The Best 4th of July Hosting Essentials That You Can Use All Year Long
June is nearly over (we can't believe it either), and next month the U.S. will be in the thick of summer. And while there are plenty of other just as worthwhile holidays to recognize that come before and after the Forth of July, this particular long weekend is still an excellent time to safely get together with loved ones and celebrate each other's company.
If you happen to be hosting or collaborating on a summer gathering, be it belated for Juneteenth, last-minute for July 4th, or in the planning stages for September's Labor Day long weekend, there are a few things you're going to need for every get-together. We've gone ahead and compiled a list of the highest-quality products, from disposable plates and cutlery (well worth investing in) to reusable products for fortifying food — and attendees — from temperature changes and insects.
Scroll on to shop our picks of the coolest sustainable or reusable essentials that are perfect for Fourth of July celebrations (and more).
Hydro Flask Outdoor Kitchen Collection Bundle
Hydro Flask's new outdoor kitchen collection offers everything you'd need to host (or enjoy solo) a well-stocked picnic. Essentially, imagine your Hydro Flask water bottle in plate and bowl form — pretty much all we could want when it comes to keeping the salad crisp and the pasta warm.
To buy: hydroflask.com, $288
JBL Party Box on the Go
Powerfully equipped with 100 watts of JBL Pro sound, this portable speaker and microphone device set is the only speaker system your beach or backyard party will need — and it's the Bluetooth karaoke capabilities everyone will be wanting to use by the end of it.
To buy: target.com, $300
Thula Tula Protea Pinstripe Beach Blanket
Having a few beach blankets on-hand is always helpful when heading to an outdoor gathering, but especially for hosting one. Crafted sustainably and ethically in South Africa, these beautiful ones from Thula Tula are conversation starters and sources of joy in themselves, making every time you unfold them for friends and family that much more meaningful.
To buy: thulatula.com, $129
Set of 20 Collapsible Wooden Square Plates
Touted as "a new kind of paper plate," these balsa wood and rice paper collapsible square plates offer an elegant clean slate for any gathering, from the most minimal to the most all-out. Best of all? They're compostable.
To buy: food52.com, $25
Mesh and Wood Food Dome
If the area where your summer gatherings or even small picnics will be enjoyed also allows other critters to enjoy it as well, you're going to need a food tent. Keep flies and general debris away from your beautiful dishes without sacrificing any of their aesthetic by covering them with this stylish food tent.
To buy: target.com, $15
Cocokind Daily Physical SPF 32
This zinc-based physical sunscreen has SPF 32 protection against UVA and UVB rays as well as blue light and pollution. It also works with ingredients like blue phytoplankton and microalgae which aid in fortifying the skin against natural and modern stressors.
To buy: cocokind.com, $24
EcoFlow RIVER Portable Power Station
Keep everyone's phone charged all day long with this portable power station, which has the capacity to fully charge up to 10 small devices at once. This is one of those outdoor party essentials that will seriously come in handy during road trips and camping trips as well.
To buy: rei.com, $280 (originally $349)
West Elm Pure Drink Dispenser
Display your fabulous summery spritzers in a chic, clear glass drink dispenser like this one from West Elm, which is accented with an acacia wood lid and stand. Investing in a quality drink dispenser means no more spout malfunctions and that your guests will have an easier time serving themselves all day long.
To buy: westelm.com, $70
Vintage-inspired French Riviera Tent
Speaking of aesthetic, this little number is ideal for keeping the sun off those who prefer a bit of shade while looking like a centerpiece for an outdoor party. It's a a host's essential when it comes to beach and backyard gatherings.
To buy: food52.com, $299
Igloo Portable Cooler
This outdoor gathering essential by Igloo is available in plenty of fun colors — no more boring white cooler nonsense. It's also less than $30 and has the capacity to fit up to 85 cans, so it's the perfect match for hosts or guests who love to over-prepare...and do so often.
To buy: target.com, $28
17-piece Stainless Steel BBQ Tool Set
There's always some utensil missing from the barbecue, so make sure to have your whole outdoor cooking set together and ready to avoid any snags in the party. This 17-piece set includes everything from corn holders to a digital thermometer, making barbecue hosting prep easy and and quick.
To buy: target.com, $25
Color-coordinated Fire Pit Skewer Set
Everyone in the group can have their own reusable skewer for fire pit roasting of marshmallows for s'mores, sausages for hot dogs, and even bite-sized grilled meats and veggies with this heat-resistant skewer set.
To buy: amazon.com, $11 (originally $14)
Wooden Spoon Herbs Lavender + Geranium Bug Spray
Being the one at the cookout with the natural, effective bug repellant spray (that's also in a pretty bottle) is the definitely one of the best ways to break the ice. But in more a pragmatic sense, it's a far better option to have with you all summer than bulky aerosol cans full of chemicals.
To buy: goldune.com, $18
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