walk it out: 21 summer day hike essentials

Who says you need reservations before you start planning date night? Believe it or not, the outdoors can be quite romantic. Imagine sitting on an overlook as the sun sets with the nearest city miles and miles away, holding hands with your honey and breathing in the sweet summer air. Now’s the perfect time to reconnect with your SO by getting some quality alone time, sans screen time distractions. But before you embark on your one-of-a-kind summer date night, make sure he’s ready with these 21 hiking essentials.

Meijer Style Men's Camping Outdoor


1. Even if your fella is more of a baseball hat kinda guy, outdoor adventures call for serious sun protection. A BioWorld canvas hat is the perfect option, with mesh sides designed to keep him cool before the temps really start to rise.

2. Sawyer Premium Sunblock with Insect Repellent is your must-have duo. Say buh-bye to sun burns and bug bites — you’re covered.

3. Especially for the boo-boo prone hiker, the Adventure Medical Kit is always a smart addition to your day pack. Have no fear: knee scrapes are no longer a date-breaker.

4. Day hikes are what Pacific Trail cargo shorts were made for. Khakis with multiple pockets means more storage for the things he’ll reach for most – beyond grabbing your hand for a surprise detour.

5. Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean he should skimp on the socks. A nice pair of Dickies socks will make sure his tootsies stay blister free while you roam the woods together.

6. For those times he thinks he knows the way, but actually doesn’t, a Brunton Get Back Mini GPS will get you back on track.

7. If you’ve already agreed to ditch the smartphones and hike technology-free, a trail map of surrounding lakes can be your guide. Bonus: jot down your favorite views so you’ll know what to visit again next year.

8. Even though you checked your weather app like a billion times before the hike, the Geckobrands Waterproof Backpack will ensure everything else stays dry. Now watch out for puddles!

9. Don’t let a grumbling tummy slow you down. For those marathon hikes make sure you pack a protein-packed Clif Bar. Because you should never be hangry on date night.

10. A Swiss Army Knife to your guy’s hiking attire is the statement necklace to your girl’s night out. It’s the must-have accessory that pulls it all together.

11. You never know what you’ll want to explore, so bring along the Life Gear 80 Lumen Glow Headlamp. Just watch out for wild life…

12. Sun’s out doesn’t always mean guns out. Make sure his shoulders are protected from the sun and breeze with a classic Field and Stream button down.

13. If your hike winds through open prairies as much as it does wooded forests, you’ll want to make sure you each have a pair of UV-protecting sunnies. Leave the aviators at home, kiddos, you want something that’ll stand up to the elements.

14. Clouds roll in. It’s cold. It’s rainy. Why did you two decide to go hiking again? When the hike takes a turn for the unexpected, the Ultimate Survival Wet Fire Starter will provide a soothing moment of warmth.

15. Make sure you stay hydrated with the handy Sawyer Mini Water Filter. Plan your route along a lake or river for easy water access and you can leave the water weights behind.

16. As much as you love to dance in the rain (cue “Livin La Vida Loca”), he probably wants to stay dry. This packable rain jacket will do the trick.

17. From pants to shorts, in no time flat. A buckle clip belt on the Pacific Trail convertible pants with a zip at the knees will take him from cool mornings to hot afternoons and back.

18. Like any good scout, make sure you’re always prepared with an Ultimate Survival Technologies Base All Weather Tarp.

19. If your honey likes to steal kisses along your route, make sure your lips are covered. Thank you, Blistex. Chapped lips, no more.

20. If fishing isn’t his forte, lean on a Mountain House Freeze-Dried Chili Mac with Beef Pouch for a romantic bonfire-lit dinner for two.

21. This may be the one time your fella gets excited about shoes. A good pair of Lake & Trail Midland hiking boots guarantees a quick getaway when a bear approaches (just kidding—it was only a shadow) or at the least, gives him great traction for those uphill stretches of trail.

This summer, trade candle light for lightning bugs by exploring the great outdoors together. Whether you’re headed across the state or just outside city limits, there’s nothing like packing a bag and hitting the trail to bring the two of you even closer together.

the only jacket you need this summer

We challenged three fashion bloggers to create their own unique looks using one of summer’s hottest accessories, the ear jacket. With the dainty ornamental accessory that clips to a stud from behind the earlobe, these gals made their way to Meijer, with a gift card in hand, to assemble three completely different looks. Bloggers Maudie Banta, Candace Read and Danielle Davis will show you how just one accessory can be styled for any summer day.

Jewelry Collage

Spruce Up Daytime Mix and Match with Maudie Banta from Maudie Lloyd

Now that it is hot and humid out (hello, summer! – from yours truly, the Midwest), I usually go for clothing that is a bit more loose to catch a breeze and so I don’t have to hide in an air conditioned room all day.

Ear jackets are just the right size and shape to be worn both as a daytime or nighttime accessory.  I found this unique-shaped pair of earrings at Meijer and was inspired to put this daytime outfit together:

Here I wore them to spruce up the outfit. Its flow-y, featherweight fabric and soft floral patterns are perfect for a day out to brunch or walk in the park. You don’t have to replace comfort for frumpy, though. Since both the blouse and shorts are loose, I cinched the waist with a belt to shape the outfit.

Want to know the best part? This look was all under $50 at Meijer! And the pieces can be mixed with tons of other summer staples as well. The blouse is the perfect flirty companion for jean shorts, and the shorts paired with a white shirt can always serve as your simple summer go-to outfit for any occasion. Whether on the beach or hitting the mall, the possibilities are endless, and by changing up your accessories, it’ll look like you never repeated an outfit all summer long.

Maudie Banta Ear Jacket Meijer Style

Simple Styling Head-to-Toe with Candace Read from Live, Love and Read

When it comes to summer style, I truly believe that simplicity is best! Taking a simplistic approach in my summer style makes the hot summer days more bearable and allows for more spontaneity (i.e. date nights, last minute summer road trips, etc.).

In my experience, I’ve learned that the easiest way to spice up one’s summer wardrobe, while maintaining that simplistic edge, is by incorporating statement jewelry. Statement jewelry, such as these ear jackets, can instantly make any look chic. What I love most about these earrings is that you can adjust the length to your preference or you could even wear them as a simple stud.

In addition to killer statement jewelry, I also love wearing a bold lip and a messy low bun. Not only does it ensure an effortless chic look, it highlights the earring while you keep cool in the sun. NYX soft matte lip cream has become a recent favorite. Not only is the color lasting, but it is also extremely light and easy to remove. For my messy bun, I used Curls Passion Fruit Curl Control Paste for those crazy frontal fly-a-ways and the Goody Spin Pin(s) to secure.

And lastly, Essie nail polish. Need I say more? A chip-free mani/pedi is one of the instant ways to enhance any look! For this particular style, I chose with the pale pink and purple Hubby For Dessert, to beautifully complement the print of the paisley dress.

Candace Read NEW 3

Danielle Rudy Davis with Lou What Wear

It’s time to re-think your shopping trip and swing by Meijer when you’re in need of a finishing touch for your look. Seriously, they’ve got so much more than what you might expect.

I’ve really wanted to try out the ear jacket trend – they’re as subtle as a great pair of studs but a little edgier and definitely more fun.  I also love how they work for day-to-night.  And I love how they peek out a little when you’re wearing your hair down.

I paired these statement earrings with this summer tassel tunic that I love as a pool cover-up for summer days, or paired with white denim and heels for a night out. I finished off the look with Revlon Ultra HD lipstick in Gladiolus that I picked up in the beauty department at Meijer. I’m pretty much a lipstick addict so I love that I can find tons of different options, that don’t cost more than $10, every time I stop in to the store. Seriously, I may pick up a new option every time I go there – it’s a problem.Lou What Wear 2

If you’ve never worn an ear jacket before, now is the time! From a floral pattern to a flowy dress to a summer tunic, these fabulous accessories will make any style shine.

To see what else these stylistas are wearing this summer, follow them at Maudie LloydLive, Love and Read and Lou What Wear.