Scrubba Wash Bag: My cousin and I jointly invested in a Scrub Bag for our 2016 Fall Trips.
Emily’s thoughts when using it in England: “Works great- I had some individual packs of woolite and it worked well. Some people report the valve leaks but I didn’t notice since everything was wet anyway- I had it in the bottom of my shower. Clothes were clean, easy peasy. Except socks were stiff- would be better to bring enough socks. My problem came with drying- everything stayed wet and got musty smelling when they finally did dry- 2 days. May not be a problem if traveling in a hot dry country but in England/ Scotland was an issue. Also, would be better if we didn’t stay at hostels/ shared bunk bed rooms since I didn’t always have a place to hang wet clothes. So, bag is good, difficulties a result of user error.”
My thoughts after using it in South America: “I was skeptical that it would be worth the added weight and space it took in my bag. I ended up using it half a dozen times during my trip. Let’s face it, the weather rarely turns out as expected on a trip and despite how little or much you pack you always need something more than you thought you would. On this trip, I didn’t get to wear the sundresses I packed, so I ended up wearing and rewearing the two pairs of pants and two tee shirts. The scrub bag made washing very quick and easy. I used Emily’s left over woolite which was a great idea!”
Lush: I am always looking for more organic and natural options as well as ways to pack lighter and more versatile. Lush shampoo and conditioning bars seemed like a great option. They are light, easy to pack, chemical free, long lasting and can go through airport security as a carry-on. I love the shampoo bar. It is easy to use and has a great latter. Although I find the small shampoo tin hard to open, especially once your hands are wet. I don’t love the conditioner. Although it works, it never feels like it is working at the time and I worry if I used enough (I have very fine hair that gets tangled) and if I used too much and rinsed it all out. It also does not condition enough those days you really need it, like after walking around in the winds of Patagonia.
ExOfficio clothes: I recently purchased one ExOfficio tee-shirt, skirt and one pair of underwear. I was intrigued and wanted to check them out. Their philosophy from their webpage: “Here at ExOfficio, performance is the cornerstone of our design process. For each garment, we ask: what is it Made To do? The answer leads to fabric choice. Each garment possesses technology to optimize it for a particular type of activity. If your adventure takes you to a river in the tropics, you need protection from the sun and insects. If you are headed to the mountains, fabric strength is priority. And if you are exploring a foreign city, stylish packability is key.”
I think the tee shirt (in above photo) was cute and versatile and I wore it most days of my recent trip. It was easy to wash and was able to dry overnight. However, after just two weeks the shirt is starting to look just a bit worn and fuzzy. The clothes are expensive but go on sale out of season (my tee-shirt went from $50 to $14 in just a few months). The shirt was definitely worth the sale price, but I would probably be mad if I paid full price. I will probably invest in a second pair of underwear as it was easy to wash and dry and allowed me to always be clean! Note: Amazon reviews say their clothes run small. I did not find this to be the case and would argue they run normal size or even a little large.