Hygiene While Living in a Van

Hi everyone! I know a lot of women have questions about how I maintain my hygiene while living in a van, so I wanted to share my tips and tricks. No daily showers may sound like the end of your life in a civilised society but adjusting your routine and doing things slightly differently can still keep you feeling fresh and clean daily.

But first, let’s set the record straight on this daily showering myth

It’s time to break the daily showering habit because let me tell you, showering every single day may not be as necessary as you think. First of all, not showering every day can save you a ton of water, and as we all know, water is precious. Secondly, your skin has natural oils that protect it, so showering every day can strip those oils away, leaving your skin dry and irritated. And lastly, skipping a shower every now and then can actually help improve your hygiene. When you shower, you wash away the good bacteria that live on your skin. So, don’t be afraid to break the daily showering routine, your skin and the environment will thank you for it. Plus, think of all the extra time you’ll have in the mornings!

Showering in a Van

While we have a shower in our van, we tend to stay in remote places and our 120-litre water tank lasts us 7 days with one shower for the two of us. This shower is super quick in military style and I mainly focus on scrubbing my body, washing my hair, shaving my legs, etc.

For the rest of the week, I use one of the following methods to wash:

  • Baby wipes: Self-explanatory and a quick way to freshen up.
  • Water and a clean cloth: This is my favourite method. Fill up the sink with soapy water and use a cloth to wash yourself
  • Campsites: Occasionally, we’ll stay at campsites that have unlimited hot showers.

I wash my hair once a week, and if I’m struggling I’ll use dry shampoo to keep me going. I’m also in the process of making my own shampoo and conditioner to be more sustainable, so if you’re interested in how that goes, let me know in the comments!

Tip: We always shower near the water fill-up stations, so we can fill up our water tank right after showering.

Shaving

I invested in an IPL hair removal system a few months before leaving the UK, and it was the best decision I’ve made. I’ve been using it for 9 months now and can easily go 7-10 days without shaving.

Period

To reduce waste on the road, I switched from tampons to a menstrual cup and, if necessary, menstrual pants (aka period underwear). I prefer menstrual cups because they produce no waste and are easy to clean. However, if I use menstrual pants, I need to make sure I have enough to last between laundry days as they are tricky to wash by hand in a van.

Facial Routine

I have a strong facial routine and take good care of my skin. My routine includes several steps in the morning and evening, and I see a dermatologist every 6-9 months no matter where I am in the world. If you haven´t seen a dermatologist before, I would highly recommend it as their advice can transform the way your skin looks. Happy to share more details about my routine if you are interested.

Other Tips

In the summer, we like staying close to wild swimming spots for obvious reasons. A daily dip in cold water can do wonders for your health. Lots of beaches in the south of Europe have free showers too so that´s another useful trick.


So there you have it! All my secrets are out in the open and as you can see maintaining my hygiene in a van is not as hard as you may think. Do you have any tips or tricks to share? Let me know in the comments!

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