Pack Like a Pro: What an Instagram Influencer Never Leaves Behind

In this series, we interview figures in business, entertainment, and fashion about their travel essentials.

Pack Like a Pro: What an Instagram Influencer Never Leaves Behind

Illustration by Emily Blevins

These are the products Katie Sturino, founder of Megababe and mom to Instagram celebrity dog Toast, can’t live without.

You may have spotted Katie Sturino and her dog, Toast, out and about in their Chelsea, New York, neighborhood. If not, you’ve definitely seen Toast, pictured above in sunglasses, on billboards, or in ad campaigns, courtesy of her status as a celebrity Instagram dog. (Editor’s note: After living a full life, Toast has, sadly, passed. Her memory lives on.)

Sturino is also the brains behind Megababe, a line of products, including Thigh Rescue balm, for women who are “too cute to chafe,” and The 12ish, a style site for “size 12ish to 18ish girls in a size 2 world.”

Here’s how she’s packing in style:

Megababe does megatravel. “I travel a lot to promote the brand, but also for pleasure. In the past year, I’ve escaped New York about 19 times, and hit up Paris, Rome, Munich, Amsterdam, Chicago, Milwaukee, Toronto, South Florida, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Antigua, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, Miami, and Atlanta.”

An “always charged” Instagram influencer. “I can’t have a dead iPhone. I keep my phone charged with my carry-on from Away. In fact, I don’t really bring an iPhone charger on my travels anymore. The Away roller is a moss green hard shell. I was skeptical at first of Away, and of hard shells, because the last one I had was crushed when I checked it. But now I love my bag. I’m pretty impressed I can pack everything into it.”

Inside her roller. “I always bring a Lingua Franca travel set. It’s cashmere, comes with socks, a blanket, and an eye mask. Because plane blankets are gross. This blanket, well, it’s mine. Obviously, I bring Megababe products, as they’re travel friendly. Thigh Rescue is an essential for me wherever I go. My toiletries go inside a Parker Thatch canvas bag. It’s perfectly sized.”

The must-haves. “I have to have the Audible book app. I never know when I will be without a screen or Wi-Fi so I always make sure I have some good books queued up for entertainment. And I always bring Aesop hand sanitizer.”

Katie’s in-flight reads. “I recently read Rich People Problems on Audible. Loved it.”

The frequent flyer’s uniform. “These days, I am flying in Outdoor Voices tech sweat leggings, white Reebok pumps, and my white shredded sweatshirt by Iro. Everything is jammed into my tan Monster tote from Fendi.”

Dog onboard. “Toast [was] an ideal travel companion. I brought Toast to Italy two years ago, then again last year. This last trip to Europe was dog-less. Toast [slept] soundly on the floor at my feet. But, I don’t assume everyone around me likes dogs. I have made this mistake a few times and been shocked when passengers next to me ask to move or give me attitude.”

Her fave souvenir. “I have a beautiful patterned coat that I bought in Capri.”

An Italian dog park when you’re dog-less. “I do Rome once a year, often as a layover. Why not, right? When there, I’ll head to Villa Borghese gardens. There’s a dog park, and Italian dogs are beautiful. I go there to creep on dogs when I didn’t bring my own.”

Mike Arnot is the founder of New York–based travel brand Boarding Pass NYC.

Next: What the Founder of Brooklyn Brewery Never Leaves Behind

Mike Arnot is a writer and the founder of Juliett Alpha, a New York–based communications firm for airlines and aviation companies.
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