15 Beach Bag Essentials for Summer

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beach bag essentials

Summer months incite feelings of excitement and anticipation for new adventures and budding summer love. The beach becomes a primary destination for friends and family to gather and enjoy an array of activities and welcome relaxation. Through proper planning, you can ensure that your day at the beach remains uninterrupted and stress free. This includes packing beach bag essentials that will prepare you for a relaxing and entertaining day in the sun.

Here are 15 beach bag essentials to maximize your time at the beach:

1. Beach Towel or Beach Blanket — Packing something to place between your body and the sand might appear too obvious or almost habitual. However, a towel or blanket is forgotten more often than you think.

2. Sunglasses with a Less Costly Backup Pair — More than likely you will be wearing your favorite, most stylish pair of sunglasses while traveling to the beach. If you know that you will be swimming or participating in fun sun activities such as surfing or football, you might want to pack a backup pair that’s less costly.

My picks: Forever 21 Classic Round Sunglasses, BP. ‘Ipso Facto’ 50 mm Sunglasses, Forever 21 Mirrored Round Sunglasses

3. Sun Protection for Face and Body — Sun protection should be highlighted on your essentials list. Choose a brand of sunscreen that suits your skin. You might choose a sunscreen to cover your body and a separate sun block for your face. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends that you apply sun protection products 30 minutes prior to sun exposure and every 2 hours throughout the day.

My picks: La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Ultra Light Sunscreen, Shiseido Wetforce Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion SPF 50+ for Face/Body, and Banana Boat Ultra Sunblock Lotion SPF 30

4. Spare Bathing Suit — You probably wore your most flattering or favorite bathing suit to the beach. There is nothing more disheartening than having a bikini strap torn off or a bathing suit bottom suffering from a hole that was a result of hitting the ocean floor due to unexpected rough seas. No need to worry, you have a backup plan!

READ: 10 Retro-Inspired Swimsuits for Summer 

5. Floppy Hat — Hats can be chosen according to planned beach activities. When your primary concern is fashion, pack a floppy, oversized hat that is accented with a scarf to complement your bathing suit. Baseball hats or visors are more apt to stay on while participating in beach activities such as volleyball. Throwing on a hat is a convenient and effective way to block sun from reaching your face and neck.

READ: 8 Floppy Sun Hats to Stay Cool In

6. Hair Ties — You don’t have to waste the 5 minutes it usually takes to search for a hair tie that seems to be lost in a bottomless bag. Select hair ties that will prevent a crease in your hair or any other damage. Place the ties in a small pouch on the interior of your bag to easily locate.

My picks: Kitsch Hair Ties, J.Crew Factory Summer Hair Ties, Simbi Graphic Print Hair Ties (10 Pack)

7. Cell Phone & Accessories — I don’t go anywhere without my cell phone and when I head to the beach, I put on a waterproof case to protect it from sand, wind and water damage.

8. Music Source — The key to your relaxation or beach entertainment might be some sort of music. Cell phones and iPods can contain music libraries of thousands of songs that you personally built over time. Listening to your favorite songs can provide the comfort needed for relaxation or the motivation behind beach competitions or exercise. Add a wireless speaker to your list to share music with a group of friends or opt for earphones to listen to your music and drown out background noise.

9. Leave in Conditioner –The ocean is an added benefit to visiting the beach. However, the saltwater can be damaging to your skin and hair. Prepare your hair by applying a leave in conditioner before arrival and reapply after each dip in the ocean to rehydrate and soften your hair.

My picks: Sun Bum 3-in-1 Leave in Spray and Alterna Bamboo Beach Summer Sun Recovery Spray Leave in Conditioner

10. Water Bottle — Try and hydrate as much as possible the day before your planned beach visit. All of the beach elements can easily dehydrate your body. Make sure you bring a sufficient amount of water or be environmentally conscious by packing a reusable water bottle to be filled throughout the day.

My picks: Klean Kanteen Stainless Steel Bottle w/ 3.0 Sport Cap and CamelBak Eddy Insulated Water Bottle

11. Reading Material — Enhance your day at the beach with reading materials such as a recently released novel or the latest fashion magazine.

12. Small First Aid Kit –Pack a small Tupperware container or sealable plastic bag with personalized first aid items such as your preferred type of eye drops, antibacterial gel and various bandages.

13. Cover up — Even with the proper sun protection, you can reach a point that you no longer wish to expose your entire body to the sun. Be sure to pack a sarong or any type of cover-up that is easy to wear and sufficiently covers your body.

READ: 17 Bathing Suit Cover Ups for Every Budget

14. Moisturizer — The dehydrating elements of the beach including the sun and saltwater are sure to draw any moisture from your skin. Pack after sun lotion to rehydrate the skin and extend the longevity of a tan.

My picks: Clinique After Sun Rescue Balm with Aloe, Sun Bum ‘Cool Down’ After Sun Lotion, and Burt’s Bees Aloe & Linden Flower After Sun Soother

15. Small Wristlet — Put all of your vital wallet items such as your I.D., bank card, cash and keys inside a small wristlet to eliminate the cluster that might accompany a trip to the restroom or beachfront café.

My picks: ALDO Three Pack Wristlet Clutches, Betsey Johnson Crab Wristlet, and Kate Spade New York Fairmount Square Slim Bee Wristlet

By following this checklist, you will surely enjoy your time at the beach with an planned, organized beach bag!

Liked this post? Then read, My Summer Beach Bag Essentials with Wheat Thins Popped Chips

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