What’s in My Beach Bag – Mexico Edition

IMG_2495-1 Hola from the sunny beaches of Cancun! In my memory I cannot remember a winter that has been as cold as the last two in Toronto. So cold that just a trip to the end of the driveway to grab the newspaper is enough to make your face hurt and require a good half hour thaw time. So my mom, sister and I decided it was time to ignore Canada for a week and mentally and physically thaw out. 6 days on the beaches of Cancun! I haven’t been to an all inclusive resort since I was really young, so the constant alcohol consumption sure is a bonus on this “forget everything and relax” vacation. And I’m not really used to being on a beach often. So I’ve compiled a little beach bag that’s been helping me along the way. In my beach bag I have:

1. Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry Touch Sunscreen SPF 60 – I’m pretty shiny white. I need all the help I can get. Too many bad burns in the past. This has helped for a nice tanned glow

2. Coppertone Oil Free Face Sunscreen Lotion – although my face isn’t too sensitive, I like the idea of using sunscreen formula specifically designed for your face. This one is SPF 60 as well.

3. Nivea Sun Lip Balm – SPF 35 have you ever burnt your lips? Holy moly does it hurt.

4. Kobo – I’ve been here three days and already on my second book. Finished the Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion and started the Clifton Chronicles by Jeffery Archer.

5. Beach Cover-Up – I’ve mentioned the bad burns in the past right? Always need something to cover yourself up with. I picked up a new PINK bathing suit and cover up just for this trip!

And that’s about it. Don’t lug around too much all day. With just a little Smashbox BB Cream with SPF 35 in the morning I’m good to go! Just sit on the beach and drink copious amounts of Mojitos and Mimosas! What do you guys like to pack in a beach bag?


Summer Sun Protection


I will most definitely never claim to be a sun protection expert. I’m proud of my pastey whiteness, and a decent tan now and then, but in order to get a tan I usually get extremely burnt first. I never learn. (and I mean ever). But I’ve come to trust and rely on a few products within the massive range of sun protectors.

Most important is the Coppertone Oil Free Broad Spectrum UVA/UVB Protection (SPF 45). It says right on the bottle ‘won’t clog pores’ which is a seller right there. There is nothing worse than oily, greasy sunscreen that makes you feel gross and break out the next day. Gross. This sunscreen does what it says, non-greasy and non-pore-clogging. And SPF 45 is some pretty awesome sun protection. It’s also waterproof and fragrance free so no sunscreen smell (although I know some people like that).

Now even though the Coppertone is oil free, I’m still weary about putting regular sunscreens on my face. I would usually put sunscreen on under my foundation, so I want something that isn’t too thick and that, if possible, is specifically formulated for face. Just in luck!! The Aveeno Sunscreen Lotion for Face is just that. It is made with soy and is a source of vitamins A, C, and E. Specially formulated for face, oil-free, water-resistant and SPF 30. Everything that I was looking for in a face sunscreen. And like all other Aveeno products it’s dermatologist recommended, therefore it’s great for those with sensitive skin.

And then of course, there are those products for when it’s just too late. For when the damage is already done. Everyone has those days (*ahem* me yesterday) when they’re in the sun all day with absolutely not a single stitch of SPF anywhere on their body. So for those days there is the after sun routine. The layers upon layers of Aloe Vera. I’m not picky when it comes to brands of Aloe. I go through the bottle so quickly that I don’t spend the big bucks. Right now I’m using Life Brand After Sun Aloe Vera Gel which works just as well as any other I’ve tried. Soothing and cooling. But again, there is the face issue. I don’t want to slather Aloe on my face. So for those nasty face burns, I use Clarins After Sun Moisturizer Ultra-Hydrating. The cream is a little thicker and has a scent that I can’t quite figure out (not bad though) and I use this just as I would any other moisturizer. If I use it before bed I do feel slightly greasy in the morning, but after a quick face wash all is well. Burn is already turning into a tan, and no break-outs on my oh-so-sensitive face.

So there you have it. No need for super expensive SPF’s and sunscreens! Drugstore brands are all you need! So go out and enjoy this beautiful weather. Just make sure you protect yourself!! (I’m still learning)