Sunday, October 17, 2010

Kits: NYC Survivalist Bug-Out-Bag (Toiletry Bag)

      The following is the separate toiletry bag I suggest for a bug-out bag.  Though you don't need to separate these items, I feel it's best for keeping things organized and easy to get to when you have sanitary needs.  Personal hygiene will be very important in any kind of bug-out situation, and is one of those things you can't dismiss.  The following are meant to keep your sanitary needs met in case you were forced to bug-out long-term.
  • Toiletry bag - I like my toiletry bag to be compact, and functional.  You can keep it simple and cheap by placing these items in doubled up gallon size zipper lock freezer bags or a small nylon pouch usually found in the make-up section at department stores.  If you're like me and want something a little more durable, I suggest looking into small bags typically made for first aid kits.  I prefer the Maxpedition FR-1 I link below, but it might be big for some peoples needs.  Maxpedition has a bunch of great pouches for this purpose here.  I like to stick all liquids in quart size zipper lock freezer bags to help from them spilling everywhere.
  • (1)Toothbrush - Size does not matter much here in my opinion.  Most toothbrush's are light, and compact.  What does matter is if it has a cover or not.  It is not very sanitary, and just plain dumb to not keep your toothbrush head covered.  It is actually good practice to keep your daily 'at home' toothbrush covered as well, to help protect from floating 'unsanitary' particles.  I prefer the following toothbrush that use the cover as a handle.
  • (1) Tube toothpaste - Up to you to get what type of toothpaste you prefer.  Though they have the small compact size tubes, I suggest the normal 'larger' ones.  I suggest this because if the bug-out situation is long-term, one of those small tubes won't last more then a month, even if they're rationed.  A properly rationed full-size toothpaste can last about a year if you needed it to.  If your worried about size, and weight you may decide against this, your call.
  • (1) Floss - Floss has many uses beyond its intended.  It can be used as thread, snares and so on.  Usually it is best if you buy the unwaxed kind for your kit.  You can get rid or the plastic case it comes in and place it in a small piece of plastic wrap.
  • A bunch of Q-tips - These have multiple uses, and are very lightweight.  One of their more useful applications is for use in cleaning equipment like your multitool.  Place them in a quart sized zipper freezer bag.
  • (1) Razor or straight edge - This again is up to you, but I would suggest learning how to shave with a straight edge or safety blade.  Though they might be a bit heavier then the plastic disposable razor's on the market today, they will last indefinitely.  Using a straight edge can be more expensive then disposables, but they pay for themselves after a year or so of use.  A straight edge also has the benefit of being a very sharp cutting utility for delicate cutting jobs like skinning.  Here is an article on straight edge shaving, and here's one on safety blades.
  • (1) Shaving cream - My skin tends to not be sensitive to shaving, so I can skip actual shaving cream and use something like soap or moisturizer.  I prefer using a moisturizer as I can shave without water if needed.  You can buy a big container like below, and place the liquid in a smaller plastic container made for traveling.
  • (1) Soap - There are a few options on the market right now, and it can get a bit confusing.  I like the liquid camping soaps that have multiple purposes (i.e.body soap, soap for fabrics, soap for your dishes/utensils) and that are biodegradable.  Because this soap has many uses, you should have a bigger bottle of it.  I suggest the company No Rinse as they have great products, and are a trusted company.  Be careful to ration this stuff properly, as it is a bit watery when used and can come flying out of the bottle.  If you decide to get a bigger bottle, it won't fit in your toiletry bag, but I'm sure you can find room in your bug-out-bag.
  • (1) Bottle shampoo *Optional* - I put this as optional because you can technically use the above soap for your hair as well.  This stuff just does a better job, and could be useful for the people in your family that have long hair.
  • (1) Bottle liquid hand sanitizer - I suggest the liquid over the wipes, because the wipes will only last so long.  What makes the liquid nice is that you can ration it.  This stuff is useful if you need to sanitize your hands after cleaning game, or touching things that can be laden with bacteria.  It's also good to use a little on your hands after having to wipe your behind when you have no sink or clean water to wash them with.  Hand sanitizers can  keep your smelly B.O. from getting out of control as well.  Take a bit of this stuff and put it in the areas that smell the most (i.e. underarms, and crotch area.)  Be careful, because these sanitizers are mostly alcohol and can really irritate those with sensitive skin.
  • (1) Deodorant *Optional* - I personally don't carry it because I would use the above soap or sanitizers to help with B.O.  But if you must, then I suggest one of the rock salt deodorants that are on the market right now.  They are small, somewhat functional, very safe to use, and last a very very long time.
  • (1) Small container of powder - There are a ton of uses for this stuff, and I suggest carrying at least a small amount of it in your kit.  Powder helps keep your skin dry, and can prevent rashes in annoying places.  It can also be used in your hair to keep it oil free, leading to less washes.
  • (1) Type of toilet paper *Optional* - What?!Optional, NO WAY!  I can hear you thinking it now.  Yes, optional.  I am only mentioning it for those that don't know how to properly 'clean' themselves while in the bush.  You can have compact toilet paper, or biodegradable wipes, but you will eventually run out.  Then what?  I suggest learning how to handle cleanliness before you end up in the situation.  You have a few options if you decide to not use toilet paper, many of which have been used (and are still used in many countries of the world) for generations.  Leaves and rocks, are the most common when in the backcountry.  You can also use rags, newspaper, books, or catalogs (as many a Sears catalog was used back in the day.)  One of the simplest, and cleanest ways is to poor water (if you have an abundance of it) down the small of your back, while using your hand to wipe away the bad stuff.  This method obviously requires you not to use that hand until you properly sanitize it, hence why I suggest hand sanitizer and soap.
  • (1) Container of Bug-spray *Optional* - This is usually optional for most people until they sleep outdoors on a warm summer night.  I personally like having some on me because bugs seem to like biting me often.  I suggest a small bottle of a bug-spray that contains about 30% Deet.  Deet is not the safest chemical in the world, but it is by far the most effective.  Try not to use it until you can't stand it another minute, or if it is affecting your sleep.

  • (1) Bottle sun-block - Sun-block can be very important even if you have proper clothes.  The sun can reflect much of its UV rays off of things like water and snow leading to bad sun-burn.  Sun-burn can damage the skin, and lead to dehydration much sooner then normal.
  • (1) Plastic comb - These things are little, and practically weigh nothing.  I'm sure you would use it if you had it.
  • (1) Nail clipper - These are hard to replace in the wild, and can be much safer to use then scissors or a knife.  A small durable pair will suffice.
  • (1) Tweezers - Though you should have a good pair in your first aid kit and if you don't, replace them.  You should carry a spare 'back-up' pair in this kit.  Tweezers are impossible to replicate in nature, and can be a literal lifesaver.
  • (1) Small mirror - Even though you should have one or two mirrors in your kit, this is more for convenience.  This way when you need a mirror for shaving or what have you, it's in this kit where you need it.
  • Feminine products - If your a female, you might think I'm suggesting these for obvious reasons, but I am not.  They are actually useful for tinder, or as a compress for a bad cut or wound.  Though they can be used for there intended purposes, there are better, sustainable options then Tampons, and Maxipads.  For women (or survival minded husbands) that are concerned about what to do about the female menstrual cycles while bugging-out long-term, there are a few options.  I won't get into them to much, but I'll give you a push in the right direction.  You can use items available in nature, but what I found to be the most reasonable item can be found here.  It may be a bit unconventional, but it is a very interesting idea and can be used indefinitely.  If you would like to read more about it, there is a wonderful article here


    No comments: