Best Tote Bag for women

1

 DO Bring a “Work” Bag

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In any interview, looking professional is key. You want to look like you’re able to tackle your responsibilities, while also fitting into the overarching office culture.

For job interviews, carrying an office-appropriate bag is important; forget the hobo, clutch or evening bags. The key is to choose an interview bag that keeps you organized, and complements your interview outfit.

But where to start? Read on for interview bag inspiration, ideas and tips to style and select a bag for your job interview.

2

 TRY a Reversible Leather Tote

Courtesy Street Level

These bags are all the rage right now, and easy to find! Just search for “reversible leather totes,” which are frequently made in “vegan” leather that will cost you under $40. Often available in brown/black, brown/blue, white/black, black/red and many other combinations, these types of bags are an excellent (and affordable) way to match your interview bag to any outfit.

3

 DO Keep it Classic

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You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to choosing a bag for your job interview. Just keep it classic, and classy. “Classic” bag shapes that would work to consider include:

  • Doctor bags
  • Satchel bags
  • Tote bags
  • “Tailored” shopper bags (ideally in leather or another thick, sturdy material)
  • Refined laptop or messenger bags

Generally, you’ll want to avoid hobo bags, baguette bags, barrel bags, flap bags, clutches and wristlets, and backpacks.

4

 DON’T Bring a Gym Bag

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Make your interview the priority of your day. Avoid carrying anything that’s not absolutely necessary: gym bags, suitcases, shopping bags, et cetera. You don’t want to look like you’re breezing through the interview on the fly.

If you’re reading this and thinking, “Yeah right, my gym bag goes everywhere with me,” ditch the frumpy duffel and consider a sleek, gym-to-work bag that’s suitable to pair with a suit.

5

 But, DO Bring a Bag Large Enough to Hold Your Stuff

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In lieu of bringing multiple bags, opt for a bag large enough to hold your stuff: your laptop, portfolio, note pad, phone and charger, and all the other necessary or sundry items you might need to carry with you. While you don’t want to bring a huge bag (again, no gym bags, no duffel bags, no “weekenders”) carrying one large and organized bag is better than juggling multiple bags or stuffing a single bag full.

6

 DO Keep a Bag Just for Interviews

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Imagine this: an “interview-only” bag that’s pre-packed and ready for each job interview? Considering purchasing (or designating) a bag just for interviews. Keep it routinely stocked with copies of your resume and job application materials, notepads and pens, an extra phone charger, gum, and anything else you might need. That way, you’ll have one less thing to worry about on the day of your interview.

7

 TRY a Bag Organizer

Courtesy Pereia

In your interview bag, you might want to consider a bag organizer to keep all of your items neat and tidy. No more digging for a pen or your business card: with a bag organizer, you’ll have everything within easy reach.

8

 DON’T Carry a Flashy Bag

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Your interviewer’s attention should be on you, not on your handbag. Save the flashy bag for happy hour and tone it down during your interview. While it’s okay to incorporate color (more on that later) – for the most part, opt for professional, neutral tones (black, navy blue, brown, beige) and conservative finishes (matte as opposed to patent leather).

9

 TRY a Stylish Laptop Bag

Courtesy Coach

If you’re having trouble finding a bag that works for you, search specifically for laptop bags. While some are bulky and designed for travel, a more tailored look is key for job interviews. Search for lightweight, leather (or a substitute, “vegan” version) or “stylish” laptop bag to find something that looks like a polished briefcase or tote, but also works as a laptop bag.

10

 DON’T Be Afraid to Have Fun

David Woolfall / Getty Images

While it’s generally better to err on the side of being conservative, in some situations (like if you’re interviewing at a casual company, or within a specific industry, like fashion, for example) it can be acceptable to carry a “statement” bag. Use your best judgment to decide what would be best in your situation.

If you have any sense of the company’s dress code and company culture, they can be a good indicator: for example, in a relaxed or start-up casual environment, it’s fine to accessorize with pops of color (as long as the rest of your outfit remains more toned down).

However, if you’re interviewing in a traditional, business formal environment, you’ll want to play it safe and avoid an outlandish bag.

Find out about more Hand bags over in our front page

Buying a Shopping hand bag

REVIEW – SHOPPING FOR HANDBAGS WITH

Women love shopping. That’s a fact isn’t it? Particularly for shoes and bags, so the legend goes.

Which means I must be a man trapped in a woman’s body, because I actually don’t like shopping at all, especially not for shoes. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that shoe shopping is one of my Worst Things.

I’d love to be able to do it online and save the hassle, but shoes and clothes never fit me properly, so it’s a waste of time. Finding handbags online is easy though, handbags I can do, which is why I said ‘yes please, thank you very much’ when Zalando asked me to choose a bag and review their online shopping experience.

If like me you don’t relish the idea of having to actually get up off the sofa and go from shop to shop, trying to pick out something that, when you catch sight of yourself in the unflattering changing room mirrors, doesn’t make you want to be sick a bit in your mouth, then Zalando could be the place for you. They’ve a massive range of clothing, as well as loads of gorgeous women’s accessories, and the ordering process was extremely smooth.

The only thing I found a little bit annoying was that the images were quite small, and you had to click through to each individual product page to see them properly. Perhaps a larger image could pop up when you hover over something? Other than that though, it was all very easy and stress free. After some serious browsing, cup of tea in hand, I chose this bag from Morgan:

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What do you think? I was going for ‘black means I’m professional and serious but look, there’s a little flower too, so don’t be scared.’

Then all I had to do was sit back and wait. A couple of emails kept me informed of my parcel’s progress and, as promised, 3-5 working days later I was eagerly tearing open the box and deciding which of my many notebooks I was going to carry around in my new bag. I do like getting parcels. And buying notebooks.

The packaging was excellent, the bag was in perfect condition, and it was delivered by courier, so I didn’t have that annoying ‘Royal Mail red card even though I was home’ scenario. All in all a very smooth and stress free shopping experience

10 Reasons Why your Best Hand Bag looks Bad

10 Reasons Your Bag Looks Lously.

Cute? Maybe. But Expensive? Definitely not.

1. It’s not made of leather. It’s not even made of good faux leather.
I’m not talking about evening bags, which can be made out of everything from silk to hard plastic and still look totally luxery. I’m talking about everyday bags made out of canvas and polyester and polyurethane.
Spring for real leather whenever possible.

On right: Taupe Leather Bag, KELSI DAGGER (Available at Nasty Gal),$98

If you must go faux, make sure it has a rich texture. Texture is essential if you want to get the look of real leather on a budget. Embossed and suede faux leathers are the most consistently real-looking. There are good pebbled and smooth faux leathers out there, but there are also tons of bad ones. If you look at a smooth or pebbled leather and it looks fake to you, just stay away. And keep in mind that rich jewel tones and black tend to look better in faux leather than bright colors or pastels.

On right: Faux Croc Handbag, FRENCH CONNECTION (Available at Neiman Marcus), $98

Be especially wary of brown faux leather. Ninety-nine times out of 100, flat, brown faux leather just looks cheap. Stay away from bright caramel browns in favor of richer chocolate browns.

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On right: Brown Faux Croc Chain Bag, ZARA, $179

2. It’s obviously a knockoff of a trendy, high-end designer bag.
Not being able to afford a $2,700 bag is nothing to be ashamed of.

On right: Brown Mini Handbag, CÉLINE, $2,700

Choose a bag with a nice shape that doesn’t look like it is trying to be something else.

On right: Suede Handbag, ASOS, $77

3. It’s dirty and/or falling apart.
Those little threads sticking out where the two pieces of faux leather are sewn together are way more noticeable than you think. So is that pen mark on the front and those dirty, discolored corners.

If you are really hard on your bags, stick to black or other dark colors that won’t show dirt so easily. When you see a loose thread, trim it. When you see two pieces of leather pulling apart, glue them back together. When you get a mark on your bag, clean it before it can set in

4. It’s covered in contrast stitching.
Cheap brands try to pass off obvious stitching as some sort style-enhancing design detail, but it’s not. It’s distracting. Just because your eye is drawn to something doesn’t mean it’s good. “Expensive” is all about subtlety.
When stitches are visible, they should be straight, small, and unobtrusive.

On right: Snakeskin Crossbody, POUR LA VICTOIRE (Available at Shopbop), $95

5. The hardware is lightweight.
Nothing cheapens up a bag faster than a dinky and overly shiny chain or zipper pull.
Less hardware is better than flimsy hardware. And don’t fall for that thing where brands just put a faux finish on lightweight hardware to make it look more like the heavy stuff. Hardware is something you really can’t fake.

On right: Green Bowling Bag, ZARA, $100

6. It’s just too cutesy.
You are not a kid anymore.
Ruffles and rosettes and frilly, scalloped edges with little holes punched in them and bows all over the place is not an “expensive” look. Sure, some high-end designers specialize in this sort of hyper-feminine aesthetic, but what works on a $2,000 bag doesn’t always work on a $100 bag, and, honestly, it often doesn’t really work on the $2,000 bag either.

On right: Brown Leather Handbag, H&M, $129

7. It’s got some big logo on it.
Unless you are rocking some Chanel or another super high-end luxury logo, the smaller and less noticeable the brand name on the bag, the better. And don’t even think about an all-over logo print. Not even if it actually is expensive.
No branding is ideal, but if it can’t be avoided, the smaller and more subtle the logo the better, especially if it is a well-known cheap brand.

On right: Black Quilted Chain Bag, CHARLES & KEITH, $96

8. It’s just got too much going on.
Too many different “design features” just make a bag look chaotic and, yes, cheap.
You can still find a totally fun bag, just keep in mind that the fewer details there are, the more important each one is, so you need to choose carefully.

On right: Suede Fringe Bag, NASTY GAL, $50

9. The zipper is hanging out at either end.
Zipper closures in general tend to feel a little cheaper than flap closures or locks, but this is especially true when the ends of the zipper are not sewn into the bag. Being able to pull the zipper out at either or both ends might allow you to open your bag farther, but it makes the bag look cheap.
If you are worried about the security of your belongings, choose a bag with a flap closure and some sort of locking mechanism.

On right: White Shoulder Bag, CHARLES & KEITH, $80

10. It’s just poorly finished.
That means it has crooked seams or the pattern is off-center or the ends of the straps are folded over and sewn in place instead of being bonded around the edges. It’s the little things. Sometimes these are factory flaws that made it through quality control and sometimes it is just bad design, but either way, you want to steer clear.
Check your bag thoroughly for flaws before you buy it.

On right: Tasseled Mini Bucket Bag, ZARA, $50

 

 

How to Clean Handbags

Many of us have spent a small fortune on our handbags. And wherever we go, the bag goes with us. Believe it or not, there’s a problem  there: The same bag that joins you in places like subway cars, restroom stalls, and office cubicles often winds up on the kitchen counter or dining room table when you return home at the end of the day.

According to Dr.Charles Gerba, a professor of microbiology at the University of Arizona who has spent the last two decades researching where bacteria lurk in our daily lives, handbags can be a magnet for microbes. “In one study of 22 handbags we found fecal bacteria on 30 percent of the bottom outside,” said Gerba.

No more facts needed! It’s time to rethink how we handle our precious purses. Here’s a step-by-step for cleaning your handbags.

Tip #1: Start at the Bottom

First, clean the bottom of the bag. If it’s leather, use extreme caution: Do a spot-test in an inconspicuous place to check that the product you use won’t damage it, and to be extra-safe you could call the purse manufacturer to ask their recommendation for a cleaning product.

If it’s faux or patent leather you might be safe using a simple antibacterial wipe on the bottom of the handbag, the area that comes most into contact with yucky germs and bacteria, or try a kid’s hand sanitizing wipe, as they are less likely to contain harmful chemicals or alcohol.

For leather, there’s an  antibacterial product called “Lovin’ My Bag Antibacterial Leather Cleanser,” which some people swear by, but if you are looking for a DIY option, you could try an equal parts vinegar/water solution in a spray bottle and spray a small amount onto the bag. Use a clean, dry cloth to remove all moisture then follow up with a leather conditioner(otherwise the vinegar can dry leather out).

If treating the leather scares you, take it to your local cobbler or leather specialist and ask them to clean it for you, or at the very least give it spray with an antibacterial spray. Ideally you should give the bottom of your bag a wipe down every evening when you come home.

If your bag of choice is a canvas tote, throw it in the washing machine every few weeks if you think it can handle it, and let it air dry. The dryer would give it an additional blast of germ-killing heat, but could also cause the bag to shrink. The same applies to kids backpacks (you don’t want to know where they have been!). A cycle in the washing machine is a good idea once a week.

Tip #2 Clean the Inside

Other cleanliness offenders are the inside of your bag and your wallet. Think about it: You take your wallet out, place it on a table or a bar or a cash register, or some other counter where a hundred hands have touched, while you sign the check, then you put it back into your bag, introducing the inside of your bag and all of its contents to whatever germs were left lingering on the counter. And if you ever carry loose dollar notes in your bag, they are swarming with germs (coins are less likely to carry as many germs as they are made from antimicrobial copper).

Take everything out and vacuum the inside of the bag. If the bag allows, pull the lining out of the bag as much as possible and spot clean with a gentle soapy water solution using an antibacterial hand soap, then give it a spray with a disinfectant. Allow it to dry completely.

Tip #3: Use a Handbag Hook

Handbag hooks that can temporarily attach to any tabletop may seem a little hokey, a funny gimmick that came out several years back and then disappeared into the black hole of random inventions, but if you are at a restaurant or a bar that doesn’t have hooks under the bar or table this is your best option. Just keep one in your purse at all times. It’s also much safer than hanging your bag over the back of your chair where someone could easily snatch and make a run for the door before you even know it’s gone.

Tip #4: Use a Magic Wand

If all this talk of germs is starting to give you the creeps, but you don’t want to risk using cleaning products on your prize possession, splurge on a device that uses UV-C light and to eliminate most bacteria from numerous surfaces.

What To Do When You Lose Your Purse or Wallet

The holiday season is prime shopping not only for consumers, but also identity thieves. While you are looking for the best deals, they are hunting for unattended handbags, credit cards on display at the check out counter, and documents left in the seats of cars parked at the mall.

Theif

Steps to Take to Protect Your Personal Information

  1. Never carry unnecessary identity documents in your purse or wallet. Social Security cards are, unfortunately, a common example.
  2. Never leave your purse unattended in a shopping cart or shelf while sorting through the shelf or rack for that perfect piece of clothing.
  3. Never leave documents, packages or your purse or wallet in the seat of your car when you go into the mall. They make prime targets for identity thieves and old fashioned crooks. Lock them in the trunk or glove box instead.
  4. Be aware of shoulder surfers. Identity thieves can take a picture of your credit card and video you entering your pin, right over your shoulder as you check out.

Unfortunately, even if you do all the right things you can still fall prey to identity theft. Having your personal information fall into the wrong hands can be scary and feel overwhelming. Anytime sensitive information is stolen, you should take the proper precautions immediately.

Steps to Take If You Lose Your Purse or Wallet?

  1. If you haven’t already, contact your lenders and report as lost or stolen any credit cards that may have been in your handbag. Your lenders will be able to go over any recent transactions with you to ensure that you are not held responsible for any fraudulent charges.
  2. Notify the Social Security Administration to let them know that your Social Security number has been compromised.
  3. Contact Experian and request a free initial security alert, or fraud alert.

A fraud alert notifies anyone viewing your credit report that someone may be trying to apply for credit in your name fraudulently, and asks creditors to contact you to verify your identity before approving applications in your name. .

When you request an initial alert, Experian also will provide a free copy of your credit report for your review. Look it over carefully to ensure there is no indication of fraud or identity theft.

If you do determine that you have been the victim of identity theft, you may add a more permanent fraud alert, called an Extended Fraud Victim Alert, to your credit report. You will need to provide a valid police report or identity theft report to do so. An extended fraud alert remains on your credit report for seven years.

The initial alert will remain on your report for 90 days. Experian will notify the other two major credit reporting agencies of your request for a fraud alert so that they can add an alert to their files as well.

You may also consider a monitoring service to help protect your identity. You can also learn more with Experian’s ID Theft Victim Assistance, where you will find detailed steps you can take to start protecting your identity, along with steps for recovery.

Identity Theft and Children

Experian does not knowingly maintain credit reports on minors. Depending on the age of your children, they may not have a credit record, in which case no alert would be necessary.

However, if their information has been used fraudulently, a credit record may already exist. If this is the case, Experian can assist you in adding alerts to protect their files as well.

You can find instructions for requesting a credit report for a minor by going to Experian’s Fraud Center and clicking on the “Minor Child Instructions” link.

How a Security Freeze Works

A security freeze is another tool used to protect against ongoing credit fraud resulting from identity theft. A credit freeze will not prevent someone from stealing your identity. But, like a fraud alert, it can help prevent use of your stolen identity to apply for credit.

A credit freeze works differently than a fraud alert, and is best used only as a last resort.

A security freeze prevents most businesses from viewing your credit report, including any potential lenders or employers you may wish to apply with. Existing lenders, law enforcement and some others may still be able to review your credit history.

Freezing your report will not impact your credit, but it will mean that you need to lift the freeze before applying for credit, employment, or other services where a credit check might be necessary.

When you freeze your credit report, you will be provided a PIN to lift the freeze. Because you must first “thaw” your report, a security freeze can hinder or delay any future applications, especially applications for “instant” credit. However, once a security freeze is permanently removed from your credit report, it will no longer affect your future transactions.

To learn more about adding and removing a security freeze, go to Experian’s Freeze Center.

Thanks for asking,

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