If you are hiking for any length of time get used to not being as clean as you usually would like. While you need to clean yourself all over from time to time, areas such as hands, the face, armpits and groin are areas that will need more regular cleaning.
For the past 5 years we been using a body washing system, thanks to the recommendation of a friend, which is about as simple as it gets.
One thing to note here is that while using this method will make you feel much better, and in the short term make you smell better, that doesn’t last long. I find on long distance trips that even after leaving a town having had a shower and having washed and dried my clothes in a machine I smell within a couple of hours of walking. The good thing is that so does everyone else!
Toilet facilities typical of the campsites on the Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail. These toilets are large enough to strip off and wash yourself. Alternatively if the weather is really bad, you may have to bathe yourself in your tent
My Body washing kit which includes:
Just add a small amount of water to the ziplock bag and a few drops of essential oil and start cleaning – you’ll be amazed at how ‘fresh’ you’ll feel
Body washing kit
Lavender Oil is another option for those that prefer
Now the thing to remember is that compared to your day to day life, keeping yourself washed and clean on the trail is a compromise. If you are hiking for an extended period, you need to get used to smelling less than perfect but it’s amazing how much better a wipe down can make you feel. I find on long distance trips that even after leaving a town having had a shower and having washed and dried my clothes in a machine with commercial detergent I end up smelling within a couple of hours of starting walking.
While this could be considered a luxury for the sake of less than 40 grams it makes a huge difference to how you feel at the end of the day and is well worth carrying on longer hikes.