5 on 5: Summer Essentials on the Go

Summer is officially here, and although I do enjoy some things about this season—long daylight hours, farmers markets, iced coffee—I’m really uncomfortable in high temperatures and strong sunlight. Here is a list of five essentials that I always carry in my bag. (The notable exception is sunblock, which I apply to all exposed skin before I leave the house.)

I can’t even estimate how many times these peppermint-infused towelettes from Herban Essentials have rescued me from heat-induced misery. I swipe one along the insides of my arms, down the nape of my neck, on the backs of my knees, wherever I can reach, and I feel calmer and cooler within minutes. (I also like to keep one on hand for motion sickness when traveling.)

Sometimes it’s not the heat, it’s the humidity. I’ve transferred  a small amount of Lush‘s R & B into a little plastic jar for my purse. When my curly hair puffs out in steamy or rainy weather, I apply the tiniest bit of R & B to the ends. It gets things under control for the rest of the day.

All the makeup experts say the same thing: don’t add more powder, just remove the excess oiliness from your skin with blotting papers. I really like Mineral Fusion‘s Shine-Free Blotting Tissues. They’re paper (not some weird plastic film that actually contains oils—yes, Clean & Clear, I’m looking at you) and they’re priced well. Boscia makes some good blotting papers, too.

As I mentioned above, I coat all uncovered parts of my body with sunblock before I go outside, but I still need to protect my lips. When I first came across these lip balms from Twist & Pout, I thought they were a bit tacky, but then I warmed to the idea. The lip balm “sphere” clips to my keychain, so I can always find it, and the balm itself contains SPF and a lemon-honey fragrance. I own this peacock-feather container, one of many fun designs.

For the past few years I’ve been carrying a paper or silk fan in my purse and whipping it out when I find myself getting sweaty on a subway platform or at a bus stop. A typical bystander reaction occurs in two phases: first, amusement or disbelief that some lady (me) is actually using an old-fashioned hand fan, followed by envy and the realization that it’s actually a pretty good idea. I like to buy fans (among other things) at Pearl River Mart.

What are your summer essentials?

Disclaimer: all items have been purchased by the author.

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8 thoughts on “5 on 5: Summer Essentials on the Go

  1. I love folding fans! I always carry one around during the summer. Mine is currently scented with L’Eau d’Hiver, another summer essential. I have R&B too, but I use it mainly during the winter months when my long, very thick, somewhat-wavy hair becomes dehydrated. In summer I usually just pin it up or braid it.

    1. Ah, L’Eau d’Hiver! One of my favorites from Frederic Malle, too… actually, today is a perfect day for it! I never thought of scenting my fan. You may have inspired me! On a really hot day, a breath of Diptyque L’Ombre dans L’Eau would feel and smell so refreshing.

  2. What a brilliant idea to use a small folding fan!
    I have several Spanish fans that I’ve used as props when dancing the fan variation from Don Quixote ballet, but they might be too flamboyant to whip out on a subway platform. Although in NYC people are used to just about everything!

  3. Another fan of the peppermint towelettes. I always have a few on hand, and can attest to their ability to revive anyone suffering in heat or humidity (or both!).

    Pearl River Mart – love that place!

    1. I really have found nothing better than those towelettes for easing heat exhaustion, nausea, and general stickiness! And Pearl River really is the best… for dishes, incense, slippers, little notebooks, soaps…the list goes on!

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