Summer Essentials Designed to Save Your Life and Your Budget

important summer essentials

We love to save you money and make your life that much simpler, and sometimes that requires thinking a bit outside the realm of savings accounts, credit cards and how to make money with side jobs and other ideas. Sometimes it means thinking of things that don’t necessarily scream, “savings!” but whisper, “wise decision,” and that’s why I want to talk about sun safety. It’s almost summer. For us here in Florida, summer began months ago. We’ve already been spending weekends on the boat, having pool parties and cooking dinner for gatherings on the grill every weekend since March. Sunscreen is a way of life here, and it should be for everyone else, too.

We never go outside, leave the house or even think about heading outdoors for some fun in the Florida sun without first lathering ourselves up with sunscreen. However, it’s easy to make mistakes; and that’s something I learned the hard way this past week. I, at this moment in time, am fried to a crisp after spending more than a week in North Carolina. You’d think that as a lifelong Floridian with almost 33-years of sunscreen and summers, I’d know better. Apparently, I don’t. When we received a call from my father-in-law, who resides in NC on the southern-most part of the Outer Banks, right on the water in the most adorable neighborhood, that he was having difficulty breathing and failed a stress test only a few months after having three stents put in last year, we were concerned.

When he then told us his doctor’s went in to see if the stents were failing and found that he has two new, almost complete blockages and that they’d be performing a double bypass two days later, we grabbed our kids, our luggage and we left. There was no question we needed to be there for him, especially since his entire family is in Florida and he’s alone. I knew that it would mean long days, lots of hospital visits, ample things we are not used to, and it would mean being outside a lot. We do have four kids that needed to be entertained on this trip, and it was not possible for them to make the 45-minute drive for half hour visiting times in the ICU every two hours for a week.

While my husband would go visit his dad during the twins’ naptime, I’d take our bigger girls outside to play on the swings, to run around the yard and to enjoy themselves. They needed some fun, and they had energy to expend. Of course, I lathered them up as I always do when it’s time to go outside. I, on the other hand, didn’t bother with sunscreen. Why? It wasn’t hot. It was in the upper 70s (practically winter to us), the sun was shining and I was able to sit in the yard on a lounge chair for hours while the kids ran around and never once felt even remotely hot or sweaty. I was lulled into a sense of complacency and after a week of that, an afternoon on the beach and one look in the mirror, I realized I was fried. My scalp, my skin; even my feet.

Even when it’s not hot, when it’s not uncomfortable and you’re not on the beach or deliberately working on your suntan, you have to be aware of the damage the sun is inflicting on our bodies. It’s tricky, and we cannot allow it to get the best of us. I know I don’t want skin cancer, nor do I want my kids to develop skin cancer. On that note, I feel fairly confident assuming you do not want to suffer from skin cancer either, so that’s why we’re taking the time to save you money on excessive medical bills, potential surgeries and increased insurance costs (as well as future plastic surgery costs because while we all love our Louis Vuitton handbags, we don’t actually want to look like them) with a really great list of summer beauty bag essentials. These are the best summer investments you’ll make for your future health and your future finances.


Everyone in your family needs a hat during the summer. Hats protect not only your scalp, but also your face and your neck. Additionally, if you’re like me and you pay a lot of money to your stylist to ensure you have perfect hair all the time, you’re saving it from becoming too dry and damaged from the sun.


Did you know your eyes can burn? I didn’t, but apparently they can. I have sensitive eyes and cannot function outside even on a cloudy day without sunglasses, but it’s something you and the rest of your family need in your summer bag at all times.


This seems obvious, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t actually have it. Get a good one; I like to use my kids’ sunscreen. I find that it seems to go on more evenly and it works better. But more importantly, don’t forget to reapply your sunscreen every other hour or so throughout the day when you are outdoors.

Lip Balm with SPF

Your lips are a part of your skin, and they need to be protected at all times. A great lip balm with some SPF in it is a perfect addition to any beach bag. You’ll need to reapply throughout the day, but you’ll find that your lips feel so much better because of it.


Now that you’ve got your body covered and your skin covered, it’s time to make sure you don’t get dehydrated. I know that when you don’t drink enough water, it can have a lasting negative effect on your skin and your overall health, so make sure you’re drinking plenty of it, staying hydrated and not allowing the sun to win.

Photo by Getty Images


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