12 Summer Essentials to Throw in Your Beach Bag


Photo Courtesy of Colleen Eversman at 2ndTruth

As we sit here penning this on a summer Friday morning, the birds are chirping, the sky is blue, and the high today is 88 degrees (hello from Minnesota, where we are morally obligated to discuss the weather at least 5 times each 24-hour cycle!!). Spending uninterrupted time outside in the sun is not something we take for granted in this, the northern part of the country, and we here at Wit & Delight are trying to spend as much time as we can doing just that in the coming weeks. We’re going to beaches and we’re sitting by pools and we’re jumping in lakes and, really, we’re considering any open body of water fair game (honestly, deflate your inflatable backyard pools, friends, or we may just come sit in them).

Given that we’ll be spending plenty of time at beaches of any variety in the near future, we went to our contributors to ask for their favorite tried-and-true items to bring along on a beach day. And folks, they delivered. See all their products recs below—they feature lots of sun protection, of multiple varieties, and we wouldn’t have it any other way. And, as always, please share your own beach day staples in the comments—we’d love to hear ’em!


Mineral Sunscreen Stick

Great for portability, as this sunscreen stick from BeautyCounter fits in any bag for on-the-go protection.
Jill Elliot


Cabana Striped Beach Towel

This towel really doesn’t leave my side during summer; it’s lightweight, durable, and aesthetically pleasing. Plus, it’s on Amazon!
Megan White


Sun-Defying Sunscreen Oil

This is my favorite product of the summer! It’s 50 SPF so it’s full-coverage, plus it’s made with safe ingredients so I can use it on my daughter. The oil is surprisingly light and doesn’t look greasy.
Kolina Cicero


Oversized Straw Beach Hat

Here’s a formal apology to my face for all the childhood pool parties and reckless undergrad years that I left it exposed to the sun. No more. This Cuyana beauty casts the biggest, “You can’t get me, sun damage!” shadow while looking ultra-chic. (Makes napping at the beach that much easier, too.)
Megan McCarty


Ava Ponytail Holder Set

There’s nothing more ideal than beach swept waves…but there also comes a time when you want all of your hair out of your face. Switch to a French braid and dunk your head in the water.
Sophie Vilensky


Mineral Face SPF 30 – Matte Tint

I was recently turned on to this invisible matte-finish tinted face sunscreen. I’ve tried other Coola products and loved them, but this one takes the cake. Smooth, flawless, undetectable sun protection with the perfect amount of coverage. — Kate O’Reilly


Baby Flap Sun Protection Hat

We packed up and hauled our 6-month-old to Hawaii this past winter and had to do a lot of shopping for a baby without the luxury of having anything in-store to look at or try on for summertime. We found this PERFECT sunhat for our fair-skinned, bald Midwestern boy (who traded his eczema for heat rash during those 10 days in February) on Amazon, which is lightweight, SPF 50, and boasts a neck flap, which I like to think of as an asset both functionally and fashionably. 🙂 We still use it on a regular basis for walks on bright days!
Ellen Koneck


BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer

This product goes on like butter and serves as both foundation and SPF 30 sunscreen in one. Plus, with its chemical-free ingredients, it’s one of the few products that doesn’t make my sensitive skin break out.
Julie Rybarczyk


Soothing Face Mist

I love to relieve my sun-soaked skin with this soothing combo of rose and aloe from Glossier. I spray a little every few hours at the beach!
Megan White


Packable Mesa Straw Hat

I have very fair skin (and plenty of freckles!) so a protective hat is a must for me come summer. This one from Madewell is unbelievably chic and makes me feel like I’m vacationing on the French Riviera, a la Brigitte Bardot!
Erin Huebscher


Multi-Focal RX Sunglasses

For those of us who can’t read a book or check a text message without our prescription eyewear and have sensitive eyes that require sunglasses, this affordable, stylish pair—the Warby Parker Essex in tortoise—has allowed me to be both productive and hip while on the boat or at the beach. I had never considered multifocal sunglasses, and now I’ll never consider NOT having a pair. They have become my year-round, sunny-day staple (and at about $800 less than the price I was quoted at my optometrist). Perhaps I should consider a second pair?!
Carol Bruess


Surf Mud Body Oil

This stuff is the REALNESS. All of Eir NYC’s sun care products contain cocoa butter and are powder loaded with antioxidants for deep hydration and to promote blood flow and cellular healing. Psst…their Hydrating Face Mist and Sunset Oil are great beach items, too.
Brittany Chaffee

Editor’s Note: This article contains affiliate links. Wit & Delight uses affiliate links as a source for revenue to fund operations of the business and to be less dependent on branded content. Wit & Delight stands behind all product recommendations. Still have questions about these links or our process? Feel free to email us.

BY Team Wit & Delight - July 26, 2019

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July 27, 2019 1:13 am

Love this Kate!

July 27, 2019 3:53 am

The Glossier face mist sound cool! Lovely post 🙂

Anika | anikamay.co.uk

August 11, 2019 7:17 pm

Do you know where the bathing suit / bikini is from?

August 14, 2019 4:28 pm
Reply to  Sarah

Hi, Sarah! Not sure if they have this exact style anymore, but it’s from Hackwith Design House! https://hackwithdesignhouse.com/product-category/apparel/swim/

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