How One Weekend in the Hamptons Completely Changed My Shopping Habits

Cierra Miller
How One Weekend in the Hamptons Completely Changed My Shopping Habits
Photo: Cierra Miller.

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My name is Cierra and I’m a Notorious Overpacker. (You should see what I lugged to Italy for a four month trip–it was a lot of cargo.) Packing light is a high-key struggle for me, even when I’m just jetting off for a weekend adventure. So when Cotton Incorporated invited me to stay at The Montauk Beach House for their Cotton Style House pop up, I decided to take on a fun sartorial challenge: I’d attempt to streamline my style and pack only cotton clothing. For one, cotton is super lightweight, so I could avoid my duffle digging into my shoulders while I waited for the jitney. I also wanted to test the theory that cotton is the ideal fabric to wear for hot and sunny beach trips⁠—as Cotton Incorporated mentioned on the invite.

While I planned for the beachside weekend getaway, I perused through my wardrobe looking for versatile, beach-washed, and breathable looks. My “try not to overpack” game plan involved bringing pieces that could easily translate from day to night. Denim shorts and jackets, pants, graphic tees, and flowy dresses were my saving grace. Of course, I mapped out which looks would make for a good Instagram, too.

Once there, preppy (but not too preppy) resort wear with an even mix of neutrals and florals absolutely struck the right vibe. My looks were comfortable and just elevated enough–I felt beach-appropriate but still stylish. For accessories, I made one exception to the cotton-only rule, reaching for my beloved straw hat. It made me feel oh-so-Hamptons in the best way, and protected my face from the sun.

While relaxing by the pool, Cotton Incorporated presented their curation of cotton-exclusive looks from brands sold through Amazon. The collection ranges from casual to dressy looks that showcase the fabric’s comfort and chic factors. I learned that many trendy brands that I obsess over, like Petersyn and For Love & Lemons, harness nearly 100 percent of Cotton Incorporated’s cotton.

cotton style house image How One Weekend in the Hamptons Completely Changed My Shopping Habits

Cierra Miller.

Beyond the versatile aesthetic and breezy texture, cotton’s other major bragging right lies in sustainability. The entire plant is harvested for more than just fabric; other items like beauty products and even money are comprised of cotton. Better yet, it’s recyclable (recycle your jeans people!). I also found out that the “typical” everyday fabrics that I have in my closet now, such as polyester and nylon, are synthetic and unsustainable. This revelation made me proud of my (slightly excessive) selection of cotton pieces that had me looking Hamptons-savvy all weekend long, and has also spurred me to be more cotton-conscience while shopping for new clothes.

Overall, I’m surprised how easy it was for me to ditch other fabrics and dress exclusively in cotton. The experiment kept my bag light but didn’t leave me short on style options, which soothed my overpacking soul. If you too feel inclined to add more sustainable pieces to your wardrobe, you can shop my super cute faves from Cotton Incorporated’s curated cotton pieces at their limited-time Amazon shop below.