Beach Bag Essentials

Beach Bag Essentials

Five ways to make the most out your beach day…

Crashing waves, white sand, shining rays…terrible sunburns, flaking lips, knotted hair, clogged skin. With the former almost always comes the latter, sadly. For as gorgeous and fun as a day at the beach can be, it’s often followed by a slew of bodily woes at the hands of the elements you were so enjoying just a few hours before.

A day by the ocean should be carefree and fun, but if you do a tiny bit of planning before you head out to the sand, you’ll be thankful. To help you out, here are some beach bag must-haves to keep your hair, skin and everything in between just this side of “sun-kissed.”


This is non-negotiable. And I really hope that at this point, my telling you how important SPF is, makes you roll your eyes and yell, “I KNOW!” But I’m going to include it here anyway because…duh.

SPF is crucial to not only enjoying a day at the beach but also for feeling like a human with healthy skin in the days after and the wellbeing of your skin for years to come. (Every sunburn you get increases your risk for melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer. Though melanoma is rare—only 1% of skin cancer cases—it’s not something to ignore, especially if you can help yourself with an SPF.)

When it comes to choosing a sunscreen, you have a couple of options. Physical sunscreens are named as such because they sit on top of the skin, physically blocking UV rays. They contain active mineral ingredients like titanium dioxide or zinc oxide that deflect and scatter damaging UVA and UVB rays away from the skin. Physical sunscreens also tend to cooperate more with sensitive skin since they don’t sink in and clog pores. That said, because they sit atop the skin, physical sunscreens can rub off easier, meaning you need to apply more frequently, and they can leave a white-ish, chalky film on the skin.

Then there are chemical sunscreens, which contain carbon-based compounds that turn UV rays into heat via chemical reaction, then release that heat from the skin. Science! Since these guys sink into skin, they’re thinner and easier to apply, but aren’t great for reactive skin as their combination of multiple ingredients can be irritating (especially as the SPF gets higher). They’re also more likely to clog pores.

So, it’s really up to you which SPF route you choose. If you’re great at evenly reapplying your sunscreen regularly, try a physical formula as they tend to be cleaner. If ease and stealth are your game, go with a chemical sunscreen. Either way, wear something, please. No one looks good with a sunburn.

If you plan to sit under a large umbrella in long sleeves all day, you can probably get away with just a facial SPF. Mad Hippie makes an excellent broad spectrum one packed with zinc oxide (a physical blocker), carrot seed, avocado and red raspberry seed oils to deliver a dose of antioxidants while also offering serious sun protection. If you want a bit of color coverage, Juice Beauty’s SPF Tinted Moisturizer serves up all natural, broad spectrum SPF 30 alongside vitamin-rich fruit acids and oils to bring out your skin’s natural glow. And for coverage under makeup, the Mineral Face Sunscreen from COOLA provides serious mineral-based sun protection and still allows for smooth makeup on top of it.

For your body, you want something that can stand up to the sun, sand, and water without leaving white smudges all over that cute bathing suit. For seriously-easy application, look for a sprayable formula like Soleil Toujours’s Organic Sheer Sunscreen Mist or COOLA’s ECO-LUX Body Continuous Spray SPF 30 Sunscreen, both of which are organic, broad spectrum and sans-conventional sunscreen chemicals.

If you’re not into aerosols, Suntegrity makes a gorgeous, easy-to-rub-in mineral formula that doesn’t leave you greasy, is totally free of parabens, phthalates and mineral oils, and includes green tea and cucumber extracts for soothing, calming good measure. For a higher SPF, Let It Block’s Goth Block boasts a 50 SPF and is water-resistant up to 80 minutes, meaning you don’t to re-apply quite as often as with other mineral-based broad spectrum sunscreen.

Lip Care

You’re good on the body and face SPF, but don’t forget about your mouth! After all, lips are skin, too, so they need protecting just the same. For a barely-there tint, the SPF 8 Lip Moisturizers from Juice Beauty is a good everyday option. The SPF is fairly low so this won’t be your go-to for oceanside reapplication, but it’ll get you from your house to the beach with a beautiful pout. Another tinted option with more protective oomph is COOLA’s Mineral Liplux, which boasts SPF 30. The six shades mean there’s something for everyone and every mood, and the organic capuacu butter and mongongo oil mean it’s nourishing, conditioning and goes on smooth.

And don’t forget to treat your lips post-beach as well. Yes, you’ve done a great job protecting them throughout the day, but a little extra love never hurt. Made with uber-moisturizer jojoba oil, the Sculpted Lip Oil from Ogee is full of antioxidants and nutrients that will help combat inflammation and soothe a sunburn (just in case any rays snuck by).


Another potentially obvious item, but yes, deodorant at the beach is a thing. Though digital application can take some getting used to, the Cream Deodorant from Lulu Organics is worth it. Not only will the clean, invigorating lavender and clary sage scent perk you up during a hot day, it’s totally free of parabens, petroleum, gluten and aluminum. Plus, the coconut oil, kaolin clay, baking soda and essential oils will keep you dry and smelling like a field of fresh herbs all day long. It’s also pretty discreet in terms of application if you find yourself wanting to re-up at any point.

The Right Hair Products

For every woman who enters the ocean with hopes of emerging with mermaid-caliber beach waves, there is another who knows that this look isn’t so easily achieved with just a dunk in the sea. In fact, “beach waves” more often than not take the form of “drowned rat,” unless you’re equipped with the right tools. And while it may seem silly to use a salt spray at the beach where you are literally surrounded by salt water, trust me when I say it’s worth it.

Salt is incredibly dehydrating, which means it can leave your hair feeling crunchy and dead by the end of a beach day. To balance the drying effect, you need to counteract it with something hydrating. Both the Surf Sister Salt Spray from Plantfolk Apothecary for Free People and Captain Blankenship’s Golden Waves Sea Salt Shimmer Spray offer just that. Each has a delicate balance of texture-friendly salt and nourishing oils to keep hair perfectly tousled and perfectly hydrated. For even more protection, feel free to work a few drops of hair oil—like this one from Little Barn Apothecary—through the lower half of your locks. It’ll condition, tame frizz and boost shine so you’re not a poofy-haired mermaid.


You didn’t think I’d forget skincare, did you? We’ve already covered SPF for your face, but a day at the beach doesn’t have to be a “set it and forget it” kind of skincare situation. To make sure your skin is primed for sunscreen application, I’d suggest a light oil cleanse in the AM. Yes, cleansing balms are typically reserved for nighttime routines to remove a day’s worth of gunk from your face, but it’ll serve you well here.

First and foremost, you want to make sure your skin is free of anything that might work its way into your pores and get trapped under the physical barrier of a mineral sunscreen. Secondly, there’s a chance some of the products you use on your skin at night contain photosensitive ingredients (ie — AHAs, retinols, essential oils), meaning skin that’s exposed to the sun while wearing ‘em is extra-sensitive. So before you head out to spend a day in the sun, you’ll want to make doubly sure to remove anything like that from your skin. A personal favorite? Kopari’s Coconut Cleansing Oil because it smells amazing, will leave your skin soft and primed for SPF, and doesn’t include any ingredients that will interact poorly with the sun.

While you’re at the beach, it’s also not a terrible idea to keep cleansing cloths handy. There’s no grossed feeling than the mixture of dried sweat, old sunscreen and saltwater sitting on your skin, so avoid it all together with Kai Naturals’ Juice Bamboo Natural Facial Cleansing Cloths. Individually packaged so they’re a cinch to toss in your beach bag, these babies get everything off with a couple of swipes and are alcohol-free, so they won’t pile onto the drying effects of the elements.

And then if you want to get really fancy, I wouldn’t say no to a luxurious, hydrating mist to replenish your skin’s moisture. Maya Water’s Facial Mist packs a serious moisturizing punch with just one spritz (plus it uses thermal water from the Norwegian mountains so you know it’s legit). And the Rosewater Mist from Miss Violet Lace smells amazing and is packed with aloe vera to help soothe your beachy skin.

+ Is there something in your beach bag that we left out? Let us know in the comments below!  

Check out other articles by Allie White here!

Free People Blog

Here Comes Sunlight (Stop)!

Why changing to organic sunscreen is essential for you personally (and our whole world)…

This article originates from contributor Altman and our beloved buddy .

For many of my entire life, when it found purchasing sunblock, there is just one three-page term that impacted my buying choice. Is it possible to speculate? No? That term my buddy, is SPF (okay good, I understand SPF is definitely an acronym, not officially a term — nobody walks around stating it loudly like “spppppffff” — however, you obtain the stage…)

Easily purchased a sunscreen by having an SPF of 9, I understood I had been meant for a powerful bronze and/or perhaps a burn similar to an indignant seafood; likewise, when seeing SPF-50 and a large straw-hat, I understood I possibly could maintain my organic pasty goth appearance.

While walking down the sunscreen area in the nearby pharmacy, my easy thinking brought me to buy regardless of the cheapest sunblock using the greatest SPF was, slather it on my encounter and throat, and start my evening…

Properly, the changing times they’re a-changin (!) and, once we are finding more and more, what we place in our anatomies (through meals and topically, through beauty items) might have an enormous effect on our wellness. Prejudice is bliss, nevertheless when it involves sun-protection, prejudice is bliss(ters)… (continue reading which means this horrible laugh makes a bit more feeling…)

Listed here are 8 sunlight-connected “FUN DETAILS” I’ve learned all about sun and skin safety that have brought me to alter my sunscreen buying choices and steer clear of pharmacy manufacturers in support of organic suncare options…

Sunshine Fun Fact Number 1: the skin we have is the body’s biggest wood and, because it’s comprised of small pores, nearly all what we placed on the outer skin gets consumed and adopts our anatomies as though we’d consumed it, including beauty items and sunscreen.

Sunshine Fun Reality #2the term, im, acronym “SPF” means Sunlight Guarding Element and describes the theoretical period of time an individual can remain in sunlight without getting sunburned. For instance, an SPF of 45 allows one to remain in sunlight ..

(Note: I’m not certain if this can be a “enjoyment reality” or just a discussion beginning, therefore moving forward I’ll allow you to choose for oneself if it’s enjoyable or not…)

Sunlight (Possibly Enjoyable) Reality #2: There’s no medical evidence that any SPF more than 50 really shields skin somewhat better. For instance, utilizing an SPF of 100 isn’t dual an SPF 50’s safety, no more than 1-percent greater. (Ok, perhaps that one is certainly not really a fun reality. For that rest of the post I’ll allow you to choose if these truth is enjoyable or not…)

Sunlight Reality #3It’s essential that people people acquire 20 units of sun-exposure each day (without sunscreen) so our anatomies may create the all too-essential Supplement D3, that will be accountable for a lot of good stuff like guarding our immune programs, raising our emotions, helping combat melanoma and psychological disability. More than 70% of the populace is Vitamin-D poor, meaning nearly all us have to save money time outdoors and possibly consider Vitamin-D products. (Note: Talk To your physician to ensure you are able to manage 20 units of sunlight each day, particularly as this 20-moment principle differs for individuals of various complexions and and it is favorable towards the season…)

Sunlight Reality #4Reasonable sunlight is fantastic but, if you should be likely to be exterior for over 20 units, it’s very important to hide with a few type of sun-protection in order to steer clear of the likelihood of burning and health issues for example skin melanoma down the road…

Sunlight Reality #5Sunscreens come mainly in 2 types — chemical sunscreen and spring sunscreen. Chemical sunscreens absorb straight into the skin , while vitamin sunscreens referred to as & rdquo,& ldquo blockers; have the ability to remain in the skin s area. Nutrient sunblocks are created utilizing dioxide and zinc-oxide.

Sunlight Reality #6Chemical sunblocks constitute nearly all the local pharmacy variety and, when I’ve discovered, include unnecessarily poisonous elements like oxybenzone, that has been associated with cancers, hormone interruption and more. (Yikes!)

Sunlight Reality #7: as though chemical sunscreens weren’t poor enough, when you use one and get into the sea, the oxybenzone and paraben elements often wash-off in to the water (even when the sunscreen promises to become waterproof) and, consequently, toxin marine-life and bleach our fragile barrier reef program. (Yikes again!)  

should you enjoy ANY facet of the sea (or our world in general), I plead of that you don’t use conventional chemical sunscreen while boating! The seafood plead of you also! (P.S. May seafood get creases? Sorry, tangent…)

So rsquo & what;s a sunlight-caring woman to complete?!

Fortunately, there’s an answer and there is naturally-derived our body Earth or sunblocks that may easily support safeguard the skin without hurting your body.

Presenting Free People’s Sunlight Team — Liquid BeautyCoolaSuntegrityAllow It To Stop and EiR

Whether you’re buying colored cosmetic lotion, activities sunscreen or lipbalm, we’ve you coated (without risking your wellbeing or even the world’s…). Among the most popular manufacturers, Allow It To Stop, was recently granted many eco-friendly sunscreen by Surfrider Business! (I’m presently utilizing GOTH STOP by Allow It To Stop when I sort this, btw.)


+ Which sublock that is organic will you use to savor our world?

Discover our total selection of sun-protection BELOW.