Personal hygiene survival tips
A pack of Wet wipes can be the savior when you can’t get access to a shower. These little disposable cloths can do you and everyone around you a huge favour by saving you the humiliation of stinking all day and everyone else the assault to their nostrils.
You can use them for all parts of your body, face, under arms, privates, feet, anywhere that’s needed. If you have sensitive skin check when buying to get perfume free or sensitive skin varieties.
A swim in the sea in warmer weather is another way to get cleaned up, although you will need to pay attention to certain body parts without looking like the weirdo in the surf. Many beaches have fresh water public or outdoor showers, rinse off the sea salt under these.
Many public toilets also have hand driers so if you wish to wash out your underwear and are prepared for a few strange looks you can even use these driers to dry them.
You can buy disposable or travel size products of all type. If you’re on the move a bit, keep a little supply of personal hygiene products in a pocket of your backpack or handbag.
Suggested basics: wet wipes, soap, tooth brush and paste, shampoo, and a hair comb. Deodorant, sunscreen and moisturiser plus a small towel or chamois towel would be an added bonus.
BO- Body odour
Don’t fool yourself that antiperspirant applied to already smelly underarms becomes anything but extra stinky!
Deodorant will only work best on a clean body, if you can’t have a shower, then have a “Pommie” wash especially under your arms with soap and water before applying deodorant.
If you have to wear yesterday’s clothes, smell them first, any odour on clothes will become stronger once they heat up with your natural body heat.
Showering-Body & Hair
Always be water conscious when showering, but basically get in the water, get wet, soap up all over, rinse off and get out. You can use a face washer, or loofer. There a hundreds of body wash, scrub, and gels on the market, but good old soap will do as good a job as any.
Don’t, however expect that letting water run on you equals getting clean, you will actually have to pay some attention to your smelly nether regions to get them freshened up.
Shampooing and conditioning your hair- Apply a small amount (50c size in palm of the hand) of shampoo to your wet hair, use your finger tips to massage it all over your scalp and hair to get it clean. Rinse off thoroughly.
Apply conditioner if needed, in similar quantity as shampoo, but only apply it to the ends of your hair, not at the scalp. Rinse thoroughly. Towel dry your hair, then use a wide toothed comb to detangle. Using a brush on wet hair will often break and split it.
It’s super important to look after your teeth as rotten or infected teeth can lead to all sorts of major health problems. Visit a dentist at least once a year or more when you have a problem.
For the rest of the year you need to brush and floss morning and night. If you are away from home and have forgotten your tooth brush, you can use some tooth paste on your clean finger. You can also use some salt or bi carb soda on your brush. Buy yourself a new tooth brush at least four times a year.
Some people suffer from extremely bad foot odour, you may not smell body odour yourself but you certainly can smell rank shoes and feet. For people that suffer smelly feet it is important that feet get plenty of air and are in enclosed shoes as little as possible. Of course you can’t go bare foot to work or school and certainly don’t slip your shoes off under the desk but you can take extra care to help yourself.
Carefully wash and thoroughly dry your feet, try different products available over the counter until you find the one that helps. Many Sandshoes/Runners can go through the washing machine, get in the habit of washing them weekly. An old remedy is to sprinkle a heaped teaspoon of bicarb soda in your shoes, leave overnight and shake out in the morning, or put smally shoes in a zip lock bag and into the freezer for a few hours.
Condoms are an aid to stopping unwanted pregnancy and STI’s but they can split or burst, so are not a 100% guaranteed.
If you are unsure how to use a condom properly, then carefully read the instructions or search for a YouTube clip. You don’t want to get caught out unprepared if the need to use one arises!
Never leave your used condoms for anyone else to dispose of, if you get the pleasure of using it, you get the privilege of disposing of it in the bin (do not dispose of condoms down a toilet).
For more info about contraception see SkillBot – Sexual Health
Women's personal hygiene products
Ensure you change tampons and pads regularly (see instructions in packaging) Prolonged retention of a tampon can cause Toxic shock syndrome
Disposal – Do not dispose of sanitary items down a toilet, use sanitary waste bins in public toilets or wrap them in paper and dispose of in the garbage bin at home. It is never anyone else’s responsibility to do so. See pack for disposal instructions.
How to shave your face
When the time comes to start shaving it is important to know what you’re doing.
Your skin is at a very sensitive stage so when armed with a razor, handle with care. You can choose to use an electric shaver or a razor blade. If you have a beard, give it a trim with some clippers or scissors first.
Using a razor.
1. Get your shaving kit ready ie. a face washer, hot water and soap (or exfoliator), your razor, a dry towel, shaving cream/gel or preferred product.
2. Wash your face with warm/hot water and soap or exfoliant to remove grease and grime. Allow the face washer to sit on your skin to soften stubble and open pores.
3. While keeping your face warm with the washer, fill the wash basin with cold water and drop in your razor in to let it soak (hot water will only make the blade expand and be duller). Never use an old or rusty razor.
4. Apply your shaving cream/gel to the face and neck area with a shaving brush (you can used hair conditioner if you are out of cream) avoid using regular soup as it will dull the razors blades.
5. Now start on one side and work towards the other, shaving in short light downward stokes (with the grain) using your free hand to pull the skin tight as you go.
6. Rinse the blade often as you go, by swirling around in the sink and gently tapping on the basin edge.
7. Once you have shaved all the areas you want done, rinse your face in warm water, then run your fingers over your face to find any rough areas missed. (look for commonly missed areas around the sideburns, nose and mouth) use some cream or gel before shaving again.
8. Once you are finished soothe your face with cold water, this will also help close razor cuts and stop bleeding (apply a small piece of toilet roll to any cuts still bleeding)
9. Rinse and dry your equipment and store in a dry place. Clean equipment is less likely to introduce bacteria and infection to your open, freshly shaved pores.
10. Use an after shave product or moisturiser after shaving if you want.
There are quite a few methods of leg hair removal. The method you use comes down to personal preference and cost.
We have listed some here, cheapest to most expensive.
2. Hair removal creams
4. Laser electrolysis.
Shaving techniques and razor care are the same for men’s shaving, so look there for tips.
Other bits & pieces of person care and good grooming
Cleaning your ears – Wash thoroughly behind and front of your ears (but not down your ear hole) with a wash cloth while in the shower. There are lots of twist and tight turns of the outer ear so take care and this area is prone to blackheads if not taken care of. Pay extra attention to drying your ears thoroughly after showering. Ear buds are not recommended but if you use them follow package instructions carefully.
Finger and toe nail care – A small pair of nail clippers is pretty cheap. Zombie nails are not attractive so keep them trimmed and neat. Cut or file any broken or snagged nails, chewing them off will not only taste bad but could rip them down to the quick. Soak your nails in warm water to soften them before using a nail brush or nail file to clean out dirt from underneath. Use the end of a nail file or another longer nail to push the cuticle (skin at the base of your nail and finger) back.
Make up removal - You can use a simple gentle soap and water with a wash cloth or even a cheap moisturiser and tissues to remove makeup. Always be extra careful around the eye area. There are of course many other specialty products available if you have the spare cash but simple washing will do the job. It is a good idea to give your skins pores a rest from makeup sometimes. Always follow the instructions on product packaging.
Sun safety – Always use a sun block of 15+ or above while outdoors and re-apply according to instructions.
Head lice – if you happen to get Lice/Nits you will need to treat them with Lice/Nit treatment straight away. Nits won’t go away by themselves, they will do the opposite and make your head their long term home to raise their babies for generations to come. Treatments are available at supermarkets and chemists. Follow instructions carefully and repeat treatment if needed. You will probably need a friend to help you get rid of any Nit eggs, it’s a big job. You will also need to wash bedding etc in very hot water.
Pimples – Some people are more prone to acne/pimples than others. The most common time to be effected by acne is in adolescence (teen years) when there are major hormonal changes happening for both males and females. Some people may suffer longer or later in life. There are many products available and it seems to be a try until you find the right one for you, deal. Keeping your face clean and free from dirt, grime, oil build ups and makeup can help somewhat. Remember you may scar your skins if you continually traumatize your pimples by squeezing them to death.