Summer is the season of fun in the sun, but it’s also the season of heat. And sunburns. And did we say heat?! Today I’m sharing my favorite summer essentials will help you get through the season in style – and comfort!
Summer is a season that kind of necessitates “essentials,” don’t you think? From a favorite beach towel to a favorite sunscreen, we all have things that help us get through, and enjoy, the season. These 5 summer essentials are my personal favorites and all of them make the season just a little easier, and a lot more fun!
Straw Beach Bag/Handbag/Market Bag
I adore straw bags, so much so that I even wrote a whole post on them last year! Their casual vibe just suits how I’m feeling in the summer, and they’re practical, too. Because they are made from natural fibers they stretch quite a bit, so they hold an amazing amount of stuff. And the straw lets things like sand fall right through!
I have several straw bags, but my favorite is a mid-sized one that’s neither too big or too small. 😉
In the summer, I use it to carry fruit home from the farmer’s market, to bring wine and cheese to our annual concerts in the park, and even as a casual handbag!
Mine is from J. Crew and they make it every year! They change it up slightly, but essentially it’s the same size and quality and always a good price. But to be honest, I have several different styles because they are just so fun to carry as a casual handbag in summer.
My Favorite Sunscreen for the Face
I’m not particular about the sunscreen I put on the rest of my body, but I do have a preference when it comes to my face. This Neutrogena sunscreen is about the best I’ve found – and it’s not expensive. I’ve used some other pricier ones before, but I am not too crazy about spending $30 or more on a tube of sunscreen! Also, I live in Southern California and I’m outside most days, so I go through it way too fast to spend a lot.
This sunscreen goes on dry, doesn’t make me shiny or make me break out, and of course, does the job of keeping me from getting burnt. All for the bargain price of about $8! I usually get the SPF 55, but it comes in everything from SPF 30 all the way up to 100.
Toddy Cold Brew System – Iced Coffee Maker
Okay, guys this is seriously the simplest product but I am in love with it! I bought my Toddy Cold Brew System a couple of years ago, and I’ve been hooked ever since. If you aren’t familiar with these, they make cold brew coffee by soaking the coffee grounds for 12-24 hours. By soaking the grounds with cold water, you produce a coffee that is actually smoother and lower in acid than regular coffee.
This makes a coffee “concentrate” that you can then refrigerate for up to two weeks. Then whenever you feel like it, you can pull it out to make an iced coffee. And if you’re wondering if it’s better than making your regular drip coffee and putting that in the fridge? I can only say a resounding “yes”!!
This system is hands-down 100% better! And it lasts a long time. It’s also easy to use, easy to clean, and inexpensive. I make a batch every week and I can enjoy a delicious iced coffee on a hot afternoon simply by mixing it with milk – it’s heaven! A definite “summer essential” for me! 😉
“Table in a Bag” – Low Portable Wood Table
This is also one of my all-time favorite summer items! I bought mine at Crate and Barrel about 12 years ago and it’s still going strong! We have a local park that does concerts in the summertime and it’s the perfect thing to bring to that. We pack it up, along with a couple of low beach chairs, and we have the perfect place to put our dinner, wine and cheese, or snacks. We’ve also brought it to the beach and some sporting events.
It sets up and breaks down easily, and comes with it’s own carrying case with a shoulder strap. I really can’t say enough about this little table! I’ve bought it as a gift several times now and everyone always loves it. And it never fails that when we bring it to a picnic, at least one person will ask me where I purchased it! A definite summer essential for me!
My Favorite Packable Hat
A packable, crushable, always-stays-nice hat is a summer essential for me for sure. Whether I’m working in the garden, walking the dog, or taking it to the beach, I almost always have a straw hat with me. And I must admit, I’m not careful with them! I’m usually throwing them in the back of the car, squishing them in my beach bag, or cramming them into a suitcase. 😉
Because of this, I found that I was buying new hats pretty frequently as the straw was constantly breaking. But with this hat, that never happens. I can pack it and squish it without worry! To be honest, it isn’t cheap. It’s a bit of an investment, but for me it’s definitely been worth it.
I’ve only had mine a few years, but it still looks like new. I’m pretty sure if I added up the less expensive hats I bought during the same period, I’d come out ahead. And in theory, I shouldn’t have to buy another one…ever! (I’ve linked both my hat, as well as some other less expensive ones).
Any way you slice it, I think it’s nice to have a hat that will keep the sun off your face and you don’t have to worry about!
So there you have it – my five favorite summer essentials! Hopefully you got some ideas for some new essentials for yourself, and I’d love hear about some of your own summer favorites in the comments. I always love hearing about new, fun things that will help make the season even better!
*please note some affiliate links have been used for your convenience*
Now I hope you’ll visit my friends below and see what great summer favorites they’re sharing as well!