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If there are three undeniable truths in my life, they are as follows (in no particular order): 1) Ranch is the superior condiment, 2) The limit to the number of times I can entertain a rewatch of The Vampire Diaries does not exist, and 3) I will pack 14 pairs of underwear for a seven-day trip, just in case I pee my pants twice a day while I’m there.
So it’s no surprise that for my most recent, 12-day beach vacation, I packed an ungodly number of pieces that, in hindsight, had just about no chance at ever leaving my busting-at-the-seams suitcase in the first place. Out of the surplus of bikinis, workout gear, dresses, hats, and shoes that I stuffed into my suitcase, here are the 10 vacation clothes I actually ended up wearing and would 10/10 pack again:
Baja Slip On Platform Sneaker
One thing about me? Going through airport security will always stress me out. I always have an irrational fear that I have a surprise water bottle hiding in my backpack and that everyone hates me for sorting my belongings in bins too slowly, so you already know that slip-on sneaks are my shoes of choice. These laceless platform sneakers from SeaVees are everything an anxious-yet-chic gal needs—they’re on-trend, easy to slip on and off, and comfy enough to do laps around the airport while I’m waiting for my flight to take off.
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Shop it now Abercrombie & Fitch
Babydoll Maxi Dress
If there’s one item that I got the most compliments on during my vacation, it was this little number from A&F. This was one of my last-minute, oh-crap-I-have-nothing-to-wear-on-this-vacation purchases and it served me so well during beach lunches, evening cruises, and beyond.
Shop it now Ray-Ban
’70s Acetate Sunnies
I have gone through a lot of Ray-Bans in my day and these are by far the sturdiest ones that I’ve owned, which, due to my track record with sitting on my sunnies, is a major selling point. They are on-trend but super functional, don’t get stuck in my hair when I wear them on my head, and survived two planes, a few hour-long commutes, and a few days floating in my beach bag, and they’re still perfectly intact.
Shop it now Uniqlo
Linen Button-Down Shirt
This linen button-down shirt is the most versatile item that I brought on my trip. I used it as a bathing suit cover-up, as a chic top tucked into jean shorts, and as a light jacket on the plane and at dinners. Whoever said that diamonds are a girl’s best friend seriously underestimated the power of a solid, white button-down, and I’ll die on that hill.
Shop it now Amazon
This was another two-days-before-takeoff purchase and truly one of the best impulsive decisions I’ve ever made. I realized that I didn’t have any sort of beach bag when I started (last-minute) packing, so I opted for one with quick shipping and a budget-friendly price point. This mesh tote absolutely delivered and I’ve already gotten two of my friends to hop on board and get their own.
Shop it now Target
Ribbed Underwire Bikini Top
I totally missed the boat for online swimwear shopping before my trip, which left me absolutely banking on a trip to Target to fulfill my swimsuit needs. Unfortunately for me, my Target of choice was completely picked over and I couldn’t find a matching set to save my life. Thankfully, my sister found this one at her suburban Target in my size—it fit like a glove (true to size for the win!) and it was so flattering. I don’t usually shop in the juniors’ section for swimwear, but this bikini top has made quite a case for future purchases.
Shop it now Amazon
Packable Straw Hat
I’ve never been much of a sunhat girlie because I love wearing my hair up and out of my face at the beach, but I saw this one on Amazon and had to add it to my cart immediately. This hat allows me to live out my high-ponytail dreams and is super easy to roll up and pack for travel, which makes this one of my favorite win-win situations of all time.
Shop it now Abercrombie & Fitch
Low-Rise Denim Shorts
I brought a lot of shorts on my trip, but I definitely reached for these ones the most. They are comfortable (which I don’t say often for denim), are super flattering, and allow me to pull off the low-rise trend without jumping completely off the deep end.
Shop it now Madewell
Huggie Hoop Earrings
I’m definitely a “simple gold hoops” kind of gal, but in the spirit of adding a bit of color, I picked up these huggie hoop earrings during my last trip to Madewell. I love how dainty they are and simply can’t stop talking about this clementine detailing that absolutely screams summer. It was the perfect way to brighten up an otherwise basic outfit and is a piece of jewelry I’ll reach for all summer long.
Shop it now Show Me Your Mumu
White Mini Dress
While I was on vacation, there were two things that I avoided at all costs: giving too much thought into piecing together an outfit and putting on pants. This feminine mini dress from Show Me Your Mumu allowed me to avoid both of those can’t-be-bothered pain points, is so flattering, and made getting ready an absolute breeze.
Shop it now
I’m a Fashion Writer Who’s Constantly Traveling—Here Are My Best Packing Tips READ NOW
This post contains a sponsored inclusion of SeaVees, but all of the opinions within are those of The Everygirl editorial board.