17 Beach Hacks That’ll Totally Change the Way You’re Beachin’ It This Summer

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These beach hacks make a day in the sand even better!

baby girl wearing a blue bathing suit sitting in blue pool in sand

These beach hacks will help you have the most epic beach day ever!

Are you one of the millions of people who will be hitting the beach this summer? If so, then you need these life-changing beach hacks and tips to make your next trip a total breeze!

Protect your phone from water and sand.

girl on phone in ocean with wild pigs in background beach hacks

Whether you’re reading your favorite Kindle books or taking amazing underwater pictures, put this universal waterproof phone case at the top of your packing list!

Hip Tip: Can’t wait for the $7 waterproof case to arrive via Prime shipping? Take your phone in a plastic sandwich bag. It’s not 100% waterproof, but it’s close to free and will at least keep the sand away!

Get rid of sand with baby powder. It’s one of the best beach hacks!

baby powder in the sand the best beach hacks

Use baby powder on your hands and body to help dry up sand. Then brush off any sand that’s stuck to your skin. It’s one of the best beach hacks!

Use an umbrella hook to hang wet towels and bags.

pol-r bear umbrella hook beach hacks

Avoid sandy towels and beach bags by using an umbrella hook. This beach hack keeps your belongings sand-free, which means less sand is tracked into the car too. 😂

Hip Tip: For faster drying towels, ditch the cotton and use a lightweight microfiber towel instead.

Don’t sit on a damp towel, use a waterproof mat instead.

dark gray mat on sand with two beach chairs

There’s not much worse than a soaked and sandy towel. Here’s why we love this polyester beach mat:

  • It’s waterproof.
  • It comes with stakes to stay in place.
  • It’s lightweight.
  • It fits in your pocket. 😱
  • It comes in 5 colors.

Freeze drinks and grapes to keep food cold.

best beach hacks water bottle juice boxes and grapes inside cooler bag

By freezing drinks (and even snacks like grapes), your food and drinks will keep their chill for much longer without taking up more space.

Hip Tip: Want the perfect beach cooler? We love the Ozark Trail brand and found it to be just as good as the super expensive Yeti brand!

Keep drinks and phones sand-free.

purple blue orange cup holders with drinks and phones in sand

These handy, stackable cup holders can also double as a phone, drink, or sunglasses holder.

Beat the heat with homemade slushies.

beach hacks dining with alice frozen capri sun drink
Credit: Dining With Alice

Stay cool at the beach with an icy treat! Freeze Capri Suns for the kids. Make an adult version with this yummy recipe from Dining With Alice.

Create a sand-free zone with a fitted sheet.

blue fitted sheet on sand with stuff in each corner

All you need for this hack is a cheap fitted sheet and some stuff to support each corner (think coolers, bags, shoes, and more).

Hip Tip:  Don’t get windswept! Fill plastic bags with sand to make DIY weights for your towel or mat.

Disguise your valuables in snack containers.

best beach hacks pringles container with money keys and watch inside

Place small items like keys, money, and jewelry inside of a food container so people won’t see them. Just don’t make the snack too tempting. 😉

Hip Tip: If you really want to fool people, wrap your small valuables in a diaper. 😆 They’ll definitely leave it alone.

Save space in your beach bag with collapsible items.

best beach hacks collapsible buckets from JOYIN

Lugging heavy or bulky items can make your beach trip a hassle. Save space by bringing foldable or collapsible items like these beach buckets.

Hip Tip: Fill one of your buckets with water and use it as a hand-washing station for sandy hands.

Easily tote plastic bags for wet clothes and towels.

best beach hacks wipes container with trashbags inside and flag bathing suit in background

Fill an empty wipes container with plastic grocery bags or trash bags. This keeps bags from blowing away. Then, when you leave the beach, fill the bags with your wet clothing and towels to prevent a mess in your car.

Want sunkissed hair? Save at the salon and grab a lemon.

hand holding a bag of lemons

Squeezing lemon juice in your hair before going into the sun will supposedly give you some pretty amazing natural highlights. Consult with an experienced hairstylist beforehand – just to be sure.

Soak up some shade with a beach tent.

oileus beach tent on the beach customer review image

Protect your family from the wind or powerful UV rays with a beach tent.  Get one for the family or just your baby.

Bring a makeshift pool for smaller kids.

baby girl in blue pool in sand at beach

Make a hole in the sand, then fill this pop-up pool with ocean water using the collapsible bucket (included). There’s even a tote bag for when you’re ready to leave! This kept my daughter busy for hours while our older kids played in the ocean!

Hip Tip: Try doing the same thing with a cheap shower curtain, small tarp, or trash bag.

Use frozen aloe vera cubes to treat your sunburn.

bottles of green and clear aloe vera on store shelf

Did you come home with a pretty gnarly sunburn? Squirt some aloe vera in an ice cube tray, freeze it, then rub the cubes on your skin to soothe.

Hip Tip: You can also make (and apply) this super soothing whipped aloe vera cream!

A mesh bag leaves the beach at the beach!

stripe mesh bag hanging from target cart

Don’t bring the beach home with you. If you carry beach supplies in a mesh bottom bag, the water and some sand will fall out as you walk to the car. Use any mesh laundry bag or try this oversized mesh beach bag.

Remember your trip with a DIY souvenir!

beach hacks plaster of paris handprint souvenir from Crafting A Green World
Credit: Crafting a Green World

Use plaster of Paris to make a sandy souvenir! You’ll love having a keepsake of a handprint or footprint. Get the full DIY instructions from Crafting a Green World.

This easy 4-ingredient recipe could be your new favorite frozen summer cocktail!

About the writer:

Sara is a self-taught blogger and photographer with 8+ years of experience having work featured in various building, travel, and fashion publications, most notably Bassett Furniture and Fossil.

Join The Discussion

Comments 46

  1. babymair

    Sara,thx so much for these ideas,and the time,and effort you put into this post .. I will be using a few of these ..keep up the good work and God bless.

    • Sara

      I’m so glad this post was helpful to you! Enjoy all your trips to the beach this summer! xo, Sara

  2. Shannon

    I put lemon juice and camomile tea in a spray bottle and sprayed that in my daughters hair at the beach now she has pretty highlights. Her hair is dark blonde tho if I try to do it in my hair it makes it turn orangey. Lol

  3. MommySpendsLess

    Those phone cases come with a recommendation to test them with a paper towel inside before using with your phone. I highly recommend actually doing that. I got a two pack for our recent trip to LegoLand. I used one just for money/license/credit card (my phone was in a locker). I wore it in the lazy river and wave pool and everything stayed perfectly dry. My daughter used the second one on a water ride (tons of water splashing on us but the case was never summerged) and hers got water in it.

    • Sara

      Oh no! So sorry to hear about your daughter’s phone. Thank you for sharing your experience with us!

  4. Bunny

    The fitted sheet idea is so clever! Thanks for the tip!

    • Denise

      I tried it in Florida and it was a disaster. U need big items to keep the sheet in place.

    • Sara

      Isn’t that idea so amazing, Bunny?! Perfect for small babies too!

  5. Luna

    Great ideas and recommendations going to hit the beach with two kids and I’m so nervous about this trip. 🤪

    • Dawn

      I would recommend 3 buckets and double the toys, because some will get buried and lost. The extra bucket can carry water for the sand castle. Arm floaties are not safe, nor are kick boards. Please invest in life jackets and enforce no water without using them, you too may need to wear one because they want you safe too. Set stong rules and stick to them, we live by undercurrents, many people drown each year.

      • kmark

        **** please do not buy extra toys bc your kids are going to lose them. Keep up with your toys. Clean them up EVERY DAY at the beach. As a local at a few very popular beaches in NC, leaving toys not only pollutes but also turtles nest in the sand. Toys get in their way as do sand castles. No holes should be left as they are hazards for turtles and people at night. No toys should be left. Please clean up after yourself. Sincerely, beach locals everywhere

    • Sara

      Best of luck to you Luna! You’ve got this! Hopefully, our tips will make your life a little easier!

  6. Cate

    Don’t forget snow sleds glide on sand to. I use mine as a sand wagon.

    • Tina


    • Michele

      Nice! I have one.

    • Sara

      I did think of that and debating sharing that one, but then thought about after you’re off the sand? Would you scratch it across the pavement and all the way to your car? LOL! It’s still a great tip for sand though, thank you for sharing!

      • Chantillylace85

        Yep! My son uses a wheelchair and we use a jet sled (intended for hunting) and load him and all our belongings in it. It works perfectly! We use it in the snow, sand, through the woods- a universal form of mobility!

  7. KClee

    Another idea for a pop up pool, besides purchasing #10. A friend of mine used to get a shower curtain liner from the dollar store, dig a hole, place it in and there you have it instant kiddie pool.

    • KClee

      I see now you already had it as a hip tip…lol.

      • Sara

        Thanks for sharing your tip! I love the pop-up pool we used all summer last year, however, the shower curtain is a great idea too!

    • kmark

      Agreed. Those aloe products are FULL of alcohol as well. Very drying and not good for sunburn. You’re better off getting after sun lotion and sticking it in the fridge. Also you can buy a big leaf of real aloe at the grocery store for pretty cheap!

  8. Ashley

    I love the waterproof pouches for my phone. I always put a dollar bill in the pouch so I can tell if it’s getting wet. Never had any issues though!

    • Sara

      That’s such a great idea to test it out, Ashley, thanks for sharing that! Also, a much less expensive way to find out if it works or not. 😉

  9. Amy

    What kind of watch is that in the Pringles can?:) I love it!

    • Sara

      That would be Lina’s watch, isn’t it pretty?! She said the brand is Maurice Lacroix.

  10. Cat

    Did anyone else notice the pigs in the water under tip #1🤔? Kinda odd to swim with them. Anyhow, fun tips! Thanks

    • Sara

      That picture was likely taken at Pig Beach. It is on Big Major Cay in Exuma, Bahamas.

    • Sara

      Isn’t that so unique Cat?! You can swim with wild pigs in the Bahamas. It’s definitely on my bucket list! 😀

  11. Just A Though

    I always keep a bottle of aloe in the fridge that way it’s always cool for sunburn.

  12. laura fuller

    Purchased the waterproof cell phone case from amazon last summer for trip to Hawaii. Although it kept phone dry, I had the darndest time trying to get it to take photos or videos underwater. Not sure if issue was my phone or the case but be aware…I got nothin’ underwater!

    • Sara

      Ahh! So sorry to hear that Laura, what a bummer!

  13. Laura

    Looks like there is sand all over that beach mat.

    • tipaye

      Why wouldn’t there be? It’s polyester, so the sand shakes-off easily and it’s waterproof. The post doesn’t read that it’s sand-repellent 🙂

    • Sahreesh

      Check out thesunfort.com

      They’re out of order currently but returning in June. It’s an awesome product

  14. shop4mybabies

    I would never steal someone’s money and keys, but i would probably steal someones pringles 🙂 signed my inner fat girl (and the outer one too)

    • sunny_girls

      Lol! I had the same thought!😊

  15. Juls

    That is an awesome idea! We were JUST discussing the litte ones, wagons and going long distances down the beach. You’re a lifesaver!!!

  16. Maria

    Love the frozen aloe idea! Will definitely be using some of these tips. Would not recommend drinking from previously frozen water bottles though, I read that it can cause chemicals to leach into the water. Love frozen grapes though

  17. Dave

    Instead of the Pringles can I recommend getting one of those locking bags that you can tether to your beach chair to keep your valuables locked up and safe.

  18. Lora

    A wave swept away one of those waterproof lanyards. My family member lost his smart phone. Be careful.

  19. Sherri Wooward

    Great post! I found the information to be both informative and well-presented. Bravo.

  20. Lolly23

    I always freeze Peppermint Patties ahead of time for the beach-they are so nice and refreshing…also Hawaiian Tropic dry tanning spray in the pump bottle is great for keeping those black flies that bite away. Only had that experience once, but those flies will ruin your beach day really quick.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for these tips! I’ll have to bring some frozen Peppermint Patties to the beach on my next trip! 💕🙌

  21. Lolly23

    Oh yeah, and also I like to bring a soaking wet washcloth in a ziplock bag because somehow I always end up with sunblock in my eyes🙈

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      YES! I’ve had that happen before too! Thanks for that smart suggestion! ❤️

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