioritize durability.

In an effort to save money and lower plastic waste, choose a clear travel makeup case that can be used again and again. If you travel frequently, you’ll also want to make sure you grab a bag that won’t easily tear, rip, or bust at the seams — or your clothes could pay the price.

Pick the right size for your needs

When it comes to packing, space is a hot commodity. Before you purchase your clear travel makeup bag, take a look at what you’re aiming to put inside of it. If you can get away with a smaller bag, why not take up less space? If it looks like you’ll have too many items, think about what you can pack in your checked luggage or see if you can break up the items amongst several different carry-on bags in your party.

Consider organization

It’s harder to find clear travel makeup bags with built-in organization. Many clear makeup bags have a top lid or pouch design with only one compartment or a split clamshell design with two compartments. Take a minute to take stock of what you’re hoping to pack inside your travel makeup bag. Are you going to want to separate any items or containers? Do you mind fishing for smaller items inside of a large, single compartment? Remember to keep the TSA rules in mind as you search — make sure the bag is the right size and is truly see-through. 

A typical quart-sized bag measures 7 inches by 8 inches. 

Any makeup or toiletry items that have the potential to leak should be placed into a clear travel bag when flying. This includes (but is not limited to) lotions, shampoo, conditioner, foundation, facial serum, toner, and usually gels, creams, and pastes. Remember to keep these in containers that hold no more than 3.4 ounces or 100 milliliters.

We don’t recommend using any clear makeup bags larger than a quart when traveling. While you may get away with it at some airports, others are very strict (we’re looking at you, England). You don’t want to get held up on either side of your travels for something easily avoidable; it’s not worth the risk. 

Why Trust Travel + Leisure?

For this story, T+L contributor and frequent traveler Katherine Alex Beaven completed hours of research on clear travel makeup bags, keeping key features such as size, shape, quality of materials, and overall design top of mind. 

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  • People Tested

The 10 Best Travel Makeup Bags of 2024, Tested and Reviewed

Our top pick is the Relavel Travel Makeup Case

L.A. Hubilla is a freelance commerce writer for PEOPLE who specializes in fashion, beauty, and lifestyle content. She also regularly tests products for multiple digital outlets, including InStyle and Byrdie. When she's not window shopping online or creating pro and con lists, you'll find her drinking tea and talking about her feelings.

travel make up case

In This Article

  • Our Top Picks
  • Others We Tried
  • Things to Consider

How We Tested

Why trust people.

  • What Is People Tested?

People / Brian Kopinski

We’ve all been there — getting ready for a night out on vacation only to find your favorite bronzer shattered to pieces. Soon you’re off frantically searching for the nearest Sephora. Let’s rewrite this narrative, shall we? Transporting your beloved cosmetics for glam on the go shouldn’t be intimidating. Thankfully, there are a variety of travel makeup bags designed specifically to keep your products intact and organized on your journey. 

Beyond choosing a high-quality case, celebrity makeup artist Neil Scibelli also suggests swapping out some of your usual products with multi-use alternatives that are ideal for travel. “Think of things like tinted moisturizers with sunscreen, lip, eye, and cheek products, and perhaps a palette that offers multiple colors that you can use across your trip,” says Scibelli. Another hot travel tip from Scibelli is to minimize the number of powder items and opt for cream alternatives whenever possible. “Items like powder bronzers and blushes can easily crack during travel, so if you can switch to cream bronzers and cream blush — that can be super helpful." A bronzer stick , for example, would be a good option.

We tested 26 of the most popular travel makeup bags based on durability, design, portability, capacity, and price to see which held up the best. After the eyeshadow dust settled and liquid foundation explosions were cleaned up, we found our best overall picks.

Read on for the best travel makeup bags PEOPLE Tested and expert advice on how to pack your makeup for your next weekend away.

Best Overall

Relavel travel makeup case.

  • Ease of Use 5 /5
  • Quality 5 /5
  • Capacity 5 /5
  • Design 5 /5
  • Portability 5 /5

The internal dividers of this case not only allowed us to customize storage, but it kept all of the makeup in place and intact during shake tests.

External padding cushioned the fall for this case during drop tests and not a single makeup item broke.

The zipper top opens fully to allow you to see all your products at once.

The case is waterproof and easy to clean with a cloth to remove dirt, grime, and spills.

The bulkier shape of this case would be harder to pack in a backpack or smaller carry-on bag.

We found when worn as a backpack, the straps on this case don’t feel super stable.

This Train Case from Relavel blew us away during testing. We loved how easy it was to store, organize, and access the makeup and brushes. The zipper top opens fully so you can see everything at a glance. (No more rummaging for lost eyeliner caps in the crevices of your travel makeup bag.) We really appreciated the individual brush holders and easy-to-clean plastic protective cover, too.

This travel makeup bag is an organizational dream. The individual dividers can be moved around and customized to best fit and secure all your products, like all of them . During testing, this case fits an impressive seven palettes, a whole makeup brush collection , two foundation bottles, five toiletry bottles, over 15 lipsticks, an eyelash curler, hair spray, and a travel-sized moisturizer bottle. It is available in a wide variety of colors and patterns, as well. The exterior and interior fabrics on this case feel high quality and durable, and the waterproof surfaces are easy to clean, which is a must for any makeup bag. 

Your makeup will be fully protected in this train case. The internal organization will keep your products securely in place, while the exterior padding will provide a safety cushion so no worries about your favorite eye serum getting smashed in transit. In both our drop and shake tests, none of the makeup products broke or spilled — a big win. The only possible drawback for us is that the bulkier, square shape would fit best in your checked luggage instead of a backpack. It comes with attachable straps, making this a wearable makeup case for added portability; however, when worn as a backpack, the straps didn’t feel super stable for longer periods of time. But for an affordable price, this is a great sturdy, high-capacity, customizable makeup bag — ideal for those traveling with a lot of products, such as both sunscreens for face and body.

Size: 10.3 x 9 x 3.6 inches | Weight: 1.52 pounds | Material: Nylon, TPU | Closure: Zipper

People / Jhett Thompson

Best Overall, Runner-Up

Béis the cosmetic case.

The faux leather exterior not only felt luxurious but still looked brand-new after multiple drop tests.

The main storage compartment held an incredible amount of products, and not a single one broke or spilled during testing.

The included mirror comes with a stand and also survived multiple drop tests.

The wide-open main compartment didn’t offer much organization or separation of the products.

This case took up a lot of space when we tried packing it in a backpack.

Shay Mitchell's brand, Béis, is known for its beloved Weekender Bags — and its cosmetic case was also a front-runner in our tests, scoring high marks across the board. This case was super easy to open, close, and pack. We love the wide-open central compartment that makes tossing in all your hair and makeup essentials an absolute breeze. With full double-U zip closures, we found everything easily accessible. This case even includes a mirror, which is a game changer. The sleek folding mirror comes complete with a stand for touch-ups on the go.

We really liked the removable compartment for storing brushes and the additional zip pocket for added storage. The bottom of the case has two smaller sleeve pockets but doesn’t offer any other organization. While it doesn’t have many compartments, this case can really pack in the products. During testing, we were able to fit an incredible amount of items: five makeup brushes, four eyeshadow palettes , one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, one lipstick, nine small toiletry bottles, one hairspray, two powder compacts — and we could’ve fit more!

The luxurious feel of the faux leather elevates this travel makeup bag. We also love that it is available in nine different colors to match your style and mood. Overall, it felt sturdy and durable and was easy to clean during testing. During our drop and shake tests, nothing broke or spilled, which really impressed us, considering the main cavity didn’t have any additional compartments to keep products in place. This Béis makeup case offers ample storage, so its bigger size fits best in suitcases or luggage. It can fit in a backpack but will take up a lot of space. While more expensive than some of the cases we tested, it’s worth it for the chic aesthetic and high performance.

Size: 9.5 x 4 x 7 inches | Weight: 1.38 pounds | Material: PU leather, PVC, lining: poly with water-resistant finish | Closure: Double u-zip

Best Budget

Narwey travel makeup bag.

  • Design 2 /5

Its capacity impressed us while still being easy to pack in a backpack or smaller carry-on.

The full zipper closure opened up easily and allowed us to see all the contents easily.

It is available in 14 different colors.

This bag doesn’t come with any external or internal padding, though it still kept our makeup secure.

There were no separate compartments to keep products organized.

For a super inexpensive price, this Narwey Travel Makeup Bag will get your makeup to and from your destination safely and with ease. Need we say more? Probably not, but humor us: This bag had a full zipper closure that was easy to open and provided full access to everything. The exterior fabric is water-resistant and easy to clean — and is available in 14 different colors.

The main compartment of this travel makeup bag was 3.5 inches deep, which is generous compared to some other bags we tested. Separate brush pouches with a PVC protective cover and an additional smaller zipper pouch offer some organization. There isn’t any designated organization to the main compartment, but we still found it held quite a bit. We were able to fit two full sets of face and eye brushes (19 brushes in total), two face palettes, a color-correcting palette, three eyeliners, four lipsticks, a mascara, and a lash curler . The capacity for the case was phenomenal, while still being compact enough to put into a day pack.

This bag didn’t have much padding, however, it did keep our makeup intact during our shake and drop tests, which is impressive for the price. If you’re on a tighter budget, this bag is sure to give you the most for your money. 

Size: 9 x 6.7 x 3.5 inches | Weight: 7.8 ounces | Material: Not listed | Closure: Full double zip

Best Organization Features

Dagne dover mila toiletry organizer.

Dagne Dover

  • Capacity 4 /5

The compartment dividers kept our products organized and secure throughout testing without breaks or spills.

You can remove the compartment dividers for added space if needed.

The upright design makes it easy to pack and can fit into smaller luggage and backpacks.

Its narrower upright design couldn’t accommodate as many products as other bags we tested.

Dagne Dover bags are loved for being high-quality, aesthetically pleasing, and eco-conscious. Their Mila Toiletry Organizer continues in that legacy and delivered an impressive organization throughout our testing process. Available in six colors, we loved the upright design that proved much more spacious than it appeared. The full zipper top opening made packing, viewing, and accessing the products super easy. 

There’s something super satisfying about everything having its place: That’s what we love most about this bag. The separate compartments made organizing simple and kept the products securely in place for our shake and drop tests. No broken or spilled products here. Even better, the compartment dividers are removable for easy cleaning and maximum storage. The padded exterior not only gives a hint of that trendy athleisure aesthetic but also offers added protection in transit.

During testing, we fit four makeup brushes, two makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, three lipsticks, four small toiletry bottles, and one hairspray in this bag. This was impressive, considering the size. We did note that the bag's narrower design didn’t hold quite as much as other larger bags we tested. (The brand does offer a larger size ). An organized travel makeup bag made from recycled plastic bottles that will fit in any size carry-on luggage or suitcase? Count us in.

Size: 5.5 x 5.5 x 5.5 inches | Weight: 6 ounces | Material: Repreve recycled polyester exterior and interior | Closure: Zip

Best Hanging

Béis hanging cosmetic case.

  • Portability 4.5 /5

This makeup case was able to fit more products than our standard packing list during testing.

The sturdy structure and shape kept all the makeup secure during the shake and drop tests — no breaks or spills.

It includes a removable clear zipper tote for smaller toiletries for carry-on luggage.

The bulky shape takes up a lot of room in a backpack or suitcase, and it’s not as malleable as others we tested.

The clear zipper pouch found in the main compartment doesn’t stay in place when the bag is hung vertically.

It's not fun to do your hair and makeup in a tiny bathroom with no counter space for your stuff. The Béis Hanging Cosmetic case is our top pick to solve this common travel challenge. We loved how easy this case was to open and pack. It unfolds and lays fully flat, which made packing a cinch during testing. It’s great to be able to see everything all at once for minimal scrounging when getting ready. The hook allows you to hang it vertically for easy storage and access when traveling.

This travel makeup bag is for those unwilling to pare down their routine. No judgments here. You’ll have room for it all — yes, including your favorite hair products . We were so impressed with how much we could fit in this bag. We packed four makeup brushes, six makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, five lipsticks, seven toiletry bottles, one hairspray, and four eyeliners. (Overpackers rejoice!)

The construction of this case felt sturdy and durable during testing. The nylon fabric feels super easy to keep clean. During our shake and drop tests, all of the products remained intact and secure. This hanging case is on the bulkier side and would take up a lot of room in a carry-on backpack or tote. It’s probably best for larger suitcases. We appreciate the middle compartment came with a clear zipper tote you can remove and use as a TSA-friendly toiletry case for a smaller carry-on or underseat luggage . The only drawback is the clear zipper pouch can fall out when the back is stored vertically, so it’s best to store it elsewhere when hanging.

Size: 9.75 x 7.25 x 6.5 inches | Weight: 1.14 pounds | Material: Nylon twill, vegan buffalo leather, polyester lining, pouch-clear TPU | Closure: Double u-zip

Best Hanging, Less Expensive

Boacay hanging travel toiletry bag.

  • Ease of Use 4.5 /5
  • Quality 4 /5
  • Capacity 3.5 /5
  • Portability 4 /5

The plastic compartment pockets made all the products visible.

It was easy to clean.

When hanging vertically, all the compartments stay securely closed.

This bag kept all the products intact during shake and drop tests.

The quality of the exterior fabric didn’t feel as luxurious as some of the other bags we tested.

The bulkier silhouette fits best in a larger, checked suitcase than a small carry-on or backpack.

This hanging toiletry bag from Boacay offers the convenience of vertical storage for an affordable price. The fold-out design made packing and viewing the products very easy. This bag includes four separate zipper compartments (which is more than many other cases we tested) that stay securely closed when hanging, and it is available in several different colors. We liked how the clear plastic compartments let us see all the products easily and would be easy to keep clean in case of any spills.

We packed a lot into this hanging case. We were able to fit four makeup brushes, three makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, two lipsticks, four toiletry bottles, and two hairspray cans. We honestly could’ve fit more which bodes well for those who travel on longer trips and need larger-sized products, like your must-have sunscreen . We tested the medium size, however, this product also comes in a larger size for an additional cost for those who need even more space. The structure of this bag provided protection throughout our multiple shake and drop tests. No products broke or spilled. Some of the products moved around a bit, but the fold-up design helped keep most things in place. We also appreciate the elastic loops in the middle two compartments that can help secure some items.

This hanging case is best for larger suitcases or checked bags but can still fit neatly into a backpack (though it’ll take up quite a bit of space). While this isn’t the highest quality material we tested in a travel makeup bag, at this price, you can’t go wrong.

Size: 11.42 x 3.78 x 7.48 inches | Weight: 12.3 ounces | Material: Exterior fabric not listed, PVC inner pockets | Closure: Full zip

Best Compact

Lululemon go getter pouch.

  • Design 4 /5

This bag fits easily in a backpack and smaller carry-on.

The pliable exterior made it easier to pack this bag full of products and squeeze it into a fuller backpack or suitcase.

The bag is water-repellent and easy to wipe clean.

We found ourselves rummaging a bit to find certain items at the bottom of the bag.

The exterior is rather thin and less protective than the other bags we tested, and some product caps fell off during testing (though nothing broke or spilled).

If you’re looking for a sleek and portable travel makeup case that you can throw in any bag, the Lululemon Go Getter Pouch is the one for you. Don’t let the compact silhouette fool you, we were able to fit quite a bit into this case. In the small front compartment, we fit four small/medium-sized brushes with room for more. We packed two palettes in the mesh pouch and five brushes, one more palette, two lipsticks, one foundation bottle, and three micellar travel bottles in the main pouch.

The outer water-repellent material made from recycled polyester looks stylish and, better yet, is also easy to clean. It feels thinner than other bags we tested — no extra padding here. After shaking and throwing the bag a few times during testing, a few caps came off some products, but thankfully no spills or breaks. The tops of some lipsticks were a tad smushed. The design of this pouch is simple and straightforward without much internal organization. While the bag was able to fit many products, the lack of organized compartments made it difficult at times to find a specific product needed. 

The compact size of this big is a major highlight as it easily fits in a backpack, weekender bag , carry-on luggage, and a checked bag. We especially like the flexible fabric exterior, which makes squeezing it into an already full bag much easier. The price point is affordable for a well-known brand and makes it a great choice for those prioritizing portability in a travel makeup bag. 

Size: 8.7 x 3.3 x 6.3 inches | Weight: Not listed | Material: Recycled polyester | Closure: Zip

Best Leather

Leatherology train case.


The square shape and deep main compartment fit so much makeup during testing.

We found the internal organization impressive in this case (so many pockets!).

The water-resistant lining is easy to clean.

It is available in 12 colors and can also be personalized.

When empty, we found this case didn’t feel as sturdy when packed full of products.

This bag is more expensive than the others we tested.

Looking for luxury and durability? Leatherology’s chic, classic, square-shaped train case will transport your makeup safely and in style. This bag’s full-grain leather exterior feels and looks like a dream. We appreciate the water-resistant lining that will be easy to keep clean. The full-zip-around closure allowed for easy packing, access, and viewing of all the products. We loved how many pockets there are in this travel makeup bag. It made organizing while packing super simple. The main compartment was deep enough to pack some bottles standing up. We packed four makeup brushes, three makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, three lipsticks, seven small toiletry bottles, and one hairspray. 

Despite initially feeling less sturdy when empty, this bag felt very secure once packed with products. The thin padding between the exterior and interior layers also adds additional protection. It fared well in all our shake and drop tests. No makeup or toiletries were broken or spilled, and the leather still looked great. The price is higher than some of the other bags we tested, but the genuine leather exterior, easy-to-clean interior, and loads of pockets make it well worth the cost. In addition, this travel makeup bag comes in many beautiful colors, and it can also be personalized. 

Size: 7.5 x 5 x 5.2 inches | Weight: Not listed | Material: Full grain leather exterior, water-resistant synthetic interior | Closure: Zip-around

  • People/Jhett Thompson

Best Makeup Case Set

Cuyana leather travel case set.

The wide opening of the larger case made for easy packing and increased accessibility.

The genuine leather proved easy to clean during testing.

This is available in 14 colors and can also be personalized.

The softer leather exterior didn’t add as much padding as the other bags we tested.

Some eyeshadow did spill during our shake and drop tests.

We love a two-for-one: This Travel Case Set from Cuyana is ideal for those wanting additional storage and the option of different sizes. The materials on these sleek, elegant leather cases felt durable and high quality throughout our tests. We found the larger bag had a wider opening for convenient packing and easy access. We learned the width of the opening can be a bit deceiving. We had to remove some products we initially packed in order to fully close the bag. In the larger bag alone we were still able to pack four makeup brushes, two makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, one lipstick, four toiletry bottles, and one hairspray and definitely had room for several more products. The second smaller case would be great for brushes, jewelry, or essential toiletries for your carry-on. 

At first, the soft leather exterior of these cases didn’t feel as sturdy as the other ones we tested, but they still kept the products secure in our tests. A little bit of eyeshadow was the only makeup to spill during multiple drops and shake tests but was easily cleaned up. Getting two genuine leather travel makeup cases for this price is a great deal. We also like the option to choose which size feels most appropriate for different types of travel. And who can say no to 14 color options and a color-coordinated personalized set? Not us.

Size: Large: 7 x 12 x 3.5 inches, small: 5 x 8 x 2.5 inches | Weight: 1 pound | Material: 100% sustainable, Argentinian leather | Closure: Zip

Best Investment

Cuyana travel beauty case.

  • Quality 4.5 /5

The removable leather pouch added extra storage and protection for smaller, more fragile items.

The exterior Italian leather of this case felt very sturdy and protected our makeup during testing.

The case opens up fully to allow for easy packing and easy access to items.

The pockets and elastic loops for makeup brushes kept products organized.

We noticed a few minor scuffs on the exterior of the bag after our drop tests.

The Cuyana Travel Beauty Case is the epitome of fashion and function together in one beautiful bag. Yes, this price tag is steep, but the quality of materials and thoughtful design won us over. The Italian leather exterior elevates the classic design of this travel makeup bag. The rectangular case opens up fully (like a clamshell), and we found it was super easy to pack. 

The internal organization is both super functional and beautiful, thanks to the matching leather interior. We appreciated the designated elastic loops for makeup brushes along with the leather flap to secure the brushes in place. The bonus removable leather zipper pouch adds another level of organization. An additional pocket at the bottom of the main compartment secures even more products. We were able to fit eight makeup brushes, two makeup palettes, one bottle of foundation, one eyelash curler, one mascara, four lipsticks, four toiletry bottles, and one hairspray. 

This bag isn’t just pretty, it’s sturdy too. The leather exterior and interior protected our makeup well during our shake and drop tests. Only a few items shook loose, but nothing broke or spilled. We noticed a few minor scuffs after dropping and throwing the bag a few times, but they were easily wiped away with our fingers. While the high price is certainly an investment, this travel case will be a beautiful piece to add to your travel collection for years to come. 

Size: 6.2 x 10.2 x 3.1 inches | Weight: 1.6 pounds | Material: Italian pebbled leather | Closure: Metal zip, internal metal button clasps

Other Travel Makeup Bags We Tried

  • Away The Cosmetics Bag : We love the sleek and low-profile design of this cosmetics bag, and the soft-molded cube shape fits nicely into a backpack and varied sizes of suitcases during testing. While we were able to pack a substantial amount of makeup in this case, the caps came off several products during our shake and drop tests, leading us to fear some inevitable spills during travel. We also found the price tag a bit steep compared to similar bags we tested.
  • Calpak Terra Hanging Toiletry Bag : We loved the durability of this bag’s material, not to mention its cute aesthetic. The compact size is super portable, and its ability to hang vertically makes it an all-around space-saver. While this hanging toiletry bag held ample products, several makeup items fell out during our shake and drop tests, which forebodes potential broken and spilled makeup. It was more expensive than similar and more secure bags we tested.
  • Mark & Graham Concourse Cosmetics Case : Again, we love a two-for-one, and this cosmetics case set from Mark & Graham offers a classic and chic aesthetic. We love the option to remove the smaller zipper pouch and use it on its own. While the larger case is so easy to open and pack, we wish there were a few more organizational features to separate and secure our items. Unfortunately, after a few shake and drop tests, several caps came off some bottles, and one compact even broke.
  • Vera Bradley Recycled Makeup Organizer Set : Ah, the iconic Vera Bradley prints. This set brings up some nostalgia for us, and we love how durable and easy to clean the material is (and that it’s made from recycled plastic). This set is a great value. It was able to hold and protect ample amounts of makeup products during our tests. No makeup broke or spilled; however, there isn’t much internal organization for either bag, and it left us struggling to find certain products buried at the bottom.

Things to Consider Before Buying a Travel Makeup Bag

Functionality .

When shopping for a travel makeup bag, functionality is your friend. You want a bag that can easily store, organize, and protect your products while traveling. Consider how much makeup and toiletries you usually travel with and what type of products. If you’ve got lots of brushes and smaller size items, you’ll want a bag with plenty of internal organizational options like the Relavel Travel Makeup Train Case , which has customizable dividers. Choose a bag that’ll easily fit everything, but be wary of a bag that’s too big because extra space will let your products get jostled around in transit.

Look for any special features in a travel makeup bag that are a good fit for your usual travel experience. Perhaps a hanging bag, such as the Béis The Hanging Cosmetic Case , will work best for small hotel bathrooms or tiny guest areas. Or maybe a removable pouch, like the Lululemon Go Getter Pouch , is something you’d prefer to keep essentials within reach in your carry-on. Consider other design elements like material and hardware finishes that can elevate your travel makeup bag from another utilitarian piece of luggage to a chic design piece.

We tested travel makeup bags that ranged in price from around $12 to almost $300. You can find a quality makeup case at any price, including the budget-friendly Narwey Travel Makeup Bag , depending on the materials and features that are most important to you.

In our PEOPLE Tested Lab, 26 buzz-worthy makeup cases were tried, inspected, and evaluated for ease of use, quality, capacity, design, and portability. Each bag was packed with the same standard packing list, and additional products were added if possible.

Our standard packing list included the following: 4 makeup brushes, 2 makeup palettes, 1 bottle of foundation, 1 eyelash curler, 1 mascara, 1 lipstick, 2 toiletry bottles (pre-filled with micellar water and sunscreen), 2 toiletry bottles (pre-filled with lotion), and 1 hairspray bottle.

After each bag was fully packed, our testers vigorously shook and dropped each case multiple times. The condition of the makeup afterward was observed and documented.

To test portability, each makeup case was then packed into three different-sized bags: a backpack, a carry-on suitcase, and checked luggage.

Combining considerations for the quality of materials and special organizational features, each case was given an overall score on a scale from one to five. The makeup cases with the highest averages were selected for this article as our top picks.

Frequently Asked Questions

“For starters, I like to minimize the general bulk of my products so that I'm not overpacking,” shares Scibelli. “And, of course, keeping the sizes to 3.4 ounces and under, if I'm not checking a bag.” He also recommends using a padded cosmetics case that offers an additional layer of protection.

Pro travel tip: “Use your other items in your suitcase as armor for your makeup bag, and position it in the center or with softer items around it for protection," he says.

“A typical toiletry bag is pretty simple, consisting of a one-pocket zip pouch,” explains Scibelli. “Travel makeup cases have become so much more intricate now with multiple pockets and travel features like having detachable pockets, being water resistant, and added padding for safety.” Makeup cases will often have specific features to hold makeup brushes and easy-to-clean fabric in case of spills.

Never say never, but mindfully packing your makeup in a travel makeup bag can avoid breakage in your suitcase. Scibelli recommends packing your makeup palettes tightly around other objects to avoid too much moving around. “If you're not going with a padded case, you can even wrap your favorite makeup palettes in a washcloth or sweatshirt. If you have a few makeup palettes that can risk cracking, you can also try stacking them together with a rubber band to avoid them from moving too much.”

L.A Hubilla is a freelance commerce writer for PEOPLE and She specializes in lifestyle, fashion, and beauty content. Hubilla also frequently tests products for various digital outlets including Byrdie, InStyle, and Travel + Leisure, among others. For this article, she surveyed the data compiled by the PEOPLE Tested team and compared them with professional insights from celebrity makeup artist Neil Scibelli. Using Scibelli’s advice paired with tester observations, she selected the top-performing makeup cases for this roundup. 

Meet Our Expert

Neil Scibelli is a celebrity makeup artist.

What Is People Tested? 

We created the PEOPLE Tested seal of approval to help you find the very best products for your life. We use our unique methodology to test products in three labs across the country and with our network of home testers to determine their effectiveness, durability, ease of use, and so much more. Based on the results, we rate and recommend products so you can find the right one for your needs.

But we don’t stop there: We also regularly re-review the categories in which we’ve awarded the PEOPLE Tested seal of approval — because the best product of today might not be the best of tomorrow. And by the way, companies can never buy our recommendation: Their products must earn it, fair and square.

In short, PEOPLE Tested provides recommendations you can trust — every day, every purchase.

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25 Travel Makeup Bags for You to Slay Your Next Vacay

Did somebody say they're looking for a good travel makeup bag??

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Seventeen picks products that we think you'll love the most. We may earn commission from the links on this page.

The school year is *finally* coming to a close, and you know what that means...summer vacation! ☀️ After a semester full of homework and exams, it's time to go catch a flight and take a much-needed vacay. We understand how stressful packing can be, so to help make getting organized a breeze, we found the best travel makeup bags that'll ensure you have everything you need. Whether you're only packing just the essentials for a quick weekend getaway or your entire makeup drawer for a longer family road trip, we've got you covered with the best travel makeup bags for you to slay your next vacay.

Impressions Vanity Hello Kitty Faux Leather Makeup Bag

Hello Kitty Faux Leather Makeup Bag

I mean, come on. It's Hello Kitty! This super cute little makeup bag is perfect to carry your brushes, or your fav everyday products.

Sonia Kashuk Double Zip Train Case

Double Zip Train Case

This case has one big compartment for your bigger items like foundation bottles and setting spray, a mesh pocket zip-up pocket for eyeshadow compacts, and brush holders. What more could you ask for?

Dagne Dover Mila Toiletry Organizer

Mila Toiletry Organizer

Does it get any better than adjustable compartments?? You can easily move around and resize the inside of this makeup bag to fit all your beauty needs.

Dime Beauty Co. Travel Bag | Tan

Travel Bag | Tan

She's simple, she's sleek, she's elegant. This bag opens up to two clear zippered compartments, one on each side, so you can easily see all of your things.

BAGSMART Toiletry Bag Travel Bag with hanging hook

Toiletry Bag Travel Bag with hanging hook

This travel toiletry bag unfolds to reveal four different compartments, and then folds up into a convenient carrying case that you can easily fit into your luggage.

Y1tvei Preppy Patch SKIN Varsity Letter Cosmetic Toiletry Bag

Preppy Patch SKIN Varsity Letter Cosmetic Toiletry Bag

The perfect little bag to pack your skincare routine, and it's SO cute. 😍

Kaya Collection Medium Clear Cosmetics Case

Medium Clear Cosmetics Case

This cosmetic case by Calpak travel is clear so you can easily see what you packed, it's spacious enough to carry a decent amount of product, plus, it's water resistant.

Lay-n-Go Drawstring Cosmetic & Makeup Bag Organizer

Drawstring Cosmetic & Makeup Bag Organizer

How convenient is this?! All you have to do is open up the makeup bag and lay it out flat, add all your makeup, and drawstring it closed. Your days of digging through a bag or dumping everything out are over!

Caboodles On The Go Girl Funfetti Case

On The Go Girl Funfetti Case

Caboodles' iconic makeup case has a tray on the inside with a flip-lid mirror. Plus, it latches closed so you don't have to worry about it accidentally opening and spilling all your stuff.

Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Makeup Bag

Pillow Talk Makeup Bag

Charlotte Tilbury makeup bag opens accordion style with a bunch of compartments for you to organize your favs by category.

H&M Toiletry Bag

Toiletry Bag

This toiletry bag by H&M is two-tiered, and it has built-in brush holders.

Caboodles Envy "It" Bag

Envy "It" Bag

This beauty bag is *super* spacious, and it looks like a purse, so you can carry it around and it won't ruin your outfit. 💅

Mark and Graham Terminal 1 Cosmetic Case

Terminal 1 Cosmetic Case

These carrying cases by Mark and Graham can fit a lot of makeup, and they're super durable. Plus, for a few extra $$$ you can get yours personalized.

Impressions Vanity SlayCase® Vanity Travel Case

SlayCase® Vanity Travel Case

This one's for the hardcore makeup girlies. This makeup chest has LED bulbs around the mirror, glam vanity style, so you can comfortably pack all the makeup you need and then give yourself a flawless full beat while you're away from home.

Victoria's Secret 4-in-1 Train Case

4-in-1 Train Case

Victoria's Secret's case comes with three smaller pouches that perfectly fit inside so you can separate and organize your products, or just throw everything into the main case and call it a day.

Beis The Cosmetic Case

The Cosmetic Case

The attachable mirror will come in handy for touching up your makeup on the go. Or you can give yourself a full face while your siblings hog the hotel bathroom.


Pack It All Organizer

Sephora's version comes with everything you need, including brush carriers, removable storage cubes, and a removable zipper pouch.

MOMIRA Travel Makeup Case with Large Lighted Mirror

Travel Makeup Case with Large Lighted Mirror

A makeup case with an attached LED mirror will definitely come in handy when you're on the go. Not to mention it's waterproof and has several compartments and brush storage.

Sonia Kashuk Weekender Bag

Weekender Bag

This cosmetic bag has two zippered compartments, and it's super thin so it won't take up too much space in your suitcase.

Abiudeng Double Layer Cosmetic Bag

Double Layer Cosmetic Bag

Keep your makeup in the top and your brushes in the bottom with this double layer makeup bag.

Headshot of Briannah Rivera

Bri is the editorial and social media assistant at Before joining the team at ELLE, she worked as the editorial assistant for and where she covered all things celebrity news and pop culture. You can probably find her sipping an oatmilk iced chai while searching for the best new makeup products or thrifting her entire wardrobe.

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15 Best Makeup Bags to Cure Your Clutter

By Sarah Han and Annie Blackman

Best Makeup Bags a collage of Dagne Dover Everlane and Saie cosmetic cases on a pink background

All products are independently selected by our editors. If you buy something, we may earn an affiliate commission.

We love shopping for beauty products, but organizing all of our products ? A little less so. That's where the best makeup bags come in. Deep down, you know that your precious makeup, hair-care, and skin-care stockpiles deserve to be stored with dignity in something pretty, practical, and portable. Whether you need a makeup bag to take you through TSA or simply something to help keep your vanity in order, these 15 best makeup bags will check all your boxes. Keep scrolling to find your perfect makeup pouch.

Our Top Picks:

  • Best Overall: Béis The Cosmetic Case , $68
  • Best for Overpackers: Étoile Collective Duo Vanity Case , $100
  • Best for the Organized Traveler: Everlane The Renew Transit Catch-All Case , $35
  • Best for Last-Minute Packers: Vlando Travel Cosmetic Case , $24
  • Most Durable: Briggs & Riley Baseline Expandable Travel Bag , $95
  • Most Stylish: Cuyana Travel Beauty Roll , $248
  • Best Water-Resistant: Dagne Dover Hunter Toiletry Bag , $45
  • Best Splurge: Tumi Madeline Nylon Cosmetics Bag , $250
  • For the Hotel Frequenters: Away The Hanging Toiletry Bag , $75

Best Overall: Béis The Cosmetic Case

Black Béis The Cosmetic Case on a light gray background

Béis The Cosmetic Case


Why It's Worth It:  Doing makeup while in a moving vehicle should be considered an Olympic sport. However, a good makeup bag on your lap, while you multitask (in the passenger seat, of course), can make a world of difference. The Béis The Cosmetic Case is one of our go-to's for its spacious, organized design and plentiful interior pockets. This pick also comes with a makeup mirror for easy touch-ups wherever you are. It's also spill-proof, and we  love  having one less thing to worry about.

Dimensions:  10 inches x 7 inches x 3.8 inches |  Material:  Faux leather (exterior), polyester, and PVC (interior) |  Color Options:  8

Best for Overpackers: Étoile Collective Duo Vanity Case

Étoile Collective Duo Vanity Case beige bag on light grey background

Étoile Collective Duo Vanity Case

Why It's Worth It:  So you've got a lot of stuff. Well, the Étoile's Collective Duo Vanity Case isn't sweating it. This double-decker cosmetics case has a deep main compartment equipped with a detachable flexible divider insert and pouches for upright storage of full-size bottles and tools. Its slimmer compartment is perfect for stashing eye shadow palettes and comes with a handy fold-out travel mirror.

Dimensions:  9.4 inches x 6.7 inches x 7.1 inches |  Material:  Faux leather (exterior), nylon (interior) |  Color Options:  11

Best for the Organized Traveler: Everlane The Renew Transit Catch-All Case

Everlane The Renew Transit Catch-All Case grey bag on light grey background

Everlane The Renew Transit Catch-All Case

Why It's Worth It: Everlane's The Renew Transit Catch-All Case is your carry-on's new BFF. Available in four neutral hues, it features five pockets on the outside and one on the inside for organized travel. The top of this chic cosmetic bag can be folded down and snapped shut over the outside pocket or untucked and left unrolled for easy access. Plus, it's made of recycled polyester, which is always straightforward to clean.

Dimensions: 9 inches x 6.5 inches x 4.75 inches | Material: Polyester | Color Options: 4

Best for Last-Minute Packers: Vlando Travel Cosmetic Case

Vlando Travel Makeup Cosmetic Case blue makeup case with brushes and cream lining on light grey background

Vlando Travel Makeup Cosmetic Case

Why It's Worth It:  We love the Vlando Travel Makeup Cosmetic Case because it was made with  makeup brushes  in mind. Inside the makeup organizer are four spacious, designated slots for brushes so bristles don't get ruffled in transit. Adjustable compartment dividers also allow you to sort everything just how you like it. Since this travel makeup bag features waterproof materials, you won't have to worry about any liquids leaking in  or  out.

Dimensions:  3.9 inches x 9.8 inches x 8.6 inches |  Material:  Synthetic leather (outer shell), polyurethane (inner lining) |  Color Options:  4

Most Durable: Briggs & Riley Baseline Expandable Travel Bag

Briggs & Riley Baseline Toiletry Kits green canvas bag on light grey background

Briggs & Riley

Briggs & Riley Baseline Expandable Travel Bag

Why It's Worth It:  Handsome and practical, the Briggs & Riley Baseline Expandable Travel Bag is here for all your storage needs. The convertible design has upright storage and a top compartment that unzips and can be hung from anywhere. You'll like the PVC-lined pockets, large side compartments, and the convenient top handle for easy carrying.

Dimensions:  11.5 inches x 9 inches x 1 1.5 inches |  Material:  Ballistic nylon |  Color Options:  3

Most Stylish: Cuyana Travel Beauty Roll

Cuyana Travel Beauty Roll in coral color on light grey background with red best of beauty seal

Cuyana Travel Beauty Roll

Why It's Worth It:  Cuyana's Travel Beauty Roll is a worthwhile splurge crafted from high-quality Italian leather. The  Allure  Best of Beauty Award-winning travel case has four sections: one zippered, one large slip pocket, one brush compartment, and one detachable pouch, so all your goodies stay in place. If anything spills or leaves marks, you can clean the leather lining using a damp cloth with a bit of soap or  micellar water  on a cotton pad.

Dimensions:  9.5 inches x 14.5 inches x 0.5 inches (flat) |  Material:  Pebbled leather |  Color Options:  4

Best Water-Resistant: Dagne Dover Hunter Toiletry Bag

Dagne Dover Hunter Toiletry Bag black bag on light grey background

Dagne Dover

Dagne Dover Hunter Toiletry Bag

Why It's Worth It:  Dagne Dover's multitasking Hunter Toiletry Bag is delightfully durable and constructed from easy-to-clean neoprene. It has room for essentials like a razor, a full-size  fragrance  bottle, or even your favorite  hot tool . The high-tech, water-resistant fabric is also hand-washable, making it a safe bet to add to your admittedly musty gym bag. The bag also features two removable mesh pockets with zip closures. P.S. It comes in  a larger size  if that better suits your needs.

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Dimensions:  7.5 inches x 4 inches x 4.5 inches |  Material:  Neoprene, zinc alloy |  Color Options:  16

Best Splurge: Tumi Madeline Nylon Cosmetics Bag

Tumi Madeline Nylon Cosmetics Bag in mauve on light grey background

Tumi Madeline Nylon Cosmetics Bag

Why It's Worth It:  You might already know that Tumi makes some of the most legit luggage you could possibly lug, but you'll be delighted to hear the brand also makes a cosmetics bag. The Tumi Madeline Nylon Cosmetics Bag unzips to reveal a detachable pouch, three transparent interior compartments, and a pouch for seamless storage. It has a built-in metal hanger, perfect for hotel trips. Oh, and you can monogram it, which we think is pretty fun.

Dimensions:  8 inches x 11.3 inches x 2.8 inches |  Material:  Nylon |  Color Options:  6

For the Hotel Frequenters: Away The Hanging Toiletry Bag

Away The Hanging Toiletry Bag black hanging toiletry bag on light grey background

Away The Hanging Toiletry Bag

Why It's Worth It:  Away's The Hanging Toiletry Bag is great for people who want to keep all their beauty products neatly divided in one place. This convertible option unzips to hang on a doorknob or hanger, handy for hotel stays or as a storage solution in your bedroom. Three mesh pockets keep things in order, and the removable clear pouch protects liquid products from leaking.

Dimensions:  9.6 inches x 3.74 inches x 6.6 inches |  Material:  Nylon |  Color Options:  4

Most Innovative: Lay-n-Go Cosmo

Lay-n-Go Cosmo black toiletries bag open and closed on light grey background

Lay-n-Go Cosmo

Why It's Worth It: For the person who can't stand pawing through their makeup bag in search of an almost non-existent eyeliner pencil stub, the Lay-n-Go Cosmo will change everything. Undo the drawstring and lay all your products on the round 20-inch mat. Once you're ready to pack up, pull the drawstring and watch the whole thing tighten into a bag. A raised lip on the edge of the mat keeps products from rolling away, a zippered pocket for safe storage, and a built-in elastic strap that acts as a brush holder. Oh, and it's machine-washable in case of spills.

Dimensions: 20 inches | Material: Polyester | Color Options: 28

Best Petite Bag: Longchamp Le Pilage Cosmetics Case

Longchamp Le Pilage Cosmetics Case in black with leather clasp on light grey background

Longchamp Le Pilage Cosmetics Case

Why It's Worth It:  The Le Pilage Cosmetics Case from Longchamp lives at the intersection of "to-die-for cute" and "I'm freaking out. This is so practical." This little version of the classic Longchamp tote is perfectly sized to fit all your bits and bobs, complete with a water-resistant lining and leather closure to keep everything safe and intact. It's not the most spacious option, so we love it for excursions that require mascara, lip gloss , and a couple of other goodies.

Dimensions:  6 .5 inches x 4 inches x 2 inches |  Material:  Nylon, leather |  Color Options:  3

Cutest Carry-All: Saie Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag

Saie Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag purple bag on light grey background

Saie Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag

Why It's Worth It: We're in love with the Saie Lilac Oversized Makeup Bag for more reasons than just its sweetly spring-ready color. The vegan leather makeup bag has one zipper that stretches from end to end, allowing you to access any nooks and crannies smaller products might be hiding in. It's roomy, it's cute, and it's in our carts.

Dimensions: 6 inches x 8 inches x 3 inches | Material: Faux leather | Color Options: 1

Best for Light Travelers: Lululemon Go Getter Pouch

Lululemon Go Getter Pouch black bag on light grey background

Lululemon Go Getter Pouch

Why It's Worth It: Lululemon's Go Getter Pouch is among our favorites for its versatility, water-repellent fabric, and easy-to-clean exterior. Though the pouch looks small at first glance, we swear its spacious main compartment easily holds all your essentials. Use it as your everyday makeup bag, a toiletry organizer for travel-friendly skin care, or a petite clutch for days you want to travel light.

Dimensions: 8.7 inches x 3.3 inches x 6.3 inches | Material: Nylon (outer shell), polyester (mesh and lining) | Color Options: 1

Best Clear Makeup Bag: Calpak Large Clear Cosmetics Case

Calpak Large Clear Cosmetics Case clear and tan bag on light grey background

Calpak Large Clear Cosmetics Case


Why It's Worth It: A PVC-lined makeup bag like the Calpak Large Clear Cosmetics Case is a total game-changer. The roomiest cosmetics case from the viral travel brand has transparent walls that allow you to find your tiniest tubes in seconds. This bag also features two large compartments, a small mesh pocket, and dual carrying handles. It's kind of like if Mary Poppins's magic bag was see-through.

Dimensions: 11.5 inches x 5.25 inches x 9 inches | Material: PVC and polyurethane (exterior), polyester (interior) | Color Options: 17

Best Vegan Leather: Rose Inc Structured Beauty Clutch

Rose Inc Structured Beauty Clutch beige bag on light grey background

Rose Inc Structured Beauty Clutch

Why It's Worth It: Made of faux leather, the Rose Inc Structured Beauty Clutch is so chic that we would even consider using it as an evening purse. This muted beige bag only has one main zippered compartment, but it keeps its shape, whether open or closed, no matter how much you stuff it. At $20, it doesn't get much better.

Dimensions: 8.9 inches x 4.4 inches x 6.7 inches | Material: Faux leather (exterior), polyester (interior) | Color Options: 1

Need more shopping inspo? Here are a few makeup products we've been loving:

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  • The 9 Best Magnetic Lashes for When Eyelash Glue Is Just Too Much Effort
  • 15 Best Eye Shadow Sticks That Even Beginners Can Master

And now, watch Becky G break down her most iconic music videos:

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15 Pro Tips for Traveling With Makeup

Experts share how to pack a beauty kit that covers all the bases.

travel make up case

Haley is a Wisconsin-based creative freelancer and recent graduate. She has worked as an editor, fact checker, and copywriter for various digital and print publications. Her most recent position was in academic publishing as a publicity and marketing assistant for the University of Wisconsin Press

Carol Yepes/Getty Images

Going on vacation is all fun and games until you get to the packing portion of the trip. At that point, it quickly becomes a game of “What can I bring?” and “What must I sadly leave behind?” 

Traveling with makeup is particularly challenging, especially with TSA’s rules on liquid sizes and the propensity for your most prized products to break or leak. You’ve also got to think about things like climate variation and how your skin might react while also trying to keep your regimen somewhat normal so your skin doesn’t freak. 

With practice and planning, though, you can get really good at editing down all your beauty essentials without over or under-packing. To help you cover all the bases when it comes to traveling with makeup, we asked experts to share their best tips. 

Invest in a Great Makeup Case

First thing’s first: You’ve got to have a great place to store your beauty loot when traveling with makeup. Look for a bag that’s big enough to house all your essentials, is leak-proof, keeps you organized , and is easy to clean, advises Sydney Morgan , beauty content creator. The Calpak Medium Clear Cosmetics Case ($85; Calpak ) is a great pick. 

Choose Cosmetics Bags That Serve Double Duty

If chosen well, your makeup bag can be so much more. "Some can double as small clutch or evening purse in a pinch," says Anne McAlpin, packing expert at . "I love the 'free' ones from cosmetic specials like Clinique and Lancôme. Bright colored bags make it easy to find your makeup in your bag." 

Put Makeup Brushes & Tools in Their Own Bag

Makeup brushes are an investment, so it only makes sense to look after them well. “I keep my tools in a dedicated case,” notes Jenny Patinkin , professional makeup artist and founder of Jenny Patinkin Eco-Luxe Beauty Tools . This helps protect the bristles and keeps things more sanitary, too. To save even more space, choose a makeup bag that has a compartment you can dedicate specifically to tools and brushes.

Keep a Few Items in Your Purse

Lost luggage happens every once in a while, so travel with confidence by having a cosmetic backup plan, says Brittany Lo , a professional makeup artist and founder of Beia. She says, “Always keep two to three essentials with you in your purse, just in case your luggage doesn’t make it or in case you need to reapply before you get the chance to unpack.” For example, a lightweight BB cream or foundation, cream blush, and mascara. When in doubt, identify your “desert island” essentials and pack those. 

Opt For Multitasking Makeup

Saving space is a must when traveling with makeup, so take advantage of multitasking products. “I do like to steamline when I travel,” notes Patinkin. “[For example], Packing a bronzer that can double as contour, a buildable cheek color, and a buildable foundation for simple daytime application or more dramatic evening looks, one four-pan eyeshadow palette that can be used a lot of different ways, and keeping as few brushes with me as possible.” 

Don’t Switch Up Your Routine Too Much

It’s tempting to pack all those tiny, travel products since they’re conveniently sized, but switching up your beauty routine too much isn’t ideal. 

“Your body likes consistency,” notes Matthew Waitesmith, a professional makeup artist with Artis . “If you mostly maintain your same makeup routine while traveling, your body will be less likely to overreact to all the environmental changes involved with travel.” Not to mention, a chill vacation isn’t necessarily a great time to experiment with a tricky new felt liner or foundation formula. You want reliability and ease. 

Underfill to Reduce the Risk of Leaks

Leaking liquid makeup is not just a big mess—it can mean you lose a lot of your product, too. McAlpin has a little trick that has kept her leak-free.

"Only fill liquids three-quarters full, then squeeze out the air and secure the lid. A change in air pressure can cause liquids to expand, creating leaks." By not filling it to the brim, you leave room and reduce the chance of leaks. (But pack it inside a resealable plastic bag just in case!)

Decant Larger Items

Whether you’re checking a bag or sticking to a carry-on, it’s wise to consolidate your products to save space and minimize the potential for messes. If any of your liquid products are over 3.4 ounces—the TSA cutoff size—decant them in a travel-size container. Alternatively, buy the travel-sized versions of your faves, Lo suggests. When you run out of the travel-size product, you can refill the packaging with your full-size product. 

Protect Delicate Makeup

The pain of seeing your favorite powder products broken is real. Avoid the distress by packing delicate items very well. You can do so with a fine bubble wrap (avoid anything too bulky). It also helps to “sandwich” your makeup bag, says Morgan. 

“Put your makeup bag in the middle of your suitcase with clothes surrounding it,” she says. “This sounds super funny, but it is the best way to keep things from shifting around and breaking. I typically like to put it in the middle with clothes underneath and on all sides. This has helped to avoid breakage.”

Consider the Climate

While you don’t want to completely switch up your makeup routine, do take the climate into account. For example, if you’re heading somewhere really humid or plan to splash around in the ocean, swap in some waterproof makeup. Or if it’s going to be dry or hot, pack a face mist that helps set your makeup and keep your skin looking dewy all day.

Bring A Couple “Special Occasion” Items

Along with your go-to makeup and skincare products, Waitesmith recommends packing a few makeup items that you associate with special occasions, such as a bold lipstick color or a pretty eyeshadow quad. He says, “You may want to be a bit more extravagant with your makeup colors or intensity to celebrate the special environment—like for a candlelight dinner.” 

Pack a Compact Lighted Mirror

“The lighting in your hotel or other accommodation mirror is unfamiliar, so it can be hard to judge whether the color or texture of the product you're using feels like it's flattering,” notes Patinkin. She says that a lighted makeup mirror can help squash this issue real fast. Choose one that’s slender and stands up on its own or has suction cups that adhere to a flat surface mirror. 

Think Vertical

McAlpin swears by hanging-style personal care kits. "Many European and boutique hotels have minimal counter space, so these bags are great for keeping essentials close at hand without items falling off pedestal sinks and breaking on tile floors."

Repurpose Containers

Travel-specific containers are great, but you can get creative with what you use. "I use contact lens holders for small amounts of primer, eye moisturizer, etc.," McAlpin says. "Just label it with permanent marker on the lid."

Find Ways to Minimize Liquids

If you're traveling carry-on only, your space for liquids is limited.

While solid beauty and makeup products have become an important part of travel packing, McAlpin has some other ideas for carrying on her favorites. For fragrance, for instance, you can soak cotton balls with fragrance and pack in small leak-proof containers.

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Complete your look, women's brands, shop by occasion, underwear & lingerie sale, men's clothing, men's active & outdoor, men's big & tall, men's brands, men's shoes, bags & accessories, cologne & grooming, underwear & basics sale, girls' clothing, boys' clothing, shop toys "r" us, furniture & mattresses, electronics, cleaning & organization, outdoor living, beauty brands, new & noteworthy, beauty gifts, women's shoes, women's shoe brands, kids' shoes, shop women's sandals, handbags & wallets, accessories, sunglasses & eyewear, trending now, wedding jewelry, men's jewelry, father's day gifts, living room furniture, dining room & kitchen furniture, bedroom furniture, outdoor & patio furniture, home office, entertainment & game room, toys by price, movie gift guide, gifts by category, spotlight picks, gifts by price, for every dad, for every personality, brand name gifts, macy's style crew picks, gifts for more occasions, new arrivals, summer trends, women's must haves, men's must haves, home must haves, now trending, wedding guest shop, names to know, contemporary, mission every one, women's, kids' & toys, handbags & accessories, jewelry & watches, sale & clearance, travelarim 22" hard shell lightweight carry on luggage airline approved with smart organization and attachable cosmetic case.

TravelArim -

Revolutionizing your travel. With our sleek designs, durable materials and smart organization features, we make your travel effortless and your moves efficient. be it around a bustling street, a tranquil getaway, or in the middle of an adventure. We make sure you ve got it all on the move!

  • 22 INCH CARRY ON LUGGAGE: With exterior dimensions of 22” x 13.5” x 9” including wheels, our small suitcase carry on bag meets the airline approved requirements. Interior includes large, zippered compartments and 19.5” x 13&#x
  • COSMETIC CASE: Keep personal items and valuables close by. Cosmetic case features a zippered compartment, mesh pocket, and elastic strap that fits over the suitcase handle.
  • CARRY ON SUTICASES WITH WHEELS: Hardside luggage for plane travel provides gliding 360 movement, and features a telescoping handle, stainless steel name tags, and TSA lock.
  • TECH-FRIENDY COMPARTMENT: Compartment: Includes a padded laptop pocket, iPad pocket, and power bank pocket that integrates with the exterior USB port to charge your devices (NO PORTABLE CHARGER INCLUDED)plus an insulated food pocket.
  • HARD SHELL CARRY ON LUGGAGES SET: The beveled sides of our luggage carry on suitcase and cosmetic case are impact-resistant, and the brushed finish on our carry-on luggage reduces scratches.

To report suspicious activity, please reach out to Macy’s at 1-800-289-6229 or click here to report online.

Web ID: 16541309

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Customer reviews

I have not used the luggage yet. But it appears to be what I ordered.

The luggage look nice and light weight. I did not like the fact that it had a lock which require you to charge it.

Happy I bought this product

Perfect size for me for a long weekend trip. I wanted the next size up but couldn’t find it. I will enjoy this size.

The reviews were very mixed but I ordered anyways. I am impressed with all the compartments and pockets. The travel/cosmetic case is pretty large. I’ll be able to put quite a bit inside. The wheels roll nice and smooth. I love that it has a locking feature that’ll keep someone from being able to access my things, especially if I’ve got my laptop inside. I haven’t used the USB to charge my phone yet so I can’t comment about that. Overall I’m really impressed with this set and the price point is great.

I never received my suitcase and no one has contacted me

Beautiful vibrant color and seems sturdy. Love that it provided place for a laptop on the outer side of the carryon for easy removal at the security gate. The other gadgets I didn’t really need but maybe good to have. I was not excited about the makeup case I would rather a bag that slips over the carryon. For this reason I returned it and will buy one without the makeup case.

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7 Best Travel Case for Cameras, According to Photographers and Travel Enthusiasts

The perfect bag to keep your camera safe and easily accessible on all your adventures.

woman photographing through camera by boyfriend

We've been independently researching and testing products for over 120 years. If you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Learn more about our review process.

Travel Backpack 45L

Best Overall Travel Case for Camera

Peak design travel backpack 45l.

Camera Backpack

Best Value Travel Case for Camera

Tarion camera backpack.

The Jumper

Best Backpack Travel Case for Camera

Brevite the jumper.


Most Stylish Travel Case for Camera

Lo & sons claremont.

Waterproof Outdoor Photography Backpack

Best Waterproof Travel Case for Camera

More than a backpack waterproof outdoor photography backpack.

Roadie Roller 18

Best Carry-On Travel Case for Camera

Tenba roadie roller 18.

Nova 200 AW II

Best Shoulder Bag Travel Case for Camera

Lowepro nova 200 aw ii.

To help you find the best travel cases for cameras to protect your gear, the GH Institute experts turned to real photographers, videographers and content creators for their go-to picks when taking their equipment on the road (or through busy airports). The picks below include travel backpacks with padding and dividers made to secure your camera despite bumpy roads and turbulence, as well as carry-on camera cases, purses and bags.

At the Good Housekeeping Institute , our team of experts has been testing travel and tech essentials for decades, from must-have travel gear to travel backpacks , portable tablets , smartphones and more. When selecting the best travel cases for cameras, we reviewed each pick for factors like design, materials, weight and extra features like easy access points and extra pockets. Below you'll find the best travel cases for cameras in 2024.

Designed for trips four days or longer, this carry-on size 45-liter backpack is all you need on your next adventure. Not only is it roomy enough to store your camera equipment, but it has enough space for other essentials like clothing, tablets and much more thanks to tons of access points, pockets and straps.

"I carry a lot of differently sized cameras and films on any given trip,” said one photographer. “The inserts they sell for it are great for moving a variety of cameras while keeping them safe and it’s quick to open once you get to a location and start shooting .” Just keep in mind that accessories like the camera packing cube are sold separately, making it a bit of a splurge.

Our pros love that the backpack comes with a luggage pass-through so you can stack it on a carry-on suitcase, or you can store the padded shoulder and waist straps away if you plan on checking. For heavier loads, it even features an expansion zip so you can squeeze a bit more into your bag (45-liter capacity) or you can compress it down to 30 liters when needed. But what we really love most is that the backpack's nylon material is weatherproof, according to the brand, and the bottom of the bag contains a waterproof liner so you don't have to fret too much about where you set it down or what weather comes your way.

Need something to store your new camera and need it quickly? Our pros like this super affordable backpack that you can get on Amazon for under $50 . It features nearly 2,000 five-star reviews, but what makes it so great are its six removable dividers, a tripod strap (if needed) and a 13-inch laptop sleeve so you can carry everything in one spot. Plus, there are mesh pockets on the sides for quick access to umbrellas or water bottles, as well as zippered pockets for accessories.

A waterproof rain cover also comes included should you get stuck in a downpour. "It's large enough for a camera body and several lenses and other stuff!" said one online reviewer. "The sturdy sides make it a good choice to protect my equipment."

You’d never guess that this inconspicuous backpack is actually a travel case for cameras. Compact, lightweight and available in a variety of colors, our pros love that it comes with five dividers so you can configure it to your camera equipment. In addition to the zip-top closure, we also appreciate that a laptop pocket is included along with a quick access pocket so you can quickly snap a shot when needed — and that’s not to mention the passport pocket and hidden pocket.

For those who plan on traveling extensively with it, rest assured that it’s machine washable and even comes with a lifetime warranty. “I like that it has padded compartments that I can customize for my camera stuff but also looks like a normal backpack,” said one photographer. “It just looks good. It’s great when traveling internationally so I don’t draw attention to myself by looking like I have camera gear on me .” For those who need a bit more space, consider sizing up and option for the large model that’s 22 liters.

Lo & Sons Claremont

Travel cases for cameras don’t have to be bulky, unattractive or blatantly obvious. Our experts absolutely love this stylish camera purse made from full grain leather that’s available in four shades. It’s designed to protect a DSLR camera as well as a small extra lens among other essentials like your wallet. (For more compatibility information, you can refer to the brand’s size and fit guide via the product page .)

While we haven’t yet tested this exact model, our fiber scientists like the brand’s oversized weekender bag and expect no less from this pick. We especially love that it’s built with two little pockets for SD cards and a handy zippered pocket to squeeze in a passport. Plus, the straps are adjustable so you can find the best length for your height.

Bring this rugged backpack with you on all your outdoor adventures. Not only do our travel experts love its attractive design that comes in three shades, but we appreciate that it’s made from a water-resistant canvas material and features padding and insulation to keep your gear safe . You can store other essentials like wallets, cash and a phone in its many pockets, as well as a 15-inch laptop. We especially love the side pocket that opens up so you can quickly access your camera without having to take the entire backpack off.

One of our photographers, Philip Friedman , uses this carry-on camera bag for whenever he needs to travel with a lot of camera equipment. Unlike other backpacks or bags featured on this list, the Roadie Roller can fit two mirrorless or DSLR cameras and up to five to six lenses as well as a laptop . For those who need more space, you can also opt for the Roller 21, 24 or other sizes.

According to the brand, this camera case complies with most international and U.S. domestic carry-on regulations, meaning that you should be able to bring it onboard with you but always consult with your airline first. GH luggage experts appreciate the bag’s sleek look and like that a removable camera module is included so you can feel good about packing up your gear, though the bag itself is on the heavier side.

Another Hearst staff favorite, we love this shoulder bag for those who don't like wearing backpacks or may already have one. Because of its design, it should be super easy to access your camera as well as any extra lenses (according to the brand, the bag can fit from three to five extra lenses and up to two DSLR cameras). Though it’s not made for storing many other bulky travel essentials like a laptop, we appreciate that the bag features several pockets, storage compartments and a weather cover plus padding to protect from the elements.

Also notable is that interior dividers are customizable so you can organize your gear however suits you best. "As everyone knows, inevitably the amount of gear we carry expands to immediately fill all available space," one online reviewer shares. "This bag met my goals nicely and it is a very nicely made bag. I love the rain cover feature and have already put it to work when we got caught out in a heavy downpour."

How we chose the best travel cases for cameras

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When narrowing down the best travel cases for cameras, the GH Institute product analysts and experts extensively research the most popular picks on the market. We then reached out to photographers, videographers and content creators to learn more about the travel camera cases they use and love and reviewed specs for at least 10 models. To make our final selections, we assessed each pick for factors such as design, materials, weight and extra features like easy access points, extra pockets and more.

What to look for when shopping for a travel case for cameras

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Below you'll find tips from real photographers on what to look for when shopping for a travel camera case:

✔️ Material: As you shop for a camera case, make sure that you choose one made from sturdy, durable materials that will protect your equipment. If possible, our pros suggest opting for a water-resistant or waterproof case. "I like something waterproof or water-resistant because you never know what scenario you will be waking into while traveling," says Good Housekeeping's lead photographer, Mike Garten . "No one wanted expensive camera gear to become saturated with rain or spray from a pretty waterfall."

✔️ Type: You'll want to decide whether you prefer a backpack, shoulder bag or a rolling carry-on as your travel camera case. While backpacks tend to be more comfortable, a shoulder bag is a bit easier to access. Carry-ons are a great choice for anyone who needs to transport a lot of equipment at once. ✔️ Design: Pay careful attention to your camera case's design both inside and out. Not only do you want to be satisfied with how it looks on the outside, but the interior organizational features should be customizable and compatible with the gear you'll carry. Look for removable dividers so you can shift things around as necessary. ✔️Access points: Look for several access points if you want to be able to access your camera quickly. "A side access portal or panel is crucial so that you can swing the bag off one shoulder and access the camera quickly to get the shot," says Garten. ✔️ Extra features: Look for extra features that come with your camera case, like zippered or mesh pockets so you can squeeze other essentials in your bag like a water bottle or wallet. Tripod straps are handy as well if you plan on bringing one, and a rain cover can save the day should you get caught in bad weather. "A laptop pocket is great so that you have everything in one," suggests Garten. "If you’re out taking lots of pictures you will likely need to download images onto a computer to make space for more!"

Why trust Good Housekeeping?

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Good Housekeeping Institute Writer and Product Analyst Olivia Lipski covers everything from tech to travel, fitness, outdoor, home and more. Not only does she have years of product review experience under her belt, but she’s also a travel enthusiast who evaluates must-have travel gear on all her adventures, including travel shoes , travel electronics and more.

Headshot of Olivia Lipski

Olivia (she/her) is a media and tech product reviews analyst at the Good Housekeeping Institute , covering tech, home, auto, health and more. She has more than five years of experience writing about tech trends and innovation and, prior to joining GH in 2021, was a writer for Android Central, Lifewire and other media outlets. Olivia is a graduate of George Washington University, with a bachelor's degree in journalism, political science and French, and she holds a master’s degree in communications from Sciences Po Paris.

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Review: Does the Monos Hybrid Check-in Large live up to its social media hype?

Testing the suitcase billed as 'virtually unbreakable'

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I don’t often buy a lot of stuff when I’m on vacation, but when I do it’s usually heavy.

Flying back to Vancouver after a month in Costa Rica and Austin, Texas, my suitcase was chock full of barbecue sauce, salsas, hot sauces and lots of other delicious stuff that typically comes in heavy glass bottles and jars.

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While the goods made it home safely, my suitcase did not. When it slid down onto the baggage carousel at YVR, it was badly cracked and broken.

I treated this event as an opportunity to invest in a better quality suitcase — one that will allow me to transport the significant amount of condiments I sometimes buy when travelling, and look good while doing it.

Enter, the Monos Hybrid Check-In Large suitcase.

I have had my eye on this brand for a while  — maybe you have as well. Monos has a significant presence on social media and their products are undeniably beautiful, with clean simple designs and sleek styling.

What you may not have seen on social media is that Monos is serious about durability — its luggage cases are, according to their website, “unbreakable” and guaranteed for life. If you want to know more or you just love mesmerizing looping gifs of suitcases taking a beating, check out their quality testing page . You can also check out this astonishing video of Monos luggage getting run over and crushed by a Jeep and emerging structurally intact.

The Vancouver-based company says they designed their luggage to “stand the test of time,” both in terms of quality and aesthetic, meaning it will endure a lifetime of tosses by overzealous baggage handlers and it’ll still look stylish rolling into a hotel lobby many years from now.

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Monos also claims to be the first luggage company to be certified climate neutral, which it achieved by reducing emissions and investing in carbon credits. If I wasn’t already convinced, it was the brand’s eco-friendly core values that pushed Monos over the top when it came to my buying decision.

But will the Monos Hybrid Check-in Large pass mustard muster?  

Monos Hybrid Check-In Large features  

Shell and frame: Much like Monos’ Classic line, the Hybrid line is made with an aerospace-grade polycarbonate shell. However, the Hybrid line adds an aluminum frame and corner guards, making it “virtually unbreakable”. It has a premium feel and a sleek look, with all components of the exterior colour matched in your choice of silver, obsidian (black) or champagne. It does indeed look like a suitcase an astronaut (who might also be an influencer) would bring to space.

The case is also zipperless. It is secured instead by two sturdy latches with built-in TSA-approved combination locks. The zipperless design makes it more difficult to break into, which means you need not be concerned that thieves will make off with your supplies of doña, the world’s greatest taco hot sauce. The double latch closure also increases the overall durability of the suitcase, because who ever heard of a zipper that lasts forever.

The case also arrived in a large linen bag, which is made to keep the case free of dust and dirt when in storage.

Components: The adjustable telescoping handle, also made from a combination of aluminum and polycarbonate, feels like it’s built to take a beating and has four height settings.

The 360-degree spinner wheels appear to be made from rubber and polycarbonate and provide a smooth ride at the airport and on the sidewalk. Monos says the wheels are reinforced to carry more sauce weight on longer journeys.

Interior: Inside the case, you’ll find two compression straps and dividers on both sides. The lining is made from recycled polyester which Monos says is antimicrobial. Inside the case, you’ll also find an anti-microbial, silver ion-coated laundry bag and two shoe bags, plus a vegan leather luggage tag. It’s these small details that really add to the premium feel of the suitcase.

Specs:  The exterior of the suitcase measures 30″ x 21″ x 11″ (76.2cm x 53.3cm x 27.9cm), the interior is 28″ x 20″ (71.1cm x 50.8cm) with a volume of 97 litres and the case weighs 13 pounds. These specs include bumpers, wheels, locks and handles.

Warranty: Monos luggage comes with a 100-day free trial, as long as those 100 days don’t include any air travel. The case has to be in re-sellable condition to be returned. The lifetime warranty covers any breaks or cracks to the shell as well as broken wheels, handles or zippers.

Price point:  The Monos Hybrid Check-In Large is priced at $525, substantially less than large check-in luggage offered by luxury brands like Paravel , Rimowa and Carl Friedrik , which also offer cases made with polycarbonate and aluminum materials.

Suggested add ons

Monos offers two carry-on options that complement your Hybrid Check-In Large. The Hybrid Carry-On costs $395 or $375 when you buy it with the Hybrid Check-in Large. There’s also the slightly larger Hybrid Carry-On Plus priced at $415, which can nest in the Check-in Large when not in use.

It’s important to note that Salsa Lizano, the key ingredient in gallo pinto, the national dish of Costa Rica, can’t be carried in check-in luggage because of restrictions on liquids.

While the interior compartments, dividers and compression straps make it easy to keep your suitcase clean and organized, the $110 set of compressible packing cubes come in handy on long journeys. I like the three-piece set from Samsonite too, if you’re on a budget. Monos also offers a luggage cover for $55.  Both the cover and the cubes are 15 per cent off when you buy a suitcase.

Unfortunately, Monos doesn’t offer any products to help protect breakable glass jars and bottles, so you’re still going to have to use your socks and sweaters to protect those.

My experience

One of the biggest challenges when it comes to owning Monos Hybrid luggage case is resisting the urge to put its durability to the ultimate test. So far, I have not thrown it down the stairs, pounded it with bowling balls or run it over with my car, because it is a beautiful piece of luggage and it’s not immune from scrapes and scratches.

Ultimately, it’s the timeless design that really brings the wow factor to the unboxing and even when you see the suitcase slide onto the baggage carousel at the airport at your destination.

It is also remarkably lightweight for a suitcase this large and sturdy, which is of course a bonus when you pack heavy and want to avoid the overweight fees you sometimes encounter when you come from a sauce family.

If you are looking to invest in a high-quality piece of luggage that will last for many journeys, the Monos Hybrid Check-In Large is a good bet.

Where to buy: Monos Price: $525

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5 Eerie Appalachian Folk Stories (& Where They Take Place)

Explore the eerie side of Appalachia with these chilling folk tales that will keep you up at night but also make for a great trip.

  • Appalachia's eerie folklore includes the Mothman, Flatwoods Monster, and Moon-Eyed People.
  • Point Pleasant in West Virginia holds Mothman events annually and has a museum.
  • The Brown Mountain Lights in North Carolina are a spooky tourist attraction linked to ghost lights.

Folklore exists in every corner of the world, from big cities to remote villages and everywhere in between. It seems that anywhere humans inhabit for more than one generation develops its unique folklore and mythologies to tell its children. And, more often than not, this folklore takes on an eerie, macabre tone.

The United States is a terrifying place full of ghost tours , haunted American hiking trails , and some of the creepiest spots on Earth ; it's thus, unsurprisingly, home to a collection of unique, eerie folklore tales.

While every region of the United States has its folklore traditions, the Appalachian Mountains, home to many top-rated hikes , and their surrounding settlements seem uniquely suited to strange and ominous folklore tales that will keep anyone up at night. After all, the Appalachian Mountains are some of the oldest mountains on Earth, with geological origins stretching back more than one billion years.

Humans have inhabited the region long before written history. Archeological findings in the region date the earliest human inhabitants to at least 16,000 years ago. This vast timeframe leaves a lot of time to come up with some good, scary stories.

Today, many parts of Appalachia are well-developed or have been turned into major tourist attractions. But despite recent progress, the mountains and their inhabitants still retain their ancient, mysterious character that lends itself to some great, eerie folklore. Here are some of the best eerie Appalachian folk stories, their locations, and how visitors can experience them today.

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5 the mothman, west virginia's winged harbinger of doom.

Few Appalachian folk tales have ingrained themselves into popular imagination quite like West Virginia's Mothman . Surprisingly, what is arguably the best-known of the region's mythological creatures also has the most recent origins, at least as far as folklorists can tell. While many of the other creatures and tales on this list go back centuries, the Mothman first entered into popular imagination in the 1960s.

The year is 1966, and the location is the town of Point Pleasant, West Virginia (now home to the Mothman Festival) . Point Pleasant is a minor regional city situated at the confluence of the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers, across the river from the West Virginia-Ohio border. Before the events of 1966, few people could find much interest in this small Appalachian outpost, which up to that point was only notable for a few historical events during the Colonial Era and the American Revolution.

In late November of 1966, a minor local news story sparked one of the most enduring--and mysterious--paranormal mysteries of the 20th Century. On November 15, four Point Pleasant residents were driving along a small, remote state route near an abandoned National Guard armory and power plant.

According to their account, as they passed the abandoned armory they saw a large creature standing "six to seven feet tall" with eyes that "shone bright red." Panicked, the group sped away in their car, only to find that this strange creature began to fly "like a helicopter" and chased after them through the air.

Eventually, the group was able to escape their strange pursuer. After word got around Point Pleasant of this bizarre encounter, the local Point Pleasant Registry newspaper ran a now-famous headline: "Couples See Man-Sized Bird...Creature...Something."

Over the next year, several more Point Pleasant residents reported sighting this mysterious creature. The first-person accounts differed somewhat in terms of circumstances, but descriptions of the creature had a few common details. The creature looked vaguely humanoid but much taller than the average man. It usually had some kind of wings and could fly at high speeds. And, of course, it always had glowing red eyes.

At a certain point, the local press began dubbing this strange visitor the "Mothman." The origins of the name are unclear, though it may have been a reference to the Batman villain, the Killer Moth. Regardless, the sightings of the Mothman continued through 1966 and 1967, as residents of Point Pleasant reported encountering the creature in their driveways, chasing after their cars, or, in one case, stealing their dog.

According to the common account, the year-long Mothman sightings ended in a tragedy. On December 15, 1967, a little over a year after the first Mothman sightings, Point Pleasant suffered one of the worst disasters in its history when the town's Silver Bridge suffered a catastrophic collapse. The bridge spanned the Ohio River, and connected Point Pleasant to the neighboring town of Gallipolis, Ohio.

On that day, during the height of rush hour traffic, the bridge's support system broke under the excess weight and collapsed into the river below. 46 people were ultimately killed in the tragedy. Although no connection between the Silver Bridge collapse and the town's Mothman was evident at first, soon afterward people noticed that sightings of the Mothman had all but ceased in the aftermath of the disaster.

Explanations for this year-long phenomenon have varied. Many believers connect the Mothman with the bridge collapse, portraying the creature as some kind of harbinger of disaster. Others note that many of the sightings took place around the abandoned National Guard armory outside of town, leading to the theory that this could be some kind of secret military experiment.

Skeptics have theorized that the original "Mothman sighting" could simply have been a large sandhill crane or similar bird that had drifted from its usual range, and all ensuring reports were either hoaxes or just driven by mass hysteria. Regardless of what explanation one prefers, the Mothman is here to stay as a piece of folklore.

In the ensuing decades, the Mothman disappeared but emerged as a local legend in Point Pleasant. Visitors to the town today can immerse themselves in all sorts of Mothman-related activities. This includes a visit to the town's Mothman Museum or a stop at the now-famous Mothman Statue for a quick photo op. On the third weekend of September, Point Pleasant hosts its annual Mothman Festival , which features live music, shops, activities, and tours.

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4 the flatwoods monster, appalachia's most infamous close encounter.

While the Mothman is West Virginia's most famous 20th-century cryptid, it's not the only one. Another chilling piece of Appalachian folklore originated in the small town of Flatwoods, West Virginia. And though this particular bit of folklore only stems from one single sighting, that sighting was enough to establish the " Flatwoods Monsters " as a lasting piece of Appalachian cultural history.

On the evening of September 12, 1952, three Flatwoods youths reported seeing a "bright object" suddenly streak across the sky and land near a local farm. The boys reportrf this apparent UFO sighting to a neighbor, who organized an impromptu search party to venture out to the site of the crash to try and investigate further.

Once there, the team reported seeing a "pulsing red light" in the woods. When someone in the group pointed a flashlight in that direction, they suddenly saw what they described as a "man-like figure with a round, red face surrounded by a pointed, hood-like shape."

The complete description of this creature has become murky over so many years and retellings, but most of the earliest reports describe it as being extremely tall, perhaps even 10 feet tall, with a round "blood-like" face and small "claw-like" hands. Some reports describe the creature as "hissing" and gliding towards the group upon being discovered. According to most accounts, this prompted the group to drop their flashlights and flee the woods.

Although subsequent investigations were carried out by local law enforcement, no other sightings of this creature were reported. However, over the next few days, a few Flatwoods residents, including a local journalist, may have claimed to have discovered evidence of "skid" marks in the ground near the site where a UFO may have crash-landed.

Today, the "Flatwoods Monster" (as it has come to be known) is a popular bit of spooky Appalachian folklore, especially among UFO enthusiasts. The town of Flatwoods hosts an annual " Flatwoods Monster Convention ," featuring live events, guest speakers, vendors, and costume contests.

The Flatwoods Monster Convention also occurs in early September, so visitors to West Virginia during this time can likely attend both the Flatwoods Monster Convention and Point Pleasant's Mothman Festival in one trip. In addition to the convention, Flatwoods also features the Flatwoods Monster Museum , a free museum that contains memorabilia and artifacts relating to the original 1952 sighting.

3 The Brown Mountain Lights

North carolina's mysterious ghost lights in pisgan national forest.

If humanoid moth monsters and UFOs are a bit too much for some travelers, North Carolina's Brown Mountain Lights are a perfect blend of romantic and "just spooky enough" to make for a memorable trip. According to local legend, the Brown Mountain Lights are a series of "ghost lights" that sporadically appear on or around North Carolina's Brown Mountain.

As with other examples of ghost lights, the Brown Mountain Lights allegedly appear floating in the atmosphere around Brown Mountain without any apparent cause. Most accounts describe the lights as small, "star-like" orbs that float above the ground. In some accounts, the lights meander slowly through the air, while other accounts describe them as moving rapidly, almost like fireworks. But all accounts describe the lights as appearing out of nowhere, without any clear source.

Folklorists have found evidence of these ghost lights from the oral traditions of the Cherokee and Catawba Native Americans, who are indigenous to the area around Brown Mountain. Later reports of the lights can be found from European settlers, Civil War soldiers, and tourists.

Many rational explanations for these lights have been proposed, the most widely accepted being that the lights are coming from nearby trains, cars, and brush fires, and are being distorted by the mountain's atmosphere in an optical illusion. Other accounts have more supernatural explanations, including mountain spirits or UFOs.

Regardless of which explanation you prefer, Brown Mountain itself is an excellent place to visit. The mountain lies within the larger Pisgah National Forest, which contains many of the most scenic peaks and forests of the entire Appalachian Range, and sits close to the popular vacation destination of Asheville . Visitors to Pisgah National Forest can head off to one of many lookouts that gives a great view of Brown Mountain to maybe catch a glimpse of the lights themselves!

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2 the bell witch, the only documented case of a ghost committing murder.

One of the most terrifying and lasting ghost stories in American history is Tennessee's haunting "Bell Witch" tale . Whether this particular horror is a true account of the supernatural or merely a tall tale that has drifted into folklore, it's still guaranteed to send chills down anyone's spine.

The legend of the Bell Witch haunting originates in early 19th Century Tennessee. According to most accounts, between 1817 and 1821, the Bell family of Robertson County, near present-day Nashville, was haunted by a malevolent spirit that purported to be the ghost of a witch. And while specific details are hard to confirm, the story has achieved infamy as being the only "documented" account of a ghost that has committed murder.

According to the legend, Tennessee resident John Bell first encountered something unusual in 1817. One day, while walking near his property, he reportedly spotted a strange, monstrous creature, with the body of a dog and the head of a rabbit. Bell shot at it, but the creature fled into the woods. Following this incident, the Bell family began to experience strange phenomena in this house. This included strange noises throughout their house, objects moving on their own, paralysis, and physical attacks by an invisible entity.

At a certain point, the spirit began to "speak" to the family. According to reports from a family friend, the entity told them that she was a spirit who "was once happy, but has now been disturbed."

The haunting culminated with perhaps the only recorded incident of a ghost-on-human murder (at least among believers).

Around 1821, the family patriarch John Bell fell deathly ill with a mysterious ailment. As he lay dying, the witch's voice bellowed out to announce that she had poisoned his dinner. Most accounts of the Bell Witch haunting end here, though some accounts report a few follow-up hauntings of Bell's children in subsequent years.

Whether one believes this is an actual case of a malevolent (and deadly) haunting, or else just a scary story made up to scare children, the Bell Witch Haunting is eerie enough to make for a good, spooky trip. Today, visitors to Tennessee's Robertson County can make a stop at the Bell Cabin , which purportedly sits on the actual site of the original Bell family home where the haunting took place.

Nearby is the sinister Bell Witch Cave , a small cavern that features in many of the accounts of the Bell Witch Haunting. And, each autumn, the area hosts the annual Bell Witch Fall Festival , which features live performances, music, and interactive displays retelling the Bell Witch legend.

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1 the moon-eyed people, mysterious humanoids from cherokee legend.

Many of the spookiest tales from the Appalachian region come from the Native American tribes who once lived there. The Cherokee people who once inhabited the Appalachian mountains of Georgia have contributed one of the eeriest legends from any Native American folklore: the Moon-Eyed People .

According to Cherokee legend, the Moon-Eyed People are humanoid inhabitants of the forests around the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Details vary according to the specific source, but most accounts describe them as short-skinny humanoid figures with extremely pale skin and large, blue eyes.

In most retellings, the Moon-Eyed People are extremely sensitive to light, and, as such, always come out during the night (hence their large, moon-shaped eyes). Some variations of the story hold that these Moon-Eyed People are some sort of evil spirits, while others describe them as another race of humans.

The exact origins of Moon-Eyed People legends and their place in Cherokee folklore are still being debated. Many of the initial accounts among European colonists came in the 18th Century. During this period, interest in Native American legends and history often superseded any commitment to accuracy, and many of the published accounts of Native American folklore were often embellished, misunderstood, or fabricated outright.

Some folklorists believe that the Moon-Eyed People were a caricature of white settlers in the region. Others believe that the myth may have evolved from another Native American tribe whom the Cherokee defeated and drove out of the area.

Regardless, visitors today who want to see if they can encounter one of these "Moon-Eyed People" themselves can head off to the Appalachian Mountains of Northern Georgia. A common destination for folklorists and adventurers is Georgia's Fort Mountain State Park . And even if you don't spot any small, pale creatures lurking in the dark woods, Fort Mountain is still a beautiful destination to visit!

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Garden tours, plants sales and more ways to spend time among flowers

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One of the loveliest ways to ease yourself fully out of the post-winter blahs and into springtime is to quit being a wallflower and instead surround yourself with living, blooming plants.

From botanical gardens to plant sales and garden tours, it’s time to make like the Scarecrow in “The Wizard of Oz” and while away the hours, conferring with flowers.

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The waterfall at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay. Photo by Tory Paxson, Courtesy of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens


Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay is open for the season, daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Maine Days are May 31 to June 2, when anyone with a Maine driver’s license or state ID gets in for free. Ditto for dads/father figures on Father’s Day (June 16). Advance registration is required. With more than 300 acres of gardens and natural spaces, including a waterfall, there will be plenty to see, smell and bask in the scenery.

Here are more things to do in Boothbay

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A tour group walks on the boardwalk at Viles Arboretum in Augusta. Joe Phelan/Kennebec Journal

Viles Arboretum is a botanical garden in Augusta with 6 miles of trails and more than 20 botanical collections. It’s open daily from sunrise to sunset, and admission is free. There are 224 acres with all sorts of flora and fauna to discover. Leashed dogs are welcome, and the visitor center is open from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

Viles Arboretum offers medicinal plant walks, and although the May 18 session is full, you can still register for the June 15 and Sept. 14 events, lead by herbalist, homeopath and flower essence practitioner Debra Bluth. Tickets are $25. Advertisement

The Mount Desert Land & Garden Preserve has four areas to explore on its property in Northeast Harbor: the Asticou Azelea Garden (dawn to dusk daily), the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Garden (noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday from July 9 to Sept. 8, reservations required), Thuya Garden (dawn to dusk daily, June 15 to Oct. 14) and Little Long Pond Natural Lands (hiking trails and carriage roads open dawn to dusk daily). On June 26, at the Wildflowers of Little Long Pond event, participants can wander around the garden’s fields and forest, spotting wildflowers along the way while practicing how to identify them.

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Joyce Saltman, right, and Beth Anisbeck embrace a tree for 60 seconds during a tree hugging event sponsored by Portland Parks and Recreation, at Deering Oaks Park last year. Carl D. Walsh/Staff Photographer


2nd Annual Tree Hugging 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Deering Oaks Park, Portland. The tree hugging is a family-friendly community gathering to celebrate Portland’s many trees. Park ranger Liz Collado will lead a sensory awakening and forest bathing session. Along with tree hugging, there will be a storytime, and you can touch a forestry truck and meet naturalist Noah Querido and Portland city arborist Mark Reiland. Just down the road, you’ll find Fessenden Park, on the corner of Brighton and Deering Avenues. The tulips have arrived, and it’s worth a visit to see them.

McLaughlin Garden Lilac Festival 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 24. McLaughlin Garden and Homestead, 97 Main St., South Paris, $5. You’ll find more than 125 varieties of lilacs at the McLaughlin Garden Lilac Festival. Explore on your own or take a guided tour led by a horticulturist. There will also be family-friendly activities, and you can shop for native and unusual plants.

4th annual Woodfords Community Garden Tour 1-4 p.m. June 8. Woodfords Corner Community in Back Cove, Deering Highlands, Oakdale and Deering Center, $20 suggested donation. Presented by Friends of Woodfords Corner, this self-guided tour features at least 10 gardens. As you make your way down the list, you’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised by all of the hidden havens bursting with flowers, plants and impressive yardscaping elements.

Peony Society of Maine 23rd annual Garden Tour 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 8 and 15. Both tours start at 1348 Ohio St., Bangor, $5 donation. You’ll visit multiple gardens in Bangor, Winterport, Ripley and St. Albans, and your senses will be filled with countless peonies. A peony plant will be raffled off at the end of each tour. Advertisement

Hidden Gardens of Historic Bath 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 22. Sagadahoc Preservation Inc., 880 Washington St., Bath, $40. The Hidden Gardens of Historic Bath house and garden tour features several homes in North Bath. Every stop on the tour will be a treat for your senses and may motivate you to make some of your own magic when you get back home.

Garden Conservancy Open Garden Days 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 29. Beckett Castle Rose Garden, Singles Road, Cape Elizabeth, $10. You’ll see plenty of roses as well as ocean views at Beckett Castle, which sits right on the water, with views of five lighthouses. The castle was built in 1871, and its rose garden features more than 70 varieties of heirloom roses. A 50-foot stone tower doubles as the rose arbor entrance to the castle.


Tate House Museum’s Annual Plant and Herb Sale 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 18. Tate House Museum, 1267 Westbrook St., Portland, 207-774-6177. The wide selection includes perennials divided from the museum’s 18th century reproduction garden. Visitors can also make their own “seed bombs” and get a sneak peak at a new installation by artist Ashley Page from 10 a.m. to noon.

Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland Spring Plant S ale 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. May 18, Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland, 217 Landing Road, Westbrook, 207-854-9771.   Perennials, house plants and more will be on sale, and plants that don’t have specific pricing are “name your own fee.” Anyone interested in donating plants or pots to the sale should send a message to [email protected] .

Taking Root Plant Sale 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. June 1, Tom Settlemire Community Garden, Maurice Drive, Brunswick, 207-729-7694. This annual sale is organized by the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust. Proceeds benefit the Common Good Garden, which provides food and gardening education for the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program. Master gardeners will be on hand to help shoppers choose their best options.

Scarborough Land Trust Native Plant Sale and Spring Festival 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. June 1, Broadturn Farm, 388 Broadturn Road, Scarborough, 207-289-1199. Visitors will find native plants, food vendors, local artisans, guided nature walks and activities for kids. To preorder plants, visit the Scarborough Land Trust website.

Maine Audubon Society Native Plants Sale and Festival 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., June 8, Gilsland Farm Audubon Center, 20 Gilsland Farm Road, Falmouth, 207-781-2330. More than 75 species of native wildflowers, shrubs and tree seedlings will be available, along with workshops, info tables and experts.

Staff writer Megan Gray contributed to this report.

Related Headlines

Headed to Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens? Here’s what else to check out in Boothbay

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