Guide To Essential Camping Hygiene

When you’re out in the great outdoors and away from the creature comforts of home, your hygiene seems to suffer. Without access to your luxury beauty products or hot, running water, you’re more likely to get smelly and dirty fast, so we’ve compiled some tips on personal hygiene while camping and staying clean outdoors.

How Do You Keep Clean While Camping?

Always have hand sanitizer during your camping trip to keep your hands germ-free, especially when handling food. In addition, a camping hygiene kit that includes biodegradable wipes, a microfiber towel, enough moisture-wicking clothes, biodegradable shampoo, biodegradable soap, and a toothbrush. For female campers bring feminine hygiene products if necessary.

What Are Some Camping Hygiene Hacks?

Spending time outdoors for several days with less access to water to clean oneself can be a downer. To ensure this doesn’t take away from the experience, explore these tips and tricks for staying fresh during your outdoor adventure.

Pack Some Wipes

A simple tip for good personal hygiene while camping comes from a pack of biodegradable wipes. These can be used to give yourself a quick once-over when you’re unable to go to the bath, or some might find them useful after a trip to the outdoor toilet. Be sure to pack your wipes away when you’re done, as they can be extremely damaging to the environment, and store used ones in a zip-lock bag and keep them with you until you can dispose of them properly.

Baby wipes

Choose The Best Spot To Go

Although it’s not the most enjoyable part of camping, it’s a necessity, so finding the right place to use for bathroom breaks is essential. According to the REI, go at least 200 feet away from your campsite. Find a site with good access to ample sunlight and soft fertile soil, as this will help you cover up. When you’re done, remember to clean up after yourself and make sure there’s no trace left behind.

Swab Yourself

One of the biggest risks of camping comes from the bacteria that can build up on our skin, and some areas are more worrisome than others. Some campers might like to carry a few cotton balls and a bottle of hydrogen peroxide to keep themselves clean. Simply dab the balls in the peroxide and use it under your arms, on palms, face, feet, and groin. These are areas of high bacteria growth and the peroxide can help prevent it from spreading.

Carry Some Hand Sanitizer

Hand sanitizer is one of the simplest things you can pack to keep yourself healthy and hygienic. A handy little bottle that fits in your backpack will do. When you don’t have access to running water, these are great for bathroom trips or if you’ve been preparing food and want to clean your hands. They aren’t ideal as the only source of hygiene, though, so when given the chance, be sure to clean yourself under running water with soap.

Hand sanitizer

Pack Enough Clothes

When packing your bag, aim to pack two outfits a day so that you‘re not smelly and putting everyone off the campsite. Choose loose-fitting and comfortable clothes that are less likely to cause sweating and smell, and if presented with a chance to wash some clothes along the way, then you should do so.

Get Into Nature’s Bath

The best way to get clean when you’re camping is to have a bath in a natural body of water, so if you’re given the opportunity to do so you should take it. Some find they pass water on a hike, and even though it might not be time for a bath you should grab the opportunity when you can. Be careful not to wash with harsh soap and ensure you’re using running and clean water. Never bathe in stagnant water, though, as this can be full of harmful bacteria and diseases.

Bring Water For Washing

Unless your campsite has access to water facilities, most campers will be fully prepared with their water supply. You should also factor in how much you’ll need to wash clothes and yourself, as some people seem to forget this importance. If you can get cheaper water in bulk then use this for your washing as it doesn’t need to be the highest quality for drinking, but just enough so that you can create a makeshift washing machine with a tub and some mild detergent.

Keep The Smells Away

Some people assume that being hygienic means smelling good, but when you’re out camping you don’t want any overpowering scents around. Not only can be they be annoying to those you’re camping with, but they can attract insects and animals to your campsite. Use mild deodorants, soaps, and washing powders and leave the perfume at home for your return.

Store Waste Correctly

Observing good hygiene while camping should be equally important as taking care of the environment around your campsite. Everything you consume or use needs to be stored away correctly so it doesn’t create a stench. Keep waste in a sealed bag and cover any mess that you might make on a bathroom trip.

The aim is to leave no trace behind, and this is especially important when you think of the smell it might leave.

Garbage bag tied to a tree

Bring A Portable Shower

Although it might be considered a luxury for some, having a portable device to shower when camping is the easiest way to ensure that you are smelling good and feeling clean. Portable showers can be connected to just about any water supply whether it’s a fresh body of water, a tap, or filtered water you’ve bought from home. Give everyone a designated time limit for showers, like one or two minutes each, and you’ll ensure that everyone stays clean and smelling their best on the trip.