Having a baby during the summer comes with its own challenges. Parents must ensure they have all the summer baby essentials on hand to keep their baby comfortable and happy.
The biggest challenge during the summer is to keep your baby at a comfortable temperature. Babies have trouble regulating their body temperature, so they must be dressed properly. You also need protection from the sun; infants six months old can wear sunscreen, but younger infants need to stay out of the sun as much as possible.
Let’s not forget all the fun things you need to hit the pool, beach, and lake when the temperatures soar.
So, to help you have an incredible summer with your little one, here’s our list of summer baby gear to have on hand, from sunscreen to portable highchairs and everything in between.
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Summer Baby Essentials
Sunscreen is a must-have summer baby essential. Babies’ sensitive skin can be easily burned if they are not properly protected from the sun’s rays. Luckily, there are lots of great products designed to keep your little one safe while they enjoy being outdoors.
When choosing a sunscreen for your baby, it is important to look for one that is designed specifically for their delicate skin. Generally, you should choose a mineral sunscreen or a mineral-based product that contains zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These ingredients provide broad-spectrum protection and are less likely to cause irritation than chemical sunscreens. Additionally, you should look for a product that has an SPF of at least 30 or higher and water resistance of 40 minutes or more.
It is also important to remember that sunscreen should only be used on babies six months and older, as younger babies can have an adverse reaction to some ingredients found in the product. When applying sunscreen on your baby, make sure to avoid the eyes and mouth area, which can be extra sensitive to chemicals found in many products. Also, make sure to reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating heavily.
Taking these precautions will help ensure your little one has fun in the sun while staying safe from any harmful UV rays.
An excellent option for baby sunscreen is Babyganics SPF 50 Sunscreen Lotion. It has thousands of positive ratings from zinc oxide and titanium oxide. You’ll find that it’s free of harmful chemicals like parabens and nanoparticles and affordable!
2. Baby Sun Hat
All babies need a wide-brimmed sun hat when spending time outside. It protects their heads, face, and eyes from dangerous UV rays. Whether your baby is splashing in the pool or riding in their stroller, having a hat belongs among the top summer baby essentials.
Ideally, look for a sun hat made with quick-dry materials. You’ll spend time in the water and want hats that won’t take long to dry after a dip in the pool.
Parents love iPlay Sun Hats because they have a flap on the back of the neck to protect their skin. Plus, they come in a range of colors.
Keeping sunglasses on your baby may be challenging, but if your baby keeps them on, they are great for their eyes. Sun rays damage everyone’s eyes, and since your baby’s eyes are still developing, it’s even more important to keep them covered.
Grab a pair of sunglasses with a strap on the back to keep the pair on their face a bit easier.
4. Baby Swimsuit
When the temperature starts to rise, it’s time to break out the baby swimwear. Whether it’s a trip to the beach or just a dip in the pool, we recommend having at least two quality swimsuits for your little one’s comfort and safety.
Choosing a good baby swimsuit can be daunting due to all the options available. One-piece suits are great for younger babies as they provide more coverage and protection from the sun. Rash guards are also a great option for infants. Rash guard for infants sets come with built-in UPF protection which is great for sun safety and provide extra coverage from sand and dirt. As your child grows older, they may prefer two-piece options such as bikinis or board shorts that allow them more freedom of movement while still providing adequate coverage.
In addition to style and fit, look for baby swimwear made of quality materials like UPF-rated fabrics that help protect your baby’s delicate skin from harmful UV rays. It’s also important to make sure there are no loose strings or buttons that could potentially become choking hazards.
No matter what type of swimwear you choose, make sure it fits properly, provides adequate sun protection and is comfortable enough for your little one’s playtime activities. With these key features in mind, you’re sure to find the perfect piece of swimwear for your summer baby!
5. Swim Diapers
Swimming also means you need swim diapers; parents have two options: disposable or cloth. Some public pools or waterparks have a specific requirement one way or the other, so before leaving your house, it’s a smart idea to call and ask. You don’t want to arrive at the pool only to realize cloth swim diapers aren’t acceptable.
In fact, some swim schools require disposable and cloth diapers with the cloth diaper over the disposable! It’s a wise idea to have both.
Reusable swim diapers are washable and simply catch any poop that may escape. They come in a few sizes; get a pair with snaps rather than Velcro. Those are more durable. It’s hard to beat the iPlay Snap Reusable Swim Diapers with 50 SPF protection; it comes in various sizes and colors.
Disposable swim diapers don’t catch urine either; it’s a common misconception that parents discover when accidentally putting on a swim diaper rather than a disposable diaper. Urine leaks right through, but they stop poop from escaping.
Most big-name diaper brands offer disposable swim diapers. One of the most popular is Pampers Splashers!
A popular choice, widely found in supermarkets and online, Huggies Little Swimmer offer everything that babies need and parents want in a swim diaper. From built-in leak guards that offer excellent protection against diaper explosions to a great fit, these budget friendly swim diapers are our top pick for disposable swim diapers!
6. Swim Float
Baby floats are an essential item for summer fun with your little one. Not only do they provide safe and secure pool playtime, but they also give baby a chance to relax in the water. Floats come in all shapes and sizes, from simple inflatable donuts to more elaborate designs with sun shades, toys and drinks holders – so you can pick something that both you and your little one love.
When shopping for a baby float, it’s important to make sure it has safety features like leg holes or a seat belt so your baby won’t slip out. You should also look for models made from non-toxic materials that won’t irritate baby’s skin. And check that the float is age-appropriate – some are designed specifically for babies aged 6 months or older while others are suitable from birth.
For extra peace of mind, look for a float with extra buoyancy supports such as air chambers or foam panels. That way you can be sure your baby will stay afloat at all times while they’re having fun in the sun! So why not get ready for summer with a great new baby float? It’ll help keep your little one safe and sound while they enjoy lots of fun watery adventures!
It’s also important to remind parents that a swim float is not something you should leave your baby unattended. These are meant to be used alongside parents as a way to free up their arms and give babies some splashing fun.
This inflatable pool ring comes with straps to safely hold your infant into the float and a sun canopy. It’s for ages 3 to 36 months.
7. Water Shoes
Water shoes are a must-have for the summer if your baby is walking. Walking on the sand at the beach is hot and may burn your baby’s feet. Likewise, walking around a pool may have rocks or other items that will hurt your baby.
These non-slip water shoes are an excellent choice for boys and girls, perfect for the beach, the pool, or the lake.
8. Beach Towels
You’ll also want to have at least one beach towel for your baby this summer. Regular towels you have at home work great, but this hooded cotton beach towel is utterly adorable!
9. Wet Bag
Have you ever gone swimming and realized you have nowhere to put your wet swimsuit? If you put them in your towel in a bag, the bag gets wet.
That’s when you need a wet bag.
A wet bag holds anything wet, and it’s made with waterproof materials to keep wetness inside of the bag. These bags are great for swimsuits or diaper explosions. If you use cloth diapers – regular or swim – having a wet bag is a great idea for traveling and on-the-go use.
10. Muslin Baby Blanket
Muslin is a breathable cotton material, perfect for the summertime. These blankets work great for swaddling, but they are versatile and belong in every parent’s arsenal of items.
Use a muslin baby blanket as a stroller blanket or a stroller cover when out and about; they work great for outdoor nap times. The breathability makes this an excellent option for a nursing cover. Toss it over your shoulder, and it’ll cover anything while still allowing a breeze to reach your baby.
11. Lightweight Baby Clothes
In the summer, it’s best to dress your baby in lightweight summer clothes. Babies have difficulty regulating their temperature, so a newborn is comfortable dressed in one more layer than you. An infant who is older than six to eight weeks old is comfortable in the same layers as you; their temperature regulation ability increases with age.
Cotton is a fantastic material for baby clothes. It’s breathable and allows air to circulate around your infant.
The last thing you want is for your baby to get too overheated. When babies are too warm, it increases the risk of SIDs.
12. Cotton Baby Sleepers
Blankets are a no-go for infants since they pose a suffocation hazard. Grab some cotton baby sleepers to keep your baby covered during sleep time.
13. Lightweight Baby Carrier
A baby carrier is a must-have at all times of the year, but picking the right one during the summer is a bit harder. You don’t want anything that will be too hot when carrying your infant.
Ringslings are ideal for a lightweight baby carrier because they are typically made with a breathable linen or cotton blend. They use minimal layers and fabric, making it breezy for you. However, a ring sling is ideal for smaller infants rather than older and heavier infants and toddlers.
Soft-structured carriers are preferred by many parents, but all the layers make them hotter than other styles. So we recommend choosing a baby carrier with a mesh panel in the front for more air circulation.
You also may want a mesh baby carrier for swimming. These are affordable and great for hitting up the pool with a baby who may not feel comfortable in a float yet.
Check out our top recommendations in our best baby carriers for hot weather guide!
The Ergo 360 is an all in one carrier that grows with your baby from newborn to toddler (0-48 months; 7-45lbs). From forward facing in to forward facing out, hip and back carry it's hard to go past the versatility of this baby carrier!
We love it for forward facing baby wearing as it is easy to adjust and provides head & neck support for your baby. This is in additional to the padded lumbar back support and extra padded shoulder straps that provide maximum comfort.
The Omni 360 is so incredible for warm weather because it's made with soft, durable mesh fabric that keeps both you and your baby cool. It also has a detachable storage pouch and a UPF 50+ baby hood for sun protection and privacy.
Strollers are an essential item for any parent of a baby during the summer. Whether you are taking them out for a walk, or just need to move them around quickly, strollers are one of the most versatile tools in any parent’s arsenal. Plus, there is something so adorable about seeing your little one in a stroller with their tiny feet dangling over the edge!
When selecting a stroller, there are several factors you should take into consideration. Safety is always paramount – make sure whatever stroller you choose has a five-point safety harness, and it can recline to ensure your baby’s comfort. Look for features like adjustable handles and brakes that will make pushing and steering your stroller easier and more comfortable for you. And don’t forget about storage – look for a stroller that has plenty of room underneath to store things like diaper bags and extra blankets.
Finally, remember that the summer months can get hot, so pick a stroller with breathable fabric and UV protection from the sun. This will help keep your little one safe from the heat while they ride in style! With so many different styles and designs available, finding the perfect stroller for your summer baby should be easy!
Check out these stroller guides to help you find the perfect stroller for you and your baby:
- Best beach strollers for sand
- Best 3 wheeler strollers
- Best hiking strollers
- Best bassinet strollers
- Best umbrella strollers
- Best all terrain strollers
15. Insulated Sippy Cups
An insulated sippy cup is another summer baby essential. Stainless steel insulated cups will keep your baby’s drinks cold while at the park playing.
16. Cooling Towels
All families need a set of cooling towels. These are versatile items you’ll find plenty of ways to use in the summer.
Cooling towels stay cool for hours after you initially wet them. They snap and cool, so you don’t have to keep wetting them down.
Put one around your toddler’s neck while playing at the park, or wipe your baby’s face while relaxing at the beach. Place a towel between your infant and your torso while babywearing to stay cool and relaxed.
As your kids get older, they are great for spring and summertime sports!
17. Stroller Fan
A stroller fan keeps your baby cool and comfortable while riding in the stroller or wagon. Keeping your baby at a comfortable temperature means staying with a happier baby wherever you are.
Everyone knows a happier baby means you enjoy your time more!
Later, a stroller fan works on a treadmill, desk, or bike, so you’ll find plenty of ways to use these. If you head to Disney for vacation or the beach, I suggest having one with you.
Here are my top picks for the best stroller fans.
SkyGenius is a lightweight, portable fan that you can use on your stroller or anywhere else you need it, including in the car or attached to a table. It's quiet, operating at less than 40 dB even at the highest speed.
Parents love the SkyGenius because not only does it operate from 6 to 40 hours (depending on your settings) but it also comes with a thick, sturdy clip that fits surfaces up to 2.5 inches wide. The soft pads keep the clip in place while protecting the surface you attach it.
It is powered by two rechargeable batteries that can be recharged via a USB connection. It takes four hours to charge with a USB cord fully.
This fan rotates through 350 degrees, so the air flows in almost all directions. In addition, there is an auto-oscillation feature that operates at a 90-degree angle.
18. Car Shades for Windows
Many newer vehicles have car shades built into the windows, making parents’ lives a bit easier. They retract inside the door and pull up, hooking onto the top of the door.
However, if your vehicle doesn’t have built-in shades, you’ll need to add car shades for your car windows. All you need is a pack of window shades that cling to the glass, making them easy to use. They’ll work for side windows or the rear window; pay attention to where the sun typically comes in and hits your baby.
19. Car Noggle
Getting into a vehicle when it’s hot outside is miserable for all, including your baby. Most vehicles have air vents in the back, but that doesn’t mean your baby has good enough airflow. Remember, overheating is never a good thing for an infant.
The Car Noggle fixes this problem. It redirects air from the front of the vehicle into the back, cooling down your infant. You don’t need any tools to connect it to your air vents; it only takes 30 seconds to get it set up and ready for use!
20. Portable High Chair
A portable high chair is a handy item to have during the summertime. Use it while at the park when it’s time for lunch, or take it camping with you. You’ll need it for all the meal times then.
The Summer Pop ‘N Sit Portable Booster Seat works indoors and outdoors for babies six months to 4 years old. It folds compactly, and you can use it on a chair or on the ground with its legs.
21. Outdoor Baby Dome
This is a handy item when you have babies during summertime. It’s a multi-purpose dome that works as a playpen, a tent, and a safe sleeping space while on the go outside.
The dome includes a tent over the top to protect your baby from the sun’s rays, giving much-needed shade during the summer. Setting it up is easy and requires no tools, and when you are done, it folds down and fits into the handy carrying case.
22. Outdoor Blanket
An outdoor blanket is a water-resistant blanket you can take with you anywhere. It gives you a clean, safe space to lay your baby outside to relax. When you’re done, fold the blanket up and keep it in your vehicle.
Having an outdoor blanket is a summer must-have. They work for the beach, lake trips, camping, and more. You’ll find many reasons to use it when the weather is nice.
23. Insect Repellent
When it comes to summer baby must haves, insect repellent certainly makes the list. Whether you’re taking your little one to the park or the beach, there will no doubt be plenty of pesky bugs around. So, it’s important to make sure you have some insect repellent handy to keep your baby safe and comfortable.
When choosing an insect repellent for your baby, it’s important to look for one that won’t irritate their skin or make them feel uncomfortable. Some natural ingredients like citronella can be great for keeping away mosquitos and other bugs, but if you’re looking for something stronger then there are plenty of DEET-based products on the market too. It’s also worth checking the label carefully to make sure that the product is suitable for babies – some of them might not be suitable until they reach a certain age.
It’s also worth noting that when using any kind of insect repellent on your baby, you should always apply it as directed and avoid getting it near their eyes, nose or mouth. It’s best to apply it sparingly too – just enough to provide protection without feeling overly greasy or sticky on their skin. That way, they’ll stay comfortable while still being protected from any nasty bug bites!
24. Baby Pool
A great item to add to your summer baby checklist is a baby pool. Not only is it a great way to keep your little one cool during the hot summer days, but it also provides them with loads of fun!
When shopping for a baby pool, there are a few things to consider. First and foremost, safety should be your priority. Make sure the pool you pick is made of durable materials that are free from sharp edges and toxic chemicals. Additionally, a childproof fence or gate should be installed around the pool, if water is to remain in it after use, to ensure that children can’t enter without supervision.
The size of the pool should also be taken into consideration; too small and your little one won’t have enough room to move around and explore, while too large may not fit in your yard space or budget. There are many different shapes and sizes available on the market, so make sure to explore all of your options before making a purchase.
Once you have found the perfect baby pool for your family, don’t forget about all of the fun accessories you can get such as floating toys, dive sticks and goggles! These items will provide hours of entertainment for your little one and help them stay cool throughout those hot summer days.
25. Summer-Friendly Toys
When it comes to summer baby items, toys are a must-have. Not only do they help keep your little one entertained outdoors, but they can also provide an opportunity for them to learn and grow. From water tables to outdoor playhouses, there are plenty of ways to make sure your baby is having fun while staying safe in the sun.
One great summer-friendly toy is a water table. Water tables are easy to assemble and provide hours of entertainment for your baby. They’re also great for teaching them about cause and effect as they explore with their hands or splash with toys in the water. You can even add food coloring or bubbles to the water for added fun!
No matter what type of toy you choose for your baby this summer, make sure it’s age-appropriate and provides plenty of opportunities for learning and exploration. With the right toys in tow, both you and your little one will be ready to make the most out of summertime fun!
26. Nursery Fan
A nursery fan is a type of fan that is designed to be used in a nursery or baby’s room. It is typically smaller in size than a regular fan and may have special features such as a remote control, adjustable speed settings, and a timer function to help create a comfortable and safe environment for the baby.
A nursery fan is typically used to circulate air and keep the baby’s room at a comfortable temperature. It can be used during the daytime or nighttime to help keep the baby cool and comfortable, especially during the hot summer weather.
Additionally, a nursery fan can also be used to create a soothing white noise that can help calm and lull the baby to sleep. Some parents also use a nursery fan to create a consistent background noise to help block out other sounds that may disturb the baby’s sleep.
It’s also worth mentioning that some pediatricians recommend using a fan to help reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) by creating a cool and well-ventilated room for the baby to sleep.
You can learn more in our best fans for nursery guide.
The Vornadobaby Breesi Nursery Air Circulator Fan has been built specifically with babies in mind!
This fan allows you to circulate and cool all the air around baby up to 9.5 times each hour with Vornado’s signature Vortex Action. The gentle circulation pattern means baby never catches too strong of a breeze, yet benefits from the constant circulation.
And the pivoting design allows for directional airflow, while two speed settings provide excellent control of baby’s environment.
It also comes with a bunch of safety features such as finger friendly design with no pinch points or sharp edges, a topple-resistant wide base, and hidden cord storage. As well as a child proof lock switch.
Final Thoughts on Summer Baby Must Haves
Summertime with a baby is a fantastic time, however it’s important to make sure your baby is safe and comfortable in the warmer weather.
Just remember, you should always keep an eye on them when they’re in the sun and water, and use appropriate protection such as sunscreen, insect repellent, and a sunshade to help protect their delicate skin.
We hope this summer baby essentials list has been helpful in helping you to prepare for a fantastic summer with your little one. And if you’re looking for more great baby guides, then check out these guides on minimalist baby registry, what to stock up on before baby arrives, preparing for baby checklist, and baby items starting with a to z checklist. Or even my 6 month old must haves checklist!