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Camping Toiletries: 15 Essentials That Need to Be in Your Toiletry Bag

Getting ready to head out on a camping trip? If you won’t be near a store your not going to want to all the essential camping toiletries. We are a team of camping experts that have made all the mistakes for you and put together a list of 15 essentials that your not going to want to forget.

From first aid to general hygiene items, let’s look at what should go into your camping toiletry bag.

What Is a Camping Toiletry Bag?

Any bag or container that you can relegate all of your camping toiletries to is a great idea, keeping all necessities in one place, so you can easily find them. Some people use bags designed specifically for toiletries. 

toiletry bag
Some toiletry bags fold out into sections, allowing you to separate your items.

They tend to have water-resistant material and fold out into three or four sections. You can often hang them over a cabinet handle or doorknob for easier access. These travel bags have room for almost everything on our list and more.

Men’s shaving or Dopp kits also work. They look like a rectangle box with a zippered top. This toiletry bag does not have sections, so everything gets loaded into one storage space that can sit on a countertop.

For those backpacking a dry bag is a good choice to pack toiletries. In addition to keeping them dry, the bag can be used to wash garments if needed by filling it with water.

Why Do You Need a Toiletry Bag When Camping?

Yes, being out in the wilds of nature brings out the primal animal in many of us. But it doesn’t excuse poor hygiene or lack of preparedness for emergencies. Having a fully stocked camping toiletry bag allows you to stay clean, smell like something other than a campfire, and avoid nasty bug bites, injuries, and sunburns. 

How to Stay CLEAN While Backpacking! | Miranda in the Wild

You’ll need deodorant, and you can’t take a break from brushing your teeth during your weeklong vacation. And what if someone ends up with a cut or sunburn? Just think of your toiletry bag as your key to looking good, feeling good, and staying healthy. It’s always wise to prepare for unforeseen obstacles.

How Do You Pack Toiletries for Camping?

You can store your camping health and hygiene items in a toiletry bag. But keep in mind, medication or ointments that might liquify in heat must remain at specific temperatures. Place them in baggies and put them in your RV refrigerator or cooler

You may choose to section off first aid items from hygiene ones. Additionally, you can also have different bags for each camper, to avoid mixing toothbrushes.

Mom and daughter sitting together inside tent while camping
Stay sweet smelling and clean while camping by making sure your toiletry bag is packed with all of the essentials.

Camping Toiletries: 15 Essentials That Need to Be in Your Toiletry Bag

Camping in a tent or even an RV usually has strict space limitations. So we have pared down our list to 15 essential toiletry items. Remember, you can purchase some in large or small sizes. If at all possible, keep the bottles and containers to sample size. Here’s what you will need, depending on who will accompany you.

1. Shampoo, Conditioner & Soap 

Plan to shower and wash your hair if you’re on a camping trip of three days or longer. Bringing soap in a body wash or a bar will make showering easier. And shampoo is a must to break up grease and dirt and give your hair renewed luster. Conditioner will make combing through tangles much easier. Some come as an all-in-one with shampoo and conditioner to pack easily in your camping toiletry bag. 

Two brushes and dry shampoo bottle
No water? No problem! Dry shampoo can keep your hair clean if you can’t wash it while camping.

2. Dry Shampoo

If you don’t have access to water, consider packing a dry shampoo. It will absorb some of the oils in dirty hair for a short time by using alcohol. This will let your hair appear cleaner and let you go a little longer without a shower.

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3. Body Wipes

Water is sometimes hard to come by, especially when tent camping. So if you can’t find a place to shower, pack some body-sized wet wipes. These giant ‘baby wipes’ wash away the grime and dirt and will keep you smelling fresh.

Pro Tip: Not sold on baby wipes? Join the debate on whether or not Body Wipes for Camping Are Ew or Awesome?

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4. Razor & Shaving Cream/Gel

Unless you want to grow a beard, pack a razor and shaving cream in your toiletry bag. And don’t forget a small mirror for this task if you won’t have one around your campsite. And without a mirror, you might want to pack some band-aids.

5. Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Floss, etc.

Take good care of your teeth, especially while downing those S’mores every night by the campfire. Pack each toothbrush separately in a plastic container to keep them separate and clean in your toiletry bag. You can usually get sample-sized toothpaste to save on space. And don’t forget the floss to keep your smile bright and healthy.

Two kids brushing teeth with toothbrush
Make sure your smile shines in all your camping photos by not forgetting to pack your toothpaste and toothbrush!

6. Deodorant

Pack it and use it daily. If tent camping, you may want to consider fragrance-free deodorant to avoid any unnecessary campsite visitors, like bears. However, if you enjoy a scented deodorant, look for campsites with bear boxes. Sample size deodorants can slip into your camping toiletry bag to save space.

7. Body/Hand Lotion

This is not necessary, but it sure is convenient after sitting in the sun all day and getting sunburnt. You can also use hand lotion for dry skin or to add a slight fragrance, as most lotions have pleasant odors. Look for some with vitamin E or aloe vera for rejuvenating after a day in the sun.

8. Feminine Hygiene Products

Don’t forget to pack those tampons and pads if you happen to start on your trip. Or, if you prefer to camp waste-free, grab that menstrual cup and a pot to boil water for sanitization. However, if you camp with limited water, include some other supplies as well. And don’t forget medication to temper menstrual pains. 

9. Comb/Brush

It’s good to have the option to run a comb through your hair. If you like that wind-blown look, that’s fine. But it can come in handy if you get leaves stuck in your hair. And it can prevent knots from getting too tangled. You can get a travel size or collapsible brush to fit in your camping toiletry bag easily.

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10. Contact Lens Case & Solution

Keep your eyes healthy by cleaning your contacts in solution each night. And don’t forget to bring backups. However, if you plan to take a break from wearing contacts, remember to pack your glasses. Or if you only wear glasses, bring an extra in case it gets broken. You don’t want to drive home from your trip blind.

Man putting contact into his eye
You will want to make sure you can see all the cool things you are exploring! Don’t forget to pack a spare pair of contacts in case of emergency.

11. Tweezers

Nature throws us all kinds of curveballs, including splinters when collecting firewood. Come prepared with a pair of tweezers. They are light and maneuverable and don’t cause as much damage when removing splinters. 

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12. Band-Aids & Antibiotic Ointment

Band-aids are a must when camping. Use them for razor cuts and scraped knees. When used with an antibiotic ointment, the cut or scrape will heal faster and prevent infection. So don’t forget to pack this essential camping toiletry.

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13. Insect Repellent

You can use many methods to keep insects away from you and your campsite. From citronella candles to spray-on repellants, bands, and treated clothing, you can send mosquitos and flies on their way with one or all of these items. Some will fit in your camping toiletry bag better than others.

14. Sunscreen

Avoid painful sunburns by proactively applying sunscreen. You can also bring hats and sunglasses, as those UV rays have a way of cooking us. Even if camping in the winter, you’ll want to protect your skin from burns. Camping in higher elevations also makes sunscreen an essential camping toiletry item.

Boy with backpack camping.
Keep your skin safe while camping! Wear a hat and sunscreen while on your adventure.


15. Shovel (If Backpacking)

If you will be tent camping or backpacking, a shovel is an essential piece of equipment for ‘doing your duty.’ A folding shovel is easy to pack away, then pull out for use. You can find them at any sports store or Army surplus outlet. So please bury your waste properly when on public property. 

Pro Tip: We found the 7 Best Folding Survival Shovels to bring on your adventures.

Make a List and Check It Twice Before Your Next Trip

As you can see, all of the above items are important to keep you and your friends and family happy and healthy. You can add other products to the list, but you can do that after packing these necessities. So start collecting your camping toiletry bag items now, adding any other essentials you deem important. Then you will be ready for any upcoming camp trip.

What’s in your toiletry bag? Tell us what item you can’t camp without in the comments!

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An Upper Peninsula of Michigan native (aka a Yooper), Caitlin is the organization, big-picture, and content strategy queen of our operation. She keeps everything orderly and on track.

With a background in Business Management, she supports and helps channel Tom’s technical prowess into the helpful content our readers and viewers expect. That’s not to say you won’t find her turning wrenches and talking shop – RV life is a team effort. She keeps the business and the blog moving forward with a variety of topics and resources for our audience.

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She also loves the RV life due to the fact that you can bring your pets along. Sharing information about safely recreating outdoors with your whole family – pets included! – is very important to her. Because of this, Caitlin spearheaded the launch of HypePets in 2023.

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Kevin Ros

Sunday 22nd of May 2022

Soap, shampoo, toothbrush…nothing else really needed.

Some of your items mentioned should be in the first aid kit.

Al’s, some parks have instituted a “back your poop out”