10 Things That No Dance Bag Should Be Without
With all the excitement in Total You Dance Company members just receiving their team member dance bags, I overheard one dancer say, “Mom!! Now I have a pocket for everything!” That is the idea little dancer. To have a bag with ALL your dance stuff in one place! No more missing shoe (or shoes), no more getting in trouble for not having your hair in a bun when you are rushing to the studio. No more, “I forgot my dance clothes.” No more of that!! By having a function dance bag, you should have everything you need in preparing for your classes, on the way to class, in between and during classes, and a place to go to when looking for your dance things after class.
What should be in your dance bag?!
#1: Your dance shoes!
Go ahead! Throw your Tap shoes, Ballet shoes, Jazz shoes, Pointe shoes and paws in! Now they ALL have a place to call home. No more losing a shoe, or frantically looking for your shoes before class. Just place your shoes in your bag when class is over, and pull them out when you need them. Simple.
Hint: Never put shoes in plastic bags! Shoes will end up stinky in no time. Instead, use laundry garment bags. They work great to keep the shoes paired together and the air circulating to avoid that sweaty feet smell (its not just you by the way). Don’t forget to write your name on the inside of each shoe to avoid a mix up.
#2: Your Hair kit.
This should include: bobbie pins, hair nets, hair spray or hair gel, comb, and those fun little bun twisty pins that are a life saver and for creating the perfect bun! See my post on how to make the prefect bun here.
#3: Water bottle.
Water is life and we need to hydrate our bodies. Always, Always, Always, have your water bottle. Not every studio or theater has a water fountain, so make sure you are prepared and bring your own. And no plastic please! Find a reusable bottle that fits your personality and decorate it with your name and stickers.
#4: Extra pair of tights and Leo.
It happens all to often. You are rushing to class, pleading with your mom or dad to hurry because you can’t be late again, you hop in the car and look down and you have this horrible run in your brand new tights! Boo. Dance bag to the rescue! Little chang-a-roo in the car and TAH-DAH! You are all new for class. I also recommend keeping an extra Leo in your bag for emergencies like you have to go straight from school to the studio, you spilled your lunch all over yourself in transit, or you forgot to do laundry, again (yes dancers, this is YOUR responsibility, not your parents).
Every good dancer has a notebook handy. In here, you write down the song title of your new dance so you can go home and download it right away to practice, corrections from your teacher, what you need to practice at home, counts to a tough part of your dance, the phone number of a new friend from class, formations, new ballet words you want to look up to remember, new steps learned, and any other genius ideas that come up!
#6: First aid kit.
Every dancer will eventually get a nasty blister or two, especially when going en Pointe. Even if you are not en pointe yet, you should always be prepared for a scratch or a fall. I remember getting some really great nasty bruises and when asked what happened I relied full of pride, “From dance.” hehe.
In the kit you should have: Bandaids of different sizes, alcohol pads, tape, antibiotic ointments, q-tips, and advil or tylnol (if you are older and have your parents permission. Use as directed).
Hint: Try shopping in the travel section at your local drug store for mini-tubes and versions of things. You don’t want to be lugging around a full size bottle of hairspray and antibiotic cream. Remember, you still have to carry this thing to and from class.
#7: Your Make-Up Kit.
This by far is the most fun. Now, you do not need this in your bag all the time, probably around show time and such. In this kit you should have: Head band, Foundation, (liquid for the base and powder for a flawless finish and to prevent shine) blush, eye shadow, eye liner, 2-5 sets of false eye lashes, (how many times did we mess up when putting on lashes for the first few times?) eye lash glue, lip liner, lipstick, q-tips, make up re-mover wipes, spirit gum & spirit gum remover (if your studio requires you to where rhinestones around your eyes). Watch a helpful make-up tutorial here for children or a teens.
Make sure to always have at least a little bag of nuts, dried fruit or a granola bar in your bag for when you are in between classes or running straight from school to the studio. A good snack can help your body preform better and your brain function better to remember all that new choreography.
#9: Props for Dances.
Once year, we did a dance with ribbons. We were each responsible to bring our own ribbon to class each week. I can not tell you how many dancers got in trouble for forgetting their ribbon. Not me. Because it was always in my dance bag.
#10: Find a mini bottle of baby powder
and keep it in your bag. This is a great little trick for a few things…
Hint: Sprinkle some in your dance shoes after and before class to keep the stinky feet smell down. If you are preforming on a stage that is super slippery and you need some traction, put some on the bottom of your feet of shoes and you wont’ go slipping into the audience or onto your back (you can also use your powder foundation for this). Its good to use if you forgot your deodorant that day, or sprinkle some on your hair if its starting to look greasy because you didn’t have time to wash it in between your busy school and dance life.
When in doubt: DANCE!