21 Essentials for your beach bag this summer

Updated: Sep 10, 2019

Beach season is finally upon us, when we spend time with friends and family, soaking up vitamin D, and relaxing by the water!

Before you put on your cute new swimsuit and bury your toes in the sand, let’s talk about beach bag necessities. I’m certain you have your basics taken care of with your favourite sunnies and sunblock, but what about other beach day essentials? This is what I'll be putting in my bag this summer.

Start with a cute bag, that's also practical. For me, practical is one that sand won’t stick to, that doesn’t stain from water marks, and yet still holds everything you need. From there, here are my beach bag essentials.

1. Sunglasses. Squinting and wincing is no fun—and neither are the wrinkles they produce over time. Ensure that your summer sunnies will provide you with 100% UV protection and ones that you won't mind losing in the water. (This was a sad day when I watched my favs sink to the bottom of the lake, never to be seen again.)

2. Sunscreen. This one is a given, and a must. I like to apply a waterproof sunscreen before I get to the beach, then use one in a trigger spray bottle to reapply throughout the day, as it's so much easier to apply.

3. H2O. Stay hydrated! I take my insulated reusable bottle to keep the water cool and refreshing.

4. Wipes. Sand sticks, and we get sweaty in our humid summer climate. I like to have a wipe to refresh my face and hands before going to buy a bite to eat.

5. A hat. I like a large brimmed floppy hat to really protect my face from the sun. If I’m in and out of the water a lot, or playing games in the sand, I’ll bring a ball cap too, so it doesn't blow off.

6. Lip balm with SPF. Keep your lips hydrated and protected from the sun too.

7. Reading material. Personally, I like to read an inspiring industry magazine about events so it’s easy to pick up and put down when I get distracted by people watching. An e-reader, or old school paperback novel can sometimes end up in my bag as well.

8. Cash. Have some small bills and change available for a trip to the ice cream shoppe, a tip, or someone selling things on the beach.

9. Wet bag for your bathing suit, if changing out of it at the end of the day. I do this so I don't get everything else in my bad all wet, if this is the case, you’ll likely need a whole other bag for a change of clothes etc.

10. Microfiber cloth. Throughout the day, your sunglasses will get spotty and dusty, keep your shades clear so you can still see your friends, book, or people walking by.

11. Underwater camera or waterproof case for your phone. Don’t miss out on fantastic water shots, I love my underwater camera!

12. Hair protection. Bring a hair product to not only give you natural beach waves, but to protect your strands from the water and/or sun.

13. Hair tie. If the beach waves don't go as planned, I have a backup for my out of control hair.

14. Towel clips. Keep your towel from blowing off your chair with some clips. I have some from an event, but utility clips from your local hardware store would work as well.

15. Entertainment. When hanging out with a group, a portable waterproof speaker is a must. However when alone, set of earbuds are great.

16. Wristlet. Since you won’t want to take your entire beach tote with you every time you need to go to the bathroom, buy a drink from the bar, or grab an ice cream. A little wristlet is perfect for storing your money, phone, and keys (car or room key). Depending on how comfortable you will be leaving your belongings unattended, maybe this is a waterproof case that you can take into the water with you.

17. Battery charger. If it’s a long day at the beach, I have a waterproof solar charger with me so I can keep snapping and posting pics, listening to music, or keeping my e-reader fully charged all day.

18. Cover up. Maybe you wore it to the beach already. I like mine for extra protection from the sun, or to wear when grabbing a bite (or cocktail) from a casual spot near the beach.

19. Snacks. To avoid a case of the hangries, I like to have a light snack, such as whole fruit, trail mix, or a nut bar. Think unsalted snacks so you don’t get dehydrated, and whole fruit that isn't too delicate—apples and oranges, not peaches. (although I love peaches)

20. Trash bag. I don’t ever want to litter, so I have a bag just in case there isn’t a garbage nearby. This way I won’t get wrappers, fruit peels, or cores mixed in with the rest of my beach bag items.

21. Notebook and pen. I’m constantly inspired by things around me for events and things to do, especially when I’m just hanging out, so I like a place to write them down before I forget.

The list could go on and on, so take what makes sense for you, and have a fantastic summer at the beach!

Written by Carolyn

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