Stock up on sunscreen – summer is nearly here!
Whether your going on holiday or staying locally, going to a beach when the days are warm with a toddler is a very different experience than taking a baby – with toddlers having different requirements! So with that in mind here are a few essentials you might want to consider adding to your suitcase if going on holiday or taking with you on your beach trip if staying locally.
UV Swim Suit – I’m constantly chasing Jasper around whilst at the beach reapplying sunscreen, but it’s so nice to have the added reassurance that he has extra protection against UVA and UVB rays whilst wearing a UV swim suit. Almost every high-street children’s clothing stores will have UV swim suits offering either SPF40 or SPF50.
Sun Hat – Whilst Jasper is still little I always choose a wide-brimmed hat to offer protection not only to his face and head but to the back of his neck. If the day is exceptionally hot I will wet his hat before putting it back on his head which helps cool him down considerably.
Sunscreen – Even with all the above sunscreen is still very important! At the moment I’m alternating between Boots Soltan Kids and Nivea kids which both offer five-star UVA protection; I’ll add a link at the bottom of the page explaining more about the star rating incase you are unaware.
Reusable Swim Nappy – I’ve always used reusable swim nappies on all of the boys and I’ve never had a problem with any poop escaping. Whether you use reusable or disposable, a swim nappy is undeniably an essential.
Hooded Towel – With an active toddler I find it simpler to be able to pop a hooded towel over Jaspers head rather than trying to wrap a towel around him and at the same time keep him still so the towel doesn’t fall off. A hooded over-the-head towel offers warmth after coming out of the sea due having an added hood and because his arms are free he can enjoy having a snack whilst drying off.
Water/Beach shoes – Now Jasper is walking and wants to follow his older brothers everywhere beach shoes protect his little feet from the hot sand, they also come in really handy whilst paddling in the sea as sometimes the shore can have little stones and broken shells which have sharp edges. They’ve also came in handy on previous holidays we’ve been on around the children’s pool as the area was painted (around and inside the small pool) with none slip paint making the floor area feel like sand paper, it meant by him wearing the shoes it protected his feet from becoming scratched and sore.
Water Cup (sippy cup) – Jasper has his Sippy Cup available to him all day everyday, whilst out in the sun I do try to make sure he is getting plenty more water as dehydration is something which worries me especially whilst out in the sun.
Cooler Bag – Toddlers can get very cranky when they are hungry so I always make sure I have snacks and even lunch on hand for Jasper. Watermelon is currently an all time favourite snacking food for all of the boys with an added bonus of it being 90% water, so it’s rehydrating as well as refreshing!
First Aid Kit – This comes in very handy even for the older boys. Accidents happen so I like to be prepared as its amazing the healing powers of a plaster or even what magic cream can do!
Pop-up UV Tent – These are amazing, not only do most of them offer UV50 protection but its a great place for your toddler to be able to hang out in the shade either with a snack or some toys. The one above from Early Learning Centre comes with its own little bag and doesn’t contain any fiddly bits. With Jasper on my hip I’m able to just pull it out of the bag let it go and it’s already assembled.
Toys – Jasper loves his bucket and spade when at the beach, even sitting for quite a lengthy amount of time filling the bucket with sand to just empty it and start all over again. Other things we like to take along with us are dinosaurs and cars which we pick up cheaply from the pound store as we always end up leaving the beach with one or two missing due to them being lost in the sand.
Small 3 Ring Pool – These are really inexpensive and a great way for toddlers to be able to cool down whilst also being safe. Jasper is a big fan of water and like most toddlers he has no fear so with four other children to watch and needing to have sunscreen applied it’s the first thing I set up once we get to the beach, that way once Jasper has had his sunscreen topped up (first application is done at home) and is in his UV swimsuit he can sit in the pool with a few toys allowing me to be beside him but also helping the other boys to get ready.
Talcum Powder – Comes in handy not only for Jasper but the whole family. Once sprinkled on your feet or legs it removes the moisture making it easy for the sand to be just wiped off; we all know sand gets everywhere so also comes in very handy when trying to do a nappy change when their bum is covered in sand!
If you would prefer to use something more natural I have heard cornflour works just as well. -(ive never used it)
The NHS website explains a bit about the star rating on sunscreen and also some helpful information on sun safety.
Let me know in the comments if you have any essentials that you like to take with you to the beach for your toddler!