Leslie Gonzales a.k.a. MissusSmartyPants, helps women dress their best for their body type! This fashionista without the venom owns and operates the website www.MissusSmartyPants.com, and she hosts a weekly blog talk radio show, Fashion Rescue.

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Leslie's Fashion Notes & Stuff

by Leslie Gonzales, Fun Fashion Expert

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It's that time of year to plan vacations and getaways! Get a change of scenery and spend time collecting memories (and shells) with your loved ones. Even if you can't take a full week off, at least take a mini-vacation or relax during a long 3-day weekend. Just a bit of planning is all you need!

Here are some style and packing tips to help you have a relaxing flip-flop of a time! Here's a checklist of what we'll need for a three-day trip to the beach (or lake house).

Take into consideration what activities you are planning besides lying on the beach and reading... and get packing, girl!

What You Need

Flip Flops, and other packing advice for a weekend getawayFlip-Flops! Nothing says summer better than flat beach flip-flops. There's a rainbow of colors to choose from. Look for fun patterns printed on the soles of the flip-flops too. Even a pair of sandals with sewn-on shells would be fun. Get a couple of fun pairs to pack! I like to shop the big box stores for these!

1 pair of heeled slip-ons. You need one "dressier" pair of sandals for a nice dinner out.

1 pair of sneakers. Wear these for shopping and sightseeing on the town.

2 stylish t-shirts or tanks. Pick some fun colors that look good on you! Remember: body skimming - no baggy t-shirts!

2 pair of shorts. These need to work for you body type (body skimming and with stretch!) They should coordinate with your t-shirts/tanks. Basic colors work best... white, navy, khaki, brown and black.

1 pair of casual pants/jeans. Just in case it gets cool when you stroll at sunset, it's nice to have pants.

1 sundress. You will look cute and "beachy" when you wear a cool gauzy frock. I like to pick a style that I can wear to brunch or dinner (if it has spaghetti straps, you may want to add a lightweight sweater over the top) Also add a matching bangle or two, to quickly dress up the look.

Your bathing suit! Don't forget your suit! One fabulous suit can do wonders for a gal's image!

A cover-up. Just throw it on and you're good to go! Wear it when you stroll along the shore with your honey, or when grabbing an icy latte at the café.

Beach bag/extra large tote. Choose a straw or vinyl tote in a bright and cheery color. (One the complements your bathing suit is best) I also like one with a zipper, so I can avoid the contents of my bag spilling out into the sand!

Large brim hat and sunglasses. Even if you sit under an umbrella, you still need to have the essentials to protect you from harmful UV rays.

2 Large Beach Towels. Invest in a couple of quality extra-large beach towels. The bigger towels help keep the sand at bay and off your body. Use the extra towel rolled up as a pillow for when you are lying down. After a cooling swim, this towel can dry you off (instead of picking up your towel and spraying sand on everyone!) See how important it is to have 2 towels?!

Sunscreen. The last thing you want to do is get sunburned the first day out! Don't forget to slather on sunscreen before you head outdoors -- and every two hours as needed. Sunscreen lotion should have SPF 30 and contain both UVA and UBA protection. Also you may want get a "glow" with some self-tanning product - to enhance the sun-kissed look!

Toiletries: toothbrush, toothpaste, makeup, deodorant, hairbrush, shampoo, lotions and soaps. Keep it simple and take only trial sizes.

Accessories: You don't need too many accessories for a 3-day trip, but take some to dress up your casual attire. I like to take a bangle bracelet, some dangle earrings and perhaps a necklace made out of shells (very tropical).

Have a great trip and send me a postcard! Love, Leslie

Diet.com fun fashion blogger Leslie Gonzales, AKA MissusSmartyPants, helps women dress their best! Check out her website for more information, www.missussmartypants.com

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