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How To Organize Your Purse

By December 11, 2022May 28th, 20249 Comments

Let’s be honest, here. I don’t know about your purse, but my purse contains my life. When I don’t know where it is I get a little anxious. How about you? When I can’t find something that I KNOW is in my purse I also get a little anxious and even upset. I think to myself, it must be there. That’s where I always put … (you can fill in the blank). Does that ever happen to you? It is very important to me to keep my purse organized because it’s one simple way for me to avoid stress and anxiety. It’s not difficult to organize your purse and I will share with you my simple strategies to organize your purse.

Before we begin to organize your purse, let’s acknowledge that your purse, like my purse, is probably a catch-all for things that you encounter when you’re out and about during the day. If I have a little trash and can’t find a waste basket, into my purse it goes. Then there are little things, like a flyer I found at one of my favorite local shops, Breadwinner, advertising their specials. At this time of year, my purse also holds things like my gloves and sometimes a hat. And receipts from holiday shopping.  Of course, all this is in addition to the things I must have with me at all times like my keys, wallet, phone, and glasses.

Simple Strategies to Organize Your Purse.

Empty your purse

The first step is to empty your purse.

Toss the trash and then group like with like. Put the receipts from your holiday shopping in an envelope and label it.

Go on a treasure hunt

Did you find things you have been looking for?

Sometimes I find coins, dollar bills, and even a credit card at the bottom of my purse. Why? Well, if I’m in a hurry I don’t always take the time to put things back exactly where they belong, like in my wallet. I just toss them in my purse and away I go.

Keep a few coins in your wallet along with some dollar bills, just in case. Put the credit card back where it belongs.

Extra make-up

I have a little make-up bag in my purse, and it’s supposed to hold a small tube of lotion, a small pack of tissues, hand sanitizer, and lipstick. My make-up bag is big enough to hold those things and small enough to fit in my purse. The issue is that when I need a tissue, I don’t have time to rummage through my purse, unzip the make-up bag, and grab a tissue. I tend to leave the small pack of tissues out of the small make-up bag.

Let’s make this easy.

Tools To Organize Your Purse

Organizing insert for your purse

Here is an example of a holder for these small things that makes it easy to access them and easy to put them back.

There’s a place for my lipstick, glasses, tissues, pens, a small notepad, and more.

Fully loaded purse perfector

It is a purse perfector.

The best thing about this is that it easily lifts out of one purse and slots into another if you like to change your purse from time to time. You can be sure using something like this helps you to organize your purse. It is truly helpful in tote bags which tend to be just empty space without any zippered compartments.

Holder for credit cards

I love this little holder for credit cards. It has a window to store my driver’s license and slots to hold credit cards. Plus, a zippered section where you can keep a few dollar bills, if you want, or other credit (or loyalty) cards. It easily fits in a pocket or a section of your purse organizing insert. Even better it is RFID. No one can use a reader to steal your credit card or driver’s license information when it is in this holder.

The other reason I like this holder is that it is easy for me to put my credit card back in the slot. I don’t have to open a wallet. I just pull this little holder out of my purse, use the card, and slip it back to where it belongs. There are many of these on the market. This one comes from IDStonghold.

This is the key to being organized, right. Making it easy to put things back where they belong so you can find them again.

Leash or clip for your keys

Some purses have a little leash on the inside to which you can clip your keys. That makes it super simple.

Don’t despair if your purse doesn’t have a leash. You can create a place in your purse to always clip your keys.

Use a carabiner to create your own keychain clip or select one from the endless links if you do a search on google for Carabiner Keychain.

Use these simple strategies to organize your purse and avoid the stress of wondering where your wallet, keys, and anything else you routinely carry in your purse have vanished.

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Diane N. Quintana is a Certified Professional Organizer® ,a Certified Professional Organizer in Chronic Disorganization®, Master Trainer and owner of DNQ Solutions, LLC and co-owner of Release●Repurpose●Reorganize, LLC based in Atlanta, Georgia.


  • Love the tip about a leash or clip for keys! Bag and keys always go together in my mind, so it’s so convenient to hook them together.

  • Lisa Gessert says:

    What another reminder for an a area we tend to bypass with organizing, While I only have about 4 bags they tend to need a pass through once in a while…my daughter on the other hand has baby bags filled to the brim, I will be sharing this with her!!

  • Julie+Bestry says:

    Hats, gloves, trash? Diane, what are you putting in your purse?! But seriously, I like all of your ideas. For me, the key is that all of the things in my purse have homes inside of other things. My business cards have a case; my glasses have a case; my diabetes supplies have a case; my non-categorized tools (pen, sticky notes, mini-eyeglass screwdriver, scrunch) go in a soft-sided case. My lipstick and compact live in the zipper compartment. My phone has a special outside pocket. I purposely don’t have a purse large enough to put hats or gloves (those go in the coat pockets) because the one place in my life where I’m minimalist is my purse. There’s nothing loose in my purse; I’ve sort of developed my own deconstructed Purse Perfector!

    My RFID wallet holds my cards (debit, credit, insurance, AAA, etc.) and no card goes anywhere except back in its perma-slot. I don’t generally use cash, but there are some coins in the change compartment. Where cash would go, I put my receipts (though I’ll admit the one thing I occasionally toss in my purse is a loose receipt when I’ve gone through a drive-through and too long passes between when I get my card back (or if I’ve ordered in an app) and when I get the receipt. All this said, though, my purse is my life, just as you said. I can find any item by feel because each item in its own container feels so different; I’m not the kind of person who can reassemble a rifle blindfolded, but I could find anything in my purse, blindfolded, if necessary.

  • Seana+Turner says:

    It’s a small space that is crowded and hard to see in, right? As I get older, I find I want to carry around as little as possible. I have small shoulders and my bag is always slipping, so the lighter, the better.

    I think I have a sunglass case, my wallet, and a small bank for makeup/lip gloss/etc.

    I do love a purse with a zipper compartment to hold sundry tiny things that I like to have. Compartments are awesome!

    Always a worthwhile little project. Being able to find what you need quickly from the depths of a bag does feel like a superpower. 🙂

  • Before Covid, I had larger bags that held a lot of stuff. During Covid, I paired down my purse content. It was very illuminating. I recently purchased a new purse. I had a purse perfector and found that the flexible ones would flop, and returning items to the right spot were hard. The sturdy ones worked better for me. It’s nothing big, but it fits a variety of small things and my sunglasses.

  • I am funny about my purse too. For example, if I’m a passenger in the front seat of the car (or even the driver), I need to have my purse right next to me. My husband doesn’t quite get it, but he respects it.

    I used to carry a large tote-type purse. It had my life in it, as you described. And also had a purse organizer (like the Purse Perfector.) However, these days, I carry a tiny bag with just the bare essentials- wallet, keys, hand sanitizer, gum, mints, pen, and mask. If I need to carry other things like glasses or makeup, I put my small bag in a tote or lightweight backpack. My phone is often in my pocket. Tissues and gloves go in my coat pockets. I like traveling lighter.

  • Sara Skillen says:

    Your post is inspiring me – I’ve pretty much quit carrying a purse (I have a wallet on my iPhone case), but there are some things about it I miss. A purse Perfector might be just the ticket! Might be something to ask Santa for this year. Thanks for sharing your tips!