Coachella can be an incredibly memorable experience full of dope art installations, beautiful people, and some of the best musical performances you'll ever see (Beyoncé).
But it can also leave you drained and calling off of work Tuesday with a fake excuse.
These were the strategies that I used to make the most of my Coachella experience, by making sure my vessel was well taken care of. Remember you didn’t pay that much for your ticket to be sick or too tired to enjoy your experience!
Huyen’s Essentials Packing List
These are the items I used the most or would’ve been really sad not to have.
- Non aluminum water bottle. They will take away metal bottles.
- Hand sanitizer
- Baby wipes
- Emergency feminine products
Those items in addition to the standard list of materials (scroll to "Coachella camping checklist" if you're camping) were critical for me to maintain my energy levels and avoid getting sick. Here are the tips I leveraged a lot of those items in:
You are in the desert. I repeat, you are in the desert.
On top of that, you’re moving around a lot and hopefully dancing. So, breaking a sweat is just about guaranteed. Have a water bottle or CamelBak. Don’t let long water refill or bathroom lines deter you from drinking water. This is even more crucial if you’re drinking alcohol. In addition to the potentially dangerous dehydration, you’ll simply not enjoy the shows as much if you’re tired and the sun has sucked out all of your energy.
Speaking of sweating, if you tend to feel sticky or break out when you sweat to much- baby wipes are key!
Use Sunscreen Liberally
Walking through the festival, I saw a girl with obviously sunburnt skin but a perfectly circular patch of fair skin in the center of her chest. It wasn’t cute like the sun tattoos you may have seen, and looked more like her statement necklace made a longer statement then she intended it to.
The Coachella sun is not forgiving and you can’t depend on the potential of clouds or existing melanin in your skin to protect from long term UV damage. If skin cancer doesn’t freak you out, consider how much less cute your IG pics will be with a sunburn 😞 Most people are going to be well protected with SPF 30, as long as you reapply throughout the day. I used this convenient little Sun Bum stick on my face and body.
Be Mindful of Food
The Coachella food line up is almost as impressive as the music artists. You’ll find everything from pretzels and popsicles to ramen and açaí bowls. I’m not going to front like I didn’t get nachos, but anything that’s super fried or dry will likely leave you wanting to chug a bottle of water or buying a smoothie/ fruit on top of your meal to quench your thirst. You may end up eating more than you intended if you opt for the junkier options.
You may end up spending more, too. Meals range from $10-$17, with some cheaper snacks like fries or ice cream. Get food that satisfies your tastebuds and potentially your thirst so that you don’t end up having to get more than you normally would.
Pack it and snack it. To help you save time standing in lines and money, pack some healthy snacks! I made myself baked oatmeal muffins to have each day for breakfast, and little oranges were the perfect, refreshingly juicy snack to keep in my fanny pack.
The amount of walking and hopefully dancing that you do should make you worry less about not strictly sticking to your workout plan. However, if you do want to get it in on top of the Coachella festivities- make sure you time it properly. The sun is significantly less intense in the early mornings and evenings- so protect yourself from dehydration by working out when the sun is not at peak.
I know this one doesn’t sound realistic, but if you can sleep as much as possible- your Day 3 self will thank you. Even if you stay up all night at the silent disco or goofing around at the camp site, all of the acts start later in the day, so take advantage of that schedule to sleep in. If you’re camping or staying with a lot of people, and you’re sensitive to noise or light- bring along earplugs and/or an eye mask!
It’s a 3-day festival so even if you do everything “right,” you’re still likely to need some time to rest after. But I’m confident following these tips will help you not only be able to jump back into your routine more smoothly after the weekend, but also enjoy the incredible weekend itself even more!