I am unreasonably pale by Floridan standards because I rarely make it over to the beach, so sue me. I love being out on the water boating, fishing, and snorkeling (among other things) but you will rarely find me basking in the rays of the sun. Why?
1. Because I don’t have the attention span to be tan (to you kids who can sit still for more than 15 minutes, I salute you).
2. I value the elasticity of my skin.
3. Past skin cancer scares have rearranged my priorities.
Needless to say trips to the beach are short and sweet and typically lead to adult beverages somewhere on the waterfront. Therefore I pack lightly while being mindful I may end up in public afterwards.
May I present to you my essentials for a mini-day at the beach:
Long sleeves– I also wear a loose long sleeve dress or shirt to make sure when I’m ready to get out of the sun, I really can cover myself up. I tend to choose flowing shapes made with light fabrics which dry quickly and don’t feel like I’m wrapping myself up in a wool sweater.
Sporty suits– I have to keep moving when I’m seaside so my swimsuit needs to keep me and my lovely lady lumps contained. Awkward tan lines aren’t a concern since it is practically a miracle if I can even get one.
T-strap sandals– Contrary to popular belief, flip-flops are not choice footwear in the sand. They have a tendency to flip sand on the back of your legs so something more secure like a t-strap can help avoid this little nuisance. “Toes in the water, ass [covered] in the sand” is more of a mindset than I lifestyle. #floridaproblems
Tote and towel– This should be a no brainer however it is a known fact that guys refuse to bring towels to the beach claiming they will just sit in the sand but SPOILER ALERT: they will just hog yours.
Hat and sunglasses– I WISH upon a star nightly that floppy straw hats will someday look good on me but until that day comes I’m stuck with your average baseball hat and if that’s my plight I may as well slap my monogram on it. For those of you thinking of skipping the hat, it will come in handy for those post-beach drinks when your hair looks less “seaside chic” and more “windblown rat’s nest.”
The key to sunglasses is that they fit under my hat. I adore oversized shades but they don’t mesh well with the hat bill. These mirror aviators are everything to me right now and are major for staring at the hairy man in the speedo without getting caught.
Not pictured:
Deck sound system– Very handy dandy and connects with up to five Bluetooth devices so you and your friends can fight over control the music.
Sunscreen– SO. MUCH. SUNSCREEN. My current go-to is Neutrogena Beach Defense (anything over SPF 30 and always in lotion form) for my body, COOLA tinted matte SPF 30 for my face (evens skin tone, not greasy, and organic…need I say more), and Baby Lips in “Cherry Me” because your pucker matters too dang it!
Activities– Paddleball, nerf guns, sandcastle building tools, whatever.
And there you have it, packing for the beach like a true Floridan.

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