13 Unusual Safety Items for a Mom’s Purse

I used to carry a massive satchel for a purse until, one day, I realized that I didn’t use 80 percent of the items inside, and that I was walking with one shoulder noticeably higher than the other.

That’s when I decided to pack lighter and smarter. I still carry my cellphone, a small wallet and I try to always have cash with me. But here are a few family safety items you may not have thought of – unusual items you can carry in your purse.

  1. Two or three small pieces of moleskin; just the right size to cover a sore spot on a foot before it becomes a blister. Make sure to buy moleskin that has adhesive on one side.
  2. Individual packets of sun block, insect repellent and antibacterial gel wipes. There’s no need to carry entire bottles if you buy some of these packets.
  3. A black Sharpie. This is handier than a pen or pencil if you need to leave an emergency note with your car, or write your cellphone number on your toddler’s arm (in case the two of you get separated in an emergency).
  4. Peanut butter in a packet for a quick jolt of protein. Almond and other nut butters also come in these foil packets.
  5. A tiny LED flashlight to light the way, find your keys or signal for help.
  6. A small pair of tweezers. This is not just for plucking a stray eyebrow but for removing slivers, cactus spines or tiny shards of glass.
  7. Super glue can be handy to keep a small wound closed. Don’t use it on the face or near the eyes or on a jagged, deep cut. Of course, super glue is also handy for mending a broken nail or other small repairs.
  8. A tube of lip balm or chap stick, wrapped in several inches of duct tape. (This is a good way to store a small stash of tape).
  9. An individual packet of a powdered sports drink mix, to provide a boost of energy and electrolytes.
  10. A set of hand and/or foot warmers during the winter.
  11. Jelly beans, or other hard candies. These can help alleviate a sore throat or cough, pacify cranky kids and provide a boost of sugar. If yours contain Vitamin C, that’s even better.
  12. Several safety pins of different sizes. The uses for these will become self-evident.
  13. A multi-tool. Even in the days of carrying The Big Purse, I was always looking for a way to cut through twine, price tags, etc.

Keep most or all of these family safety items in a quart-size zip-top bag, both to keep things organized but also to provide a plastic bag for trash in all sorts of emergencies.


Lisa Bedford, author of Survival Mom: How to Prepare Your Family for Everyday Disasters and Worst Case Scenarios, also blogs at She believes there is power and peace in being prepared.


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