Summer has finally arrived! There’s nothing better than escaping The City for a beach, where temperatures can be considerably cooler (and the little ones stay occupied). We’ve compiled a list of ten beach essentials, as well as some tips to make every seashore trip as pleasant as possible.
1. SPF Clothing/swimsuits – We are so lucky to have access to a plethora of clothing and swimsuits with high levels of SPF. It makes it that much easier to keep your children covered and protected. SPF clothing and bathing suits are available everywhere from Gap to One Step Ahead.
2. Sunscreen - A good sunscreen is a beach essential. Neutrogena’s Wet Skin Kids Sunblock is formulated to work with wet skin by cutting thorough water. Make sure you apply thoroughly and often.
3. A large, wide-brimmed hat - We know it’s sometimes difficult to keep your little one in a hat – choosing one with a chin strap can make everything more secure. We like iplay hats – they have several different styles, all with SPF included.
4. A beach tent - A good beach tent can double as a fort in the backyard (come fall or cooler weather). The Sun Stop’r – Kwik Cabana II has an SPF of 50 and great reviews.
5. Sand/water shoes - The sand can get extremely hot for little feet. And rocky or grainy textures can hurt tiny toes. Make sure you have the proper footwear to protect you children. Check out the Stride Rite Renee shoe (for girls), or the Timberland Sand Stomper for boys. Of course, Crocs are also a great option for the beach.
6. A beach umbrella – Even with sunscreen and shielding clothing, it’s a good idea to have an added level of protection. This umbrella by RIO has an SPF of 100, and is easy to secure in the sand.
7. A sand-proof blanket – You’ve probably realized that children get sand everywhere. A sand-proof blanket can be easy to shake or clean off. We like the Skip-Hop version. Or, for a cheaper alternative, choose a bamboo mat.
8. A beach chair - You’ll probably remember a beach chair for yourself, but what about your little ones? Our children love sitting in their own chairs. This one from BeachChairs.com has a detachable umbrella.
9. Baby powder - As odd as this may sound, baby powder works like a charm in getting sand off of sunscreen sticky skin.
10. A foldable mesh bag – A mesh bag can hold all your gear, and with a quick shake all the excess sand is gone. The Sand-Away Beach Bag by One Step Ahead has a zippered pouch for cash and debit cards, and folds up into a small pocket.
• Plan on going for 2-3 hours at a time, so the little ones don’t overheat and become uncomfortable.
• Try to avoid the hottest hours of the day; go early in the morning, or later in the afternoon.
• Bring lots of water and snacks, to keep your brood fully hydrated and satisfied.
• Don’t forget the toys! At this time of year, you can find a good selection just about anywhere (including you local CVS, Rite Aid, or Duane Reade).
What are your essentials and suggestions for a trip to the beach?