This post contains affiliate links. See disclosure.
Do you often forget your wallet at home? Are you constantly sifting through your purse for your keys? Is the inside of your handbag marred by pen marks or makeup stains? If so, you may need to declutter your purse! In this post, I'll show you how to organize your purse with a purse organizer.
Before my blogging 'side gig,' I was into vintage purses. I would collect them, enjoy them, and resell them. I've since shifted slightly towards a more minimalist lifestyle, and am trying to establish a capsule-like wardrobe with a few versatile accessories. I’ve whittled my way down to just five purses, each of which serves a unique purpose (read: I can't get rid of any more of them)!
But, even with just a few bags, there's the conundrum of how to transfer your essentials from one purse to another without forgetting anything. The solution? A purse organizer!
This is essentially a 'bag within a bag' that allows you to transfer your belongings en masse from one purse to another. A purse organizer solves the problem of forgetting something in your 'other' purse; it also keeps your purse organized, protects the inside of your purse from makeup stains, and can add structure to an otherwise floppy tote.
If you've been following along for a while, you're probably not shocked to learn that in addition to a tidy home, I like to keep a tidy purse! Purse organizers are the perfect way to do this!
There are many options available, and I've tried almost every type.
So, which one do I think is best? Believe-it-or-not, it's the least expensive one!
My go-to purse organizer is this nylon multi-pocketed one, that you can get on Amazon for under ten bucks.
Vercord Purse Organizer - S,M,L ($8.99-12.99).
In this post, I'll show you how to use a purse organizer to keep your bag organized and how to use it to lighten your load!
Choosing the Right Purse Organizer
Through some trial and error, I've found the purse organizer that works best for me (the Vercord nylon 13-pocket organizer in 'medium'). It fits in each of my purses, except for my mini clutch, and it has two large, zippered compartments.
Below, I'll show you how it fits in both my most casual tote and my fanciest handbag.
Here it is in my small Longchamps Le Pliage. This is the quintessential, care-free, casual tote---the one you take to the grocery store or to the park with your kids. It's lightweight, durable, and tolerates all of the abuses of your day-to-day. When my son was still in diapers, I used the 'large' one, but have since downsized. My purse mantra: use the smallest purse that will meet your needs. Why burden yourself with anything larger?
This same organizer fits snugly inside my Chanel Jumbo Single Flap. This is my 'holy grail' bag. If you're a fellow Chanel fan, you'll know that this model (with the single flap) is discontinued. (Ebay is probably your best bet for finding one 'preloved.') This is my 'drinks with girlfriends' and 'date night' bag.
As you can see, my purse organizer can take me from daytime at the park to an evening out in seconds!
Depending on the shapes and sizes of your purses, different types of handbag inserts may better suit your lifestyle:
Structured Purse Organizers
Purse organizers made of rigid felt work well in large, floppy canvas totes, like the Louis Vuitton Neverfull and the Speedy, to which they add structure.
Vercord Felt Organizer Shaper, 12 Pockets in S, M, L, XL ($16.88-$28.68). I used to own a Neverfull and this is the exact organizer I used!
Osotwbo Felt Handbag Organizer Shaper, 12 Pockets - S,M,L,XL ($18.28-$41.89). I use this type of organizer in my Speedy Bandouliere to help it maintain a boxy shape. However, I don't put anything in the pockets. I continue use my nylon organizer within this organizer.
Vertical Purse Organizers
If you're a fan of tall totes, you'll need a purse insert that is taller than it is wide.
Vercord Long Tote Felt Organizer Insert, 17 pockets ($23.99). Something about this organizer and all its pocketed glory makes me happy!
What's In My Purse Organizer & How I Organize It
Once you've chosen your organizer, it's important to arrange things strategically to get the most out of it.
One of my best purse organization tips is to be consistent about where you store things within your purse/purse organizer. If you always keep your keys in the same compartment, they'll be a lot easier to locate. After a while, you'll be able to retrieve things from your purse without actually looking inside. Before I got serious about doing this, I would rifle through my purse, searching frantically for my keys, each and every day, at my doorstep.
I also divide my purse organizer into sections, depending on function and frequency of use.
The 'front' side (the part of the organizer facing away from my body when I'm wearing the purse) is easier to access than the 'back' side, so this is where I keep frequently used items:
Gum or mints (missing from the photo, as I'm currently all out).
My transit pass.
Hand sanitizer. I'm a fierce advocate of hand hygiene. Cleansing your hands frequently is the best way to avoid the common cold and other contagious illnesses! The first thing I do when I pick up my son from daycare is slather his hands in this stuff in an effort to eradicate the cooties he's accumulated throughout the day.
Purell Hand Sanitzer - Pack of 6 ($8.94).
If you don't feel like shelling out for the Apple version, there are budget-friendly look-a-likes available---like these: SZJDDQ Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds ($29.99).
The 'back' side of my purse insert (the part that faces towards me when wearing the purse) houses items I don't need to access as frequently:
Portable phone charger & charging cable. Okay, so these may not be purse essentials for everyone. But, as someone who's on her phone a lot (probably more than I should be, but that's a topic for another day...), these are lifesavers! I've had my share of paranoid fantasies about my phone dying during my commute home and missing an important call from my son's daycare.