If you thought all you needed was a great swimsuit, you thought wrong. Here’s what you really need to be stylish and practical by the pool or at the beach this summer

From head to toe, there’s more to it than just a great cozzie. Pair style with practicality this summer and win at poolside and beach living.

Related: 3 Reasons why we love monokinis

An awesome cover-up

Everyone needs an awesome cover-up for lazing around the pool or days at the beach. Not only does it cover you up when you need it to, but a cover-up can also give you some protection from the sun.

Choose one that you can pass off as an outfit for quick errands or pre-swim meals. Consider the UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) of your cover-up and make sure it’s both stylish and functional.

Subscribe to our Free Daily All4Women Newsletter to enter

beach wear/ pool wear

Brave soul Plus Size beach cover-up Maxi kaftan black R499, Zando

Brave Soul Long Length Beach Cover-up button through all over printed dress navy R599, Zando

Stylish sunnies

There is no need to spend the day squinting in the sun. Whatever your style, there is a stylish pair of sunglasses with your name on them.

Whether you’ve found the perfect pair to suit the shape of your face, or you’re staying on trend with the latest styles – don’t leave the house without a pair of sunglasses this summer.

beach wear/ pool wear

Functional hats

For days in the sun, we are going for function over style. Wide-brimmed hats that shield your face are a must-have; it doesn’t hurt that they are on-trend every summer too.

A neutral straw hat goes with just about any poolside or beach outfit and just screams summer fun. Make sure you have at least one.

Related: The 5 hat trends you  need to know about this summer

beach wear/ pool wear

Water safe sandals

If you’re going near the pool or taking a walk on the beach, be prepared to get wet. Don’t ruin your dress-up sandals with water. Instead, choose a stylish pair of water safe sandals you can just wipe down.

Plastic and jelly sandals are a big trend this summer. Mix things up with a neon or transparent pair.

pool wear/ beach wear

A huge bag for all your stuff

A huge tote bag isn’t just a fashion accessory; there is a method to this madness. Carrying a big bag means you can bring all your summer must-haves with you. Grab your sun lotion, water bottle and towel and never be caught unprepared.

Related: 5 Of our favourite stores for buying swimwear

pool wear/ beach wear