The Holiday Party Bottom Shelf


Behind every great holiday party outfit is a holiday party Bottom Shelf. It’s the stuff that keeps partygoers looking shiny and bright all night long—ever wonder how they do it? Not with glittery eyeshadow, or velvety red lipstick, or even a quick roll of warming, musky perfume oil. The best stuff isn’t wrapped with a bow, it’s a few ugly products, stuffed messily into a bag. For example, you know you’ll wish you had a pack of mints when it’s too late to find some. When you need to touch up your makeup, it’s good to have a light-up compact (this one even comes with a built-in phone charging bank). But foot numbing spray, wine stain remover, and toupée tape are the real savvy tricks. Trust us—they make all the difference between a fun night and a silent in-the-cab-back-early night. Before you leave the house, here’s what you’ll need:

The Sprays

Need to run to a holiday party post-work, and don’t have time to stop home and change? Totally fine. All you need is: an outfit that a swipe of lipstick easily takes from day to night, and a couple of potions from The Laundress. Their Crease Release can help soften the wrinkles that form from sitting all day. And if you worry about taking your lunch smells to dinner, their Fabric Fresh is like deodorant for clothes. Both come in 2oz mini bottles that are handbag and office desk drawer friendly. If you insist on wearing uncomfortable shoes, a prep spray can help. This one helps prevent blisters by coating feet in a sheer layer of dimethicone. After it dries for about a minute and a half, you’ve got a barrier between your skin and the shoe, and you’re good to go. (It starts to flake off on its own after about six hours, or you can take it off with a washcloth when you get home.) If you need something more urgently, head to the drugstore and buy a bottle of lidocaine spray. That’ll alleviate the pain of teetering on heels in a pinch. Finally, throw a Touchland hand sanitizer in your bag, too—the slim rectangular bottle is great and it’s the easiest to use before digging into any finger food.

The Stick-ons

In more dire shoe-related circumstances, blister bandages are a savior. They’re made of hydrocolloid material, exactly what’s in a pimple patch—their soaking up ability makes them unmatched after you have a blister. But, they’re also extra sticky and waterproof, and work as buffers that won’t slip and slide on your blister hot zones. Speaking about slips, you can’t enjoy yourself at a party if you’re constantly worried about your clothes covering the right places. Lingerie tape exists for this exact purpose, but actually, toupée tape is even better.

The Swipes

Everything that used to be a stick, tube, or compact is a wipe now. Get with the program! You shouldn’t make a habit of using ‘em every day, but they’re genius for nights out on the go. Recess’ deodorant wipes are individually wrapped and about the size of a condom, so you can fit one in a wallet, clutch, or even the tiny front pocket of a pair of jeans. They don’t leave white marks on your clothes like a stick deodorant might, and actually wiping the sweat off instead of just adding more odor-masking stuff is surprisingly effective. And—OK, now picture this. It’s several hours later, you’re at the party gulping down your second glass of red wine, you head to the bathroom (wine is a liquid, after all) and realize your mouth is completely purple. The worst! Vanity Project’s Wine Wipes to the rescue. (They’re sommelier-approved, and won’t leave a weird taste in your mouth when you go back for more.) Finally, it’s always good to have a pack of fun printed rolling papers handy. For one thing, they easily double as oil blotting papers. And when the party vibe shifts to something more chill, you’ll have the exact supplies you’ll need.

Photo via ITG