Summer Essentials to Keep in your Tote Bag

Summer Essentials to Keep in your Tote Bag

Summer is here, and with it comes long lunches—a perfect nicoise and a hibiscus iced tea, please—al fresco, trips to the Farmer’s Market for peonies and vibrant seasonal produce, matcha latte dates, evening strolls, fireworks, lazy days, picnics, day trips and road trips, visits to the botanical gardens, and sun-soaked happy hours.

We’re adamant about always being prepared with little luxuries and essentials that make our days and evenings perfect and comfortable.

In order to be comfortable while out, it’s essential to have necesites in tow. Select your favorite tote bag—straw, embroidered with your name? A classic canvas tote? A stunning leather number? And prepare for a long and hot summer filled with beautiful memories.

Here, a list of things that we recommend that you have with you at all times.

Summer Tote Must Haves

● Sunglasses

We’re a bit biased, but the perfect pair of shades is undeniably a summer essential. Not only will the right frames elevate your look, but they’ll protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. Keep a pair (or two) with you at all times.

Shop our selection of beautifully crafted, timeless sunglasses here. Whether you’re looking for a classic pair, something more modern, standout shades, or a pair to wear everywhere, we have you covered—and all eyes will be on you.

● Clean snacks

Stable blood sugar is an absolute must—and it’s important to always have clean, nourishing, and delicious snacks on hand to avoid getting hungry, cranky, or filling up on anything but the best.

A few of our favorite summer snacks to have on hand? Fresh fruits and vegetables (think berries, apples, pears, fried shishto peppers with sea salt, pan or air fried vegetable fries, carrots, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, celery, and anything pickled), seaweed snacks, beef jerky, canned salmon, clean protein bars, seed crackers and hummus, clean protein shakes, pistachios, salsa, hard boiled eggs, yogurt, olives, and other canned fish.

Having an afternoon snack that combines protein and fiber will keep you fueled in between meals so that you can enjoy your summer days—while looking and feeling amazing.

Clean Snacks for the summer

● A sparkling drink

You know that you should be drinking water, but plain water can be a bit dull. Bring a sparkling drink—flavored seltzer, a stevia-sweetened soda, or a Pellegrino with you. Bonus: sprinkle in some fresh lemon. If you’re not driving, why not have a few canned cocktails on hand? They’re portable, easy, and delicious, making them ideal for summer.

● Ear pods and a great lineup of Podcasts

Heading out alone? Bring your earpods with you in case you want to listen to music or a Podcast while you’re out.

Summer in France

● Scented lip balm

Summer winds and the intense sun are drying, so make sure to bring a nice natural lip balm with you. If you’re seeing people, make it a subtly tinted balm so that you’ll look even more gorgeous, with minimal effort.

● Electrolytes

Hydrating with water only does so much. We love to take electrolytes to replenish our bodies with salt and other essential minerals. Our favorites? LMNT and Ultima—both of which are sugar free and totally delicious.

Summer reading with SALT. optics


Let’s face it—even in the summer, life is stressful. Take the edge off with some CBD. We love CBD mints—they’re delicious, easy to take, and will make every summer day and evening more relaxed and enjoyable. We’re fans of Liweli and ECO Therapy CBD Mints.

● Ashwagandha

If you aren’t already on the Ashwagandha train, now is the time. Ashwagandha will help you to feel centered and calm as it relaxes your nervous system and provides you with a sense of true calm and well being. Take a few capsules a day, especially if you’re feeling anxious and uncentered. Ashwagandha is the ultimate!

● Hand sanitizer and cream

Clean your hands from germs and dust while out with a nice, clean hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer is drying, so make sure to also have a nice, scented hand cream with you.

● Laptop

Heading out for the entire day? Bring your laptop in case you need to send a few work emails while you’re waiting for your happy hour drink to arrive. This one is obviously totally optional.

Summer hats

● Sun hat

Shade your gorgeous skin from harmful UV rays with a stylish hat. We love the look of a classic oversized straw hat—like those by Lack of Color, but one can never go wrong with a baseball cap. Pack two, in case your friend or S.O. forgot theirs.


Ok, we literally mean salt. You already know to bring your SALT eyewear with you everywhere you go. Bring a portable container of a great sea salt—our favorite is Maldon. Not only does consuming salt help you to stay hydrated, but it'll make your snacks and meals even more delicious. Bonus: also bring portable condiments (think packets of Cholula, dijon, etc).

● Portable utensils

Whether you’re picnicking on the beach, hiking, or may be consuming a salad to go in your car, be prepared with a set of portable, reusable eating utensils.

● A silk scarf

A great silk scarf—be it a vintage Hermes or something new—will make you look more put together and is ideal for everything from keeping the sun off of your skin while driving to tying around your neck—or the handle of your bag.

● Mini perfume

Carry a portable bottle of a gorgeous, summer-y fragrance—or your signature scent—and spritz it onto your summer skin whenever you need a bit of a refresh. The right scent will mingle beautifully with the scents of the beach, and will also take you from daytime to happy hour-ready.

● Spare phone charger

Invest in a great phone charger bank and have it with you at all times—no one wants their phone to run out of battery while out, and this will keep you connected. We love the idea of ungluing ourselves from our phones as often as we can, but we still insist upon having a charged phone on hand.

Enjoy your summer days and evenings, and remember—always be prepared! In fact, always be prepared with the best.

What else is essential for you to have in your summer tote? Take a photo of your summer-ready tote bag and tag us on Instagram.

Written by: Alexandra Malmed

Photos by: Fabien Courmont

Model: Pauline Gudet

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