Our Beach Essentials for the Summertime

When you’re a kid, going to the beach or the pool is the absolute BEST part of summer! We both remember coming home from a long day at the pool with a sun tan, chlorine in our hair, and just being completed exhausted from such a jampacked day. Oh how we miss being kids sometimes.


Now as adults, we don’t enjoy these days as much as we should. Neither of us belongs to a pool, and the beach can sometimes seem like it’s more of a hassle than a fun day in the sand. But we’re both aiming to change that and take advantage of these hot days before they’re gone!riveria_maya_mexico_vacation_travel-16

These cute beach essentials definitely help give us the kick in the butt to get outside and relax!riveria_maya_mexico_vacation_travel-21

Casey’s Summer Essentials

Striped Beach Bag

I got this bag when we went on our New Year’s trip to Mexico and I’ve been using it like crazy ever since. It’s so roomy and you can’t help but love the nautical touch with the stripes. I’ve taken it on quite a few trips as my carry-on bag, and this summer it has come along on a few boating days!

One-Piece Swimsuit

You guys have seen this suit before because I wore it on our trip to the Blue Lagoon. I’ve always love J.Crew’s swimsuit selection because the quality can’t be beat. This striped one-piece is my favorite. It covers you up, but the back is really sexy and fun. Definitely a must-buy if you’re looking for a new one-piece.

Face Sunscreen

When I was younger I was all about tanning. I was a lifeguard in the summertime, and when I wasn’t working I was often laying out with friends in an attempt to get the darkest tan possible. Yikes. Now, I’ll do just about anything to avoid any more wrinkles. After far too many burns (& a few scary trips to the dermatologist), I’m not a sunscreen addict. I opt for the highest SPF possible on my face, and often wear a hat when outside for long periods of time. I use this face sunscreen from Neutrogena because it’s lightweight and non-greasy.

Budget-Friendly Sunglasses

Without fail, I always break/scratch/lose my sunglasses. Therefore I never buy expensive ones. The BP sunglasses at Nordstrom are always super cheap ($12) and are stylish too. Plus I never feel guilty when I inevitably break them. These tortoiseshell and rose gold ones are fabulous!

Straw Hat

You can’t go wrong with a classic beach hat. This one isn’t too floppy, so I can wear it just round on the weekends to keep the sun out of my face when running errands. And unlike most hats that are one size fits all, this one comes in a medium-large (which is perfect for my XL noggin!).

No Tangle Brush

Whenever I get my hair wet in the lake or pool, I can’t let the big mop of wetness air dry without brushing or else it is tangle city! I’ve had the “wet brush” for some time now and it really does work wonders to detangle hair. Even if you’re not using it at the pool or beach this summer, this is a great brush for anyone when they wash their hair and brush it wet.

Bridget’s Summer Essentials

Bathing Suit

I scored this suit on sale just before our Iceland trip and really love that it’s stylish, yet conservative. It feels very durable when I wear it, which I appreciate in a bathing suit.

Protective Sunscreen

I’ve never been a sun-lover, as evidenced by my pale skin, so I’m all about the SPF! I typically don’t waste time “laying out” because my skin quickly burns and eventually goes right back to being bright white… skipping right over the best part — the tan! To protect my fair skin I typically reach for the SPF 100+ and stick to the shade as much as possible.

Easy Slip-on Sandals

I’ve been wearing a nude pair of these sandals on repeat all. summer. long! I love them because I can easily slide them off and stash them in my bag. Yet after a long day at the beach or pool, they’re still nice enough to run errands or “go out” in. Plus they’re under $30 and come in all sorts of fun colors.

Budget-Friendly Sunglasses

Like Casey, I forget, scratch, or break my sunnies, so having a cheap pair that I won’t feel terrible about breaking is a must. I’ve been loving this pair lately and I especially love their $14 price tag!

A Cover-up That Actually “Covers Up”

I hate when I wear a cover up that doesn’t actually “cover up”. Because usually after the pool the group decides to grab dinner and I feel super uncomfortable because my cover up looks like I just came from the pool! I love this cover-up because it’s an actual dress that covers me up and doesn’t scream “I just came from the pool”. Plus it’s black, which is helpful if your suit is still a bit damp and ends up getting your cover up wet too. I sometimes wear these dresses to the pool, and even for a night out on the town, and I’m not afraid to admit it.


And last but certainly not least, I always throw a hat in my bag for even more sun protection. If I’m looking to be more stylish I’ll opt to pack my straw hat like Casey’s. However if I’m being more casual, I love my Cubs hat… especially if I’m having a “don’t care about my hair” day. This hat is especially helpful at the end of the day when I run errands and my hair is a hot mess!




  • Erin

    i wear so much SPF on my face it’s kinda ridiculous. and i still have dark spots developing on my face. UGH. I actually struggle with hats in the sense that my head is small and most hats are WAY too big! and I used to think cheap sunglasses were better than spending money & investing in an expensive pair. But then i got a pair of raybans YEARS ago. and they’re still good to this day. But now i have to wear prescription sunglasses — so i did spend money on raybans but made them RX. it’s really just a matter of not putting the glasses on top of your head & putting them in the case when you aren’t wearing them.

    • Erin,
      Totally feel you on the SPF. I wear 100 like it’s my job…yet those wrinkles and dark spots are still happening. Grrrr.

      And you may be swaying me on the sunglasses. I just feel like I would be sooooo mad at myself if I accidentally threw them in my bag and scratched them. Was it hard to get used to always putting them in the case to protect them?

      Have a great Wednesday!

    • Erin

      i don’t think it is hard to remember to put them in the case. One, the fact that you just dropped a couple hundred on them is all the more reason to be — Let’s put this in the case. In the summer time though, I wear sunglasses like ALL the time — these light blue eyes can’t even handle cloudy days that they just stay sitting on the credenza or my work desk until i need to put them on again. In the winter, it’s easy to remember to put them in the case before i toss them in my purse.

      however, cases do take up room in purses, so i’ve had to adjust. and get a slightly bigger crossbody (i’ve been using purses about this size lately — https://www.nordstromrack.com/shop/product/1868136/elliott-lucca-mari-leather-crossbody?color=SLAT%20NSDUA) and it’s more than enough room for my regular glasses and sunglasses and wallet.

    • Ohhh thank you so much for the tips Erin! And love the tip for the gel….gonna look for that for sure!

  • I am also all about the cheap sunnies, I usually buy several pairs a year from Target. I have been thinking about investing in some Raybans so it’s good to hear the feedback about them below, thanks Erin! I too, am fair skinned, with lots of freckles and very prone to sunburns. I have had two patches of basal cell skin cancer removed in the last few years, so am very conscious about using spf and wearing hats! Unfortunately when I was a kid, many moons ago, sunscreen wasn’t really a thing, and I remember wanting a tan so badly when I was a pre-teen. Once I laid out with baby oil on, like my olive-skinned BFF, and OMG that was bad! Even though the sun is not my friend, I love it so much and summer is my favorite season!?☀️

    • Kerri,
      I too had some basal cell removed this year on my back. It was not a fun process and made me want to yell at 16-year-old Casey for being a slave to the sun in high school. Ugh…if only we could go back and tell our younger selves to throw on the SPF.

      Have a great Wednesday!

  • Pam

    I use the same sunscreen on my face. Love it. Like you gals, I don’t buy expensive sunglasses.

  • Trang

    Bridget, I love, love, love the Leith racerback (aka cover up dress). I had purchased it in royal blue from your previous post and am thinking of getting it in other colors. I have worn it to work and out on the town. It’s classic, comfortable and adorable!
    Casey, I like the straw hat you recommended and looked at other similar hats on J Crew, but they are back ordered until the end of October. Wowzers, I may not need it in the snow by then. LOL

    • So happy to hear that the Leith cover up is a good buy! May have to look into that.

      Oh my goodness…can’t even believe it with the hat! That is worthless come October. haha.

  • Lori Flynn Schaffhauser

    I love those J Crew sandals! I stopped into my local factory store today and scored a pair for myself and one for my daughter. The buff color was only $19.50 online and they price-matched them.

    • What a score! That is awesome that they price matched them.