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Style and beauty tips for the beach

From the skimpiest of bikinis to retro shades, style insiders reveal their seaside essentials and beauty tips to Carola Long – while The Independent's fashion team pick their own holiday must-haves


Solange Azagury-Partridge, jewellery designer

"I never go to the beach without my knitted rainbow beach bag filled with Hawaiian Tropic suncream, Phyto Plage products for hair, indian leather sandals, a tie-dye top, a notebook and pen, a book (Edith Wharton) and of course diamonds, because they are on fire in the sun, the best place for them."

Vanessa Seward, creative director of Azzaro

"I always pack strapless bikinis to avoid bad suntan marks. I have my fetish pair of red vintage Roberta Di Camerino sunglasses (very Heidi Fleiss), and I recommend Azzaro's terry cloth djellaba. This summer I'm packing Snob Society by Francis Dorléans to read, and I always use Clarins Sun Care Cream high protection. I also protect my hair with Huile de Palme from Leonor Greyl, and a sun hat with a large brim so I am able to read."

Patricia Field, stylist

"Vanity Fair is an essential beach read. I love the quality of the writing and the interesting articles they feature on people like Bernard Madoff. I'd take something to keep me refreshed – the customisable diet Coke Ugly Betty bottle which I recently designed, and a Mac lipstick in Amplified. It's a dark saturated burgundy – the colour palette I use all the time as I have dark skin."

Bobbi Brown, make-up artist

"I always carry sunscreen, a baseball cap, SPF 15 lip balm, bottled water, a great book and my iPod with all my favourite songs. In terms of make-up, a pop of blush on cheeks and a dusting of bronzy shimmer is all you need to dress up sun-kissed skin. Use a lip tint on lips – it adds just the right amount of sheer colour and looks polished without being fussy. After a day in the sun, pamper hair and control fly-always by dabbing leave-in conditioner on the ends of your hair."

Angela Missoni, designer

"I always carry the essentials – Missoni bikinis, kaftans and sunglasses, a loose cotton shirt and a throw-on jersey dress. I love buying pieces from the local markets, because they're unique."

Anya Hindmarch, bag designer

"My favourite sunglasses are Barton Perreira – a useful disguise after a late night or a long flight! I always carry a cotton kaftan to take me from beach to poolside party and for that just-in-case moment I might pop in a raffia clutch such as my Ipanema. The list of books I want to read is so long that I may buy an e-reader, rather than have to schlep them around."


Emergency fixes for holiday hair

Adam Reed is the co-founder of the Percy & Reed salon, London W1 (020 7637 4634)

"Braids or buns pinned into the nape of the neck add instant beach style. They can be classic or asymmetric. Braid and then pin using 'blend' hair grips from Boots (as I did on Diane Kruger in Cannes last month) or use a hair band (Stella McCartney).

Heidi Lording, volume expert at Percy & Reed, has the perfect style for all year round beach hair. It involves perming with a modern twist for tousled waves, coupled with balliage highlights.

To refresh highlights without damaging hair: steep two camomile tea bags, soak through the hair, leave in and then venture into the sun. For softer highlights braid hair first.

To neutralise chlorine: put a tomato ketchup rinse through shampooed hair – the acidity removes any green tinge.

To add shine: Essence Absolue from Shu Uemura is a must-have holiday product, great for using before shampooing or blow drying or as a leave-in conditioner to tame frizz.

Prime Plenish from Shu Uemura, and L'Oréal's Force Vector are my top recommendations for conditioning dry, frazzled hair.

To hide grease: use baby talc from Johnson's on the roots of hair to absorb excess grease or sweat."

Faking the perfect tan – before you go

Joanne King, head of beauty at Urban Retreat in Harrods, devised the Urban Retreat body home tanning class, £40, urbanretreat.co.uk.

"Perform any hair removal 24 hours before a treatment to ensure the skin's natural oils are not unbalanced, and to prevent streaking.

Exfoliate. Try a grainy scrub with non-dissolving grains and a moisturising base. Pay close attention to elbows and heels.

Make sure calves, heels, knees and elbows are deeply hydrated, apply a nourishing cream to your entire body covering finger and toe nails.

Avoid your tan shouting 'fake' on the beach by keeping the underarm area moisturised daily. It tends to collect fake tan and look uneven.

To disguise cellulite, stretch marks and areas you are less confident about revealing, spritz a second layer of tan to darken them a little more intensively. Chlorine can bleach or lighten your tan, although you might not care once you get to the pool!"