The EB True Hollywood Story of Swag

Let’s clear things up right away, because based on this post, my house looks like a hot mess. No, I am not a hoarder. This is actually the swag from one week at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Swim taking up three stairs and a little floor at my house. I got the idea to further investigate our obsession with swag bags when I offered bloggers Kristin Clark of Living in Color Print and Ana Ortuno of Chic Streets and Eats a place to store their freebies (my car) between shows. The next day I went to give Kristin her swag and at least one of the bags alone weighed a good 10 pounds. And she, like the rest of us, had been carrying it around with her the whole night. So, what’s in these bags anyway, that’s worth lugging around with you while you tetter in heels in the sand. Let’s take a look-see, shall we?

{Attack of the swag bags. I’ll never need another tote bag for as long as I live.}


{Again, not a hoarder.}

Sunscreen—check. Frisbees—check. Personal lube—yup, that’s in there, too. There’s also flip-flops, hats, more bags, coconut water from not one but two companies, jewelry, coupons, beach balls, lipstick, gloss, blush, scar cream, travel mugs, key chains, hair goo, a scarf, a beach towel and coupons galore. So how much of this stuff is worth the lug? That, my friends, is the question and the reason why we tote swag bags from one event to the next. Because, let’s face it, you’re just an out and out swag hag if you go through your tote mid-event. It’s swag courtesy to act like you don’t care, then race home, spill your swag on the floor and assess your sitch. And here’s why: I was privy to an out and out swag war in the Mercedes-Benz Star Lounge between three parties who shall remain nameless over a Wildfox shirt/dress/crop top swap. In the end, I gave mine away because I’m nice and that whole one-size-fits-all crap is total nonsense. Might as well let someone who can actually fit the shirt have it because otherwise, I’m just gonna make it PJs. But if we kept our swag to ourselves, none of that would have happened. Swag rules to live by.

{Pop chips, anyone?}

For the record, I’ve never not received a swag bag in Miami in the past year that didn’t have Pop Chips in it.

{Enough Make Up For Ever liner to get me through 2014.}

So, what makes a good swag bag? It has to have something you’ll actually use in it or something high-end. And it has to give the air that you are in control. For instance, the best swag bag of swim week, in my opinion, was the Bloggers Night Out at the Betsy Hotel rooftop. Standouts included a makeup bag by Stephanie Johnson, a Schick Quattro razor (the brand I use every day) and a $50 gift certificate to The Orchid Boutique. I deemed it the winner because I’ll actually use the makeup bag. It’s totes cute. I now don’t need to buy razor blades the next time I run out. And the $50 gift card means I get to pick out something I like, instead of being handed a bag of swag that isn’t my style. It’s all about the illusion of control. The actual best bag itself, however, is a toss-up between the Tory Burch bag, which is to die for, and the Wildfox bag, because I will totally use it at the beach. In fact, I think I can fit inside of it, it’s so big. But that’s a whole other story for another day.

{And the award for best swim week swag bag goes to … Bloggers Night Out.}

{With honorable mentions going to MIA Shoes because they gave away shoes—free shoes are always a good time. Plus, there’s a coupon for more shoes, and since I wear the brand I’m totally putting that to use.}

{And the Bal Harbour Blogger brunch at Soho House with champagne, a makeup bag, Gee Beauty blush and a 20-day DavidBarton membership.}

So, what was your best swag score at swim week?