My Beach Bag Essentials

Hello Lovely,

This summer has been amazing. Unfortunately, I travelled so much and had so many loose ends to tie up for grad school, I didn’t really have time for the beach. Plans fell through with friends, but I refused to give up. I finally got to go to the beach last weekend and it was just what I needed. Four hours of splashing and girl talk is the perfect way for me to end my summer.  Many of you will be hitting the beach today so I wanted to share my favourite items to take to the beach with me. I carry/use these 6 items every time and I think we can all agree they’re a must have for everyone hitting the beach before summer ends.

The perfect beach bag

I love my new beach bag I got in Exuma. It was costly, but this bag holds up well against sand and water. And it’s large enough to hold everything I need to carry. Try to find something cost-effective that still suits your personality. Don’t put too much thought into it though. No one really cares about the bag, it’s what in it that counts.

Absorbent Beach Towel

I’ve actually had this towel since high school. My dad bought it for me during one of his trips. The best part? It doubles as a bag! It’s pretty cool using this as a bag, then drying off with it and turning it back into a bag.

Sunscreen

Not pictured, but sunscreen ismust. As black people we often think we don’t need sunscreen since our skin doesn’t burn as easily, but we’re actually at a higher risk for skin cancer. So take the time to use a waterproof sunscreen before you leave the house so you travel with less and can focus on diving right in.

A snazzy pair of shades

I don’t understand how people can lay on the beach without sunglasses. Everything is so bright and hot! I’m sure that damages your eyes or something. Either way, I think it makes me look cool 😉

Something to drink

For me I always have two options: a beer and water. The perfect place to enjoy a beer truly is the beach. This time I tried bud light margaritas. None of us liked them, but we don’t waste alcohol. And once we were done, we drank an entire bottle of water to fight dehydration. If you’re heading to the beach, you have to pack water to drink to stay hydrated.

Separate bottle of water

I always carry a jug of tap water to wash my feet off with before getting in my car. It decreases the amount of sand that ends up in my car as evidence that I went to the beach. It’s also great to get some of the salt off your skin before it dries and makes you itchy.

What are your must-have beach bag items? Books? Bluetooth speakers? Digital camera? Share your favourite items to take to the beach in the comment section below and don’t forget to follow me on Bloglovin’, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more stories and quick tips!

Swimming With Natural Hair: What You Need to Know Before Hitting the Beach

I have never been one of those girls that refused to get my hair wet whenever I was going to the pool or the beach. I never had difficulty washing my hair. In fact, my only problem was drying. I always ended up with a huge frizz ball for hair. Even now that I’m natural, I still don’t have problems washing my hair. Maybe because it’s not as long as when it was permed, it’s not a hassle. Detangling takes a while yes, but once we’ve got a rhythm going, things tend to move rather smoothly. I think at this point, my only concern is protecting it from damage. So because I was going to the beach today with some friends, and considering that my hair is now purple, I decided to look up some tips on how to protect my hair from damage from the salt water. It’s actually so simple, and doesn’t take much time at all. Some people were saying I would have to soak my hair in a bunch of different oils, and wrap my hair… I wanted to scream! I can’t imagine putting too much oils or products into the ocean. These tips helped me today, so hopefully, they can help you too:

 

  • Saturate your hair - sounds silly right? Why do I need to wet my hair BEFORE I get in the water? Quick answer – wet hair will soak up less chlorine (or sea salt) than dry hair will. Think of it like a sponge. A dry sponge will absorb as much liquid as it can. But a wet sponge is so full, it can’t absorb any more.

  • Apply coconut oil (unrefined is best) prior to getting in the water (preferably the night before). Hair will absorb the coconut oil strengthening the hair shaft thus providing extra protection against the chlorine. I used organic extra virgin olive oil.

  • Coat hair with conditioner - this will seal the cuticle and help create a barrier between your strands and the chlorine. *some choose to forego this tip because fellow swimmers may end up wearing it and tasting it! I didn’t do this step. I figured the coconut oil would be enough.

  • Do not leave your hair out - one big braid or a bun will keep hair from becoming matted or tangled. My hair is currently in a twists up-do.

  • Wear a swim cap – it may not be sexy and you can certainly skip it, however, the more barrier between your hair and the chlorine the better.

 

Post Swim:

  • Rinse with water then shampoo – there are several swimmers shampoos out there. Try Ions Swimmer Shampoo (100% vegan and sulfate free) or Triswim Shampoo (paraben free). I used Garnier Fructis Color Shield Fortifying Shampoo.

  • Condition as normal (deep condition if you feel it’s necessary). I used Cantu Leave in Conditioner.

How do you prep your hair prior to taking a dip?