How To Take Care Of Your Hair While Camping (11 Easy Tips)

by Alison Blair

When you go camping, there are a lot of things to worry about - like making sure you have all the right gear and knowing how to set up your tent. But one thing that often gets overlooked is hair care.

Yes, even while camping, it's important to take care of your hair!

Best way to care for your hair while camping is to wear your hair in a Flexi clip. Additionally, you can also wear a hat or bandana to protect your hair, and use dry shampoo help soak up excess oil in your hair to keep it looking and feeling clean.

In this blog post, I'll break down 11 easy tips for caring for your hair while camping.

camping hair tips

How to Take Care of your Hair while Camping

1. Use A Flexi Clip 

A Flexi clip is an amazing type of hair barrette that allows you to easily and cleanly put your hair up without any tangles, hair pulling, or hair headaches, which makes it a great tool for hair care while camping.

hair clip for camping

I didn’t start camping until I was an adult; a mom of 4 small children (which blossomed into 8 with numerous foster children and lots of friends tagging along). 

By the time we got our 1st camper, a whopping 25fter, we were camping with 6 (5 of which were 6 and under.)

Have you ever heard the saying SSS? I believe it came about because of campers like ours, the shower was literally over the sink and toilet. Talk about space saving. But I digress, I am here to talk with you about all the techniques I developed to deal with mine, and my children’ hair when camping.

In the beginning it was easy to care for my hair. A bucket of water and a nearby stream would suffice.

For me I couldn't care less, as long as it felt clean. The boys felt much the same as me.

Ah, but then there were the girls; girls that I often actually wondered often if they were mine. Where on earth did, they get this 'it must look perfect' attitude; we were camping for gosh sake.

tangled hair

Washing their hair wasn’t too big of an issue, I mean they did understand we were camping, but as they got older every hair had to be in place, every curl had to rest just so.

Then the fashion gurus introduced the messy bun. I thought I had found the cure.

But no, I was not going to be so lucky (did I happen to mention of my 8 children 6 where girls and the boys wear buzz cuts?).

tangled hair tie

Enter in the hair tie tango. You all know what I’m talking about, that lovely dance your hair likes to do, wrapping itself seductively around the hair tie, causing screams of pain and accusations of “you’re hurting me” leaving you praying for the day when they get older and can fight their own battles.

tangled hair tie

Did you know these screams reverberate in a campground? You can hear them from all directions.

Now I must tell you its not to say I didn’t try every, and I mean every, hair tie and little hair invention that came along. I mean I had 2 with curly hair, two with fine straight hair and 2 with insanely thick hair.

Oh my what’s a mother to do. This mom was running out of options.

Enter the Eureka Moment.

It was an extremely hot day in August (in Florida, no less) and my husband bought me a gift. I always wore my hair down (because I too dread the hair tie tango). It was he who decided I needed to get my hair up off my neck and he purchased me my very first flexi clip.

gray hair coffee cup hair clip

An amazing little hair “barrette” (I use this term loosely as it is not, but I was new to them).

I was in heaven, all the possibilities, the end of the morning battles, the ease of getting their hair up in 30 seconds or less, the fact that they could easily DO IT THEMSELVES!!!!!

sport hair clip camping boating

How is it that I had never come upon this amazing little hair hack secret? These things my friends, these flexi clips, are every camping mom's best friend.

2. Pack hair care products: 

When planning for a camping trip, don't forget to pack hair care items such as shampoo, conditioner and hair masks.

These will help you keep your hair hydrated and healthy while camping.

3. Go easy on the heat: 

Avoid using styling tools like curling irons or hair dryers while camping since they can strip moisture from your hair.

Instead, opt for air-drying or braiding wet hair before going to sleep at night.

4. Wash your hair regularly: 

Even though it may not be possible to wash your hair every day while camping, make sure to give it a good scrub at least once every two days with an appropriate shampoo and conditioner.

This will help keep your hair clean and free of dirt and debris.

5. Protect hair from the elements: 

When camping, you are exposed to a lot of environmental factors like wind, sun and humidity.

Make sure to use hair products that contain UV protectants and also wear hats or scarves when outdoors for extra protection.

6. Avoid chlorine: 

Swimming pools can be great fun while camping but make sure you avoid swimming in chlorinated pools as it can strip hair of natural oils and leave them dry and brittle.

If you do go swimming in one, opt for using a swim cap or conditioner-based hair mask afterwards to restore moisture levels.

7. Use silk or satin pillowcases: 

Pillowcases made of materials like silk or satin are much gentler on hair than cotton ones and can help reduce hair breakage. This one is my favorite!

So make sure to pack a few for your camping trip!

8. Avoid tight hairstyles: 

Tight hairstyles like buns, braids and ponytails can put too much tension on hair and cause breakage.

So when camping, opt for loose styles that allow hair to breathe more easily.

9. Clean hair brushes: 

It's important to keep hair tools clean while camping as they can easily accumulate dirt, dust and oils which can lead to product buildup in hair.

Make sure you give them a good scrub with shampoo before using every time.

10. Use dry shampoo: 

Dry shampoo is a great way to refresh hair without having to use water. So it's a good idea to keep a bottle of this handy while camping. I LOVE this dry shampoo by Lilla Rose! Run, don't walk, and get it HERE. Trust me on this!

11. Deep condition: 

Make sure you give hair some extra TLC with deep conditioning treatments once in a while—these will help restore moisture levels and leave hair looking healthy and shiny.

 This hair masque by Lilla Rose is the best deep conditioning treatment I've ever tried!

How To Prevent Greasy Hair While Camping

gray hair updo flexi sport

Greasy hair can be difficult to manage while camping, as there isn’t always soap and water available. Thankfully, there are a few steps you can take to keep your hair looking fresh and clean. Here are 7 tips for preventing greasy hair while camping:

1. Use dry shampoo: 

Dry shampoo is a great way to refresh hair without having to use water or shower products. It helps absorb dirt, oil and odors from hair so you don’t have to worry about greasy locks.

This dry shampoo by Lilla Rose is my absolute favorite!

2. Pack some baby powder: 

Baby powder is a great way to absorb excess oil from hair and keep it looking fresh. All you have to do is sprinkle some on your hair, brush it through and voila!

3. Braid hair at night: 

Braiding hair before going to sleep can help reduce the appearance of greasy hair in the morning. It also helps protect hair against breakage or tangles during the night.

4. Use a clarifying shampoo: 

A clarifying shampoo helps remove product buildup and oils that can make hair look greasy. Make sure to use this once every few days while camping for optimal results.

5. Avoid styling products: 

While camping, avoid using too many styling products as they tend to increase hair oiliness. Stick to hair products that offer protection against the sun and wind instead.

6. Use a hair mask: 

Hair masks are great for restoring moisture levels in hair while camping. Make sure to use one at least once a week so hair stays hydrated and healthy.

This is my favorite super-hydrating hair mask.

7. Eat clean: 

Eating clean is key to preventing greasy hair, as unhealthy foods can cause build up in hair follicles which leads to excessive oiliness.

So make sure you’re eating plenty of fruits and vegetables during your camping trip! 

How To Wash Your Hair While Camping

heat protectant gray hair

It can be tricky to wash hair while camping, as there isn’t always running water or products available. But it is possible to give hair a good cleanse with just a few simple steps. Here are 10 tips for washing hair while camping:

1. Use water sparingly:

Make sure to conserve water when washing hair while camping by using only the amount necessary.

2. Bring biodegradable soap:

Biodegradable soaps are designed specifically for outdoor use and don’t leave behind any chemical residue in the environment.

3. Pre-wash hair:

Before actually washing hair, brush through it thoroughly to remove any dirt or debris that may have accumulated during the day. The "Flexi Brush" is my favorite massaging scalp brush for this job. Works wonders!

4. Wet hair with warm water:

Use a bowl or container to pour warm water over hair and make sure it is completely saturated before adding soap.

5. Soak hair in shampoo:

Massage shampoo into hair, then let it sit for a few minutes before rinsing out. This will help the product penetrate hair more deeply and remove any stubborn dirt.

6. Rinse hair with cold water:

Cold water helps close the hair cuticles, which can lock in moisture and help keep hair looking shiny and healthy.

7. Blot excess water from hair:

To avoid having too much moisture in hair, use a soft towel to blot away any excess water after rinsing. I love using a quality bamboo hair towel like this one.

8. Apply hair conditioner:

Conditioner will help add moisture back into hair and prevent it from becoming too dry or brittle. Make sure to only apply conditioner to the mid-lengths and ends of hair, not the scalp.

9. Rinse hair with cold water again:

Once you’ve applied conditioner, rinse hair out with cold water again to seal in any moisture.

10. Let hair air dry:

Air drying hair is best when camping as it helps reduce the amount of time needed in front of a mirror while also keeping hair healthy and hydrated. Avoid using heat styling tools if possible!

Again, I highly recommend using a bamboo hair towel, as it is gentle on hair and greatly speeds up drying time.

By following these tips you can keep your hair looking its best while camping. With a little bit of effort, you can have hair that is healthy and beautiful even in the great outdoors! 

How To Camp With Long Hair

grey hair ponytail sport

Long hair can be difficult to manage while camping, but with a few simple tips it can be done.

1. Use a Flexi Clip:

A Flexi clip is the absolutely BEST tool for camping with long hair because it allows you to easily put hair up in seconds, and it will stay put all day without giving you a headache, no matter what activities you're doing. 

You can shop all of the beautiful colors and styles of Flexi clips HERE.

2. Braid hair before sleeping:

Braiding hair helps reduce the amount of tangles and knots that occur while sleeping which makes hair much easier to manage in the morning.

3. Wear a cap or hat:

This will help protect hair from sun damage, as well as reducing any frizziness caused by wind and humidity.

camping hair care

Please Share!

Thanks so much for checking out my post on how to take care of your hair while camping! If you enjoyed it, please share and pin. I appreciate it! 💜

about the author, Alison Blair

Raised by two amazing, giving people, Alison is the 7th of 10 siblings. She retired from a career in healthcare and spent many years as a volunteer firefighter. She and her husband, Ed, have been married 38 years and have 8 children & 11 grandchildren. They are former foster parents and adopted 3 of the children. 

Alison believes that her life is to be in the service of others, and is a true believer in the motto "Pay it Forward."

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