In this feature, InStyle.com’s Senior Fashion News Editor Kim Peiffer documents what she packed and what she wore for her trip to Spain.

I’m from a small town in Wisconsin (where it is cold, cold, cold!), so my vacations usually involve one of two things I lacked growing up: a city or a beach.

Travel Like an Editor: Kim PeifferCourtesy Photo

I’ve lived abroad and traveled many places in Europe, but I had yet to visit Spain, so I planned a girls’ trip to Madrid and the island of Mallorca (the perfect combination of both city and beach). The goal? To spend the first half exploring Madrid, dining at tapas restaurants, and perusing the city’s best boutiques, and spend the second half relaxing, laying in the sun, and dining by candlelight on the Mediterranean (tough job, I know).

Travel Like an Editor

I love to travel light (I rarely check a bag, even if I’m going somewhere for two weeks), so I always bring pieces that can be worn multiple ways. Because this particular trip involved both time in a city and a stay on an island, packing was quite the challenge. I kept it streamlined with a few evening outfits, a pair of versatile stilettos, my favorite bikini, and the ultimate accessory—a pair of cat-eye sunglasses.

When it comes to beauty essentials, I rely on the same products no matter where I am in the world: an illuminating tinted moisturizer and a shimmery blush to give my skin a summer glow year-round, a super hydrating eye cream and a light facewash, a bottle of dry shampoo, and a tinted glossing treatment to keep my hair from turning brassy in the sun.

And yes, I somehow managed to fit it all in a carry-on!

Travel Like an Editor: Kim PeifferCourtesy Photo

Click through the gallery to shop Kim’s travel essentials!

—Coordinated by InStyle’s Senior Market Editor/Digital Correspondent Dana Avidan-Cohn