Packing for a Weekend Ski Trip Feels Impossible in a Carry On—Here’s What We Recommend.

Packing for a Weekend Ski Trip Feels Impossible in a Carry On—Here’s What We Recommend.

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Packing for a ski trip can be difficult. Any way you slice it, if you own your own gear, we’re talking two checked bags minimum. (For the purpose of this packing list, we’re ignoring the drivers and the renters—you lucky ducks.) If you don’t wear your ski jacket and ski pants on the plane, they take up a literal half of your suitcase by themselves! And what about 
the cute après boots you just bought, or that puffer vest that makes an entire look? Guess they’re staying in the closet…

As you get frugal with your limited space for a trip from Salt Lake City to Lake Tahoe (um, speaking from personal experience), it can feel overwhelmingly like you’re going to forget something. It’s helpful for me to remind myself frequently that despite the accessorizing and the outdoorsy style we so love, as long as we have the basics to hurtle down the mountain, all will be okay! Still, having a concrete outline makes it significantly easier as you gather your belongings and attempt to shove a winter wardrobe into a tote bag that simply does not have the capacity. So we did the hard work for you, compiling a one-stop shop of our essentials to head out skiing for the weekend.

Women’s Ski Weekend Packing List:


  • Carry on suitcase
  • Personal item
  • Boot bag
  • Ski bag

Our recommendations: If you have the right bag, you can pretty much stuff your entire life into it. (I am unfortunately an overpacker, although I do not recommend being like me in that regard.) I love that the Monos Duffel ($210) and Monos Metro Backpack ($200) have external pockets that you can use as toiletries, meaning that you can continually “add” to your bag without violating the carry-on rule. For a carry-on suitcase, preferences vary but I generally recommend the Away Carry On ($275)—a classic! Category-wise, I cram practically all of my “lifestyle” and “tech” items into my Monos Duffel, while I pack my clothes in my carry on.


  • Ski jacket
  • Ski pants
  • Buff/neckwarmer/balaclava
  • Beanie
  • Base layers (2)
  • Midlayer fleece/jacket/sweater

Our recommendations: Let’s start with base layers. We just wrote a whole edit on which base layers are worth a damn (to be frank) but we’ll recommend a Kari Traa set ($250) or Halfdays seamless layers ($190). For a buff, I love the Goldbergh Twinkle Neckwarmer ($79) to add a luxury touch to the ‘fit. If you’re someone who wants more full coverage, Matek has so many cute balaclavas – we love this printed one ($110) designed by stylist Gia Seo. You already know what we’re going to say for ski jackets and pants: Halfdays, Halfdays, Halfdays. My personal choice? The Ashton Jacket ($425) and the Carson Bib Pant ($325).

If I’m going for a sweater, I love the Alp ‘N Rock Après Ski Sweater ($179), which doubles as an après fit, obviously! I also recently got this Huckberry Trail Fleece Pullover ($81), which is super soft to the touch and extremely warm. For a quick trip, I appreciate packing a *cute* midlayer so that I can use them as any necessary dinner or going out outfits too.


  • Ski gloves
  • Glove liner (optional)
  • Ski socks (2)
  • Ski goggles
  • Helmet
  • Skis/bindings
  • Poles
  • Ski boots
  • Backpack/fanny pack (optional)

Our recommendations: While I’ve had and loved my pair of budget-friendly Italic Mid-Mountain Gloves (just $34), I’ve admittedly been eyeing the mountain favorite Hestra Mist Mitts ($115). While I often opt just to wear my gloves sans liners, I do adore the Ibex Glove Liner ($50) with touchscreen capacity. For ski socks, Darn Tough Socks, Falke Socks, and Smartwool will never steer you wrong. Just remember, thinner socks will keep your feet warmer than super thick socks since they allow more space in your boot and therefore more bloodflow to your toes. Your choice will depend on your desired balance of warmth vs. cushion. Bring 2-3 pairs depending on your number of days, then alternate or wash as necessary. 

I highly encourage any skier or snowboarder to wear a helmet, because protecting your brain is the coolest look of all. Mine? The Smith Mirage MIPS ($140). Read my full breakdown of my first-ever gear setup for what else I recommend, and why I chose what I did. 

For a small backpack on the mountain (usually carrying chapstick, wallet, water bottle, Liquid IV, ibuprofen), I actually love Hydroflask’s Slingback Bottle Pack, which is only $60 and engineered to fit an entire water bottle. For a funkier pick—with less space—I also own Baboon to the Moon’s nylon Fannypack Mini ($49).


  • Swimsuit (if hot tub)
  • Beanie
  • Sweater (2)
  • Jeans/pants
  • Cozy socks
  • Waterproof boots
  • Going-out boots (if different)
  • Going-out bag
  • Pajamas

Our recommendations: Lucky for you, we’ve tackled a lot of these already. We wrote an entire hot tub edit with a breakdown of the best moisturizing, boujee, and delightful products that elevate your après experience. Oh, and we also recommended the coziest of boots.

This is where being a frugal packer gets tough. You have so many cute winter outfits, and such little space. For this, I recommend picking your most comfortable and flattering pair of jeans. For me, I live in the Just Black Denim Throwback Straight Jeans ($118) year-round, but might bring the Madewell Mid-Rise Stovepipe Jeans ($120) which dresses up more easily for nice dinners or occasions.

I have tried one too many times to stomp down an icy sidewalk in “cute boots” only to fall on my ass so I recommend sticking with your winter boots—plus, it’ll save you space. But trust me, we have plenty of best-of-both-worlds edits for chunky, grippy tread but polished appearances. Remember non-ski socks, of course, and perhaps toss in a cross-body bag so that you can go out without worry.

Finally, pajamas! Try Petite Plume for an elegant but comfy set.


  • Water bottle
  • Mini shampoo
  • Mini conditioner
  • Mini soap or body wash
  • Deodorant
  • Razor (optional)
  • Facial cleanser
  • Moisturizer
  • Lip balm
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Makeup (optional)
  • Makeup wipes (optional)
  • Good ol’ SPF (never optional)
  • Electrolyte mix (optional)
  • Protein powder (optional)
  • Ibuprofen (optional)
  • Melatonin (optional)

Our recommendations: For most, packing a toiletries bag for the weekend just looks like scaling down. For example, I tried to fit all my needs into one of my Monos Duffel external pockets. Out of this entire list, while preferences vary, I recommend an easy spray SPF like this Habit mister ($30) which is small enough to fit in the fanny pack. You’ll want to multiply your hydration of course, so check out Liquid IV’s fresh new collection of mocktail flavors ($26). Top off your setup with an attractive, easy, and portable collection of must-have meds from Cabinet Health in attractive glass organizers, starting at $10.


  • Speaker
  • Laptop
  • Charger
  • Phone
  • Charger
  • Fitness tracker
  • Charger
  • Camera
  • Charger
  • Headphones
  • TV Stick
  • Cards/games (optional)
  • Massager/foam roller (optional)
  • Surge protector (optional)

Our recommendations: I nearly always have a “tech bag” (my personal item) stuffed full with my laptop, work laptop, and various tech items. Because there are quite a few chargers on this list, I also recommend bringing a surge protector ($21)—which is extra helpful when there are fifteen friends stuffed in a ski chalet all vying for the same outlet. Similarly, many of these are need-to-haves. If you by some miracle have any extra space in your carry-on or personal item, I’d also recommend tossing in some games (this Monopoly deal card game is a fan-favorite and so easy to pack) and a massager if you have the space. We love a good recovery process, and we’ve recommended our favorite recovery items for skiers.

Reading next

And I Would Walk 10,000 Miles: The Long Walks Edit
How to Everglow Among the Evergreens: Skin Care for Ski Season

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