Creating Individual Soap Leaves - Camping Hack #11

You want your family to keep at least semi-clean while you're out enjoying the great outdoors, but this can get cumbersome or messy or be bad for Mother Nature.

Bottles of liquid soap are heavy and a disaster if they inadvertently pop open. A bar of soap in a plastic bag is slimy, soft and downright yucky, and synthetic detergents may be harmful to the environment.

Finally, scented soaps may keep you smelling good, but they're a bug magnet, and every mosquito within a half mile will make a beeline to your tender, sweet-smelling skin. However, there is a practical and straightforward solution: making your own soap leaves.

To make your own individual soap leaves for camping, gather the following items:

- A bar of unscented, 100 percent biodegradable soap. Look for a soap that is not overly hard to prevent crumbling during cutting. Consider using handmade soap without any added scents or make your own.

- A pastry cutter, vegetable peeler, or drywall knife.

- Wax paper or parchment paper.

- A small, rigid plastic container with a sturdy lid (avoid using a bag, as it may cause the leaves to stick together and become unusable).

Follow these steps to create your soap leaves:

1. Cut the soap into the thinnest layers possible, ensuring each piece is just enough for a single use. If the layers are too large, you can cut them in half. For the best results, cut across the narrow edge of the soap bar.

2. Place the soap leaves on the paper and be sure they are spaced out and do not overlap. Allow them to air dry for a day before packaging to prevent sticking.

3. When it's time for hand-washing, remove a single soap leaf before wetting your hands to avoid it becoming soft and sticky.

By preparing these individual soap leaves, you'll have a convenient and mess-free way to keep your hands clean while camping.


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