Ya'll I was craving a warm weather getaway so badly and it DID NOT HAPPEN. Lolz. We had planned this amazing road trip to Santa Cruz for our six year anniversary and in my mind we'd have one whole day with no agenda other than reading books on the beach.
...and it was so foggy. LOL.
The trip itself was a total blast, sun or no sun. Even without perfect beach weather, we still got the chance to read and lounge on the beach and I got to pack my beach bag for the first time ever this summer.
Beach bags are tricky because 1) they need to be sturdy, durable, and easy to clean and 2) they need to be big enough to fit loads of stuff. I actually had fun packing mine up for the first time in a full year. I found a new beach bag I love, found some new essentials to fill it with - and wanted to share!
I've cycled through a whole host of beach bags in the past and, I'll be honest, I'd never once considered treating a beach bag like an "investment" piece. I never thought it was worth it to own a beach bag that cost more than $20.
And then I got my hands on the Cuyana Raffia Tote.
Here's the jam - ya'll already know I'm a major Cuyana fan. My Cuyana Structured Tote blog post and YouTube video are both in my top 10 most popular content of all time. The reason I'm such a fan is because their motto of "fewer, better" really resonates with me. I don't want more crap. I want to own a few versatile, beautiful, well made pieces that I can wear for years.
The Raffia Tote falls right into that sweet spot. Yes - it was designed to be a "beach bag." It's giant with a sturdy straw outer layer, but it's really the sleek shape (trapeze) and the leather lining that elevates the bag to the point I felt comfortable wearing it throughout the day, on the beach, and then to dinner. It also has handles as well as a shoulder strap, plus an inside pocket for valuables.
This bag isn't just a "beach bag" - it's ridiculously chic.
I'm incredibly fair so SPF is especially important for me, but SPF should be in everyone's beach bag. EVERYONE.
I'm a little excessive and have a range of different SPF products I carry in my beach bag. The Olay sunscreen is my favorite face moisturizer because it's never once given me a breakout. I'm a big fan of this Supergoop sunscreen for my body. The mousse makes it easy to apply! I also love this Supergoop "setting" mist to refresh my SPF throughout the day. It's pretty rare for me to have a day I'm not wearing skin makeup and although my face makeup often has SPF in it, I love the setting mist for topping it off as the day goes on.
Not shown in these photos is my Kindle. I am OBSESSED with my Kindle and have been for years. Don't get me wrong - I love a good paperback book - but the kindle is just so damn convenient. And honestly nothing beats reading on the beach or by the pool.
Stay hydrated, kids! I always keep a water bottle in my bags. Although a Swell or Hydroflask might keep your drinks cooler for longer - they're sort of on the heavy side. Bkr is my brand of choice for beach hydration.
Tell me your beach bag essentials in the comments below!
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