Heading out to the beach for the first time with your little one can be a truly fun and exciting time for both of you. They will have the opportunity to take in the sand, the water, and all the great outdoor beach activities. At the same time, you have the opportunity to watch all of this excitement unfold. However, you also need to take extra precautions. Your child’s skin is fare and not accustomed to the sun. As is the case with any new activity you need to prep accordingly and plan for the worst possible situations, so that in the event something does take a turn, you’re prepared for it. To help, here are five things to do when it comes to your baby’s first trip to the beach.


This is a must. Above everything else, you need to protect your baby from the sun, and while clothing and other accessories are important (such as a hat), sunscreen is your optimal item to have. And in this case, no level of SPF is too high. Don’t go with SPF 15 or 25. These are far too low. In reality, you shouldn’t be getting anything under 50, and even SPF 75 or higher is desirable. Also, make sure you apply the sunscreen regularly. If your baby’s skin is starting to look pink it means it is too late, and they have already gotten some sun (and maybe a sunburn). So apply additional sunscreen every hour, if not sooner.

Grab Those Swim Diapers

Yes, you’ll want to have plenty of regular diapers on hand, but when it comes to the beach and going in the water, you want to pick up swim diapers. Now, you can go with reusable swim diapers if you’d like, but these are costly and you’ll be stuck washing them. It might sound like a good idea at first, but chances are you’ll eventually end up grabbing the disposable diapers anyway. These you’ll toss just like you would a regular diaper.

Swimming diapers are waterproof, which makes it good for both heading to the beach and if you’re at a local pool. The purpose of waterproof diapers is two-fold. First, it is going to prevent water from pushing into the diaper. Regular diapers become saturated and pull in water, which makes it soggy and heavy. Additionally, the waterproof swim diapers help prevent liquids from exiting the diaper. So, if your baby is in need of a diaper change you won’t end up polluting the surrounding water (which is especially important if you’re in a pool).

Additional Clothing

We already mentioned some of the clothing you’ll want to have on hand with your baby when you head out to the beach. A large hat is great. Yes, you can opt for the classic baby baseball cap, which is fun and a great photo opportunity as it is pretty adorable, the bill of the hat will only cover the front of your child’s face. Ideally, you’ll have a hat that will cover up the entire face with a wider brim. So a sun hat or a “fisherman’s hat” is a good way to go. It provides a sun-protecting brim that will go all the way around the hat, offering more protection no matter the location or direction of the sun.

Beyond the hat, you’ll want to invest in rash guards for your child. As you already know as an adult, sand has a way of getting everywhere. If there’s an access point sand will get in there and stick. It’s not comfortable at all. Well, a baby has a few additional problems when it comes to this.

First, they have their baby fat. The extra skin rolls make for great hiding places for grains of sand. This will eventually cause rashes and chaffing. While you need to pay extra close attention to your baby and make sure they are always completely rinsed off, it is far too easy to miss some of the sand. And second, if your baby does have sand stuck in between folds of skin it isn’t like they can tell you about it. It might irritate their skin but they’ll have no way of telling you exactly where the sand is and what’s going on. With rash guards (also called rashies), you’ll help prevent some of the more annoying and frustrating rashes that can develop due to the sand.

Baby Beach Toys

Let’s face it. You’ll need to occupy your baby. Yes, it is a brand-new world and a new experience for them, which helps keep them distracted and entertained, at least for a little while. However, you need to have other items on hand that will keep them having fun. Don’t bring the fluffy stuffed animals from the house as these will just soak up water and dirt. Instead, you should invest in baby beach toys. These are usually inexpensive and are great for going to the beach. From building sand castles to giving them something to dig with, these baby beach toys are perfect, and you can fit most of the toys inside of a light beach bag. You may even decide to keep the beach bag in the trunk for impromptu beach visits.

UV Baby Blanket or Changing Pad

You need to protect your child from UV rays. Applying plenty of sunscreen and keeping them out of prolonged direct sunlight is key, but there will be times when you’ll want to rest (after all, running around after a child on the beach can be exhausting). When this is the case, you’ll want to invest in a UV baby blanket or changing pad. This is great when your baby needs to take his or her nap, or just when they are laying there and you want to offer added protection. The Tarpestry can easily be propped up to create the perfect shade for a nap and protect your baby from the harsh rays. There’s no such thing as too much UV protection. Your UV baby blanket can help with that.

Prepping For Baby’s First Beach Outing

These are just five of the top things to do for your baby’s first trip to the beach. It should be a fun experience for everyone involved, just make sure to plan for every possible situation. Not only will this give you all the necessary resources available just in case everything doesn’t work out as planned, but it will give you peace of mind knowing you have the entire trip covered. And remember, if you need any additional tarp gear, such as a UV baby blanket / changing pad, make sure to check out the wide selection of goodies for sale at Tarpestry.