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There are some items everyone should take camping, regardless of gender. But there are a few items that women might consider for their next camping trip – to make it the best (and most comfortable) one yet. So, before your next camping adventure, read on for our (short) list of camping essentials for women.
See this article and printable for a camping checklist with all essentials!
Five camping essentials for women
Most camping items are for everyone, no matter their gender. But, there are a few items that women might be more likely to take along. (No, not a razor. You’re camping; no need to shave!)
Of course, everyone’s needs are a bit different. What works for one person might not work for another. But, hopefully, this list of camping essentials for women will help you decide what you need to make your camping trip even better.
1. Female urination device (FUD)
For cisgender women, a urination device can be a game-changer, especially if you’re not camping near a restroom or want to avoid pit latrines.
Several different urination devices are available. And most are funnels that allow you to pee standing up.
And you know what that means!? You no longer have to find a discrete spot, pull your pants down around your ankles, and squat to pee. And, even if you use a porta-potty, you don’t have to sit down!
There are many different styles and sizes of FUDs. Some are plastic or latex, and some are disposable.
It might take trial and error to find the one for you, but luckily they’re small and relatively inexpensive.
The one that works best for you should be convenient and easy to use. And it’s helpful to practice using it at home before heading out on your camping trip.
You might want to take a bag to carry it in if it doesn’t come with one. Also, don’t forget the device will need to be cleaned often (and consider an antimicrobial cloth).
Here are some of the most recommended FUDs on the market. Check them out to see which one might be best for you.
2. Feminine hygiene products
Don’t let your period stop you from camping (and hiking)! As long as you feel well, there’s no reason not to get out and have fun in the great outdoors.
You can make camping while menstruating as comfortable and convenient as possible. Of course, it’s all about personal preference, but below are some suggestions to help you decide what’s best for you.
Menstrual cups are reusable and can last up to 12 hours. So, they can be more convenient since you don’t have to pack pads or tampons, and you don’t have to deal with them as often.
But if you use a cup, you need to decide how to dispose of the blood. If you’re near a restroom, it’s no problem. But if you’re out in the woods, you either have to bury it or take a container along to store it so you can pack it out.
You also have to keep it clean. Keep your hands clean with wipes, hand sanitizer, or soap and water. And clean the cup after use according to the manufacturer’s recommendations (many of them advise boiling in water for a few minutes).
Disposable period products
Disposable products are convenient and sterile. That said, you have to pack enough to last your trip. Plus, you’ll want to make sure you can change your pad or tampon regularly (thus reducing the risk of toxic shock or infection).
Also, it’s best if you have a plan for proper disposal. If you’re near a restroom and trash receptacle, that’s easy. But if you’re out in the woods, you’ll want to have a way to pack them out (consider an opaque bag).
Period underwear can work, but one pair only lasts one day, so you’ll need a few pairs if you’re camping for long. And, if you’re going to be out camping for several days, you’ll need a way to launder them. In this case, a wash bag could come in handy (like the Scrubba Wash Bag).
They might work best for a camping trip near a restroom at night and hiking during the day. Most types of period underwear last for up to 12 hours, so you don’t have to worry about changing pads or tampons.
3. Hair accessories (or a hat)
Whether you have long or short hair, you’ll want a way to make it easy to handle while you’re camping. So, you can secure it somehow – to keep it from blowing around, sticking to your face, and to keep you cooler in hot weather.
Braids, buns, and ponytails are a great way to keep long hair cleaner and out of your face. So, don’t forget your hairbrush and hairbands. Headbands and bandanas can do the trick too. You might also take a few hairpins for stray hairs.
Of course, hats are a must for camping; it’s easier just to put on a hat at some point. Plus, hats offer protection from the sun in warm weather and keep your head warm in cold weather.
4. Personal hygiene items
You’ll want to have some essential personal hygiene items when camping. And some of what you need can depend on whether you have access to water. Below are things to consider packing to help you stay clean and comfortable on your camping trip.
- Wet wipes or body wipes
- Hand sanitizer
- Dry shampoo
- Dry toothpaste
- Biodegradable soap
- Anti-chafing products, like Body Glide Anti Chafe Balm (for long hiking trips)
- Antimicrobial personal cloth
- Moisture-wicking undies
- Quick-dry towel
- Unscented moisturizer for dry skin
For toilet paper, wipes, and other disposables, take a bag to pack it out if you aren’t near a trash receptacle.
5. A backpack that fits
Suppose you’re backpacking for a few days or even hiking into a primitive campsite. In that case, you’ll probably need to pack a lot into your backpack. And depending on how heavy it is and how far you’re going, you need it to fit your body.
A good backpack isn’t going to be one-size-fits-all. You’ll want to consider your height, the pack’s weight, and how it feels on you. See this guide for choosing the right one for you.
Women’s backpacks are shaped differently and tend to be a bit lighter. The hip belt, torso length, and harness impact comfort most. Women’s packs often center the weight on the hips and lower back rather than the shoulders. Also, they accommodate shorter torsos and have more narrow shoulder straps.
That doesn’t mean you need a women’s specific backpack. It means you need to make sure you’re comfortable carrying your pack. In other words, if it fits right, it doesn’t matter how it’s labeled. Everyone is shaped differently. Sometimes, a gender-neutral or men’s pack works for women and vice versa.
What are your camping essentials?
There you have it – five camping essentials women should consider for the best camping adventure yet! But what you need depends on where you’re camping, how long you’re camping, and the activities you will do.
That means everyone’s needs will differ. Consider how much camping gear you want (or need) to carry and how far you’ll be carrying it.
You might take more comfort items if you’re camping close to parking since you won’t have to carry them far.
But if you’re backpacking in, you will have limited space for only the most essential items. Plus, if you’re not camping near trash receptacles – you’ll have to carry all your trash back out.
Hopefully some of the camping essentials for women listed will make camping much more comfortable (and, therefore, more fun)! There’s lots of great camping gear (and other items) that can help make your next camping trip better than ever.
But whatever your camping adventure, planning is the key! So it’s wise to create a camping checklist to ensure you have everything you need.
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