In this guide, I’m going to show you how to shower while camping.

This post covers:

  • Different types of shower systems used while camping
  • How to stay clean while camping
  • Basic health and environmental tips while camping

And lots more

Let’s get started.

How to shower while camping

Different Types of Shower Systems Used while Camping

While most campgrounds provide comfort stations for campers, others like the commercial, RV camps make use of shift showers and electricity from the properly grounded generator to warm the water.

However, people that camp out with none of these facilities available can either choose to use baby wipes to clean their bodies after a long stressful day of activities or can refresh themselves in warm temperature showers by one of these methods.

1. Solar Showers

You may or may not have used one of these before, but this method of showering while camping is built from a solar absorbing surface, an insulating bag, a hose, and a showerhead.

Solar showers can be set up by filling the solar shower bag via a water source (a nearby lake or river). But remember not to fill the solar shower bag since water expands when heated to avoid having the bag rip or burst.

And while heating the shower bag, try as much as possible to keep it off the ground to prevent it from losing heat to the earth, except you plan on heating it on a rock surface where the rock absorbs heat from the sun and reflects on the solar bag.

Doing this will help the whole setup heat faster.

Solar shower bags can be hung on a tree branch, with the solar absorbent surface facing the direction of the sun rays.

Now when using the solar shower, hang it above you, making sure that the hose is as straight as possible to allow the water flow with maximum pressure.

Some showerheads have a valve that regulates the water flow out of the hose.

2. Portable Propane Shower

A propane heater shower is the closest you can get to shower at home when outdoor. It heats water stored in its reservoir with propane.

The reservoir, which is made from an insulating material, can store hot water for campers. Similar to the solar shower, it has a hose and a showerhead that can be suspended to aid water flow.

Propane solar panels usually come with extra functionalities like a battery rechargeable pump or a provision for water temperature regulation and a hanger for suspending the showerhead.

3. Shower Tent for Privacy

Even though camps are usually not so crowded, using a shower tent will provide you with the much-needed privacy for a proper relaxing shower.

Camp shower tents come with provision for you to hang either of your propane or solar showerhead and rails for hanging towels and other necessary items like soap and cosmetics.

How to Shower while Camping

This guide won’t teach you “how to shower,” so to say, this is something that every adult knows how to do.

Instead, I’ll be showing you the necessary steps to take when showering at your campsite.

But first, there are two major things you should keep in mind when learning how to shower while camping:

1. Make use of biodegradable soaps when showering while camping. This is because non-biodegradable soap poses a more significant threat to the aqua-life when exposed to waterways.

2. Try to shower at least 200 feet from water sources to prevent soap droplets from running off into nearby rivers. Soap droplets are known to travel through soil, and the further away you shower from water sources, the better.

There are so many ways to maintain personal hygiene and stay clean while camping.

You could also decide to settle for a cold dip in the lake, but remember to consider the risk of hypothermia, as this is a better option on sunny days.

This can be done by simply stripping down to your birthday suit, or with a pair of shorts and a t-shirt to look modest. You can then proceed to jump into the lake, river, or stream, which you’ve had your eyes on all day.

A river bath is one of the most refreshing ways to stay clean while camping.

You could also choose to have a simple sponge and bucket bathe, which gives you the option of heating the water first over a campfire, and with a small-sized bowl to scoop the water while you wash up.

This method of showering while camping is best for a full-body sponge bath, or just in case you want to clean up some key areas of your body, like under your arms, groin, and the back of your knees.

When showering with this method while camping, it’s essential to be mindful of how much water you use to lather up, as you will need to have some left to rinse off.

And never forget, to save the aqua-life, never jump into a lake or river when you’re all covered up in soap!

Ultimately there are different alternatives when it comes to learning how to stay clean while camping.

Always remember to consider the type of soap you choose to shower with; Unscented soaps work best as they are known not to attract insects to your body.


Whether you plan to shower in modernized facilities, always remember to take your towel and flip flops or water boots along with you. Forgetting these can leave you in a stranded and uncomfortable position.

Whatever method you choose to shower while camping depends on your budget, the season, and what’s convenient and easy for you to carry along with you on your camping adventure, noting that some options are more practical than others.

And always remember – dispose of whatever leftover soapy water after showering far away from lakes, rivers, and streams

If you have questions, or you think I left out a few things, please let me know by leaving a comment below.