Let’s face it, a trip to the beach should be tons of fun, but the reality is going to the beach with kids is a lot of work!
From packing the car full of gear to be safe and have fun in the sun, to preparing appealing snacks and drinks to keep everyone full and hydrated, going to the beach can be exhausting. Then there’s the sand, which inevitably gets on everything and is impossible to remove. Whew!
With decades of beach-going trips behind me, I thought it would be fun to share some of my tried and true tips so you can enjoy your next family beach trip as much as possible.
To help make your trip easier on you, I have some great beach hacks that will help make your next family beach trip a breeze!
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Baby powder is a must for a family fun day at the beach. Just sprinkle some on a beach towel or in your hand, then brush your kiddo’s hands and feet. The sand magically disappears!
Baby powder works to remove moisture from the skin, making it difficult for the sand to stick in the first place.
Pro Tip: Sprinkle baby powder on feet and legs right before getting in the car after your beach day. Then, brush powder and sand away with your hands or a dry towel. This way, you’ll leave the sand at the beach and not bring it home with you.
Forget battling small and scratchy beach towels during your time on the sand. The best option for lounging on the beach is a fitted sheet turned so the fitted ends face up.
Just position four heavy items in the corners and pull the sheet up and taut. When you’re done, you should have four short walls around you to prevent blowing sand from invading your space.
Pro Tip: Use deep pocket fitted sheets and use the pockets to help keep small items from getting lost in the sand.
Water in the ears can be an annoying, and sometimes painful reminder of a fun day at the beach. Help get the water out by having the affected kiddo’s (or adults) blow up a balloon. This is a great way to get rid of water inside your kids’ ears because the jaw movement and pressure help open the clogged Eustachian tubes.
Just toss a few small balloons in your beach bag in case someone’s ears get plugged with water after taking a dip in the pool or ocean.
Pro Tip: Use thick, harder to blow up balloons and blow s-l-o-w-l-y.
Freezer bags do triple duty at the beach. They hack your cooler by replacing melting ice with a few frozen bags filled with water, and they’ll hold your wet gear after the water melts.
Pro Tip: Place electronics inside extra freezer bags to help prevent them from getting wet while still being able to use the touchscreen.
Avoid the need to wrestle with your little one whenever it’s time to reapply sunscreen to your kids’ shoulders and back with this simple beach hack.
Rash guard swimsuits protect the most vulnerable part of your children’s skin without the need to reapply sunscreen every time they get out of the water.
Pro Tip: Long sleeve rash guards can protect the entire upper body and help save everyone’s sanity by reducing the need to frequently reapply sunscreen.
If you’re at a beach that is home to stinging jellyfish, bring a small spray bottle filled with vinegar. The vinegar will take the sting out if anyone accidentally gets stung.
Pro Tip: Vinegar has many uses! If sunburn occurs despite your prevention methods, Apple cider vinegar helps reduce the pain and swelling.
- Soak washcloth or towel in vinegar mixture (2 parts cool water, 1 part apple cider vinegar.)
- Place the soaked towels onto your sunburned skin for 15 minutes.
- Repeat until pain diminishes.
Haul your gear to the beach in a laundry basket, then line it with a soft, fluffy towel after everything is unloaded. The basket can contain a little one during play time and will also work as a make-shift bassinet.
Pro Tip: Laundry basket turned mini-pool for the baby! When your baby is still too small for safe play in shallow, warm and still water, a laundry basket is there to help! Not only will it keep all of the toys within easy reach, but it can also help your child sit upright out of the water.
This simple beach hack will help you cool everyone’s skin while reapplying sunscreen. Just toss the sunscreen in the cooler to chill it in between coats.
Pro Tip: Storing sunscreen in the top section of the cooler will help keep it from becoming runny and separated on those hot summer days…and keep it cool!
Valuables Hiding Spot
A disposable diaper is the best place to hide your valuables. Before heading out to the water with your kids, wrap up your cell phone, money, and keys in a diaper, making it look like it’s been used. No one will suspect a thing!
Pro Tip: Yes, a diaper. It sounds disgusting, which is why it works. Valuables are the last thing anyone would expect to be hidden inside. No one will touch it; there could be baby poo in there! The only thing you have to worry about is someone throwing it away. In that case, leave it under your towel and/or far away from a trashcan.
Have you tried any of these hacks? Share how they worked for you in a comment below. If you have any to add, please share those too!
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