Summer is considered the greatest time of the year for students. For those lucky enough to have summer off, the few months between May and August is the perfect time to engage in activities that, during any other time, would be deemed inappropriate or unnecessary. Some may choose to spend summer working hard at a part-time or full-time job, and some may choose to do nothing at all. Regardless of which one you choose, here are the top 10 summer guilty pleasures most people can enjoy.
A tan is generally regarded as attractive. Men and women alike tend to strive for that healthy, bronze glow that is so easy to obtain in the summer when the sun is high and the days are long. But, however attractive a tan is, skin cancer and sunburns are not. There is no need for a tanning booth when you have the good, old-fashioned sun right there for free to help you out, but make sure you take the proper precautions. Whether going to the pool or running to the store, make sure you wear an SPF lotion over your exposed skin. Don’t forget your face, ears, chest and neck, which tend to be frequently missed. And don’t forget, you’re not Snooki, it’s okay to not have a tan, you’re still hot, regardless.
9. Big hats and sunglasses
For many, sunglasses and floppy hats are some of the more fun, and superficial, parts of summer, but they serve a greater purpose than you think.
“UV rays can damage the retina, which increases the risk of macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness among older Americans,” Dr. Emily Senay wrote in an article for CBS News. “UV radiation can also damage the eye lens and cause cataracts and, in extreme cases, cancer of the eye.”
Additionally, hats help protect the scalp, and the hats with larger rims help to keep the sun off the face and neck. These are just two summer trends that are fashionable and healthy.
8. Reading (or lack thereof)
During the school year, we tend to have so many reading assignments that the thought of reading anything we’re not getting credit for seems insane. Summertime is perfect for those burnt out students who want to have a few months where the only thing they will probably read is the occasional newspaper or magazine. But for others, summertime is perfect for reading all those novels there was no time for during the school year. So go ahead, dust off that copy of “The Three Musketeers” you have on your bookcase, find a comfy spot on the porch and get lost in a book.
7. Bad movies
Have you ever been flipping through the channels, and you see “Glitter” on VH1, and although you’d love to know why everyone thinks that movie is so horrible, you have better things to do with your time? Well, now you don’t, so go ahead and watch it. In fact, watch all those movies you’ve kind of wanted to see for novelty value but couldn’t convince yourself it was worth it. So many people have Netflix but only use it to watch new releases. Why not take a look and see what the early ‘90s had to offer in cinema? Even if the movie was horrible, at least now you can say you’ve seen it.
Finally! All the TV shows you missed because you were working, studying or partying. Summer is great for catching up on all your favorite series, since most shows are on hiatus during the summer months. Unfortunately, Hulu doesn’t offer full episodes of every show, so this might be your only opportunity to catch up on the plot before the new season starts this fall.
5. ‘Summer love’
Go ahead, do it. Date that girl who goes to the University of Missouri- St. Louis and is only home for summer break. Go out with that guy who is only in town for the summer to take care of his grandmother. There is nothing wrong with a fun, no-holds-barred romance you both know will end in August. You’re only young once. So as long as no one gets pregnant, tattooed with the other person’s name, or married for 55 hours like Britney Spears, this could just be one of those summers when you look back a year from now and think “What was his/her name again? Oh well, that was fun.”
4. Showing a little skin
Many people make that New Year’s resolution in January to lose weight, either to be healthy, or just to look good in a swimsuit. Either way, now the miserable Missouri winter is over, let those arms be free in a tank top, and give your legs a breather from jeans with a pair shorts or a skirt. Regardless of what you look like, summer is the time to be comfortable, not bundled up like an Eskimo. Be proud of what you have and enjoy the summer, in whatever floral, basketball shorts, sun dress, cutoff jeans and short-shorts sort of way you see fit.
3. Cold treats
Remember when you were younger and your parents wouldn’t buy the good popsicles so you had to make your own with Kool-Aid and an ice-cube tray? Even though now you can buy them yourself, and you should, don’t forget that simple is just as delicious. Packets of Kool-Aid still usually run for 10 for a dollar, a much better deal than the going rate for the good popsicles.
Another fun thing to do is make your own ice cream. You can buy an ice cream maker, or make it by hand, either way it’s a fun activity you can do with your friends and/or younger family members.
2. “Me Time”
Go to the gym, the movies or a concert. Do things because you want to, not because it will get you a better grade or pad your résumé. Many students work or have internships during the summer, which is great, but remember that your whole life can’t be about work. These are the few months out of the year when being a little selfish is okay. Even those people who have full-time jobs get a vacation every year; don’t forget to take yours too.
1. Sleeping in
The absolute, hands-down, best part of the summer is not waking up until you’re good and ready. This is a luxury usually reserved for Saturdays, but during the summer it tends to apply all week long. Sure, your dad will make you get up early one day to mow the lawn, or your roommate will wake you up at 7 a.m. because he or she needs you to take them to the airport. For the most part, the summer sleep is the most amount of rest you’re ever going to get. Once school is out for good and real life sets in, the summer months will be no different than fall or spring, and you’ll have to get up early every day, Monday through Friday all year round to go to work. Enjoy this while it lasts.