Survival Guide: 20 Items Every Smart (And Stylish) Angeleno Needs

"I neeeeed this clutch!" "I'll be buried in this dress." "My daughter will thank me for buying this someday." We've become pretty crafty at justifying just about any purchase. But, when it comes to the ABCs of being an Angeleno, there are some essentials a girl really can't live without — the ones that are truly worth every coin spent.
From trend-transcending sunnies to an array of life-saving sundries, these are assets you will use religiously and wear until kingdom come — no need for post-purchase excuses. Click through and plan your budget accordingly. Trust us, we guarantee these brilliant items will never see the inside of a consignment store!
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We're never ones to suggest anything uniform, but a moto jacket is a necessary closet consistent to chicly ward off all of our "non"-seasons' chilly nighttime temps. Any well-proportioned wardrobe must include one, and we heart this unexpected navy offering from Theyskens' Theory to mix up the basic-black blahs.

Theyskens' Theory Jose Netal Leather Jacket, $994, available at Farfetch.
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Ever had a work emergency pop up when you're in beastly 405 gridlock? We certainly have! With this nifty little device, all you have to do is (safely) beeline for an exit ramp, find any spot to park, hop online, and plug away — all from the confines of your car, or anywhere for that matter. It eases workaholic woes and anxiety in a major way, we promise.

Virgin Mobile MiFi 2200 Mobile Hotspot, $99.99, available at Virgin Mobile.
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We can't count how many times an impromptu beach mission has materialized, and we've been stuck with sand in every orifice because of under-preparedness. Keeping a cute, luxe beach towel in your trunk will save you from the soil of any kind of L.A. terrain. And why not make a brash fashion statement while you're enjoying the great outdoors? Jonathan Adler has a whole slew of eye-catching fabrics for bold bucolic babes.

Jonathan Adler Brown and Pink Waves Beach Towel, $88, available at Jonathan Adler.
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We know dropping dough on an earthquake-preparedness kit isn't exactly glamorous, but it's imperative should the ish ever hit the fan (knock on wood). After years of prodding from the parentals (now we're preaching!), we finally took the plunge on this pack, and really do rest easier just knowing it's there. Quake Care left no stone unturned, either. In addition to food, water, lighting, and sanitation supplies, there's even a smartphone and USB charger that works sans batteries.

Quake Kare 2 Person Deluxe Backpack Survival Kit, $79, available at Quake Kare.
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Light as air and made in a variety of colors, this Rimowa suitcase is easy breezy and ready to roll! Whether you're headed to a friend's Malibu summer rental or traversing TSA territory, a carry-on with sophistication (and no added lbs when the airline attendant eyes your over-packing) is key.

Rimowa Salsa Air 32” Multiwheel, $595, available at Luggage Pros.
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Here's another item to add to your trunk-savior staples! It's the pits when a seatbelt literally "cramps" your style, leaving that pristine frock looking frumpy with wrinkles. This bad boy was made for the girl on the go — fill 'er up anywhere, and quickly steam out any signs of unkempt attire. We swear by this gadget so hard that we'd even say splurge on two, so you have one when you're in a hurry at home.

Jiffy Steamer 0611 Esteam Travel Steamer, $88, available at Amazon.
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We challenge you to name a friend who hasn't been late, late, for a very important date in this flakey city! Well, we're naming punctuality a new virtue (gone are the days of waiting for pals for extended periods), and having a timeless time-teller is the first step in achieving grace! Snatch up something classic like this Kate Spade version that will go with any ensemble...stat! (Seriously, it's so not cool to be tardy for the party).

Kate Spade New York Gold Metro Strap Watch, $195, available at Bloomingdale’s.
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Since the agua quality in Lala is on the sketch-side, we highly recommend investing in several Bobbles water containers. You'll stay so much more hydrated when you can fill up the filtered bottle anywhere, even in the seediest of spots. Plus, you won't need to waste money harming Mother Earth with all of that nasty plastic!

Bobbles Water Bobble, $9.99, available at American Apparel.
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Thou shall possess a neutral-colored cardi! Having a lightweight, versatile sweater is the cardinal sartorial rule of any SoCal closet. It goes from sun-up to sundown, breakfast meeting to bar in a cinch. We're into this Clu cover-up because it's practical and posh.

Clu Cardigan with Silk Sides, $295, available at Les Pommettes.
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Best not to ask for paper or plastic these days, or you'll get dirty looks galore at the grocery store! It's so fun to see the sea of stylish sacks filled with fresh produce at the farmers' market, too. Go green and look gorg with this shabby-chic shopper.

Cath Kidston Shopper Bag, $9.94, available at ASOS.
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Well, you knew this one was coming. Bikini, one-piece, retro maillot — a solid (or printed!) swimsuit is non-negotiable.

Undrest Liberty of London Bandeau, $118, available at R29 Shops; Undrest Liberty of London Brief, $118, available at R29 Shops.
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How wow-worthy is this Cubist weekender? Colossal! When you don't want to be that high-maintenance chick rolling up with a full-on suitcase, a tote that surprisingly fits a ton totally fits the bill. Added sneak factor? Something about the print makes it appear that there's way less in the bottomless bag!

Pierre Hardy Cube-Print Leather-Trimmed Coated-Canvas Tote, $850, available at Net-A-Porter.
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The ability to rock backless dresses, unlined bikinis (can you believe they still make these?), and flirty tops year-round can make a girl's girls total scene-stealers! Top Hats prevent the temp from affecting your chest, and are a modest L.A. lady's salvation.

Commando Top Hats Nipple Concealers, $30, available at Shopbop.
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News flash: You don't have to be Kentucky-Derby bound to invest in a wide-brimmed hat. When you're super sun-exposed, it's crucial to not rest on your SPF lotion's laurels. Add an extra shield from rays by investing in a topper that has the sun-swatting technology sewn into the fabric. This purchase will have you looking like a million bucks on all fronts!

Coolibar Packable Wide Brim Hat, $35, available at Coolibar.
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The term "Lost Angeles" has many-a-meaning, but none more forthright than describing the massive labyrinth our town can be to navigate. (Do you ever catch yourself at wit's end screaming, "Who planned this madness?"). The demand for a GPS to an Angeleno is akin to any New Yorker's need for a MetroCard.

Garmin Nüvi 40 GPS, $99.99, available at Best Buy.
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Yet another vital component found inside any savvy gal's trunk, beach speakers are the bread and butter of entertaining outside.

Zazzle Love On The Beach Sea Shell Doodle Speaker, $44.95, available at Zazzle.
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If you've lived here longer than a hot minute, we're sure you got the flip-flop memo. However, here's your answer to stand out from the Havaiana and Rainbow-rocking crowd: We're toe-tally digging Yosi Samra's sweetly striped sandals.

Yosi Samra Striped Sandal, $66, available at R29 Shops.
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Au courant sunglass styles morph almost as much as denim silhouettes, so shelling out cash for a time-honored frame is critical. TF can do no wrong in the classic department, and if you take care of them (read: don't lose) them, you could feasibly don these shades for decades!

Tom Ford Campbell Sunglasses, $360, available at The Webster.
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Sunscreen is one of those products that can be tempting to skimp on, but keep in mind that your skin will be with you much longer than even a moto jacket (and you certainly don't want to resemble it!). We're big fans of La Roche-Posay's featherweight, yet super sturdy SPF 60 blend.

La Roche-Posay Anthelios 60 Ultra Light Sunscreen Lotion Spray, $35.50, available at Lovely Skin.
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Black pumps are just as fundamental as an LBD, but to avoid looking like a cookie-cutter carbon copy, we recommend these yin-meets-yang geometric soles. They're simply elegant enough to go with everything, but still alluring as all get-out!

3.1 Phillip Lim Miho Pump, $495, available at Otte.