\r\n \r\nIs toting around your purse more like lugging around a sack full of bricks? If you're like most women, chances are that you're overburdening yourself by carrying around way too much in your purse. Sure, it's nice to have whatever you need readily at hand. If it means putting up with aches and pains, though, it's probably not worth it. Honestly assess the kinds of things you carry around in your purse. Do you really need all of them all the time? By lightening your load, you can rid yourself of neck and shoulder pain and should have an easier time finding stuff when you need it.\r\nSmaller is Better\r\nHuge handbags are great, but there's a small problem: When you have extra space, you're going to want to fill it. Choose the smallest purse or handbag that you can get away with instead. As a backup option, you could keep a larger bag handy and place your smaller one in it when you need more storage capacity.\r\nHow Heavy is Too Heavy?\r\nJust because your purse doesn't feel too heavy doesn't mean it isn't. Like many people, you may have convinced yourself that your bag doesn't weigh too much. There are a few ways to figure this out. Ideally, your purse should weigh no more than 10 percent of your total body weight or 10 pounds - whichever is lighter. Quickly test this by holding a full gallon of milk, which weighs just over eight pounds, in one hand and your purse in the other. If your handbag is noticeably heavier, it’s too heavy.\r\nLighten the Load\r\nIf you've been lugging around lots of stuff for a long time, the idea of not having everything with you can be pretty scary. Still, there are other ways to make sure that you have what you need throughout the course of the day. Chances are that you could easily store several items in your desk at work. Other things could be kept in your car. While they won't be right next to you at all times, they won’t be too far away, either, and you won't have to put so much stress on your shoulders and neck to make it happen.\r\nChoose the Right Kind of Handbag\r\nSome types of purses and handbags are easier on the neck and shoulders than others. The ideal way to tote things around all day is by keeping them in a backpack, but that may not suit your personal style. A great alternative is a bag with a strap that runs diagonally across the body. Messenger bags are great for this. This design distributes the weight more evenly, so your neck and shoulders aren’t put under as much pressure.\r\nPare Things Down to the Essentials\r\nIt may seem like you need to have your entire makeup set with you at all times, but is that really true? When you're running around, all you really need is concealer, pressed powder, blush and lipstick or lip gloss. Do an inventory of your purse and calculate how often you really use each item. Try leaving rarely used items at home for a few days. You probably won't even miss them.\r\nDe-Clutter Every Night\r\nEven if you cut down to the bare essentials, your purse can easily accumulate a lot of stuff during the course of a day. Every evening, sit down and empty your purse of things like receipts, empty water bottles and various odds and ends that have made their way into it throughout the day. By getting into this habit, you will have a much easier time carrying around a light, streamlined bag instead of one that's bursting at its seams with stuff. As an added bonus, you won't spend hours rifling through your purse to find things. Ready to downsize to a more streamlined tote or handbag, or would you like to add flair to your look with a cute handmade bangle? Visit our online store to find the perfect thing!