Written By: Mica Cruz
Packing for festival weekend can be a challenge. Other than your festival outfits or costumes for three days and your camping gear, there are a few essentials you need to jam into that weekend bag so you can have a hassle-free festival experience. We’ve listed our nine festival must-haves so you won’t forget anything.
Water, Preferably in a Reusable and Refillable Tumbler
Staying hydrated is essential when you’re standing and dancing the whole day under the heat of the summer sun. Pack a good-sized tumbler, and fill it up with water so you can take care of yourself. Hydration packs are also becoming festival staples. They can hold more water so you won’t have to go through the hassle of leaving your spot to refill repeatedly throughout the event. You can wear yours like a backpack, leaving your hands free to dance away. Hydration packs also have little pockets where you can store your essentials like money and your phone. You can even find some in bright neon colors so you can still look cute while you stay hydrated.
Backpack or Fanny Pack
You’ll need two–a big one for carrying all your stuff to the event, and another smaller one you’ll use during the weekend. You’ll need to keep your hands free for all that dancing, so bring a small bag to keep all your essentials in like your wallet and phone. Backpacks will have enough room for your tumbler, but if you’re not a fan of backpacks, fanny packs are back in style and come in fun prints or that trendy holographic material. Anti-theft waist packs are also available if you don’t think a backpack or a fanny pack will cut it. Mostly worn by extra-cautious tourists, it’s essentially a fanny pack, but you keep it under your shirt or your pants. Keeping it under your clothes means it won’t mess with your outfit, plus you’re sure your things are kept extra safe.
Hand Sanitizer and/or Baby Wipes
Pack a small bottle of hand sanitizer and some baby wipes–you’ll need it before digging into that burger because water for hand-washing is scarce, and bathroom lines are too long. An upset gut because of poor sanitation can definitely ruin the weekend, especially with the long lines to the often waterless, soapless and unsanitary port-a-potties. This will also come in handy for cleaning all sticky food and cocktail spills off your phone and sunglasses. Baby wipes will also come in handy at all sorts of times, too.
Yes, don’t be that crazy girl walking on the grass in stilettos. Unless you plan on standing or sitting in the VIP section the whole weekend, you’d better stick to your boots or sneakers. Sandals, while pretty, cannot protect your toes from getting stepped on by the rowdy crowd getting their groove on. I also would advise not wearing your brand-new pair of sneakers, as your shoes will be your feet’s protection from spills or mud. Wear something sturdy, and keep your feet comfortable enough so you can make the most of the long weekend of walking and dancing. Bring extra socks, because if it rains, or your shoes get wet for some reason, walking around in wet socks for the whole weekend is just gross, highly uncomfortable, and not to mention, it can lead to health issues.
Coat for Chilly Nights
Although your bralette and mesh attire works well during the day, temperatures drops at night. Remember to pack a coat or a jacket for the cooler weather. While cotton and denim are cute, try bringing a lightweight waterproof jacket, just in case it rains. If it doesn’t, you’ll still be warm at night, but if it does, and you’re caught in your cotton hoodie, you could get pretty uncomfortable. A beach towel is also an option–you can use it for when you want to sit down on the grass in the afternoon or to stay warm at night.
Festival season can bring out more risky behavior in any of us. With the mix of alcohol and all that dancing, getting intimate with someone is a possibility. Be safe, and pack some condoms and follow other safe-sex practices, because it’s really better to be safe than unintentionally pregnant, or sick! Be upfront with your intentions before getting busy, and be sure your partner is sober enough to give consent. Ask to make sure they’re OK with what’s happening at any given point.
Do not resist, you will still succumb to showering yourself in body glitter. A little sprinkle can add an instant boost to your outfit, and energy! Glitter is a staple in any music festival, so go take the extra step by purchasing and using biodegradable glitter. Biodegradable glitter can be bought from shops like ecoglitterfun.com and is made from biodegradable cellulose film. After you use them and shower them away, microbes consume it while causing no harm to Mother Earth. Sparkle responsibly!
Sunnies and Sunscreen
You’ll be frolicking under the summer sun the whole weekend, and there really isn’t much shade at music festivals. Protect your skin from the painful agony of sunburn with some ocean-friendly sunscreen like Thinksport Sunscreen SPF 50+ and Sun Bum SPF 30. You’ll also need some stylish shades. Sunnies Studios sunglasses come in all shapes and sizes, and it looks like circle hippie sunglasses with rose-colored lenses are back in style. You may want to also try kaleidoscope or diffraction sunglasses, which would make the lights ten times more entertaining.
A Portable Charger
Don’t you hate it when your phone dies? Can you imagine how much more you’ll hate it if your phone dies in the middle of your fave artist’s set; when you can’t find your friends; or when you’re stumbling through tents in the dark? Be smart, and pack a light, portable charger or two with you. Some festivals have charging stations so you can recharge your phone and your portable charger. There are also waterproof, solar-powered portable chargers available on Amazon.