Shaving while camping

There’s nothing like a camping trip to remind you of how luxurious it feels to stick your face under warm, running water. Without the convenience of hot water on tap, wet shaving becomes a chore.

Don’t abandon your wet shaving routine on your next camping trip out of frustration, and don’t settle for a poor shave with an electric razor. Maintain your style and your flow with these shaving tips for camping trips:

Break your addiction to running water

The first step to getting a good shave while camping is to break your addiction to running water. If you’re camping, that shouldn’t be a problem. If it is, you probably shouldn’t be camping.

The idea of heading out into the woods for a weekend is to get away from the modern world and allow nature to refresh your mind and spirit. Running water should be the last thing on your mind.

Before you actually leave for your camping trip, spend a few days shaving without running water. If you run into issues at home, you’ll have time to figure out a solution before you’re in the middle of nowhere. For example, if you decide to shave with cold water because you don’t want to heat up a kettle of warm water, you’ll quickly discover why that won’t work.

If you’re at home when this happens, you can finish your shave with warm running water and do it right next time. If you discover this mistake while your buddies are waiting for you to head to the lake, you’ll either hurt yourself to finish the job, or be embarrassed with a partially-shaven face.

Use a cartridge razor if you’re not used to wet shaving

A camping trip probably isn’t the best time to learn how to shave with a straight razor or a safety razor. If you’ve relied on an electric razor all your life, get a cartridge razor for your camp shaves.

Use a large container to substitute for a lack of running water

Running water makes it easy to rinse off shaving cream residue. Without running water, it takes longer to rinse off. You have to repeatedly splash a small amount of water on your face with your hands. Every inconvenience adds up. When you’re roughing it, all the workarounds necessary to complete a simple shave can make you suddenly want to grow a beard. Unless your goal is to look like a lumberjack, you don’t have to sacrifice your clean-shaven style.

Get a medium-sized plastic container (or a collapsible camping container) – it will make your shaving routine easier.

Browse the container aisle at your local department store to find a container at least three inches deep and wide enough to scoop water up with two cupped hands. You won’t need to fill the container all the way to the top, but depth makes it possible to splash your face with more water at once. If you can’t get a plastic container, use a stainless-steel pot you’d boil spaghetti in.

If you’re feeling brave, submerge your head in the water and rinse your face off underwater.

A camp shower makes a good substitute for running water (in the summer)

Don’t like the idea of sticking your face in a pot of water? Get a solar-heated camp shower to hang up in a tree. The sun will heat the water in the bag, and by turning a dial you’ll get a good flow of water from a shower head similar to what you get at home.

You can make your own solar shower that provides ten minutes of warm/hot water with a couple of 5-gallon buckets. It will cost you less than ten bucks!

Don’t forget to bring a mirror

Get a small mirror from the dollar store and attach a wire picture hanger to the back. You’ll need to hang your shower from a tree close to the trunk if you’re going to nail your mirror to the tree. Otherwise, put the mirror on a tripod.

Here’s how NOT to run out of shower water by using it to shower and shave:

1. Shave first, wash your body second.
2. Stand under the water and soak it up for several seconds, making sure to get your face wet. The water won’t be hot, but it should be warm enough to feel good.
3. Once your face is wet, turn off the water so you don’t waste it. Lather up with your shaving cream or shaving soap.
4. Start shaving. Be sure to keep a small paper cup full of water next to you for rinsing your blade.
5. When you’re done shaving, lather up your body with soap.
6. Turn the shower water back on and let it flow. Rinse your body and your face with the warm, sun-heated water. If you’re camping or backpacking with others, you should have enough warm water for them to shower, too.

Choose to master the art of shaving while camping

Camping is an invitation to slow down and give your full presence to whatever you’re doing, whether you’re building a campfire, cooking, or shaving.

Shaving while camping isn’t going to be like shaving in your bathroom and that’s okay. You’ll need to be patient and present, two disciplines that, when practiced often, become hard-wired habits.

By practicing patience and presence – yes, even by shaving in the woods – you’re programming yourself for patience.

Eliminate distractions

In Evolve Your Brain, Dr. Joe Dispenza writes that when you’re distracted by familiar stimuli, your existing neural nets are “literally becoming electrically activated in the sensory and motor areas as well as the associative areas of [your] neocortex. However, we cannot make our brain focus on anything new while all these familiar neural networks are firing. Our brain is already attending to so many known stimuli that it cannot wire in new information. We are out of sync.”

Do your brain a favor and be weird. Go into the woods alone and shave like you’ve never shaved before.

Remember, you’re not just shaving in the woods – you’re developing a new neural network and hard-wiring the habit of persistence that will improve every area of your life.

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