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5 Things You NEED In Your Beach Bag This Summer

School's out babes! The sun is shinning! Cue: Beach Days!

Whether you are on vacation or just driving up PCH to get out of the scorching heat of the valley, it's important to remember that a beach day should be dedicated to relaxation. One of the biggest mistakes people make when heading to the beach is packing too much stuff! Don't bring your schoolbooks and don't bring a laptop or a yoga mat all the way up to Malibu. You won't use them, and there is nothing worse than lugging an overfull bag through hot sand.

I got chu, here's a list of the 5 must-haves in your Urban Outfitters beach bag this summer:

1. SPF!

Pack it first! Pack it again! Quadruple check that you have it!

According to the American Academy for Dermatology "Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States." And, "Melanoma is the second most common form of cancer in females age 15-29." So, for the love of man, grab some Higher Education's Spring Break™ SPF 30 Sunscreen and throw it in your straw purse.

Here's a good strategy! I know you take A MINUTE checking all your angles when putting on your bathing suit (we all do this). Take this time to apply SPF on your whole-body head-to-toe. This way your sunscreen has time to dry and you won't be worried about getting sunburned when your suit inevitably rides up. When you're done, show a lil self-love by complimenting yourself; while you stare in the mirror, put the SPF in your beach bag and head out. Once you get to the beach, re-apply Spring Break™ right away for good measure and periodically throughout the day.

2. LIP BALM WITH SPF

Lip gloss is back in a big way! Everyone wants to achieve a plump and Kylie Jenner-esque pout. I get it, but the beach is not the place to do it if you want to keep your lips looking less sunburnt, more luscious. Gloss attracts light (duh, that's the point), but that also means that it attracts extra, unwanted sun. There is nothing worse than getting blisters on your lips (yes, your lips can get sunburnt). A study published in the Dermatologic Surgery Journal found that most people know about the risk factors of UV light to skin but weren't aware of the risk factors for lip cancer. Take care of your lips just as you do the rest of your face. So, while you're in the sun, apply Make Out Ready™ Moisturizing Lip Balm with SPF 15. Your lips and your future make out buddies will thank you. Also, it's super refreshing to have a minimal makeup day! Let that beach goddess out! Show off your gorgeous, natural (sun-protected) face!

3. YOUR FAVE SUNNIES

If you have light eyes, you know the pain that accompanies stepping outside without sunglasses in the summertime. The light can be almost blinding! In addition to being uncomfortable, UV light exposure raises your risk for eye diseases. The sun reflects a ton of light back on your eyes making the need for protection even greater. Your sunglasses don't have to be expensive (Free People & Urban Outfitters have great affordable/trendy options). Anything is better than nothing, but make sure those sunnies say 100% UV Protection for good measure. Wearing a pair of stunna shades will also keep you from squinting, which can cause harsh wrinkles around your eyes in the years to come. Wrinkles should be a result of smiling too much, laughing too boisterously, and just livin' your life: not squinting in the summer sun.

4. A BOOK

Nerds, you can continue down to number 5. I know you already have a book in your bag. I see you and I dig it!

NON-nerds, this is for you! I know that you've been saying the following phrase for years: "I might like this book if I didn't have to read it for school." You know what, you're right! And now is your time to shine. Beach reads don't have to be academic; they don't have to be College Board approved. Read whatever the heck you want (Next Level Basic by Vanderpump Rules' Stassi Schroeder is a great beach read)!

It's fun to figure out what type of books you actually like reading. Don't judge yourself and definitely don't let other people judge you. If you like romance novels, eat your heart out! If you love really sad books about sweethearts who get old and die together, read those (and by those, I mean, that one. It's The Notebook, we all know). If you love Stephen King novels or old French Classics, do. your. thing.

If you're not sure where to start, let me suggest a couple of things for you. Humor essays are my favorite things to read during the summer. They are short and you can just read one at a time and then take a break. The King of Essays (and my heart) is David Sedaris. My favorite of his books are When You Are Engulfed in Flames and Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim. He also reads his own audio books. I dare you to listen and not laugh out loud like a fool! If you like True Crime and self-help books, try Stay Sexy and Don't Get Murdered: The Definitive How to Guide by the OG Murderinos Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark. If you really want to get your life together, invest in Daring Greatly by Brené Brown. If you want to feel wistful and badass at the same time, dust off A Farewell to Arms and dive in! And remember, no one is making you read these books. There are no quizzes or essays. If you really aren't feeling a book, stop reading it and give something else a shot!

5. A FANCY DRINK OR TWO

Bring something to drink that feels like a treat: flavored seltzer, coke in a vintage glass bottle, fancy elderflower blueberry lavender rosemary lemonade, or even canned wine. It is so refreshing to have a cold drink to enjoy on the beach. It will really make your beach day feel like vacation. ALSO, don't forget WATER! Bring a giant Swell Water bottle or Hydroflask and chug that baby while you're down at the beach.

Now Grab that new translucent beach bag, sunscreen up, and put on that super cheeky bikini! Now you're set for a relaxing day of enjoying this gorgeous summer weather.

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