Is your handbag a lost cause?

Tue, 20th Jun 2017
PREVIEW

A new study reveals women spend an inordinate amount of time rummaging through their handbags and Sami Muirhead is no exception.

Holy handbags, girls! A new study of 1500 Australian women has shown nearly one-third of us spend 10 minutes a day rummaging through our bags loaoking for something. I suspect I spend a lot more than this amount of time as I stand there swearing, looking for my work swipe card thingy that is usually wedged at the bottom of my bag under a mountain of crumpled receipts and loose change. 

Spending 10 minutes every day pulling apart the endless pit that is your handbag amounts to 162 days of your life. Do I spend 10 minutes a day shaving my legs? Nope. It has possibly been several months since I have done that. Do I dedicate 10 minutes a day to pelvic floor exercises? Heck, no! Thirty five per cent of women in the survey admitting to spending at least five minutes a day trying to locate stuff buried in their bag. 

So for you neat freaks, the question you are asking about now is probably what exactly do we have in our bags that makes them dungeons of doom for finding anything quickly? 

Well, let’s play a game of confession. On any given day I have a notebook, five pens, three lipsticks, a blush, foundation, tissues, baby wipes, nappies, loose change, a muesli bar, two toy cars, a diary, matches, dockets, receipts, a purse filled with about 50 cards, my work swipe card, car keys, house keys, and a phone. Some days I add an iPad, perfume, and a spare shirt and phone charger. Some weeks I find an apple or orange in there that is clearly a few months old. And it is all just kind of thrown in together like some melting pot from hell. Being guilty of decluttering my bag, I am not. 

The study found just three per cent of women never have to search for anything because their handbags are organised. I hate you lot. And I rarely use the word hate. Perhaps a neat handbag reflects an organised mind and life. And clearly my hopeless handbag represents my whirlwind lifestyle of trying (unsuccessfully most days) to keep lots of balls in the air. 

As for what we are spending on our bags, well the average bag costs $100 but the survey also shows lots of us lie to our partners about how much we actually spend on handbags. I know I do. So the experts say the only way to cut back on the amount of stuff we carry around is to invest in a smaller bag or one with lots of pockets and places specifically designed to keep you organised.  But my faithful beige tote is my security blanket and my wingman. I know if I have my bag, chances are I will have whatever I need to deal with whatever life throws at me that day. It is making me feel anxious just thinking about it.  

So perhaps instead of decluttering, I will just add some Rescue Remedy to my bag, which doubles as a chemist/makeup stall/bank/mobile communications portal/cafe/babysitter. Now that sounds a splendid idea.

Sami Muirhead is a radio announcer, blogger and commentator.For more from Sami you can hear her on Mix FM.