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Must-Have Toddler Beach Essentials for a Stress-Free Day in the Sun

When it comes to taking your little ones to the beach, having the right stuff makes all the difference. From keeping cool to having fun in the sun, we've got you covered with this list of toddler beach essentials. Check out our top picks and beach check list to make your next beach day a great one!

Looking for a downloadable checklist? We have you covered, check out our Beach Checklist below!

Beach Essentials Checklist
Download PDF • 212KB

  1. Sunscreen: This one may seem obvious but it is definitely one you do not want to forget! For children older than 6 months of age, the AAP recommends a sunscreen containing titanium dioxide or zinc oxide as it is better for sensitive skin. (The FDA recommends not using sunscreen on children under 6 months and instead providing adequate shade). Below are our top picks for Baby Sunscreen.

Blue Lizard Sunscreen

Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

SPF: 50

Water Resistant: 80 Minutes

Cool feature: Turns pink when in harmful UV light


(This brand also offers a scalp sparay if your child has thin hair and/or does not like hats)!

Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

SPF: 50

Water Resistant: 80 Minutes

Cool Feature: Vegan, Cruelty Free


Amazon Rating: 4.6 Stars

SPF: 50

Water Resistant: 80 Minutes

Cool Feature: Easy to apply


2. Shade: An essential if your child is not yet able to wear sunscreen and wonderful to have for the whole family regardless. Before you head to the beach, try and find out if shade is available from trees, rental beach umbrellas or built in ones. If not, here are some great beach shades for your baby and the whole family! 


  • Amazon Rating: 4.4 Stars

  • UPF 50+ Sun protection

  • Features: Easy set up. Different sizes depending on how large your group is.


  • Amazon Rating: 4.5 Stars

  • UPF 50+ Sun protection

  • Features: Features auger pole to place in ground with extra stakes. Zippered window for breeze.


3. Sun Hat: Always a good idea but particularly important if your child is lacking in the hair department, a sun hat is a great way to keep their head cool and sunburn free. There are so many sun hats to choose from but the one below gets our pick:

  • Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

  • UPF 50+ Sun protection

  • Features: Head and neck protection along with a "toggle" at the back for adjusting to your child's head size.


4. Beach Towel: Again, this one may seem obvious but it's definitely not one you want to forget! If you plan on being at the beach for a long period of time, you may want to bring two for your little one so you can use one while the other is drying off. Hooded towels (like the one shown below) work great for drying the hair while also keeping the head out of the sun!

Depending on how hot the sun is you may want to even leave towels draped over your seats while at the beach so they don't get too hot (especially the metal parts of car seats)!


4. Swimsuit: Similar to the towels, it may be a good idea to bring two swimsuits with so your baby doesn't have to sit in a wet swimsuit! There are endless possibilities for toddler swim suits from full body to shorter versions. Below are our picks for each. It is also recommended to dress your child in bright colors so you can easily spot them.

Full Body Suit

  •  Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

  • UPF 50+ Sun protection

  • Features: Full Body suit for rash guard, quick dry material


Two Part Suit

  • Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

  • UPF 50+ Sun protection

  • Features: Rash guard and quick dry material


5. Swim Diaper: Though swim diapers are not the best at holding everything in, they do at least tend to hold in the ahem poops. The main choices for swim diapers are the reusable type (which seems to be better at holding things in) and the throw away type. If you use reusable diapers you could also try that however from our experience they get heavy quick. If using a resuable you may also want a wet bag. * Don't forget baby wipes too!

Reusable Diaper

  • Amazon Rating: 4.6 Stars

  • Sizes: adjustable with snaps and waterproof

  • Features: "Designed for holding solids"


One Time Use Diaper

  • Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

  • Sizes: range of sizes from small to large (infant through larger toddler)

  • Features: Sides tear off to make removal easy


6. Water Float/ Life Jacket: Depending on the age and size of your toddler, you may want to use a float or a life jacket to keep them safe while having fun in the water!

Water Float

  • Amazon Rating: 4.5 Stars

  • UPF 50 sun protection when using shade.

  • Features: Easy to fold and inflate design (great for travel)


  • Amazon Rating: 4.6 Stars

  • Safety: Double buckles to keep your child safe

  • Features: Good body fit for comfort and ability to move


7. Water Shoes: Great for protecting your child's feet from the hot sand on the beach and from sharp seashells water shoes are a great idea!

  • Amazon Rating: 4.4 Stars

  • Features: Comfortable and barefoot feel.


8. Beach Toys: Perfects for building sand castles or digging a trench, beach toys are a perfect addition to any trip!

  • Amazon Rating: 4.8 Stars

  • Safety: smooth corners and edges, made with nontoxic materials


9. Sand Remover: Okay this one isn't totally necesarry but it is convenient to have, particularly if you don't like finding sand in your car for weeks after your beach trip!

  • Amazon Rating: 4.3 Stars

  • Features: Easy to use and small enough to take everywhere. Safe for skin of all ages


10. Food/ Drinks: Depending on how long you plan on being at the beach, make sure to pack some snacks that are easy to eat (aka no sticky hands). A water bottle for yourself and your little one (or breastmilk/formula depending on baby age) are also a great idea. Either way stay hydrated!


11. Something to carry everything:  Depending on how much you are carrying (and for how long you are staying) you may want a beach bag or a wagon for your beach trip! *Please note that the wagon below is not meant to transport children, for that the Wonderfold works great.

  • Amazon Rating: 4.7 Stars

  • Features: Extra large wheels that are great for the beach, foldable


  • Amazon Rating: 4.7 Stars

  • Features: Extra large but lightweight, plenty of pockets


That's all for now, now go out and enjoy some fun in the sun!

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