We’ve all been there: a broken zipper here, a drop of coffee or red wine there. When you’ve gone to all the trouble to create the perfect outfit, you don’t want to let one little accident ruin your look.

It’s time to unleash your inner Boy Scout and be prepared. Pack your purse with the following items to solve any fashion emergencies and wardrobe malfunctions that come your way before anyone even notices:

Your Everyday Handbag

For everything from a Monday at the office to Saturday at the mall, here’s what you need to carry in your practical purse:

  • Your cell phone. Get in the habit of using your phone for all your note-taking and shopping lists, and you can skip the pen and notebook.
  • Wallet and keys. Try clipping these together or tucking them in a dedicated pocket of your purse to find them fast.
  • A compact mirror. Because a last-minute check will boost your confidence and keep you from an embarrassing, food-between-the-teeth moment.
  • Breath mints. Essential after a trip to Starbucks — or any other dinner date.
  • Hand sanitizer. A travel-sized squeeze bottle of hand sanitizer will help keep colds and flu at bay. I recommend an unscented version so it doesn’t clash with your perfume.
  • Travel tissues. In addition to being a must-have in the winter, these are great for cleaning up tiny spills or making a fast makeup fix. A dedicated travel pack or plastic case keeps your purse lint-free.
  • Lip gloss. I like one with a little color for that finishing touch. It will also protect your lips from dry winter weather, and you can choose one with SPF for the summer months.

Your Evening Clutch

For a luxurious evening out, do switch out your big, work-a-day bag for a more streamlined purse that matches your outfit. Unless you’re sniffling with a cold, you can leave behind tissues and hand sanitizer in favor of these evening essentials:

  • Shout wipes. Save your favorite dress from stains with these amazing wipes that work on practically anything. If you’re concerned about a particularly delicate fabric, check out these tips for alternative wipes to stay stain-free.
  • Mini Colgate toothbrush. These clever travel toothbrushes don’t require toothpaste or even water to use, so you can erase any evidence of that red wine with a discreet trip to the restroom.
  • Foot Petals heel cushions. If you’re wearing a new pair of heels, these soft shoe pads can be a lifesaver. Just stick them to the inside of your shoe when you feel a blister coming on, and you’ll be able to walk down the street — or dance the night away! — without wincing.

Purse Pro Tip

If you’re anything like me, your handbag gets heavier with each passing day as you collect things. An overweight handbag can wreak havoc on your posture, though, and will cause you to bend into awkward positions to support it. Get in the habit of emptying your purse of unneeded junk once a week — your back will thank you, and you’ll look instantly taller and more confident!