Trips to the beach are full of fun in the sun, the salt in your hair, and the sand between your toes. They can be just what the soul needs after a long winter, and the best way to soak in the benefits by far is to book a long trip to your nearest coast. Coastal towns are full of lovely things to do, fresh fish and seafood, and a thriving community. Pair that with the draw of the beach and the ocean, and you have every reason to spend a week, if not more, along the waterways.

With every potential trip comes the need to pack. Pack right, and you can look and feel effortlessly stylish every day you’re away, all while enjoying your trip that much more. To help you pack (and fill in any missing gaps in your wardrobe), use this ultimate guide.

What to Keep in Mind About the Beach

Being beachside either means hot weather or windy gusts of air. Combine that with the salt, sand, and sweat, and you may just start to realize that other tips that include doing things like mixing and matching the clothes you bring don’t work the same way on this type of trip. You’ll either have to plan ahead and pack one (or more) outfits per day to stay fresh or choose an accommodation option that has both a washing machine and a dryer.

Pack for Heat

Packing for heat means so much more than just packing shorts and t-shirts. It means preparing to sweat. With that in mind, try to pack materials made from excellent summer fabrics, especially ones that are breathable and moisture-wicking. Items like cotton tend to absorb water, so they’re actually not a great material for high temperatures. Instead, choose linens or other performance wear. Choose looser styles as well to help keep you cool and stylish for longer.

Pack for Cold

The beach can get cold! All it takes is for the sun to set, the wind to pick up, or for the clouds to cover the sky, and suddenly, you’ve gone from baking nicely in the sun to freezing in the dirt. That’s why it’s always so important to pack some warmer clothes. You can go full nautical-themed with a Nantucket hoodie from, for example, and have something warm to throw on in the evening or if it gets a bit chilly when you’re out and about.

Pack for the Water

You’ll not only need water-wear and beachwear like coverups, but you’ll also want to bring a full beach-going kit. This can include a blanket, an umbrella, fold-out seating, and more. If you can pack this kit properly so it’s easy to carry, you will be able to bring everything you need to enjoy a truly wonderful time on the sand. As a bonus, a properly packed pack is far easier to lug around, so you’ll look good on your way to and from the beach, too!

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