Growing up in Southern Oregon, I had a smorgasbord of natural wonders in my backyard. I spent my summers hiking across rugged mountains, camping in moss-veiled forests, and kayaking on scenic waterways. Even though I’m a city gal now, my love affair with the wilderness will never end. A yearly escape into nature has become necessity for me, but let’s be real— my years of working at b-glowing have made other things feel like necessities, too. (I’m talking about beauty things, if that wasn’t obvious.) Now, I’m no stranger roughing it. I can do it. I’ve rocked a no-makeup, ragged t-shirt and messy bun look while camping, but I certainly don’t feel like my best self while doing so. For me, “no-maintenance” means having to avoid all photos and fellow travelers, lest people mistake me for the unkempt Yeti of lore. That’s why now, when spending time outdoors, I stick to a low-maintenance look and pack just a few beauty items so that I don’t have to crop myself out of my own waterfall selfie. Read on to discover my outdoor essentials:
SPF is non-negotiable for any outdoor adventure, and this portable stick makes taking my sun protection to go a snap. The hydrating balm ticks all my boxes: it’s hydrating, water-resistant, non-greasy, mess-free, and glides on completely clear to deliver lightweight, broad-spectrum SPF 50+ protection. It’s super versatile, too—because of its small size and stick formula, it’s great for covering those oft-forgotten areas like lips, ears, and under eyes. What’s more, it’s infused with skin-loving ingredients like glycerin, shea butter, and vitamin E, so it pampers my skin while it protects.
Once while camping, I washed my hair (with biodegradable shampoo, people) in a frigid mountain stream, and gave myself instant brain freeze. It’s not an experience I’m eager to repeat. Now, I always bring dry shampoo with me when I camp. This formula form Klorane is my absolute favorite: it leaves my locks soft, refreshes with zero white residue, zaps oil out in seconds, and creates just the right amount of lift.
Natural deodorant while camping, kayaking and hiking in the summer heat sounds like a terrible, terrible idea, but hear me out—this stuff really works. It performs just like “normal” deodorant, without any of the nasty, possibly cancer-causing chemicals. The absorbent baking soda, plant, and mineral complex keeps me cool and smelling fresh all day, even through the toughest and sweatiest of outdoor activities.
Multitasking products are fantastic, period, but they’re especially so when you’re camping. This formula from Origins covers all my skincare concerns in one fell swoop. Moisturizer? Check. SPF? Check. Skin-perfecting qualities? Check and check. I slather it on in the morning and sit back while it protects my skin from sun damage, deeply hydrates, evens out my skin tone, and leaves my complexion with a gorgeous, lit-from-within glow. And while it’s not technically a tinted moisturizer, it does add the teeniest touch of color, and is a great for evening out my skin without using foundation.
I don’t like to fuss with a lot of makeup while camping, but I look a bit dead without a touch of color on my lips. These adorable pots from Caudalie not only hydrate my sun-parched pout, but they leave behind a sheer touch of color that doesn’t look the least-bit makeup-y. They can also double as a pretty cream blush if I’m not sporting that natural, outdoor flush quite yet.
I have paper-white, nearly blue-tinged skin and very vein-y veins, so anytime I’m wearing shorts or a swimsuit, I need my glotion. (Glistening body lotion, that is.) My absolute favorite formula is PRTTY PEAUSHUN’s Skin Tight Body Lotion, which conceals minor imperfections like cellulite, stretch marks, and varicose veins. Luckily for me, the light-reflecting lotion comes in both clear and tinted formulas, too. I smooth a dollop on my legs in the morning, and voila! I no longer have to worry about potentially blinding those around me with my ghostly skin. What makes PRTTY PEASHUN especially great for camping is its lesser-known properties, however. The botanical formula can help heal cuts and bruises, soothe sore muscles, and act as a natural insect repellent! The last point is perhaps the most exciting, since most scented lotions attract more insects.