Ah, the great outdoors. There’s nothing like the peace and recharge that camping for a day or two in nature brings. Hiking, trekking, and camping out, however, does not mean neglecting your skin.
The outdoors can be harsh on the skin. Whether you are camping during the winter, or lounging under the sun during the summer, your skin can really take a hit if you’re not careful.
Camping will surely abbreviate your skincare routine, so it’s important to know the necessities to bring along with you, and tips to keep in mind.
Stick to the basics
Your 10-step skincare routine is going to be scaled down, for sure. So, limit the skincare products you’re bringing to the basic three: cleanse, moisturize, and protect. However, if you are suffering from painful acne caused by sunscreen and sweat, or your skin gets too dry or irritated due to dry air or the wind, you might have to add a few products to your kit.
- Cleanser. Practice leave-no-trace by choosing a cleanser that is biodegradable. It is also best to opt for a versatile cleanser, which you can also use for washing your body, hair, face, and hands. Some find micellar water a good alternative to traditional cleanser for washing off dirt, oil, makeup, or sunscreen.
- Moisturizer. A reliable face-and-body moisturizer is your best friend during a camping trip, especially if your skin tends to get irritated by dry air and wind. Opt for one that is thick, but doesn’t feel sticky. It is also best to bring a moisturizer that contains ceramides, as they protect and repair the barriers of your skin, and antioxidants, as they prevent, protect, and limit free radical damage.
- Sun Protection. SPF is non-negotiable. Choose sun protection that can be used for both the face and body, so your skincare kit won’t take up too much space and weight in your backpack. And make sure to bring lip sunscreen, too! Our lips are a delicate area, and are very prone to sun damage.
- Spot correction. Women on their period can feel at ease with a travel-size spot corrector in their pack. A zit or two can pop up anytime, so a corrector gel must come in handy.
Wear protective clothing
A sunhat is an extension of your SPF 30 sunscreen. It gives you added protection from harmful UV rays, and keeps your head cool during the hike. To brace for unpredictable weather, especially if you’re hiking in the mountains, bring with you a waterproof layer, which can also double as sun protection. You also need to protect yourself from poisonous plants, especially if you are hiking in shrubby areas. Protective clothing such as rash guards, long-sleeved shirts, and trousers can protect your arms and legs from getting in direct contact with poisonous plants.
Watch what you eat
Steer clear of food that can potentially trigger allergic reactions, such as milk, peanuts, soy, and seaweed, to name a few. Before packing those goodies, scan through the ingredients first to make sure that you are not bringing with you snacks that contain allergens. Bring energy bars that do not have soy, and choose tree nuts over peanuts. Best to bring with you fresh fruits to snack on during the hike and while camping out.
Use bug spray
Mosquitoes, flies, ants, bees, and other insects can come in contact with you during your camping trip, leaving you with itchy, annoying bumps on the skin. This can be irritating, but don’t let it ruin your bond with nature. Traditional bug sprays are good insect repellent, so make sure to pack a travel-size bottle. The bug sprays that work usually contain DEET, and some find the smell of DEET unpleasant, or get skin irritation from it. If the insects get out of hand, use the bug spray on clothes, instead of spraying it directly on the skin to avoid skin irritation.
Being in the sun, plus the long hike to the campsite, can make your skin dehydrated. So, it’s important to plan ahead. Before leaving your home, determine how much water you need. You normally need half of your weight in ounces for a normal day. So, you will surely need more when camping. Read guidebooks and maps to get familiar with the water sources in the area.
When You Get Home
Once you’re home, take a long hot shower and scrub every nook and cranny. Slowly resume your regular skincare routine. Pamper yourself further by booking a facial spa to help you repair any post-camping sun damage or dryness.
Camping should be a relaxing activity — a day with nature, away from the busy life in the city and the pressures of your day job. Don’t let your skin worries take the excitement away. If you get a pimple or two, or a mosquito bite out of it, it will most certainly go away quickly. Get out there and enjoy your camping trip!