How to Shower While Camping | 6 Top Camp Shower Tips

Proximity to nature is what makes camping great. Of course, “roughing it” means you need to live without some amenities. If your camping party will be in the wilderness for more than three days, you will want to consider how to shower while camping. Here we explore five ways to shower while camping?

General Camping Hygiene

camping hygiene

One thing everyone’s been talking about lately is hygiene. And when you’re in the woods, it should be just as important to stay clean and germ-free. The quality of your living quarters doesn’t change this need. Today we going to share some of the things you can do and items you can carry with you whenever you go out in the woods.

Carry a little bag with you if you’re away for days on end in the woods to stay fresh and clean. Your toothpaste and toothbrush should be the first things you pack. Having clean teeth in the wilderness will actually make you feel amazing.

The second thing to do when you’re out in the woods is to wash your hands and keep your face clean. It would be convenient to rinse your hands off with water every time you walk past it. This will help you feel cleaner since the water is quickly rinsing dirt off. Use all the water sources available to you, like streams, rain, and creeks, just to name a few.

You can also cleanse your face off depending on what time of year it is. Obviously, you don’t want to splash cold water on your face during the winter, but you will enjoy cleansing your face in the summer with water. Removing dirt and sweat in the summer will be refreshing and make you feel better.

The decision to wash your hair and shower depends on individual needs and lifestyle. The members of your camping group might differ on when and how much hygiene they require while in the wilderness. This is an important consideration before beginning your camping trip, make sure there is a plan for how you will shower while camping before leaving your house.

Once you are in the outdoors, remember to use biodegradable soap. This ensures you will limit the impact on nature as you maintain your hygiene routine in the wild.

Also, keep in mind that using shampoo is not mandatory, as the more you wash your hair, the more you take critical oils off your scalp. Depending on your hair type, washing your hair less frequently may have some benefits. This is especially true for people with textured hair.

Before You Start Showering

If it’s a very cold day, one of the worst things you can do is submerge yourself in the lake or stream. If something happens and you’re remote, then your temperature won’t be able to restore itself and that would just leave you in an even worse state and possibly hypothermia.

lake bathing

1. Bathing in a Lake or Stream While Camping

Bathing in a lake or a stream during the summer can be a really refreshing experience. There are products designed for camping trips that contain bio-degradable detergents, and eco-friendly soaps.

 Eco-friendly body wash and shampoo are made of biodegradable material, so you can use it in nature without harming the environment. It also helps your body feel better. I always bring this around during really hot days!

When it comes to whole-body cleansing, I prefer to use water rather than soap whenever possible because the soap can have a detrimental effect on the environment. I either take a dip in a large, clean body of water or use biodegradable soap if I have any. After coming out of the water, I dry myself using something that will decompose into the soil quickly.

When bathing in a river, it would be better not to get naked. Use a second pair of underwear (and bra) that you are going to wash later. Plus, do not jump in any new area to avoid injuring your feet, knees, or legs. Wet yourself first, and use a rag or microfiber towel to gently scrub the skin.

The shallower parts of a river are best to sit on a large rock. For the sake of those who never showered outdoors, choosing a spot that does not get too slippery at its entry or exit points is essential. In the deeper parts of a river, you can swim and wash any trace of soap off of you. If you have access to both, use the deep area first and later rinse yourself at the other one.

2. Use Baby Wipes Instead of Camp Showers

When you have limited water, the most convenient way to conserve your reserve is to use baby wipes. You can find biodegradable and disinfecting wipes both in stores and online. One tip for baby wipes, is they are useful before you go to bed.

You can just take one out and start with your cleanest parts. Before you toss it, you can use it to clean the dirtiest parts as well. In this way, you can work your way down your body until you are clean. With this accomplished, you’re ready for a good night’s sleep.

What wipes are good for replacing a camp shower?

On the market, you can find a lot of brands and types of wipes. So, here are a few tips on how to find the one that is right for you. The five main categories when it comes to these commodities are:

  1. Cost
  2. Softness
  3. Thickness
  4. Wetness
  5. Durability

Thick wipes tend to be less soft and smooth. But they are easier to handle. If the wipes are too moist, you might feel greasy after you use them. Usually, thick, wet wipes are ideal for cleaning yourself while camping.

Whether or not you can pull one out at a time can also be a critical aspect if you do not have much room, so expect to incur such a problem and inspect the item before buying it. The bigger the opening on the box, the better.

3. Hot Water for Camp Hygiene

boil camp water for hygiene

Boiling some water and using a sponge or microfiber towel, is one of the oldest ways to practice personal hygiene. During the cold season, a sponge bath with a little pot of warm water is all that it takes. But when it is warm enough outside, a better solution is to use a solar shower.

4. Using a Solar Shower

solar camping shower

This device needs to heat up in the sun before you can hang it from a branch or stump. Basically, it is a bag that holds several gallons/liters of water. Plus, it has a hoose with a mini nozzle that allows you to shower. These days, they are pretty cheap online, and you can even find them in some retail stores.

For the best results, get a black solar shower. Do not choose any other color because the black coating makes it easier to heat up quicker. As soon as you have one, you only have to fill it with water and let it sit in the sun. Usually for less than a couple of hours if the sky is clear. The bag should have an inbuilt thermometer to let you check how hot the water is.

Setting Up A Solar Shower

When ready, you put it in place, twist the nozzle, and shower. Each solar shower allows one person to bathe. But if one full bag is not enough, you will have to either buy another or wash different parts at a time. Of course, you can combine it with a sponge bath and use the solar shower to rinse yourself.

Always remember to get all the air out before you let the solar shower get warm. A few air bubbles will not cause problems, but too much air will create an air pocket. As a result, the bag will not heat the water very well.

Some of the better solar showers have temperature gauges built into them to tell how hot the water is before you start your shower. This is a great gadget to help answer how to shower camping.

5. Rainwater

During summertime, showering in the rain is a nice experience. But rainwater is also useful if you like to camp in remote areas. In fact, the unavailability of water sources may prevent you from bathing in a river or boil water for a sponge bath. As no store could be nearby for you to get baby wipes, collecting rainwater may be the only option that remains.

The best way to collect rainwater is to use a bucket and a tarp. Also, four metallic posts to place the tarp in the open would help gather more water. Put loops on each tarp corner and hang them from some branches or your posts. Make sure to stretch the tarp in the back and place the front posts closer to make the tarp dip in the center. Roughly, you will need a bucket per person. But remember to place the tarp somewhere safe if you need to change the bucket during a storm. If you store the water for more than six hours, it is advisable to boil it before using it.

6. Portable Camp Shower

portable camp shower

If you can afford this gadget, your camping experience will change dramatically. You can buy several types of camping showers, including:

  • Gas heating showers
  • Electric shower pumps with rechargeable batteries
  • Gravity camping showers
  • Pressure showers with a foot pump system

You can find many options online, so you might want to shop for the one that suits your lifestyle the most.

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