In case you haven’t noticed, we are experiencing one of the hottest summers ever—and it doesn’t look like the sweltering is going to let up anytime soon! Summer in the Philippines abounds with endless possibilities, almost as many as our islands themselves. You can do a spontaneous drive to the nearest beach and hang out for the day, or go sailing in Batangas, learn to surf in La Union or Baler, swim with whalesharks in Oslob, do watersports in Camsur, go whitewater rafting in CDO, get on a river cruise in Bohol, island hop in El Nido or Zambales, go on a roadtrip to Sagada…the world is your oyster baby, so don’t waste any opportunity to live life to the fullest while you can.
This year, I’ve made #lifeincolor my personal mantra, and have been spending nearly every weekend chasing adventures. It’s definitely a change from my relaxed mall-rat / gimmick girl lifestyle, but a welcome and delightful one. I’ve been to beautiful places I never even heard of before, and checking off things from my bucket list one item at a time.
Wherever your summer adventures may take you this year, make sure you’re well prepared. Here are some of my favorite summer essentials:
- Floaties– Nothing beats getting on a floatie in a pool or beach, gazing at palm trees and releasing all your cares to the wind. But how much more awesome would it be if the floatie came in the shape of, say, a giant doughnut? Or a cute colorful unicorn? How about a pink flamingo or a white swan? Follow @makemefloat on Instagram and check out their designs! Price range is from around Php 2600- Php 3100, and all you need to do is click the link found on their IG account to order. Send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and get ready for a vibrant summer!
- Little white dress– If the LBD is a must have for nights out, consider the LWD a must have for the summer. Whether it comes in eyelet, lace, linen, or jersey, nothing quite looks as good (or feels as breezy) by the beach! You can dress it up with colorful sandals, or a bright bag, accessorize with nearly anything, and set off with a luscious fuschia lipstick or a glowing bronzer. Just a favor- if you’re over 16 years old, ditch the flower crown please.
- Sunnies– When it comes to eyewear, ‘go big or go home’ seems to be this year’s mantra! Modern cat eye frames, square shapes, colored lenses, circular glasses (a la Winona Ryder in Reality Bites), animal print frames, and all sorts of crazy designs are all the rage right now. Check out the latest releases from Fendi, Chanel, Prada, Bottega Venetta, Versace, Anna Sui and more to know what I’m talking about. If our sunglasses are going to be any indication, we’re definitely in for loads of fun!
- Sandals– Flip flops are always going to be necessary, but what about when you want to dress with a little bit more oomph and sophistication? Check out @salachaussures on Instagram for some of the sassiest sandals we’ve seen! There’s the Nefertiti design that comes in a rich emerald color, the Naiad for dainties who love wearing bows, the Kraken for sleek and sexy feet, and Martinique, which has a fun tassel that springs while you walk. Wear these after a good foot scrub and colorful pedi, and you’re guaranteed to have summer footwear that can make all the heads turn.
- Highlights– The hotter the temperature, the lighter the hair! If your tresses are making you feel ‘meh’ whenever you look at yourself in the mirror, it’s probably time for a change. Do not attempt to color your hair yourself unless you intend to end up looking like a cheshire cat. It is always best to see your stylist and colorist for this (and for me, there are no better experts than Stephan and Margie Zenz of Expose Cebu). Ask for subtle highlights around the face to frame your features, or go the trendy route with dark pink ombre tips!
- Going Hairless– One of the biggest mistakes I’ve ever made was to shave. IT causes rough, dark chicken skin, not to mention thickens the hair follicles, and makes you susceptible to nicks and cuts. When it comes to unwanted hair, waxing or laser hair removal are your only viable options. Waxing may hurt quite a bit but at least you’ll be hair free for about 6-8 weeks, and growth will be sparse and easy to maintain. I think among the different options, cold wax is best so there’s no chance of burns. For this service, you can go to any Lay Bare branch and you’ll be quite pleased with the result. But if you can afford it, just go all out and have all unwanted hair removed via laser. It’s quick and painless, and after several sessions, you’ll be hair free for life. Imagine the freedom and the confidence of that! See the dermatologist to the stars (and Miss Universe too) Dr. Cecilia Bernad- also known as Dr. CRB– at her SM Northwing or Perpetual Succor clinic.
- Swimwear– Admit it, half the fun of summer is the opportunity to wear whatever skimpy little things we wear to go swimming. I mean, why else do we go on a strict starvation diet right after New Year’s? So if you’ve earned that hottah hottah figure, it’s time to show it off! However, take note: not all bodies are the same, so make sure you know which styles are best suited for you. Ladies who want to hide a little bit of tummy can go for a maillot, especially those that have a bit of a drape in the front. Those who aren’t very endowed in terms of bust would look better in a bandeau than a triangle bikini top. Those who want to create a an hourglass figure can try out a monokini with cutouts down the sides, and those who are a bit conscious about their thighs can look for swimsuits with a bit of flounce. Whatever it is you decide to wear, do so with confidence. Constant tugging, adjusting, hiding under a coverup (or worse, a T-shirt) was never attractive. Just go out, smile and have fun in the sun!
- Maxi dress– If you ever wonder what to wear for a beach cocktail party or chill out session, this is the easiest and most elegant thing to slip on. I’m not partial to printed maxi dresses because it reminds me too much of a duster. Go for a solid color and an easy, languid fabric like silk jersey, and accessorize with a pretty neckpiece or statement cuff. Sweep your hair up in a loose chignon or bun, and slip on metallic sandals, and you’ll look seaside perfect.
- Embroidery– Based on the spring/summer fashion week predictions from Gucci, Reem Acra, Alexander McQueen and other major houses, we’ll be seeing flower embroidery a lot this season—be it on dresses and skirts, purses, and accessories. It’s girly-retro chic and looks awesome with touches of leather (bracelets, sandals, sling bag) and those oversize sunglasses.
- Colors of the Year. Pantone always releases a particular ‘color of the year’, like Marsala or Radiant Orchid, but this year it named not one, but two—Rose Quartz and Serenity, which translates to a pale, blush pink and powder blue. Both are sweet, cool to the eye, and look particularly good in the spring and summer when paired with white or other pastels. You can’t go wrong with anything in these colors this season.
Aaand that’s a wrap for our top ten! Are you ready for the best summer of your life?