The Music Festival Survival Guide
The Keys To Survival

The festival season is here and for the music and fashion lovers, it’s a perfect time to take advantage of the eclectic things available to make it all the more enjoyable. Whether its going to be your first festival and you don’t know what to expect, or this is your fiftieth festival and your an old time veteran, this festival survival guide will be helpful.

Festival fashion has changed across the decades, from the bohemian Woodstock festival of 1969, to the hipster scene at Reading and Leeds festivals of 2010. The fashion may have changed, but the essentials to survival certainly haven’t.

First of all, the British summertime doesn’t guarantee sunshine, so you’ll need a poncho or a jacket of some form. It’s probably going to be muddy, so something light weight that will dry easily is ideal. There is a vast range of lightweight jackets this season, that will protect you from the rain, and will dry quickly when the sunshine appears. Look here for some good ideas:

ASOS Check Lined Nylon Hooded JacketGloverall Technical Packable Duffle CoatBEN SHERMAN SHORT MAC

SOULLAND PEDERSON ANORAKHaversack Summer ParkaFolk Rainmac

Secondly, whichever trousers, jeans or shorts you decide to wear for the festival, make sure that they either have tight pockets on them or ones that zip or button. You don’t want to lose your phone or something valuable in the mud and realise at the end of the festival that you’ve lost it. Have a look at some of the options here: The Festival Fashion Guide by Duncan Copeland.

Realistically, baby wipes at festivals aren’t going to make a difference to overall cleanliness. No matter how many of those freshly scented baby wipes you try and use, the mud is not going to stay away. However antiseptic wipes are a must. Using the communal toilets is certainly an experience to forget, but you want to remain as hygienic as possible. Baby wipes are good to take just in case you want to wipe clean something small or not too dirty. Using antiseptic wipes and baby wipes such as the ones below will keep you feeling that little bit cleaner. Superdrug offer a great range of cleansing and antiseptic wipes.

Tea Tree Sensitive WipesWet Ones Cooling Wipes 12 PackSUPERDRUG ANTI-BACTERIAL HAND GEL 30ML

Whatever you do, don’t forget to pack extra underwear in your bag. Having clean underwear is the only thing that will make you feel like less of a cave man when you’ve not had a shower in three days, because someone decided to leave a mess in the communal showers on the first night. Good ideas for festival underwear:

Calvin Klein 365 Digital Logo TrunksCalvin Klein X Low Rise TrunksCalvin Klein Pro Stretch Graphic Waistband Trunks

For the glorious sunshine that we all hope for, a hat such as a Trilby would be a perfect choice for protecting your head and face from the sunshine. It also looks stylish, attractive and mysterious and could help you attract that certain someone you’ve had your eye on from across the crowd. And you never know, you could always blag your way into VIP and say that your ‘with the band’. Hats are ideal for hiding that third day hair that’s been soaked in beer amongst other ambiguous beverages. Here’s a great selection of Trilby’s:

Bind HatFireball FedoraScotch & Soda 72105 Navy Hat

Along with the Trilby’s, there’s a vast selection of Sunglasses to help you see your favourite band on stage when the sun decides to come out. To avoid shopping stress, stick to easy flattering shapes such as Aviators or Wayfarers – they look stylish and modern, and suit most face shapes. Some of my favourites on the market are:

Plastic Demi Frame AviatorTom Ford Marko Teardrop AviatorsRAYBAN RB 2140 OUTSIDERS ORIGINAL WAYFARER SUNGLASSES

In case you don’t have your phone, or it has run out of battery (which can be avoided by looking below), a watch is perfect to make sure you’re on time to that hectic schedule of bands you have planned to go and see. My choices of watch are:

Nixon Gents Newton LED Black Display and Black Silicone Strap WatchIce-Watch Unisex World England White Silicone Strap WatchLTD 070123 WATCH

To prevent your phone from losing it’s battery, a spare battery should be included in your survival kit. If you don’t have a spare battery, then a phone charger is necessary. sell a good value universal phone charger, which fits twelve different types of phone.

Topman sell a great survival kit, which includes antiseptic wipes, plasters, hand wipes, ear plugs and a sewing kit. It’s priced at a reasonable ?8, and is handy as an emergency kit when someone has cut their finger trying to open a beer bottle.

When the sun does come out, you’ll need suncream to stop you sizzling. Ideally, to prevent the burning, a factor 15-30 suncream will do the job. Clarins offer a suncream with SPF 20 which also has a moisturising and cleansing effect on the skin.


For footwear, because it’s going to be muddy and rather messy, a decent pair of shoes is a good idea. Why not try a pair of All Saints boots? Or Hunter Wellington boots? They’ll keep your feet clean and dry, and will help you trek in the mud from the stages to your tent and vice versa. These are my favourite available:

Mix Aspect BootFold Military BootOffice SLAUGHTD LAMB WELLY SS10 GREEN RUBBER

Finally, bring a tent. It’s also really useful to have someone that knows how to put it up!

Gelert Quick Pitch SS Tent, GreenGelert Quick Pitch Quest 2-Person Tent, BlueGelert Contemporary Ottawa 4 Person Tent

Most importantly, have a good time. Festivals for me are the highlight of the summer and to avoid stress, I’d rather be over-prepared. I’m always really excited to see my favourite bands and sharing a tent with my friends and eating sausages off of the camp fire. It’s such a good experience and one you will remember for a long time. Use this survival guide to your advantage. Enjoy.

Matthew Burt