8 Favorite Essential Set Must-Haves to Take to Work
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I wouldn't dream of going to work without the following:
- A Set Bag
We all have our preferred way of bringing our essentials to set. Maybe you barely need more than a computer sleeve or maybe you need a large bag with lots of room. Below are a couple of promising options.
Carhartt Messenger Bag
This heavy-duty option is durable, water repellent, and has a dedicated padded compartment that can hold a 17-inch computer. A good option for anyone who has to carry a lot of stuff to set every day and needs a sturdy bag with a padded shoulder strap to accommodate it all.
OIWAS Messenger Bag for Women
This stylish, waterproof messenger bag comes in several colors and can hold a 15.6-inch laptop. Multiple inner pockets help you stay organized and the bag has an adjustable padded strap for easy carrying to set.
$26.99 on Amazon.
Solo Reade Vintage Leather Backpack
This stylish leather backpack has a front pocket, a zip-down compartment to help you stay organized, and a padded computer pocket that can hold a 15.6-inch laptop. It's got a padded back and straps for comfortable carrying.
Great for anyone who prefers a backpack-style set bag.
$151.19 on Amazon.
2. Comfortable Shoes
Readers of this blog know I write about comfortable, supportive shoes a lot. That's because comfy shoes are essential for a pain-free day on set. Learn from my mistakes and buy the best set shoes you can afford to avoid foot problems later.
These are my personal favorites because Orthofeet shoes have great support and are designed for people who are on their feet a lot. Orthofeet designs stylish shoes for those with various foot problems and they're a no-brainer to wear for long days on set. (See my review of Orthofeet shoes here.) Free shipping, easy returns, and lots of styles and colors to choose from.
$114.95 at Orthofeet.
Spend a day on set and you'll see at least a few people wearing Hoka shoes. The thick soles and breathable mesh upper make for a favorite set shoe for both men and women. They're not inexpensive, but comfort is priceless when you're on your feet for a 14-hour day.
3. Sun Hat
A good sun hat is essential whenever you're filming outdoors. I prefer fabric hats over the straw variety because they protect better against UV sun rays and you can fold them into a set bag without destroying them.
GearTOP UPF 50+ Wide Brim Sun Hat
The UPF 50+ protects against UVA/UVB rays and the breathable mesh section helps keep your head cool on the warmest days of shooting outdoors. This hat is designed for outdoor activities and the drawstring closure will keep it on your head when you're filming exteriors on breezy days.
The GearTOP sun hat comes in several colors for men and women.
$19.81 on Amazon.
4. Fanny Pack
Fanny packs have gone in and out of style over the decades I've worked in the industry, but I've never gone to set without mine. They're still the best way to keep everything you need on set within close reach. Just be careful not to overload your pack with so much stuff that your back aches at the end of the day. Keep it light and you'll find the fanny pack is an indispensable set must-have.
Carhartt Adjustable Waist Pack
This water-repellent fanny pack has a large zippered main compartment, an interior zippered mesh pocket, and a front zippered compartment with a key fob. You can use it as a cross-body bag too, and it comes in several colors for all your set essentials.
$25.77 on Amazon.
Entchin Fanny Pack
This smaller fanny pack is made of water-resistant fabric and is ideal for anyone who needs only a few things on set. It's got a main compartment with a key fob and front and back zippered compartments. I especially like the headphone hole, so you can discreetly listen to music on your lunch break. Lots of color choices.
$13.68 on Amazon
The sunglasses you wear for a long day of filming outdoors need to be durable and have 100% UV protection. Protect your eyes and resist the temptation to buy cheap shades at the dollar store, as I did early in my career. Once I bought a pair of Ray-Bans, I never looked back.
Ray-Ban RB2132 New Wayfarer Square Sunglasses
You can't beat a classic. The unisex Wayfarers precision-cut, scratch-resistant lenses help block eye strain outdoors and improve visual clarity, making them ideal for hours of wear on set. They look sharp, protect your eyes with 100% UV protection, and come in multiple frame and lens colors.
$135.90 on Amazon (prices vary depending on frame and lens combination.)
Ray-Ban RB3539 Erika Metal Round Sunglasses
The unisex Ray-Ban Erika is my go-to pair of sunglasses because I like the style and the metal frames. Of course, they have 100% UV protection, reduce glare and eye strain, and look super stylish. I get compliments on my Erikas often and they're durable for long hours of set wear.
$157.50 on Amazon (prices vary depending on frame and lens combination.)
Why do you need to bring sunscreen to set when craft service usually provides it, you may ask. Because sunscreen isn't always close by or easily accessible when you need it. I always carry a travel-size tube of sunscreen in my fanny pack. Having it with me has saved me many a painful sunburn while filming outdoors in full sun.
Banana Boat Sunscreen Sport Performance Broad Spectrum Sunscreen
We're active when we work, so we need sport performance sunscreen. This 4-pack of one-ounce tubes is what I use to save my skin.
$6.99 for a 4-pack on Amazon.
7. Lip Balm
Your lips can get sunburned, too, and regular lipstick and lip balm don't protect them from the sun's harsh rays. Once again, I found this out the hard way, and sunburned lips are painful. We need a lip balm with sunscreen for filming outdoors.
Banana Boat Sport Ultra Lip Balm Sunscreen
The UVA/UVB protection in this sunscreen lip balm protects your lips against 99% of burning rays. It's moisturizing, non-greasy, and lasts for hours, which makes it great for working outside. Throw a tube into your fanny pack so you have it handy when you need it.
$4.99 on Amazon.
8. Foot Care
Oh, our poor aching feet at the end of a long day on set. They could sure use some TLC. A simple foot massage feels so fine after a long day on our feet.
TheraFlow Foot Massager Roller
This simple but effective foot massager increases blood flow to your feet as you roll each foot across it. Now tell me that doesn't feel fantastic at the end of a 14-hour day on set.
$7.95 on Amazon.
That's my roundup of set must-haves. Did I leave anything out that you absolutely must have on set?
If so, let me know in the comments section, as well as anything else you want to know or share about working in the industry.