What's in your Beach Bag?

The Fourth of July Holiday has passed and we are now well into summertime.  Around here that means that we are heading to the pool, beach or to the boat for a couple of hours of sun and fun or for a week long vacation at the shore.  I keep a bag ready to go during this time of year so I don't forget anything important on my way to the sea. 

Lately I have been seeing a lot of posts and segments on TV about all of the "essentials" that a girl needs for the beach many of which were unnecessary or too expensive.   As a lifelong aficionado of saltwater and sun, I feel compelled to create more of a "real world" approach to the beach/boat bag.  

It all begins with a great bag. 

My cousin gave me this one a couple of years ago.  It is a great size, super cute and has an insulated liner to keep things cool for a little while.  I just love the cute little crab!  When my kids were little and we had to drag more stuff around I preferred a Lands End tote like this one.  (Monogrammed of course!)  They are indestructible and wash easily, a must for kids and the beach! 

Of course, a girl has got to take care of her skin!  I know that there are a lot of expensive sun protection products today, but I prefer the good old drug store varieties.  Lately, I have been using this Banana Boat Sport Cool Zone because it is cooling as it sprays on.  I also recently picked up Banana Boat Sun Comfort which has 50 SPF (a must for my daughter), plus it helps wipe off sand.  We use special lotion for our face, either the Coppertone Oil Free Faces lotion or, for me because I always get lotion in my eyes, the roll on Face Stick.   And don't forget your lips!  I like this Ocean Potion Moisturizing Lip Balm with a 45 SPF.  I started using Ocean Potion products years ago because the company started not too far from my home town, in Virginia Beach.  Another beach bag must- the Aloe gel for apre' sun. No matter how hard we try to prevent it- someone always comes home with a sun burn! 

Water is a must out in the sun.  I carry a Tervis cup everywhere I go.  On hot days I fill it with ice and then a little water and it stays cool for hours.  I love this one because it makes me smile! When I go to the beach or pool, I carry a little plant mister with me, also filled with cold water.  Once the sun gets too hot and uncomfortable, I spray a little mist and I am good to go!  

With all of this water around, you have to have a great beach towel. I love a great towel and will be shopping the sales this month for a new one.  It must be big and soft. I got this one a couple of years ago, I think from Macy's.  I love the blues and greens- so cool. 

There is a problem with having all of this water around- things have a tendency to float away or to sink.  I make sure that I keep my cell phone in a waterproof pouch while on the beach or the boat.  I am still auditioning the perfect way to prevent another phone from drowning. Right now, I like this little bag because it floats and I can still take a picture or make a phone call when it is on. To keep my sunglasses from floating away I found a little strap at the Dollar Store that keeps them floating long enough for me to grab them.  The yellow color allows me to see them better as they are floating. 

Speaking of floating- I love my GoPro with a waterproof float case on it.  If you are not familiar with GoPro, they are little cameras that take still photos or video.  They have different mounts for various sports or activities.  I have a mount for my paddleboard and can record my trips monitoring and controlling the camera wirelessly from my iPhone.  I have also placed it in the sand to record beautiful east coast sunrises on the beach.  Great viewing on those long winter days when you are longing for summer! 

Still shot of OBX Sunrise captured on my GoPro
One last product in my bag is a travel sized bottle of baby powder. This is a recent addition. I had been hearing all these reports about how baby powder will help to wipe off sand, but I was skeptical.  I tried it when I was at the beach a couple of weeks ago and it works!  

So what do you think?  Did I forget anything?  Do you have any must have products for your summer bag?  

I hope that you find lots of time to enjoy your favorite sun activity this summer!  Thanks for stopping by today! 



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