Fashion and beauty picks to slay summer in Chicago

Every year in June, I feel this incredible pressure to create a bucket list and squeeze every last drop out of the precious liquid gold that is summer. Here’s the thing: I usually cobble together some random stuff from years prior for summer living—a beach bag that has seen better days, sunscreen that is older than my child, a bathing suit that has a saggy bum from hours of going down the water slide with my kids on repeat. 

This year? I have a whole new arsenal of spectacular summer must-haves to make it the BEST. SUMMER. EVER.

However you summer, celebrate the fact that you are out of hibernation and ready to shine!

Sunshine day

I liberally apply sunscreen all over my body before heading out into the sun. But I rarely reapply, and if caught on the go, I am guilty of sitting on a patio for lunch with a cocktail sans sun protection. A dermatologist recommended powder sunscreen and it changed my re-application game.

Powder mineral sunscreens provide a physical barrier from the sun (versus chemicals as most lotions are) and are insanely easy to apply with the included brush. I toss one of these in my purse for post-makeup touch-ups as well as apply to my hair part—the No. 1 place on me that always gets burned.

Totes adorable

Last year, I hopped on the brightly colored pompom trend for my beach bag. One use in, however, and the pompoms popped off and the color transferred to my cover up. No bueno. This year I went for quality and function but still managed to find a beach tote that measured up to my style expectations. This one from Scout Bags folds up into an attached pouch (which doubles as a clutch). I also bring a lightweight coated Tyvek zippered pouch along from Aloha Collections to transport wet suits—one of the most brilliant inventions ever.

Suited up

I went to Target last year for my annual painful pilgrimage to try on swimsuits. The bottoms were all cheeky cut (seriously??), and the tops didn’t exactly support my sisters if you catch my drift. This year, there seems to be a barrage of woman-friendly swim apparel from companies such as Swimsuits for All (I’m obsessed). As moms, I want to start a movement this summer: just wear the darn suit and move on. Let’s all agree that 99 percent of us are uncomfortable in something that covers us as much as underwear does, but it is kinda necessary to wear in the pool and at the beach.

Dress for success

I usually have a summer momiform, and this season I am all about relaxed dresses that go from beach cover up to night on the town.

I found a cinched-waist dress with pockets from Peach that is so versatile I wore it from sun up to sundown a few days this week (shhhh). Find something comfortable that defines your gorgeous shape and swap flip flops + top knot or hair wrap for espadrilles + natural waves for an easy nighttime transition.

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