The Ultimate Study Abroad Packing List for a Semester in Florence, Italy

As David Mitchell once said, “Travel far enough, you meet yourself.”  

I can firmly state that the making the decision to study abroad in Florence, Italy of spring 2017 was one of the best things I did during my time as a college student. I was able to make amazing new friends that I would not have otherwise made, experience a new culture’s fashion, food and language first-hand, visit many European cities I had never seen before and gained an entirely new sense of independence.

With that being said, here is your go-to guide for packing for your semester abroad. 

Travel documents: 

  • Passport and/or visa 
  • Driver’s license 
  • Plane tickets
  • Proof of medical insurance 
  • Copies of passport, driver’s license and proof of medical insurance 
  • Local currency
  • Credit/debit card 

Toiletries: 

It is smart to bring travel-sized products for the first few days abroad and then stock up once you move in, especially because I struggled to find travel-size products in Europe. The small bottles are great to have on hand for weekend trips and are easy to refill. 

Also, leave hairdryers/straighteners/curling irons because they are likely to fry in converters. Instead, pick up whatever you need after you arrive in your host country. 

  • Travel size shampoo and conditioner bottles 
  • Toothbrush 
  • Travel size toothpaste 
  • Glasses and contacts for length of semester 
  • Travel size bottle of contact solution 
  • Deodorant 
  • Hair brush 
  • Makeup/hair products 
  • Medications for entire length of stay 
  • Emergency stock of ibuprofen, bandaids, and antibiotic ointment 
  • Razors
  • Feminine products 
  • Tweezers
  • Nail clippers 
  • Sunscreen 

Clothing:

Definitely research the climate of your country before leaving, as this will heavily impact what you need. Italy does not get as cold as Ireland does, for example. 

Also bring clothes that can be layered easily. 

  • Rain coat
  • Gym clothes 
  • Bathing suit 
  • Winter jacket (If needed. I only wore mine a handful of times during the semester!) 
  • Underwear, bras and socks (2 weeks’ worth!)
  • Sweaters/sweatshirts
  • 1-2 nicer outfits 
  • 3-5 long sleeve shirts 
  • 5-7 short sleeve shorts 
  • Shorts
  • Skirt
  • Shower shoes/rubber flip-flops —Good for warm weather trips and for showering in hostels/Airbnbs
  • Walking shoes – your go-to sneaker for long days of walking/traveling. Expect to toss these out by the end of the semester. I wore my Adidas Superstars as a stylish option and other people wore actual running sneakers. This is purely personal preference. 
  • Nicer pair of shoes — flats, booties or boots, etc. 
  • Leggings
  • A few pairs of jeans 

Accessories:

  • Beanie 
  • Blanket scarf — Use as a way to elevate your outfit and as a blanket on airplanes  
  • Gloves
  • Watch 
  • Sunglasses 

Technology: 

  • Headphones
  • Laptop
  • Smartphone  
  • Camera and extra memory card
  • Any corresponding chargers, chords or batteries. These can be difficult to find abroad.  
  • Outlet converters/adaptors — this is something I definitely forgot and would struggle to find on trips 

Extras: 

  • Overnight bag for weekend trips (duffel or carry on suitcase)
  • Backpack — great for weekend trips.
  • Purse that zips —  I brought my Longchamp bag and a crossbody purse to have options. 
  • Notebook and pen to write about your travels 
  • Waterbottle 
  • Umbrella 
  • Portable charger — handy on weekend trips so you never have a dead phone 
  • Travel pillow 

 

 

Poshmark 101: 4 Tips on How I Sell My Clothes Online

Ever wonder how you can make easy cash while simultaneously cleaning out your closet? Enter: Poshmark.

Poshmark is a smartphone application that is available for download for both iPhone and android users and allows you to sell your clothes online. Simply download the app from the App Store, take photos of your clothes, write a small description and include sizing and the brand name, and you’ve got your first listing up! Boom.

Once someone purchases your item, Poshmark takes care of the rest. They email you a prepaid shipping label, which you print out and stick on a box then drop it in your nearest USPS mailbox. Simple as that — nothing comes out of your own pocket.

I have sold everything from Lilly Pulitzer dresses to converse sneakers that I haven’t touched. I have had Poshmark downloaded on my phone for quite some time now, but was not making sales until more recently when my awesome friend Alex gave me a crash-course on using Poshmark (Check out her closet here — she’s the best!)

With all of this in mind, I have outlined a few of my key tips on selling your clothes on Poshmark.

Take good photos.

You would think that this would be easier said than done. But since I have began taking more time to take nice photos of my clothes, my sales have increased drastically. This means having good lighting, maybe hanging your clothes on a hanger or folding them nicely for a photo with a bare backdrop. You want to make them look appealing.

With this in mind, takes photos of your clothing from different angles. Take close up shots, take photos of the back and front, etc. Also be sure to also be honest with your buyers — if the shirt has a hole in it, make sure it is shown in your photos and noted in the description. Also consider bringing the price down a bit if the item isn’t in perfect condition. Being honest will make you appear more reputable as a sellers, and this could lead to more sales in the future if your buyers are happy with your services.

Also be sure to measure your items and put these numbers in the item’s description. Definitely a helpful thing to do.

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Make sure that you always have boxes/envelopes on hand.

Always having shipping supplies on hand allows you to send out purchases much faster than you might have if you didn’t — I know that I have made this mistake before and have paid the price by getting poor reviews from buyers. But I’ll talk about that in my next tip 🙂

Did you know that you can actually order USPS boxes and envelopes to be sent to your house for free? After having done this, I have the capability of sending out items much, much faster. Simply order Priority Mail USPS envelopes from the USPS website (not Flat Rate as these will get sent back to you) and have them mailed to your home if you do not have time to pick them up. Super easy and they’re free!

Send out your items ASAP.

Everyone likes fast shipping, right? Right. With this in mind, be fair to your buyers and try to ship out your item within a few days — 1-3 is ideal. If something comes up, also be sure to take advantage of the comments section of your listing to communicate with your buyer.

Neglecting to send out your items quickly could lead to unhappy customers, which means that they will be unlikely to shop your closet again and leave you a nasty rating.

Wrap your item up nicely and include a card. 

Take time to wrap up your items with care in some tissue paper and include a “thank you” note. This will definitely show your customer that you care about their business.

Feel free to follow me on Poshmark here and shop my closet!

 

 

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A look inside my Colourpop Collection

Hey everyone!

With the Colourpop craze in full swing, I figured I would give you all an inside look at the pieces I have ordered from the brand in the past. With everything on their website costing only a few dollars, their prices truly cannot be beat.

I only own six pieces from them but I hope to expand my collection very soon so that it includes one of their infamous ultra matte lipsticks, which everyone in the Internet seems to be comparing to Kylie Jenner’s lip kits.

IMG_5835I have three of their  lippie stix in the colors Poppin’, a matte (which I got free when I ordered the other products), Bossy, another matte, and Juice Bar which is sheer.

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I find that I wear Juice Bar most often, probably because it is sheer and is perfect for everyday. I wore Bossy and Poppin often last semester at college for nights out, and I abolutely loved the way they looked on although they never seemed to stay on as long as I hoped they would. Maybe I will have to check out their lip liners to see if those help to prolong the wear of the lippie stix.

The other lippie stick that is pictured is actually a primer that I wanted to try out, but was unfortunately unimpressed with. Maybe my expectations were a little too high for it but I found that it really dried my lips out and did not prolong the wear of my lipstick.

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As a huge fun of YouTube beauty blogger KathleenLights, I knew for sure that I had to check out the shadows that she made with Colourpop. As a broke college student, I was not completely ready to drop $20 on the quads that she released with them, so I tested out a beautiful bronze from Where the Light Is that she made called Kathleenlights. IMG_5853

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This color looks absolutely beautiful on the lids – I love applying it with my finger rather than a brush because it works best with the formula. When paired with black liner and a warm brown in the crease, it looks absolutely stunning. It has a pearlized finish and I love the way it makes my brown eyes pop.

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I personally struggle a lot with using liquid liner, and have been searching far and wide to find an alternative. I have heard great things about cream liners, and I was not about drop a bunch of money to test one out, so I decided to give Colourpop’s in Swerve a whirl.

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When used with my Mac 210 brush, this product applies to my upper lash line like a dream. I just recently this brush with a Macy’s gift card that I had laying around and was shocked by how I was easy to get up-close-and-personal with my lash line. 10/10 would definitely recommend both the liner and brush! I have worn the liner to work and had it last all day long in the hot sun, so you know that it stays on.

All in all, I really do like all of these products, aside from the lip primer which is just kind of gimmicky to be honest. With each of these products costing either 5 or 6 dollars, I would definitely recommend trying them out.

IMG_5845IMG_5849In the coming weeks, expect some pretty cool things to be coming to the blog. I just ordered a bottle of spray on nail polish online to review and am thinking about doing a 4th of July look book so keep your eyes peeled for those :).

Leave in the comments what Colourpop products you guys love the most, I would love to check them out!