Stay hydrated and free of stink, sunburn, and bug bites by packing these must-have health items
Summer's right around the corner, and that means music festivals are starting to pop up nationwide. These long weekends can be a blast—you're listening to music in the great outdoors, after all—but they can also be a disaster to both your comfort and health. Between the dirty port-a-potties, few healthy food options, and the limited ability to shower and brush your teeth, you could come out of the weekend feeling as weathered and wilted as a three-day-old flower crown. But if you pack strategically, your festival experience will be more nutritious, hygienic, and (hopefully) a lot less stinky.
Foldable water bottle
You wouldn't skimp on water during a hard workout, so why would you on a full day of dancing under the hot sun? Leave the bulky water bottle at home and instead bring the Vapur Element Bottle ($14; amazon.com). The reusable 1-liter plastic can be rolled up or flattened out when empty for easy storage. This allows you to carry it on you at all times, so when you get to a water fountain you can fill up, hydrate, and then roll it back into your bag when you're finished. Bonus: It comes with a carabiner, which keeps the bottle rolled up when not in use as well as clipped onto your bag when it's full.
Made for athletes, these tablets from Nuun ($22 for 4-pack; amazon.com) are made with electrolytes to replenish those that you sweat out. The tablets have sodium, magnesium, potassium, and calcium, all of which work together to keep you hydrated. And they're lightly flavored, which gives boring old water a little boost. (If you want to make sure you're extra-hydrated, try eating some of the most hydrating foods.)
These cleansing cloths can be a lifesaver when you need some freshening up. And let's face it—you're going to need to after hours of dancing under the sun. The super-soft shower sheets from YUNI ($12; amazon.com) are big enough to lather your entire body, getting the dirt out of any nooks and crannies in between showers. Check out all the body wipes you might need, including facial cleansers and sanitizers.
So now that you feel fresh, you want to look fresh too, right? It may not be the time to practice for your perfect cat eye and bring your full arsenal of makeup, but there are ways that you can stay on top of your beauty routine. Make sure to bring a small container of dry shampoo, like Batiste On-the-Go Dry Shampoo ($7; amazon.com), so that your hair will stay grease-free without having to wash it. You can also pack some blotting papers, which will help soak up any grease on your face, as well as use tinted moisturizers which will add some color.
Single-use sunscreen packets
This might seem like a no-brainer, but we can't stress the importance of sun safety. Not only will you better protect yourself from skin cancer, you'll also work to prevent visible signs of aging—such as wrinkles—by regularly applying sunscreen. But carrying around a big bottle or cannister can be really annoying. Throw a bunch of these Banana Boat single-use suncreen packets ($20 for 24 packs; amazon.com) into your purse for the day. Though they're sweat-proof and waterproof, don't forget to slather yourself in the stuff every hour.
What's worse than your mobile phone dying? Your mobile phone dying when you're lost in the middle of a crowd and have no idea where your friends are. Avoid this by carrying a portable charger with you. The PowerCore from Anker ($50; amazon.com) is tiny—small enough to fit in your fanny pack, yet powerful enough to give you two full charges on an iPhone. Don't need one with that much juice? Try its little sister, the PowerCore Mini ($22; amazon.com), which measures about the size of a lipstick tube. (Don't forget to keep your phone safe from the elements with a waterproof case.)
Eating healthfully can be hard when you're at a weekend festival, and you might find yourself turning to the fried food offerings to stay satiated. If you want to pump some nutritients into your system throughout the day, try for some all-natural almond butter, like Justin's Nut Butter ($17 for 10-pack; amazon.com), as a snack. These "squeeze packs" come as pre-portioned servings so you won't overdo it, but that also makes them the perfect size to fit into your bag.
Bug spray wipes
Ugh, mosquito bites. They're ugly, they itch, and worst of all, they carry scary diseases like zika. And don't even get us started on the dangers ticks present. Protect yourself with these wipes from Ben's ($7; amazon.com) help to solve that problem (and they also help with that residual spray getting into everyone's eyes and mouths!). With 30% DEET, they cover the CDC minimum requirement to protect from insects suchs as mosquitoes, ticks, and more.