Beyond Books: What’s in My Beach Bag

It’s full on beach season (or, at least it would be if Florida would get the memo and knock it off with this crazy rain!), and I, for one, couldn’t be more excited. I mean, I live pretty close to the beach, and sure, I go...

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It’s full on beach season (or, at least it would be if Florida would get the memo and knock it off with this crazy rain!), and I, for one, couldn’t be more excited. I mean, I live pretty close to the beach, and sure, I go there for happy hour with friends most Friday nights even in the winter, but that’s not the same as having a full on beach day, you know?

I mean, it’s one thing to show up for an hour and have a glass of wine as the sun sets. It’s a whole other experience to show up early in the day with a book, a chair and an umbrella and just plan to relax.

But, aside from having something good to read (I just finished a fun romance called Dating You, Hating You, for anybody looking for a light and fun beach read this summer) and a shady spot to sit, what’s in your beach bag? I’ve become a bit of a pro packer at this point, so I thought I’d share what’s in my bag now. Many of these items were sent to me for review, others I purchased on my own, but they’re all keepers in my book.

beach products

What’s in My Beach Bag

1. Beach bag. I still use the Fivesse beach backpack I reviewed two years ago, and while that specific style seems to be out of stock in every color, there are a few things I love about it that I’m sure you can find in another bag. There are numerous pockets, which makes organization easy (plus, I can keep things dry and sand-free when needed), the main compartment is spacious, and there’s a cord on the outside that’ll hold a big towel or clothes, which is awesome.

2. Anti-chafing stuff. Even if you don’t deal with your thighs rubbing on a regular basis, walking the beach in a swimsuit when it’s super hot and humid out can create some chafing issues. And if you’re spending any time on a surfboard or SUP, you might find that you have a few areas that tend to rub. Enter Body Glide Skin Glide — it’s lightweight and non-greasy, and really helps ease any friction you might experience. It might not be a staple in everyone’s beach bag, but it sure is in mine!

3. Conditioner or detangler. I’ve mentioned before that I don’t skimp when it comes to getting my hair cut and colored, and that means I try really hard to protect it — I mean, hey, I want to put as much time between appointments as possible! I actually really like the texture salt water gives my hair, but sometimes it makes the ends pretty dry and tangly, so I like to keep some conditioner or detangler on hand. I don’t do a full wash/condition, but rather just put a small amount into the ends of my hair when wet and then comb it through with my fingers. Aussie’s Color Mate Conditioner smells good, gets the tangles out, and protects that color that I spent so much money on — win, win, win!

4. Shoes. I’m typically barefoot on the beach, true, but walking on hot pavement to get there is not my idea of a good time. Plus, it’s nice to have comfy shoes handy in case I decide to grab a bite to eat on the way home after working up an appetite! I’ve been sporting Vionic’s Beach Noosa Toe Post Sandal lately for a few reasons. First up, CUTENESS — I’m a sucker for a great floral print, and these are tropical as all get out. Plus, they actually have arch support, which means I’m way less likely to anger the plantar fasciitis gods.

5. Shower wipes and body spray. Just like shoes are typically a must if I’m hoping to do anything social after my beach day, so is some sort of shower-in-a-bag. YUNI has a Sweat, Refresh, Go Kit at Sephora right now that includes their Shower Sheets, Flash Both No-Rinse Body Cleanser, Chillax Muscle Recovery Gel, and My Om World Aromatic Body Mist. (You’re welcome for that — and so is everyone you’re gonna hang out with after a hot, sweaty day this summer!)

6. Sunscreen! (Duh.) I keep sunscreen everywhere. There’s a sunscreen station in my house near the door to the pool area, I keep a bottle in my car, and I always have at least one or two options in my beach bag. Always. Recently I’ve been trying out Coppertone’s Clearly Sheer Whipped Sunscreen, which feels a lot like hair mousse and goes on really light — enough that I can use it for every day. I also have their Sport Sunscreen Stick, which looks like a deodorant stick. It goes on thick and, to be honest, a bit greasy, but when you’re really trying to ensure coverage, that’s really not a bad thing. I hit my shoulders (which tend to burn) with it when I know I’ll be heading out into the water (since it’s water resistant for 80 minutes). I wouldn’t use it every day but for days when I’m being beachy and active, it’s a convenient option.

7. A big hat. I am almost never outdoors without a hat of some kind, and I’m a huge fan of Headsweats (as you might recall). For one thing, having a Bigfoot on your hat is just fun, and the trucker hats use a terry sweatband wrapped in the brand’s signature Eventure knit to keep the sweat out of my face. It’s also nice to have a snapback if you’re wearing a ponytail!

Okay, I shared my latest beach read. What are you reading right now? I really love a good book recommendation! —Kristen

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