There’s nothing like a good beach day. The sun, the sand, the surf. It’s the peak summer activity, a time to relax and unwind and soak up some rays. The last thing you want to be thinking about on a beach day is whether or not you forgot something you need. That’s why I’ve compiled a list of all of my beach bag essentials, so you don’t have to stress over packing – you can just grab and go!
Whether you’re putting together a list of things to pack on that upcoming family trip or just want to have a go-to list for those spontaneous days when you decide to hit the road for a day in the sun, I’ve compiled all of my must-haves for the perfect beach day. Summer is too much fun to spend it stressing out over the details. I’ve got the details covered, friend – it’s time for you to get out there and hit the beach!
MY ULTIMATE LIST OF BEACH BAG ESSENTIALS
Whether you’re just spending a day on the beach or you’re planning for an upcoming trip, it’s important to think through what beach essentials you need to keep in your beach bag. What are the items you can’t live without? What will you find yourself reaching for when it comes time to bask in the sun?
It’s worth taking the time to make a list because once you have it, you’ll be set for the future – anytime you need to pack your beach bag, your list will be ready to go, saving you time, energy, and hassle.
First things first: if you remember one thing, let it be your sunscreen! We all know how harmful UV rays are for your skin, and there’s nothing worse than realizing at the end of a long beach day that you’re terribly, horribly sunburned. Ouch! No thank you. Save yourself from having to slather your body in aloe for the next week and bring the sunscreen – and don’t forget to reapply throughout the day! Sun protection is super important, so don’t slack on it. I also recommend bringing a lip balm that will protect you from the sun, as lips can quickly dry out and chap in the heat. You want to leave your day by the shore feeling rejuvenated and refreshed, not burnt to a crisp.
Your skin isn’t the only thing that needs to be protected from the sun – your eyes do, too, so make sure you pack your sunglasses. You don’t want to spend the whole day squinting in the bright sun, unable to fully relax and enjoy yourself. Make sure that your glasses are in your bag and ready to go.
Next up, it’s safe to assume that you want to have somewhere to sit and lay out. A beach blanket or towel is a definite necessity to throw in your beach bag. I’m a huge fan of beach towels and blankets that come with a strap to help you roll it up at the end of the day for easy transportation.
Summer beach days are famous for being brutally hot, so it’s vital that you make sure you’re staying hydrated throughout the day. I always make sure to stick a water bottle in my beach tote, so that I can ensure I have something cool to drink in the sun. It’s also a good idea to have a water bottle so that if you end up purchasing a drink somewhere, you can transfer it to your bottle and keep it cool all day long.
If you’re anything like me, you take a lot of photos throughout your beach day, so it isn’t long before your phone’s battery is starting to struggle. I always like to bring a portable charger with me to the beach so I can keep my battery strong all day. If you’re someone who spends a lot of time in the water (or you’re going to the beach with friends or family members who do), it’s also worth investing in a waterproof phone pouch to ensure that your phone stays dry over the course of the day. Anything can happen at the ocean!
I also love to keep a small pouch in my tote bag for the various items that can get lost in my beach bag – things like my chapstick, keys, or jewelry. Beach bags are usually pretty big, and there’s nothing more frustrating than being tired and hot and having to dig through your bag unable to find what you need. Having a smaller pouch for important items saves so much hassle and frustration. Say goodbye to losing things and hello to easier access and more straightforward beach days!
The beach is a lot of fun, but it’s also important to remember that anything can happen, so it’s smart to be prepared. I like to make sure that I have a first aid kit with me when I go to the beach, or at the very least that I’m carrying important items that I or someone else in my group might need. Some of my staples include Advil or Tylenol, bandages or antiseptic in case someone cuts their foot on something sharp, tweezers, gauze, and disposable gloves. You never know what’s going to happen, so it’s wise to be ready, just in case.
I like to bring my own snacks with me just in case I don’t find anything nearby that I want or I go to a quieter beach that doesn’t offer as many options. When choosing beach snacks, it’s important to bring things that don’t require any prep, won’t leave litter behind, and won’t melt in the hot sun. (Or, if you want to bring things that are in danger of melting, bring a cooler with you and keep them inside!) Chips, nuts, non-chocolate cookies, protein bars, crackers, and beef jerky are all great, easy options to pack for your beach day.
I also like to throw a few things in my bag to do while I’m at the beach. I usually bring a book with me in case I want to read by the water, because what’s better than a good book and the sound of the crashing waves? I also will bring a baggie or container to keep any seashells or shark’s teeth I might find so that they aren’t floating loose in my bag all day long.
Feeling more confident in your beach bag packing abilities? Read on for some of my favorite specific products that I consider to be beach bag essentials, as well as some recommendations for beach bags that I love. Your next beach trip is waiting – make sure that you’re ready to tackle it prepared and in style!
Level Up 51mm Gradient Square Sunglasses
My first thought when I’m tossing things into my beach bag? Sunglasses. I love this gradient pair from Nordstrom – super stylish and classy, perfect to get me through all of my summer beach days.
MakeMeChic Women’s Crochet Cover Up
I love a good coverup, and this crochet cover up could not be cuter. It’s so beachy and stylish, perfect if you’re heading to a local beach or if you’re packing for a trip to the tropics.
Casely Power Pod
I don’t know about you, but my phone always dies way too quickly when I’m at the beach – and you know I want to be able to take photos! That’s why a portable charger is a must, and I love this charger by Casely. It’s so small and compact, making it easy to slip in your bag and no big deal to carry around all day.
32-Ounce Wide Mouth Water Bottle
It’s so easy to get dehydrated when you’re out in the hot sun all day. Bringing a water bottle is super important so that you stay feeling great all day long. This hydroflask from Nordstrom will keep your drink cool and keep you hydrated.
Roxy Women’s Porto Sandal Flip Flop
You can’t go to the beach without a good pair of flip flops! These sandals are super cute, and so easy to throw in your beach bag to protect your feet from the hot sand and asphalt. And if you want to run into the surf shop or go grab an ice cream, you’re ready to go straight from the beach.
Caudalie Grape Water Face Mist
I love the beach, but I hate feeling gross and sweaty after a long day in the sun. Freshen up and clean off your skin with this luxurious grape water face mist. It smells great, and will leave you feeling refreshed.
Hawaiian Tropic Sheer Touch Lotion
If there’s one thing that you never forget when you head to the beach, let it be this: sunscreen. Protect your skin from dangerous UV rays and prevent painful sunburn by lathering up first thing and refreshing throughout the day. Your skin will thank you later!
Boho Patch BEACH Cosmetic Bag
I always like to have a smaller bag within my beach bag to keep track of loose items that I want to be able to find quickly – my phone, keys, chapstick, etc. This cosmetic bag is so fun and beachy, and can easily be thrown inside my beach bag for easy access.
What’s a beach day without a beach blanket? I love how easily this blanket from Nordstrom rolls up, making it super convenient to carry back and forth, and the neutral color is super cute and aesthetically pleasing.
My Favorite Beach Bags
Hola Beaches Straw Shopper
There’s nothing more classic than a straw beach bag. This one is so fun and sassy, I can’t help but love it.
Genovega Straw Woven Beach Tote
This straw tote is one of my favorites – I love all of the different text options available when you order!
The Medium Tote Bag
This tote is such a great combination of stylish and sturdy. I love how fantastic the fabric is and how much it holds.
The Beach is Back Straw Tote
This straw tote is so fun – I love the hot pink text! It’s the perfect option for a beach day.
Straw Hobo Handbag
This bag is so classy and elegant. It has a vintage flair that I love, and it would look perfect with a classic black bathing suit.
Tribeca Tribe Large Beach Bag
The fabric/straw combination is so stylish, and the rope strap adds a nautical feel that I love. It’s perfect for your next tropical trip!
Summer Casual Straw Tote Bag
I love that this bag can double as a purse. It’s super stylish and can transition seamlessly from beach to life.
Large Waterproof Beach Tote
This striped tote is so quintessentially beachy. It’s stylish, nautical, and the perfect look for a day in the sun.
Laetizia Stripe Tote Bag
This striped bag has such a fun, feminine flair that I love. It’s a great pop of color to put you in the mood for a day by the shore.
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