Sandcastle building, swimming, and lounging in the sun: a beach trip is truly summer at its best. Don’t let your next trip bum you out, though: we’ve got ways to make sure you stay cool, protect your assets and even keep sand out of your car (well, kinda). Click through the gallery for 15 ideas that will make your next trip to the beach so much easier.

Sand Sifter

Heading surfside means toting the gear your kids will need for sand castle construction, burying siblings, making beach art, and other fun games, but when it’s time to pack up and ship out, the bottom of your bag looks like the beach came along for the ride. Not anymore, thanks to The Idea Room's sweet hack. Putting all of the toys in a mesh laundry basket gives dried sand an escape route, and there’s major bonus points for being big enough to pack your kiddo’s entire supply of beach toys.

photo: Amy Huntley via The Idea Room

Do you have any beach hacks to share? Tell us in a comment below!

—Natasha Davis & Amber Guetebier