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1. A pair of polarized sunglasses to seriously reduce glare and protect your eyes from harmful UV rays, whether you're driving, boating, swimming, or just chilling in your backyard.
2. An insect repellant made with picaridin instead of DEET, which means a) you won't smell terrible (it's unscented) and b) you can worry less about SO many bugs, including mosquitos, ticks, biting flies, stable flies, black flies, gnats, chiggers, and sand flies.
3. And a Thermacell zone mosquito repeller, which you simply refill every 12 hours for some quiet, effective, and downright sweet relief when twilight hits and those tiny vampires begin to emerge. You'll actually be able to enjoy summer evenings outside again!
4. A set of sexy anti-chafe lace bands because dresses are sooo comfortable to wear when it's hot outside right up until that moment you take a few steps and feel your thighs rub together — and these put a stop to that discomfort, instantly.
5. Or an anti-friction stick so you can apply it anywhere you know you're prone to chafing and blisters before you head out for whatever adventure (or work) your summer has in store.
6. The Guppyfriend Washing Bag, which both protects your swimsuits in the washer — you've gotta get that chlorine and sunscreen out somehow — and catches those tiny plastic microfibers that your suit's synthetic fabric releases anytime it's washed so they don't add to the pollution of the planet's rivers, lakes, and oceans.
7. A set of little plastic caps to prevent your high heels from sinking into grass, gravel, and dirt (hello, outdoor weddings) and make your shoes feel a little more stable on basically any surface.
8. A waterproof pouch so you can take your phone swimming, fishing, beaching, tubing, rafting, kayaking, and kiddie pool-ing without worrying about it for one second.
9. Some high-fidelity, nearly-invisible earplugs designed to cut down on the decibels during all your favorite concerts so your hearing stays protected without completely muffling the music's clarity and sound quality.
10. A dip and sauce holder that clips to your car vents so you can to enjoy your fries exactly the way you like them on all your summer road trips, even if you're the one stuck driving.
11. A chemical-free standing weeder because the weeds like the summer sunshine as much as any of us, and you shouldn't have to bend down to pull up those pesky rogue dandelions.
12. A sunburn lotion that may help prevent that dreaded peel thanks to the power combo of cooling aloe and hydrating coconut oil.
13. A bottle of the cult-favorite Supergoop Unseen Sunscreen designed specifically for your face, because the best way to actually solve that sunburn problem is prevention, by finding a product that you like enough to use every single day. Might as well opt for one that's basically weightless, completely clear, and makeup-friendly.
I've been using this sunscreen at least once daily since my mom gifted it to me Christmas 2020, and have every intention to keep using it for years. A dime-size amount covers my entire face, because it's translucent it leaves absolutely no white cast, and 10 minutes after putting it on, my face just feels like I applied a little bit of a nice moisturizer or makeup primer, not anything that's grease-central, like sunscreen usually is. After several years of stubbornly trying (and failing) to find a decent, oily-skin-friendly, non-greasy drugstore option, I've caved to this pricier kind because literally none of the six or seven other options I tried even compared to this.
Every time I've worn makeup since I got it, I've been impressed by the way my matte foundation glides over it, looks with it, and lasts with it. You can see the texture and color in the photo above; it really does go on completely clear. And it's water- and sweat-resistant for 40 minutes! It's also oxybenzone-free, which is a common sun-protection ingredient that may not be reef-safe, and a single 1.7oz bottle lasts me a little over six months. (Here's more info on sunscreen ingredients.)
14. Or a reef and ocean–friendly mineral sunscreen that, besides being fragrance-free, water-resistant, broad-spectrum, vitamin E–enriched, and sensitive skin–friendly, comes in a tinted version to help prevent that pesky white residue. So keep your skin safe without having to worry your sun protection will harm coral, fishies, whales, or other marine life.
15. And for the pool: a bottle of spray sunscreen so your kids (or you!) can hop out of the water, skip the thorough towel-dry (because it's specifically designed so it won't drip off wet skin), and quickly reapply.
16. A long-sleeved but lightweight UPF 50 shirt because it provides *instant* sun protection you don't have to wait to let soak in or reapply at all. It's moisture-wicking and quick-drying, so even if you sweat a little you'll stay plenty comfortable.
17. A lightweight straw hat that's lined with satin to help prevent frizz *and* breakage in natural curly hair, so you can bring your own shade everywhere you go without having to worry about what your hair will look like when you take it off.
18. A compact dehumidifier because in many states, summer means extra humidity and this will help prevent any mold and mildew growth in your bathroom, motor home, or other small spaces.
19. And speaking of mold and mildew: an electric power washer because all your outdoor surfaces and furniture just plain get dirty over the years, and sometimes it's nice to take an afternoon to blast off all the gunk.
20. A setting spray so you can ensure your makeup lasts through even the sweatiest, most humid days with just a spritz or two.
21. And a hair serum infused with argan oil, vitamin E, and aloe vera because those essential ingredients make it easy for your heat-straightened hair to hold its own against humidity's demands.
22. A single blade, all-metal rose gold safety razor that — if you choose to shave — helps eliminate ingrown hair and razor burn for good, because it removes the hair right at the skin's surface level and doesn't include any other blades that just end up irritating your skin.
23. A blister prevention balm — breaking in a new pair of flats or sandals is never fun, but this might help make it a little less painful. And if your shoes STILL blister even after you've done a bunch of walking in them, it will continue to have your back. Or, well, your heels, arch, and toes.
24. A clarifying shampoo ideal for removing that swimming pool chlorine buildup causing your blonde hair to turn green, or your hair of any color to just constantly smell like the chemical.
25. A pair of supportive workout shorts with a) flat-lock seams that won't chafe, b) moisture-wicking quick-dry fabric to help with that summer s-w-e-a-t, and c) POCKETS so whether you wear 'em under something or just by themselves, you have a handy spot to stash stuff.
26. A mini personal fan to help stave off sweat, if the AC doesn't quite do enough for your bathroom vanity or desk nook.
27. A durable pet cooling mat filled with non-toxic gel — it stays five to ten degrees cooler than the surrounding temp, so your furbaby can quickly chill out even if they've been running laps in the heat.
28. And a paw washer so they can enjoy running through the mud after a cozy summer rain without causing your floors or furniture any undue mess and distress when they come bounding up to the back door.
29. Some foot antiperspirant lotion specifically formulated to prevent excess sweating, whatever it is that triggers yours. Controlling the sweat can also help stop your feet and shoes from getting too smelly!
30. And a pair of washable flats perfect if you're tired of throwing out shoes that get unbearably stinky after just a few months of wear, because that's just what happens when you wear shoes without socks.
31. A double wall vacuum insulated–water bottle because despite your best efforts to put up your car's sunshade and park in the shadiest spot in the lot, when temps reach their peak your water needs a little something extra to actually stay cold.
32. A sharp, serrated watermelon knife that part of you willl want to dedicate to slicing *only* the most iconic summer fruit, because it just makes the job SO much easier than regular knives.
33. An air fryer so you can whip up tasty snacks, sides, and even full dinners without having to heat up the whole house with the oven. It's hot enough (and your AC works hard enough!) already without intentionally heating up even a small part of your home to 350 degrees!
34. A pack of oil blotting tissues — IDK if it's just me, but I swear something about heat and humidity makes my oily skin even worse, and these will soak up any excess in no time.
35. And dry shampoo because you can't help that all your errands today left you with extra sweaty, oily hair, and you need something that'll help you clean up quickly before you head out to dinner for the evening.
Your friends to you, because now you know exactly how solve all of their (small) summertime problems:
The reviews in this post have been edited for length and clarity.