Do you know the pain of chafe at the beach? Don't worry, it's very common, but it can be a real drag and cause some considerable discomfort. Beach chafing occurs when your skin dries out, leaving only deposits of sand and salt from your sweat and the sea. In turn, these remnants cause friction which wears down the surface of your skin and chafing begins to creep in.
Here are some suggestions to help avoid chafing at the beach.
1. Rinse yourself down regularly
One of the simplest solutions to mitigating beach chafing is to take opportunities to rinse off deposits of saltwater and sand. If there are public showers available at the beach, make use of them. If there are not, bring your own water and use it to rinse yourself down periodically.
Another suggestion here is to let your swimsuit dry off completely before you undertake more activities. Wet clothes can exacerbate the friction issue and quickly cause you to chafe at the beach.
There are various products that can be helpful in reducing friction and mitigating chafing legs at the beach. Petroleum jelly and baby powder are known to have some benefits, but they are not ideal. There are specific balms designed for use on the beach, and these can be the best solution.
These balms will not be washed off by the water, and they will never leave stains on your clothing. They can be applied in common places where chafing occurs, such as the armpits, thighs and chest. You will get a water-resistant barrier for your skin that helps protect against the conditions that lead to chafing.
3. Think about clothing
Your swimsuit liners could be a big culprit in beach chafing. Sand, salt and other debris can be trapped underneath, leading to chafing in sensitive areas. That material is like a net and can even cause chafing by itself. If your swimsuit has a liner, you may want to cut it out with scissors.
Once you leave the water, put some dry clothes on to keep your skin comfortable. Your swimwear can then dry in the sun, and you won't experience irritation as you go about your other activities. Combine this with the rinsing suggestion from earlier and you should be fine.
The thighs are the most common place for chafing to occur. When you visit the beach - or anywhere else - you can wear anti-chafing bands to protect against chafing associated with your thighs rubbing together. These are very effective, made from special materials optimised to eliminate the risk of chafing. You can also get special anti-chafe swimwear to further increase your protection.
The bottom line
Chafing at the beach is no one's idea of a good time. It can happen to virtually anyone, but it doesn't have to happen to you. Follow the tips listed in this post and you will be well protected against this problem. If you are interested in a pair of tight guards, check out our guide to measuring yourself to make sure you get the right size.
Have fun at the beach!