What to Bring to Burning Man
At Burning Man, you can let your creativity fly! But keep in mind that a lot of the fashion that fuels Burning Man is also quite functional for the weather conditions and circumstances. Below I've created a list of things you'll need and why you'll need them.
The goggles you see in all the Burning Man photos are not only for looks, they also have a purpose. There are frequent dust storms out in the desert, so you need to protect your eyes from the all the dirt swirling around if (or rather when) it occurs. Grab some fun steampunk aviator goggles or snowboard goggles to stay safe. They also they are a fun way to amp up your costumes.
The desert is HOT during the day, and people wear next to nothing, or sometimes nothing. Don't let that fool you, the night's can drop down into the 40s so come prepared with a nice fur coat, and something to cover your head with like this cute Spirit Hoods Fox Hat. Fur is comfortable and warm, and the style plays into the Burning Man atmosphere well.
Burning Man was once a small gathering on Baker Beach in San Francisco, but that's no longer the case. The "Playa" is miles long and wide, so the best way to get around is riding a bike. I recommend getting a cheap bike from Wal-Mart or heading to a garage sale to grab an old one. It will get destroyed by the dust so don't bring anything fancy. If you rinse it after and take care of it it can last multiple years on the Playa.
There aren't any street lights at Burning Man. You need bike lights and a headlamp or lights on yourself in order for the large art cars and other cyclists and people to see you. You also need them to guide your own path in the darkness.
Burning Man is a leave no trace festival. Whatever you bring in, you must take with you. For this reason people bring their own reusable cup or thermos. Different camps have offerings like beer, tea, wine, coffee or water. I recommend a cup with a lid to keep things hot or cold, keeps the dust out. I also recommend getting a cup with a lanyard, or bringing a carabineer so you can attach it to your backpack or bike as you ride.
Neck bandanas have multiple purposes at Burning Man, and are a must-have. First, they keep the sun off your neck during the day. Second, they keep the dust out of your nose and mouth during dust storms. Finally, they are also a cute addition to any playa costume.
Most "Burners" wear steel toed boots. They'll keep your feet clean, they're easier to ride bikes than open toed shoes, and at night your feet will stay warm. If you find yourself in a crowd, they'll be better protection for if you get stepped on as well.