Like most of the professional population, I can't just up and go to the beach every day in the summer even though I really, really want to. (I can, however, turn my office into a summer haven with these quick, easy tips!) Although I am not a sun worshipper, 3 P.M. beach visits are my fave summer activity and they are pretty much relegated to weekends.
I love everything about the Jersey Shore — not Jersey Shore, thank you very much — from the food smells (yes, even funnel cake) to the natural ones. I don't even mind having to vacuum my car after a late afternoon weekend beach trip in order to suck up the sand from the floor mats in my car, since I'm sorta crazy about keeping my car interior clean and fresh. It's worth the the effort, since I like putting my feet in sand — it's a natural exfoliant, after all.
So while I can't escape my air conditioned office — which is so cold it feels like a meat locker — whenever I feel like it, I do fool my senses into thinking we're at the beach by using products that recreate that elusive beachy vibe, essence, and energy. If teenagers and college students are out and about, enjoying all that summer has to offer, well, why can't I at least fake it?
If you want to feel like you are having a day at the beach, without ever stepping foot in the sand, you can do what I do and that's simply recreate the feeling with scents and a small stash of products. They're mood elevators, without the negative side effects.
1. Jennifer Aniston J by Jennifer Aniston Perfume
The most famous of the Friends has a new perfume. Since Aniston has come to epitomize Cali girl cool, she wanted to capture the vibe of a beach day with her second foray intro fragrance. Mission accomplished. J by Jennifer Aniston has notes of crisp Salty Marine Accord, Waterlily, Magnolia petals, and Tahitian Bourbon Vanilla. But ignore all that beauty PR propaganda and jargon. It essentially smells like stepping out of the ocean and into a crisp, just-washed, and plush white bathrobe. Mmm. ($39, kohls.com)
2. H2O+ Sea Salt Hydrating Body Gloss
If there were ever a scent that captured sun, surf, and sand in a bottle, it's this stuff. I spritz it on my body as soon as I get out of the shower and the fragrance lasts all day. Plus, it's extra softening and adds a dewy, healthy sheen without making me feel like I am ready to oil wrestle for dollar bills at a bachelor party, which I would only do if I lost a bet. No, wait, I would never do that. BTW, I once witnessed co-eds wrestle in kiddie pool of cereal and milk at Ozzfest in Chicago when I traveled with the tour. No, I'm not kidding. ($13.50, ulta.com)
3. Sabon Vanilla Coconut Body Butter
No need to blast yourself with sunblock to get that familiar beachside, "coconutty" scent. Sabon's Vanilla Coconut Body Butter is thick, moisturizing, and smells like heaven. This, combined with either product mentioned above, is an otherworldly cocktail for the skin and olfactory senses. I won't go a winter day without using this stuff, either. So one whiff transports me to summer even when the temps are in single digits. ($18, sabon.com)
4. Moroccanoil Glimmer Shine
In addition to being snifftastic and giving my hair gloss, this lighter, spray version of Moroccanoil gives my hair a little bit of texture, as if I got some sunblock and salt air in my hair. It's not greasy, but it sorta is, although not in a way where I want to instantly wash it out. The stuff helps me mimic how my hair feels after I've been outside near the ocean for a few hours. I don't know how this bottled oil makes that happen, but it does and I don't question it. ($21.39, amazon.com)
5. Eos Lip Balm
I always keep an eos lip balm in my handbag, beach bag, and in my car. These are moisturizing miracles in a sphere tube form and Miley Cyrus uses them, at least in product placement form in her "We Can't Stop" video. I like to keep my lips hydrated and smelling/tasting fruity when I am out in the sun and these do the trick. Windburned or sun-damaged lips are no fun...at all. These babies prevent that and smell like just-picked summer fruit, making me wish I was stopping at a roadside produce stand. ($11.96 for four-pack, target.com)
Images: Amy Sciarretto (5)