Your Festival Packing List
Festival season starts earlier every year, and those few days of music, mayhem and irregular bowel movements you’ve got lined up will be here before you know it. But before you head off to the land where glitter and mud ends up in inexplicable places, you need to ensure you’re wardrobe is suitably prepped for everything a festival can throw at you. Below is your definitive list of packing essentials, all of which are well-priced and offer great value for money.
1. Swim Shorts
Whether it’s on a fake beach in Hyde Park or the shores of the lake-sized puddles at Worthy Farm, when the sun eventually comes out at a festival you’ll want to get naked and jump into the nearest body of water. Don’t. Keep your modesty intact and pack a pair of swim shorts instead. High street stalwarts Topman, Next and River Island produce a wide range of stylish, low cost swimmers that are perfect for diverting attention away from pasty skin, and looking good in the near-buff. We Recommend: Red Mid Length Swim Shorts, available at River Island, priced £14.
2. A Hooded Mac
It doesn’t matter how strong you think your look is, your festival wardrobe isn’t complete without a slick hooded mac to keep you dry in style. It really is a no-brainer, especially when the alternative is a plastic bin bag/poncho. The hood is an essential and often overlooked addition that not only helps to keep your hair in check, but also offers increased protection once the inevitable downpour arrives. Not only that, modern technical styles are extremely lightweight, meaning it can be stuffed into your backpack until required. Although budget raincoats are available on the market, it’s best not to scrimp here as it genuinely needs to protect you from the elements. Luckily, Norwegian specialists Rains produce a wide range of waterproof jackets in contemporary colourways at superb price points. We Recommend: Rains Waterproof Breaker Jacket, available at ASOS, priced £75.
3. The Sweatshirt
One of the key weapons in your festival arsenal is a powerful pullover. Not only do they look great teamed with jeans or chino shorts, but wallet-friendly sweats can be incredibly versatile, too. Wear it in place of your jacket when the sun goes down in the evening, or under your outerwear when you’re heading to the portaloo in the middle of the night and are worried about getting eaten alive by mosquitoes. What’s more, opting for an inexpensive option means you won’t care about using it to sit on/as a towel. Try going for one with zip detailing, like the Zara option below, for something a little different. We Recommend: Side Zip Sweatshirt, available at Zara, priced £29.99.
4. The Hawaiian Shirt
The only thing to wear while sinking cocktails with a miniature umbrella in them, it’s no wonder the Hawaiian shirt has become the go-to piece for stars of stage and screen when the mercury rises. On-trend for SS15, don a traditional Hibiscus-covered style for festivals at home or abroad, and stand back as it becomes apparent to everyone around you that you’re the best dressed man in the crowd. We Recommend: F&F Hawaiian Print Slim Fit Shirt, available at Tesco F&F Clothing, priced £12.
5. Slip-On Plimsolls
You’ll hear a lot of people heaping praise on sandals, specifically Birkenstocks, again this summer, which is all well and good. But in reality, nothing beats the comfort of a plimsoll – especially when you consider how long you spend on your feet at a festival. For maximum versatility, opt for a pair in leather, which can be wiped clean of mud with relative ease, and feel a bit more robust than their material counterparts. Vans are the go-to here, with the brand’s classic slip-ons setting you back around £55. A bargain when you consider how much wear you will continue to get out of them once you are back home again. We Recommend: Vans Slip-On Leather Plimsolls, available at ASOS, priced £55.
6. Slimline Sweatpants
Mercifully, sweatpants have undergone a serious image upgrade over recent seasons, which means they’re no longer the reserve of rude boys and gym bunnies. What’s more, this new, cool breed of joggers makes for perfect festival legwear. Sure, they’re amazing for lounging about in, but they’re even better for shuffling about to your favourite band or DJ. Just make sure you go for a pair in a dark shade, capable of enduring all the filth a festival can chuck at them. We Recommend: Black Skinny Fit Joggers, available at Topman, priced £28.
7. The Backpack
Herschel backpacks are still the best choice of festival bag around. Not only are they easy on the eye and available in a variety of colourways, they’re robust, well designed, practical and, arguably, perfectly sized. Large enough to store all your essentials, but small enough to banish any ideas you may have of over-packing, they’re the logical choice for any man looking to escape to a tent in the countryside at a moment’s notice. Yes, they aren’t the cheapest designs you will find on the high street, but they are built to last and you’re sure to get your money’s worth for many more years to come. We Recommend: Herschel Classic Backpack, available at The Idle Man, priced £45.