Beach Must Haves

After countless beach trips with our crew, I’ve come up with our list of beach must-haves. I’m not talking about run-of-the-mill things like bathing suits and towels, but those things that you absolutely need for the beach but might otherwise forget about.

Beach Must Haves pin

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Sharkbanz shark deterrent bands

First on the list are Sharkbanz. The kids and I watched Jaws right before our girls’ beach trip to Carolina Beach, and Ellie was a bit nervous about getting in the water. Thankfully, Sharkbanz sent us a couple of their new bands to try out, and that was all Ellie needed to convince her to get in the water!

Sharks use electroreception to navigate and hunt, especially at night or in murky water. From a fish to a swimmer, everything in the water generates a weak electromagnetic signal when moving, and sharks utilize that information to attack. Sharkbanz uses patented magnetic technology to deter sharks by creating a strong electromagnetic field that disrupts a shark’s electroreceptors.

Underwater Camera

Smiling girl at the beach with a GoPro HERO8 and Sharkbanz

One of our newest beach must-haves is a GoPro for those fun underwater/soaking wet pictures and for Ellie to record videos for the YouTube channel that she so desperately wants. While we have the GoPro HERO8, and I love that you don’t need a separate housing to mount it, I know other people that have older (and less expensive!) models that LOVE them as well! The GoPro HERO9 just came out, and it has some impressive upgrades like recording in 5k and detachable lenses.

Beach Rentals

Smiling family at the beach with rented beach chairs and umbrellas

While we have beach chairs and umbrellas, I’ve decided that renting gear at the beach is the way to go after many trips lugging gear all over the place. Not only can you eliminate a lot of extra “stuff” in your vehicle (which is how the 6 of us were able to take a trip to Carolina Beach in the Mazda CX-9), but you don’t have to deal with carrying chairs and umbrellas back and forth to the beach. And even more important, your car doesn’t end up looking like a sandbox after you bring back half the sand from the beach at the end of your trip!

Beach chair and umbrella rentals Carolina Beach NC

If you’re ever in Carolina Beach, NC, I cannot recommend Tony Silvagni Beach Rentals highly enough. Our chairs and umbrellas were set up on the beach well before the advertised time of 9am, and if you spring for the MVP package (which you totally should!), they don’t pick up your gear until 7pm. The extra couple hours of beach time are glorious since the beach clears out around dinnertime.

Girl with bodyboard at the beach

In addition to chairs and umbrellas, you can also rent things like bodyboards, surfboards, and paddleboards at the beach. We rented bodyboards one afternoon while we were at Carolina Beach, and the girls had a blast! The big kids had fun taking them out to the bigger waves, and the littles liked using them where the waves were crashing. Totally well worth the $5 for a 5-hour rental fee!!

Beach Toys

Girls playing in the water at the beach and on the sand with bodyboards and beach toys

While we typically rent chairs and umbrellas, we still bring an assortment of beach toys from our house. Over the years, we’ve amassed quite the beach toy collection, and while these aren’t the exact sets we have, these and these are ones that I would definitely buy. I always make sure to order a couple of larger shovels because the big kids can dig faster/deeper with them.

Sunscreen, Obv, but this one’s our fave

Neutrogena Beach Defense Sunscreen

I mean, everyone knows that you need sunscreen for the beach – or at least, I hope they do! – and Neutrogena Beach Defense 70 is hands down our favorite. While I also bring along a spray sunscreen, nothing beats the coverage of a lotion, especially on a windy day at the beach, especially if you have the next product!

Moon Block Sunscreen Applicator

Pink Moon Block Sunscreen Applicator

Oh my gosh, this one was a total sunscreen gamechanger for me. I bought one for our last beach trip, and I honestly don’t know how we survived without it for so long. The Moon Block Sunscreen Applicator makes applying sunscreen SO. MUCH. EASIER. You just put sunscreen on the applicator, then apply the product in stroke-like motions until it’s blended. This made it so much easier to apply sunscreen to myself and the kids as well, and for the first time, they didn’t get a sunburn because I missed a spot! There’s a 2-pack available on Amazon that I cannot recommend highly enough!

What’s your must-have beach item?? Any special tips to share??

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    • Jennifer
      September 30, 2020 / 9:23 pm

      The kids have been having so much fun with it- and I love watching their videos!

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