I'm back!! Almería and Málaga were ridiculously beautiful and relaxing, and through it all I ate like a champ and rested like a pro. I'll tell you more about the trip later (with a few recommendations in case any of you find yourselves in Southern Spain any time soon), but for now I thought I'd post what turned out to be my beach essentials.
black bikini - ok, mine's from H&M, but I dream of having a luxurious yet basic Eres swimsuit like this one day
2. kindle - loaded with tons of fiction and nonfiction, something for every possible mood
3. baseball cap - again, mine's from H&M, the men's department, but anything to block the sun while you're napping face up will do.
4. a coverup - this sheer cotton shirt from Zara was perfect (especially since, unlike the model here, my legs are not 5 ft. long, so it was much longer on me), both for when the sun was hitting too hard, or when the wind was sandblasting us.
5. sunglasses - these, picked up in Madison last summer, are still my favorites. My other countless pairs are feeling neglected, but I'm trying to reduce object-induced guilt.
6. sunscreen for your face - this one by Kiehl's is still my go-to here in Spain, but in the US I also swear by Peter Thomas Roth
7. peshtemal - turkish bath towels are the best for the beach; they take up very little room in your bag and are great for laying on, drying with, and wearing as a wrap.
8. notebook - for recording all the ins and outs of your trip, your thoughts or dreams, or for planning that novel that you're gonna write, one day, you swear,
9. sunscreen for your body - something with a high spf, applied liberally, every few hours. That's how I went from Snow White to Beyonce. Ha! Seriously, I came back with what I thought was a savage tan but literally NO ONE noticed. Just goes to show you how very very pale I was to begin with. Now I just look normal.
10. a favorite pen - not your father's cherished mont blanc fountain pen, just a good solid fat pen that makes you happy, that you can scribble with even when you're weakened by hours of sun and sea.
11. flipflops - havaianas for me, always. They never give me blisters. But that part about them not getting hot in the sun? Lies. Nevertheless, I love them.