Thieves targeted two victims in Braintree and stole their purses from inside their handbags.
Police are appealing for witnesses to the two purse dippings, the first of which happened in Great Square, Braintree, between 5pm and 5.30pm on Thursday.
The suspect unzipped the handbag and then reached in to steal the purse.
The second took place in Bank Street, on Saturday at 1.30pm.
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101.