July 4th Pool and Beach Essentials

This past weekend was America’s number one holiday, the fourth of July.  In all honesty, I usually dread July 4th after having several bad experiences during college and even getting sun poisening one year after college as a result of using expired sunblock.  Oh yeah, that was fun.

This year I decided to turn the tables and decide that I wasn’t going to set any high expectations for the weekend but instead, just relax and pretend that it’s a normal (though slightly longer) weekend.  Success it was.  I relaxed by the pool, went to a party at a Malibu beach house right on the PCH and finalized the celebration with a house party in Brentwood with a perfect firework view.  I even debuted my new favorite towel, hoping my friend Sydne would feature it on her blog.  Alas, she didn’t deem it “blog worthy” but she did tweet the pic above!

Here’s what got me through the weekend…

Redken Color Extend Solar Sunscreen SPF 12: There’s a ton of hair products that claim to protect your color from fading but very few of them have actual SPF included.  This product is fab because it not only protects your color but it also protects your scalp from the sun.

Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection SPF 60 for Face and Body: I’ve been a fan of Shiseido’s SPF products since last summer when I discovered the line.  If you’re the person who hates sunblock because you get all greased up while applying it, this product is for you.  It’s basically a luxurious lotion and it smells amazing- no sticky residue, no white streaks.

Avene Thermal Spring Water: I’ve never really done well being in the sun for too long, especially when it’s also humid out.  This refreshing water-based mist is a great refresher at the beach (or even on an airplane).

Ray-Ban Cockpit Aviator Sunglasses: Anyone else with blue eyes?  Yeah, I can’t get through the day with out my sunglasses.  I finally convinced my parents that no, they can’t buy their sunglasses at Rite Aid and expect decent eye protection.  My Ray-Ban’s have great UV protection and this shape is pretty universally flattering.

4th of July beauty

So it’s America’s holiday- the 4th of July.  Even though I’m notorious for having catastrophically awful July 4ths, I’m still feeling some 4th of July beauty.  Hey, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em, right?  America, f–k yeah.

Farmhouse Fresh Bourbon Bubbler Body Scrub -This scrumptious body scrub uses real Kentucky whiskey, brown sugar, vitamin E and rice bran oil to exfoliate your body clean.  It’s especially good for helping self-tan lotions to stick on.

JASON Naturals Quit Bugging Me! Natural Insect Repellant Spray -Truth be told, Los Angeles doesn’t have many bugs…but back in New York, you can’t leave the island of Manhattan unless you’re armed with some insect repellant.  I remember my mom dousing me with other chemical versions and always hating the smell and feeling sticky and gross.  JASON’s version is a natural alternative to harsh chemical bug repellants and uses a natural combo of Geranium, Soybean and Coconut Oils that not only keep bugs from biting but also leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth.  Plus, it’s DEET, PABA and Paraben-free.  And the bottle is adorable, just sayin…

Jane Iredale Powder-Me SPF 30 Dry Sunscreen – The all-over face and body powder helps to protect against both UVA and UVB rays with an SPF 30 and even has a water-resistant rating.  Skin Cancer Foundation approved, this sunblock is a physical, not chemical, block that works instantly in the sun.  As an added bonus, the packaging has a mirror on the cap so you can check yourself out, while applying your sun protection.

Sonia Kashuk Self-Tanning Towelettes for Body – I’m a serial self-tanner and I’ve tried it ALL.  I love the easy convenience of these towelettes…they’re great for traveling or even a quickie job or touch up.  The color is natural and the infamous self-tanner smell is barely there.