School has ended, temperatures are soaring and summer vacation is finally here. Whether you’re traveling to the beach, camping or just hanging around home and enjoying the nice weather, we’ve complied a fantastic list of summer must haves. Don’t go thinking we compiled just a list of get wet or beach items. This list includes essential items to protect from the sun, the bugs and to ensure a fun summer is had by all. We can assure you that this list will be far from a disappointment no matter where your summer adventures take you.

UPF 50+ Sun, Beach, & Boat Hat by Swimlids

A must-have for both kids–and yourself and spouse!–is a hat offering adequate sun protection. When it comes to summer  you also need something waterproof and snug fitting for all those outdoor activities. And Swimlids UPF 50+ hats fit the bill!

Swimlids are a line of baseball caps made from 80% Nylon and 20% Spandex. This blend of fabric means they fit great and stay on–even while your child runs and plays or while you’re out sailing on a windy day. They also dry quickly so they’re the perfect hat for you and your child to wear into the water. Moms with long hair will appreciate the secure fit which can hold up hair like a swim cap if you want to keep your hair dry. Swimlids come in sizes ranging from small for babies under 1 all the way to XL for adults. There’s a size for everyone in your family, and also a color for every style.

Choose from bright, rich colors like hot pink (pictured), royal blue (pictured), lime green, bright orange, deep purple, or black. (Choosing a bright color for children can help make them easier to spot in crowded beaches and pools). Moms will also appreciate the Swimlid with a ponytail hole available in the adult size (XL). Swimlids are easily packable and can be thrown in with the rest of your beach or pool gear so whichever style you choose, be sure to get everyone in your family (including yourself!) this great UPF 50+ hat!

Polarized Junior Sunglasses from Babiators

You made the switch to polarized sunglasses after reading Merging Sunglass Style with Practicality long ago, but have you considered your kiddo’s eyes, too? Now even the tiniest eyes in the house can lose the glare and keep the style with Polarized Babiators. These Limited Edition glasses feature a polarized lens inside the most popular Babiator frames. Plus, as an added bonus, you also get a sweet Cloud Case included, to keep your sunnies looking brand new, and as rad as the first day they got them. 

The Polarized Babiators feature:

  • GUARANTEED against loss or breakage for 1 year
  • Durable and flexible (not to mention, stylish!) rubber frames
  • 100% UVA and UVB protection from harmful sun rays
  • Polarized lenses to reduce harsh sun glare
  • Babiators Cloud sunglasses case complete with purchase

Anti-UV Tent by Babymoov

Summer means lots of fun in the sun. Whether you are spending the day at a pool, a beach, a park, or in your own backyard, sunshine can also mean harmful UV rays. Carry a feather-light and convenient shade with you for your children with this Anti-UV Tent from Babymoov. This Anti- UV Tent blocks up to 99% of all UVA and UVB rays, and it provides the perfect little hideaway for a hot summer day! At 2lb 12oz, this tent is so light you can easily carry it with you wherever you go. 

A brilliant feature of this Anti-UV tent by Babymoov is that it only takes three seconds to set up and take down with its pop-up system. It also features ventilated velcro mesh closures and a mesh window in back that keeps your child safe from insect bites while still allowing them to look around. We love the Anti-UV Tent, which protects babies from sun, sand and wind. Be sure to check out the demo video!


Anti-UV Tent


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Bug Smarties by One Step Ahead

Bug spray stinks, but it’s a necessary evil if you plan to spend any time outdoors this summer, or is it? One Step Ahead now offers a new line of kid’s summer clothing called Bug Smarties designed to be comfy, lightweight, kid-friendly and bug repellent! 

These functional and stylish Insect Shield pieces are effective at repelling mosquitoes, ticks, ants, flies, chiggers and midges (also known as no-see-ums). Insect Shield apparel and gear products combine One Step Ahead’s patent-pending Insect Shield process with a proprietary formulation of the insect repellent permethrin —resulting in a tested and proven odorless insect protection that lasts the expected lifetime of a garment (roughly 70 washes). You can dress your child in them knowing that they are completely safe and EPA registered.

What we love about this clothing is that the built-in insect protection stays on the clothes and not on our children’s skin. As an added bonus, these clothes are quite adorable. Among this line, you’ll find performance tops and bottoms that are great for active children, as well as lightweight hoodies and leggings that are perfect for outdoor play. Also available are crew neck shirts and roll up pants for boys. 

Whatever you choose, you’ll find that these pieces are made of soft and easy to move in fabrics that your kids will be comfortable in. Insect Shield apparel is easy to care for clothing, just like any other play outfit that you have for your kids.  The only difference is that these clothes will keep the bugs away! And for that reason alone, Bug Smarties are a must have this summer!

Butterbean Sunscreen

You need to be conscious and make sure that you have good sunscreen year round.  However, it holds even more importance in the summer, when you spend more time outside.  Butterbean sunscreen is one of those products that you can rely on for protection.  Their products are naturally sourced and healthy for both people and the planet.  It’s unrefined, certified organic, and fair trade oils impart antioxidant rich protection to your skin.  Their sunscreens use food grade organic coconut oil for added health and moisturizing benefits.  The local beeswax adds a touch of sweetness and the pleasant subtle aroma smells good enough to eat.

Butterbean sunscreens are zinc oxide based which work by sitting on top of the skin, scattering and reflecting UV rays.  They  use a non-nano sized particle Zinc Oxide above 100 nm, which has been scientifically proven to not get absorbed into the skin.  This makes it much safer for children.  Butterbean sunscreens are third party tested to ensure an SPF of 30.  Aside from the original formula sunscreen, they also offer a Good Sun Sport Stick which provides safe, effective, and convenient sun protection coupled with recyclable, sustainable, and biodegradable packaging.  You can toss it in a beach bag or backpack for any fun in the sun adventure. It’’s perfect for using on the nose, face, and ears, as well as anywhere else you please. Rest assured that you are using a great quality sunscreen. Butterbean Sunscreen has been recognized for safety and effectiveness by well know leaders of healthy living, such as Livestrong.


Butterbean Sunscreen


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ciao! baby portable high chair

In the summer, you do everything outside: picnics at the pool, family reunions, birthday parties, movies at the park, days at the beach — anything and everything! But when you have a small child, this can be tricky. You certainly can’t lug a high chair around, and those portable booster seats just aren’t ideal for al fresco dining. Luckily, the folks at ciao! baby came up with a practical solution to this problem: the portable high chair. This “go-anywhere” chair is lightweight and easily foldable, reminiscent of those chairs parents use at their kids’ soccer games. Functionally speaking, this chair has it all: a built-in cup holder for sippy cups and a clear vinyl tray for dining. If you have a messy eater, have no fear: the vinyl fabric is easy to clean: simply wipe the chair with soapy water and air dry!

For safety, the chair locks firmly into place once set up; it also features a lap belt to keep your child secure. If you’re concerned about your babe getting too much sun while dining outside, ciao! baby sells a clip-on umbrella with UV-lined fabric for extra protection. And, as its name suggests, you can truly take this chair anywhere. Weighing a mere 8 pounds, it’s super lightweight — and comes with a carry bag for simple storage and maximum portability. Kids up to 3 can use this chair, too, so you’ll get a lot of use out of it!

Geleeo Self-Cooling Stroller Pad

A walk in the park on a summer day might seem like the perfect way to get some fresh air for mom or dad, but your baby is probably not enjoying it nearly as much as you might think. Babies and toddlers have a harder time regulating their body temperature than adults. In fact, your baby, strapped securely in the stroller may be roasting and you don’t even know it. 

Therefore, with our children’s comfort and safety in mind, we can think of no other product that is more needed this summer than the Geleeo 

Geleeo, invented and designed by a parent, for parents, to prevent children from becoming overheated in their strollers, provides an effective outdoor cooling method without the use of a fan, ice or other traditional techniques. Inside the liner, a proprietary hydrogel provides a constant, gentle and soothing cooling sensation so your child stays cool and comfortable in their stroller.  It requires no prior refrigeration, freezing or energy consumption and is the most revolutionary, convenient, and eco-friendly way to keep your children cool outdoors.  And, one double-sided pad can be repeatedly used for heat dissipation on a daily basis. 

Now kids can enjoy being outdoors without sitting in a puddle of sweat using this low maintenance, high performance, and long lasting outdoor cooling product. 




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Add-It-Up! Archery Set

Beat the summer slump with Lakeshore Toys, a company dedicated to creating innovative educational materials that spark young imaginations, instill a sense of wonder and foster a lifelong love of learning. Sounds ambitious — but these toys are seriously cool! Peruse the catalog and you’ll find a house-building set, giant roller ramps, fishing games and tower puzzles, all aimed to educate kids in a fun, meaningful and hands-on way. When asked what their favorite “subject” in school is, most kids will say “recess,” while citing “math” as one of their least favorites. That’s what makes the Add-It-Up! Archery Set so genius — it’s a fun, outside game that integrates numbers in the most seamless, applicable way. Kids will love getting their Katniss/Robin Hood on, practicing their archery skills while “taking aim” at addition.

If safety is a concern for you, it shouldn’t be: the flexible, child-sized plastic bow and lightweight, suction-cup arrows are designed to be completely kid-safe. The set includes 4 arrows, bow, quiver, target and stand, and is super simple to disassemble for storage. This would make a great outdoor activity this summer — or a fun, rainy-day addition to a game/play room!

Kid’s Travel Gear By Trunki

Summer is here, which means traveling and vacations mixed among sleepovers and weekends at Grammie and Grandpa’s. If your kids will be on the go this summer, they must have all the essential travel gear they need for carting clothes and toys back and forth, for comfort in the car or on a plane, and for keeping their belongings safe and dry while cooling off in sprinklers and kiddie pools. Trunki is here to provide your kids with some summer must-haves that are perfect for traveling.

Trunki is known and loved for their unique ride-on kids suitcase, and now that they are offering a few brand-new designs, the fun gets even better! Check out the Trunki Bronco, perfect for your lassoing cowboys and brave sheriffs who can now travel from Texas to Montana with all their gear rounded up. This durable and lightweight plastic 4.75 gal capacity suitcase can carry clothes, shoes, and toys, as well as your kid! You can either hold the suitcase by the handle or the shoulder strap, or attach the towing strap to the Trunki Bronco making it easy to pull behind you through busy airport terminals. What’s even better is that the Trunki is designed to be a ride-on suitcase, so your travel-weary companion can hop on and ride his Bronco to the next stop.

Now that your child is packed up, they must start the journey to wherever they’re headed this summer. Regardless of mode of transportation, inevitable naps are bound to happen, so let your kid snooze in comfortable style with Trunki’s Dino Dudley Yondi. This dinosaur friend microbead-filled travel pillow gently wraps around your child’s neck and connects under their chin with hidden magnets, providing support and comfort while sleeping. There’s also a Trunki Grip attached which is perfect for holding a security blanket or special toy.

You’ve made it to your summer destination, and chances are there will be a bit of water play there. If your kid straps on Trunki’s Clown Fish PaddlePak, then they are prepared for a wet, fun-filled day. This water-resistant, super fun, and bright backpack is designed to hold all kinds of essentials (wet or dry), without letting water in or out. Use it to carry a change of dry clothing or use it as a wet bag for damp swimsuits, and there’s no fear of water getting where you don’t want it.  

Enjoy your summer travels, and make them happier, easier, and more comfortable with Trunki’s must-have summer travel gear! 


Trunki | PaddlePak | Yondi


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Now that you have checked out our Summer Must Haves for Kids, be sure to check out all of our other guides. Our Nest category will help you stay up to date on all the latest and greatest essentials through the Holidays and year round.


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