During the process of consolidating and paring-down toiletries for our backpacking trip to the Alps, I came across the “perfect” solution to all those little travel sized bottles of shampoo, soap, conditioner, etc… I went online and found these little paper Travelon shampoo sheets that come in packet the size of a dental floss container. You get them wet and they lather up. At 50 sheets per container it seemed like a no-brainer. So I bought the shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, laundry soap, hand soap–the works! All that stuff that would take up so little space and be feather light! Tried ‘em at home, they did an OK job.
The first time I washed my hair on the hike, I used 2 sheets. No lather. So I pulled out some more (note: use DRY fingers to pull out the little sheets-they’re the consistency of a listermint and stick together.) Maybe it was the hard mountain water, but I never got a bubble outta those suckers, just a big clump of green goo. Well, the showers only give you like, a gallon of water for your token, then you’re done. When I walked into our room, Honeykins fell out laughing. Imagine “There’s something about Mary” when Cameron Diaz has that “hair-gel” in her bangs. It was like that, only green. 10-minutes of combing through it with a toothbrush only served to spread it out like an invasive algae, and no amount of head-under-the-sink scrubbing rid me of the slime. Fortunately, a couple of very cool women from the UK apparently lost their appetites after sitting across the table from me at dinner and breakfast, and presented me with a couple mini-bottles of shampoo they liberated from the maid’s cart in a hotel they had splurged for. Many thanks, Kelly and Brenda!
Ditto for all the other little soap sheets. Nothing. Nada. Zip.
Lesson learned: Even when you’re backpacking, there are some things you just can’t skimp on. Bring a small bottle of Dr. Bronner’s and use it for everything!