This tag is for the questions discussing Hygiene (personal as well as public) when being outdoors.

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41
votes
7answers
20k views

Should you pop a blister?

When I'm home running or on a day hike, I prefer to pierce the skin as soon as a blister forms and drain all fluid from a blister to reduce the pain and further irritation/inflammation. In this case, ...
32
votes
4answers
2k views

Practicality of Beards

I have several friends with full beards. After talking at length with one, he started to convince me the protection it offers might be worth it. So, I thought I would come and ask. What are the Pros ...
22
votes
4answers
4k views

What are some toilet paper alternatives you could use in the woods?

When in the great outdoors, nature is bound to come calling, so what are some good natural toilet paper substitutes when the real thing isn't available?
23
votes
12answers
3k views

Toothpaste in the back-country and the principle of leave no trace

I am a staunch proponent of leave no trace. I don't carry dish detergent (sand and small rocks work much better on stainless steel anyways,) and I don't use soap or shampoo, not even of the ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

How to stay clean on a multi-day hike?

I love hiking but there is a serious problem - I find it disgusting to be sweaty or dirty. I am literally unable to function properly if I do not get a thorough and warm shower every morning. This ...
17
votes
3answers
3k views

Washing clothes on long hikes

I'm looking for a good solution for clothing (or clothes washing) on long hikes with the following considerations Southeastern United States, Appalachians We hike light 10+ day trips I don't want ...
12
votes
6answers
961 views

What are safe/effective leaves from around the world for use in tidying up your backside after answering the call of nature?

This partially answered in this question about toilet paper alternatives but it only says be careful what plants you use. I'd like to know specifically what plants are the best in your part of the ...
27
votes
3answers
2k views

Handling feminine hygiene on multiple-month treks?

How can I handle multiple months of menstrual cycles on a long trek like the Appalachian Trail? I am asking about how to handle the mess. Here are my personal considerations: Using hormonal birth ...
18
votes
2answers
3k views

Can groundwater still be consumed if after boiling the water turns brown with an oily substance floating on top?

This weekend we went "pole camping". A pole camp site (dutch link only) is a camp site offered by the departments of forestry in the Netherlands and Belgium. It is very basic. What is offered is a ...
9
votes
2answers
362 views

How to clean cookware?

When going camping on a multi-day trip, how do you clean metal pots, metal silverware and plates (for metal or ceramic)? The solution that came to mind was to bring dish soap and a sponge. However: ...
9
votes
1answer
245 views

Are bears more attracted to menstruating females?

People have speculated that women hiking in bear country during their menstrual cycle might increase their chances of a bear encounter. Is this true? What can be done to minimize risk? Related ...
9
votes
1answer
801 views

Sustainable systems for carrying out human waste

I am looking for sustainable alternatives for carrying out human waste. WAG bags, though convenient, sadly have to end up in land-fills. I am looking for a system where the non-biodegrading components ...
18
votes
1answer
2k views

How to clean vomit from camping gear?

Some background. Whilst car camping down in Weymouth recently I was unfortunate enough to encounter a stomach bug (we initially thought it was food poisoning but later realised it was a bug as my ...
10
votes
5answers
590 views

Can I replace Dish soap?

I have been trying to get my weight down on longer backpacking trips. I have already taken to buying very strong soap and using very little, but I was wondering is there something I can replace the ...
8
votes
3answers
453 views

Clarification sought on the six-inch-cat-hole rule

In areas where the park service asks hikers to burry their feces, it is commonly suggested to dig a six-inch hole. I have come close to filling up one of those before, which got me wondering: What is ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Big Wall Climbing Portaledge Toilet Etiquette?

So I was watching this video, and got to the part where this guy and girl are discussing and demonstrating whose method of peeing off the portaledge is scariest. Then I of course thought to myself, "...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What size dry bag is best for keeping and washing clothes?

I want to buy a drybag for washing clothes while backpacking (travelling, not hiking) and also keeping dirty/wet clothes until it is time to wash them. I have available near me 5L, 10L and 20L dry ...