Despite having spent every single summer since childhood on a Greek island, this summer will be my first trip to Milos, in the Cyclades, which is known for having some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. There are simply too many Greek islands to see them all! Here are some of my beach-holiday essentials…

HTSI style director Isabelle Kountoure on holiday
HTSI style director Isabelle Kountoure on holiday
The Greek island of Milos
The Greek island of Milos © Loraine Devaux

Costa Brazil Sol Sunlight Body Oil

Costa Brazil Sol Sunlight Body Oil, £95
Costa Brazil Sol Sunlight Body Oil, £95

As much as I love swimming in the crystal-clear sea, the salt tends to leave my hair and skin feeling very dry, so I always travel with a bottle of nourishing hair and body oil. I especially love Costa Brazil’s body oil as it absorbs quickly – after my shower I usually don’t towel dry, I just massage it onto my skin…. I am also obsessed with Sisley Precious Hair Care Oil; I apply a bit to the ends of my hair, even in between swims. Costa Brazil Sol Sunlight Body Oil, £95, livecostabrazil.com; Sisley Precious Hair Care Oil Glossiness and Nutrition, £82, sisley-paris.com


Kióhne Bay swimsuit 

Kióhne Bay swimsuit, €170
Kióhne Bay swimsuit, €170

When you spend most of the day by the sea, nothing is more important than having a swimsuit that fits well. This summer I bought myself the Bay swimsuit from Kióhne, a just-launched brand based in Greece. I love the stone-embellished straps and it’s chic enough to wear to a post-swim lunch. Kióhne Bay swimsuit, €170, kiohne.com


Louis Vuitton monogram patch denim shorts

Louis Vuitton monogram patch denim shorts, POA
Louis Vuitton monogram patch denim shorts, POA

These are basically all I wear during the day – I throw them on for lunch in the shade and again after leaving the beach to quickly stop over in the village for a freddo cappuccino. Louis Vuitton monogram patch denim shorts, POA, louisvuitton.com


Birkenstock #BOLD Arizona sandals

Birkenstock #BOLD Arizona sandals, £180
Birkenstock #BOLD Arizona sandals, £180

When I was little and first saw these shoes on fellow German tourists on the Greek ferry boats, I swore to myself that I would never wear such ugly, orthopedic sandals… fast forward 20 years and I cannot imagine a single summer without them. For the beach, I go for the classic Arizonas. They are so comfortable – I can even hike up and down hills to reach the most secluded beaches on the island. £180, birkenstock.com


EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46

EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, $39
EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, $39

This is the best and only sunscreen I use on my face. I wear it all year round, even on London’s greyest winter days… But when in sunny Greece, I apply it to my face multiple times a day. I love that the texture doesn’t leave a white layer, and it’s probably the only sunscreen that doesn’t clog my pores. EltaMD UV Clear Broad-Spectrum SPF 46, $39, eltamd.com


Métier backgammon set

Métier backgammon set, £690
Métier backgammon set, £690

No beach holiday is complete without a round of backgammon. I’ve discovered this very travel-friendly rollable one by Métier, and to my friends and family’s annoyance, there is no longer an excuse not to play. Métier backgammon set, £690, metier.com

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