Next weekend is 4th of July and chances are you’re heading to the beach. Or if not, at some point this summer you will be. Before you try to remember where you stashed the beach towels and if that bottle of expired sunscreen is still good (it’s not), let us help you make things a little easier. Whether you’re jumping on the subway to the Rockaways and require a lightweight backpack cooler and chair set up or if you’re driving to a more remote locale and can bring along more elaborate items like a pop-up tent and beach-friendly grill, we got you covered. From the best, most discreet outdoor drinking vessels to our favorite canned wine to a waterproof speaker, read on for our exhaustive list.
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A Cooler That Doubles As A Seat
So you’ve run out of blanket space? This cooler can double as a seat with rigid sides that won’t crumble under your butt. Also helpful: the entire thing folds flat for easy off-season storage.
A Backpack Cooler
If you’re taking the subway to the Rockaways and looking for a commuter-friendly cooler, this colorful backpack can stash your drinks, snacks, as well as have enough room for a small beach towel.
A Yeti Made For Small Groups
Most people won’t need the bigger Yetis, unless they’re hosting a ton of people or camping for multiple days. This smaller version is ideal for a casual beach day, with more than enough space for wine, water, and all the [charcuterie needed for a proper snack platter].
An Artsy Towel
Made in collaboration with artist Isabelle Feliu, this graphic beach towel is distinctive enough that your friends can spot you across a sea of umbrellas. One side has velour, for soft lounging while the other has absorbent terry cloth.
A Big Blanket For Two
The better to spread out on.
A Blanket That Doubles As A Board Game
In case you get bored, this one comes with everything you need to play checkers or backgammon.
A Festive, Lightweight Chair
Weighing in at just under 3 pounds, this ultra light chair is easy to carry whether you’re commuting to the beach by subway or hiking in to your favorite lake.
Outdoor Wine Glasses
One of our favorite outdoor drinking glasses is this silicone coated glass one by W&P. It’s discreet, hefty, and feels like you’re enjoying a proper drink.
A More Discreet Outdoor Wine Glass
If the W&P wine glass is too clunky to carry, this one is insulated, lightweight, and ideal for hiding whatever you’re drinking.
A Water Bottle For Cocktails
Prefer to bring a cocktail? Our staff editor Carlo Mantuano swears by this S’well bottle (in this particular color), in part because he likes how wide the mouth is. It’s the ideal way to enjoy a cocktail with ice cubes.
A Water Bottle That’ll Fit (Almost) An Entire Bottle Of Wine
At 24 ounces, it’s just one ounce shy of fitting the average bottle of wine so consider it a pretty solid option for carrying your drinks to the beach.
A Very Good Sunscreen
I’ve gone through at least four bottles of sunscreen from Supergoop! In the past year alone and the brand is hands down one of my favorites. Lightweight, it absorbs easily into my skin without breaking me out or leaving a white cast. Their latest one is ideal for a hot day at the beach since it’s water and sweat-resistant.
A Clear Sunscreen Stick For Reapplication
If you’re like me and you forget to reapply sunscreen, you’ll want to grab this clear sunscreen stick. It’s invisible over makeup and absorbs quickly, without the need to rub it all over your face.
A Light And Delicious Canned Wine
I was initially skeptical of this canned wine brand since they’re low carb and zero sugar. How good could it be? Well, after finish a few boxes, the answer is: pretty good! It’s light, refreshing, and does not skimp on the ABV. While it’s not as complex in flavor as a more traditional bottle, it’s ideal for a hot day in the sun.
A Refreshing, Non-Alcoholic Seltzer
As far as seltzers go, Sanzo is hands down my favorite with its refreshing Asian-inspired flavors. Their calamansi one is nice and tart while mango, with its splash of juice, is more like a delicious spritzer.
Tupperware For All For Your Snacks
Because trudging across a giant sea of hot sand only to wait forever for fries is not worth your time, use our favorite picnic-approved tupperware to pack your favorite snacks.
Bring along eco-friendly compostable utensils so you don’t have to dig your sand covered hands into that container of cut up watermelon.
A Corkscrew And Knife Combo
Opinel is a classic French brand of knives we love and their foldable knife is not only handy for picnics but also at the beach. Use it to open your bottle of wine or to slice up meats and cheeses for your charcuterie set up.
A Classic Beach Activity
Is it a beach day without a game of paddle ball? Obviously not, so grab a set.
**[Get Sunnylife Sunny Days Beach Bats Game
A Less Active Beach Activity
When the thought of chasing after a tiny ball across burning hot sand sounds miserable, sit and play a game of cards instead. These are waterproof, so they won’t warp or get mushy in your wet hands.
The Ultimate Beach BBQ
If your beach lets you grill, this lightweight, highly portable cube charcoal BBQ is the ultimate way to make delicious meals outdoors. The top pops off as a cutting board and there’s also a storage tray for tongs, plates, or food.
A Speaker To Set The Mood
Waterproof and featuring 12 hours of battery life, this speaker will set the vibe on your patch of sand.
A Slim Drink Koozie
This slim insulated cooler will not only discreetly hide your drink but also keep it cool longer.
A Lightweight Tent
As much as you want to enjoy the sun, it winds up getting pretty hot out there which is where this pop-up tent comes in. With a flick of the wrist the entire thing springs to life and creates a convenient shelter to hang out in.
An Adjustable Umbrella
If you’re more of the umbrella type, this is a great, lightweight option that comes in its own carrying case. The shade can tilt, so you can adjust according to the angle of the sun for optimal coverage.
Yes, beach coasters exist and they’re actually pretty helpful to keep your drinks from spilling over into the sand.
A Portable Table
If you want to be next level prepared for the beach, this foldable table is it. Play cards, set up a lunch spread, or just use it as a resting spot for drinks.