Well folks it’s officially summer and that only means one thing for me: Spending hours in traffic on the Garden State Parkway, heading to LBI, Seaside, Point Pleasant, or whatever weekend adventure I’m off to. Since I spent most of my childhood summers at the Jersey Shore (long before Snooki and Pauly D came on the scene), the beach has always been a peaceful escape for me. Most of my beach time involves being perched on the beach with the largest umbrella I can carry, reading a good book, with a cold drink in my hand. It’s like turning the lyrics of a Zac Brown Band song into fruition. There’s few things better in life than sitting on the beach for a lazy afternoon with friends. Below I’ve compiled my beach essentials in the hopes that you’ll find yourself “knee deep in the water somewhere.” That Zac Brown must have on heck of a life…
A good beach bag should be three things: durable, functional, and of course, fashionable. In other words, anything white, flimsy, tiny, bedazzled, sequined, or expensive, has no place sitting in the sand for hours on end. Personally, I like a tote bag with long strap that can be slung over my shoulder and can comfortably hold whatever I need for the day. Also, beach bags will see their share of wet bathing suits, leaked sunscreen, and popsicle stains, so it’s probably for the best not to spend a fortune on one. Here are a few of my favorite options:
Okay, so I’m not gonna give you a lecture on the importance of sunscreen and all that jazz. I’ll just leave it at this: Wear sunscreen for God’s sake. Also, just to be clear, that SPF 2 tanning oil you put on does NOT count. I’m not saying don’t give yourself a little color. By all means put on some self tanner; just avoid frying your skin in the sun or a tanning bed. Most dermatologists seem to agree that you should wear SPF 15 or higher, but once you get to SPF 50, it only slightly increases your protection. The bottom line seems to be that somewhere between SPF 15-30 is best! Nobody wants to look like a lobster or a leather bag, and certainly nobody wants to get skin cancer. So lather on the sunscreen and the self tanner my friends! That concludes my PSA for the month.
A Good Book
For me, a good book is absolutely essential for a beach trip. Now, everyone has their own preferences in books so I’ll just recommend a few of my favorites that I’ve read in the past couple of months. My interests are completely all over the place ranging from post-apocalyptic, to fashion, to mystery, so I hope I can give you a good variety in my suggestions. My first recommendation, and quite honestly the best series I’ve read in months, is ‘The Testing Trilogy” by Joelle Charbonneau. I’ll let you read the synopsis for yourself, but I predict this series will be the next “Hunger Games” or “Divergent” movie franchise. I highly, highly recommend this for anyone who loves a good post-apocalyptic book or just a good book in general. My next recommendation is “Confessions of a Murder Suspect” by James Patterson and Maxine Paetro. I mean, really, does anything by James Patterson need an explanation? Basically this is a gripping mystery series that has all the markings of a thrilling James Patterson novel. My final recommendation is “Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns” by Lauren Weisberger. This book is definitely for my fashionistas who couldn’t get enough of Miranda Priestly and Andy in ‘The Devil Wears Prada’. A great, fun read that will keep you laughing/cringing till the bitter end. In the words of Miranda Priestly “That’s all.”
The beach is obviously not the place to show off that gorgeous new statement necklace or your designer shoes, but there are other fun ways to accessorize and show off your personality. Spice things up with a patterned beach towel, funky sunglasses, and a boho fedora. Below are a few of my favorite beach accessory finds that will make your trip all the more fun, and fashionable.
That’s about it folks! What are your beach essentials? Any good books you’ve ready lately? What’s your favorite beach? Let me know in the comments! P.S. If you want to hear more of my book suggestions just let me know, and I’ll give you a list!