Life·9 min read

14 Things You’ll Be Glad You Brought to the Beach

clean bug spray, waterproof camera
Design: theSkimm | Photos: Kinfield, Urban Outfitters
May 19, 2022

This post was originally published in June 2021 and has been updated.

Products you buy through our links may earn us a commission.

Picture it. Saturday morning rolls around, the weather is perfect, and you’ve got an entire day free. Summer is approaching and there's just one thing on your mind: your first relaxing day at the beach.

Which is why we’re here to remind you to (always) wear sunscreen. If you’re looking for just the right amount of shade and things to make the day a breeze, we also got you covered. After all, a stress-free day can only happen if you pack the right things. Life’s a beach and we want you to play in the sand.

A clean bug spray that’ll keep the mosquitoes away…

With notes of citrus and vanilla, this repellent is vegan and DEET-free. It has citronella to keep mosquitoes at bay and lauric acid to soothe your skin. Clove and lemongrass will have ya saying 'buh-bye' to that typical bug spray stench. And you can recycle the packaging when you’re done. Spray, spray bugs away. ($22, Kinfield)

Buy it

A mini table so ya have a place to rest your book and sunglasses…

One that will fold out to be a little oasis for your things. No more sand in your phone speaker. Or wedged into the spine of your summer read. Phew. ($10.50, Target)

Buy it

For when you’re a mosquito magnet the minute you step outside...

Up your defense. This suction tool removes the irritant left behind that causes itchiness. So you can stop the reaction in its tracks. You can even try it on bee and wasp stings. Fight the bite. ($9.99, Amazon)

Buy it

 A cooler tote that’ll keep your guac perfectly chilled…

And don’t forget to bag the chips. This tote is leakproof, has an outside pocket for dry goods, and won’t be a pain to carry. Because no rolling cooler works on sand. Shoulder straps for the win. ($34.95, Target)

Buy it

A pillow so you can lounge without straining your neck…

This one’s built for the beach, of course. And it’s padded, weather-resistant, and compact. Plus, it folds into its own carrying case and can be weighed down by adding a bit of sand. So it won’t fly away on windy days. Nap time awaits. ($28+, Amazon)

Buy it

A blanket so you can lie down without sand sticking to you…

Like this one that is waterproof and doesn’t trap sand. So you can relax comfortably. It’s big enough for multiple people and comes with stakes for each corner. Problem = solved. ($24.03, Amazon)

Buy it

A colorful suit for a cute beach look…

You may be sweaty, but that doesn’t mean you can’t look stylish. This one-piece suit is made with 80% recycled nylon with adorable grommet details on the front. You'll be fully covered, so you can jump into the water without fear of something slipping. Instagram is waiting. ($32.97, Aerie)

Buy it

An everyday sunscreen because getting a little color calls for skin protection…

We can’t stress this enough. This nonaerosol spray is SPF 50, sweat- and water-resistant, and can be applied to wet skin. It’s your new beach best friend. ($15+, Supergoop)

Buy it

A speaker that can handle long days at the beach...

Turn the volume up, because your phone speaker is never loud enough. This retro-inspired speaker can connect to your cell via Bluetooth or an audio jack. So hit shuffle on your summer Spotify playlist. ($60, Amazon)

Buy it

An umbrella so you can take a  break from the sunshine…

Well, an umbrella-tent. It’ll provide all the shade you could need, especially on scorching days where there’s not a cloud in the sky. And it features mesh windows for proper ventilation and lots of legroom. If you’re worried about it blowing away — don’t. It’s got three sand pockets, extra sandbags, and four stakes. Boom. ($49.99, Amazon)

Buy it

A camera so you can remember the time you spent in the waves…

Capture the moment. This waterproof camera will catch all your boogie board wipeouts. And that sandcastle you spent an hour building. Say cheese. ($29, Urban Outfitters)

Buy it

Crocs because walking on the beach in flip-flops gets awkward…

Slip on something more stable. You’re probably carrying too much already. Steady footing will be a plus. And did we mention these are adorable? Because they are. ($35, Zappos)

Buy it

Mini beach paddles when you wanna battle for who has to drive home…

Volley it out. Just try not to lose the ball. Victory dances sold separately. ($24, Anthropologie)

Buy it

A cover-up that also protects your skin from the sun…

If your shoulders always tend to get burned, a sun shirt will do the trick. This one has an ultraviolet protection factor of 50+. Plus it’s cooling, moisture-wicking, antimicrobial, and quick-drying. Aka…it’s a piece that can handle it all. Throw it in your bag for an extra layer by the beach, or pop it on with a pair of shorts if you wanna grab a quick bite to eat on the way home. ($158, Zags)

Buy it

Subscribe to Skimm Your Life

We're bringing you products, recs, and suggestions that'll make your life just a liiittle easier. It all starts with adding us to your inbox.