Keeping our skin healthy, happy and comfortable can be difficult at the best of times… when we’re hiking and camping it can be next to impossible. Changes in climate and exposure to sun and wind can leave your skin feeling dry, sore and burnt… especially if you don’t take your hiking skincare seriously!
Wild Women are experts at hiking skincare, and we’ve pulled together our favourite products, from the bougie to the basic, to keep you feeling soothed, supple and safe in the great outdoors.
A Hat You Love To Wear
Sun protection is always the best way to keep your skin protected from sun exposure and harmful UV rays. Whether you prefer a wide brimmed, legionaries, bucket or cap, the hat you love to wear is far better than no hat at all, so find one that suits you.
You’ll never see our Founder and CEO Di Westaway head out on a hike without her trademark Akubra. I personally prefer a cap. Yes, Mum, I know it’s not the most sun safe option, but it’s the one I feel most comfy hiking and I’m guaranteed to wear it every time.
Let’s talk about SPF, baby!
Gone are the days of sticky, gloopy, white-cast-y, horribly sunscreens. We’re in a new era of delicious, moisturising, glowy, look-like-a-primer skinscreens (yep, it’s a combo of sunscreen and skincare), and we’re here for it.
The new(ish) golden girl of the sunscreen world, UltraViolette has almost single-handedly made sunscreen cool. Whether you prefer a matte, dewy or luminous finish, mineral or zinc, pink lid or green, UltraViolette has a skinscreen for you.
My personal fave is Clean Screen (I have bitchy, sensitive skin that breaks out at the mere whiff of fragrance) but you can take UltraViolette’s quiz to find out the right product for your hiking skincare arsenal.
If you’re hiking and swimming in the ocean, you know you need a reef safe option, right? Plenty of sunscreens are terrible for the reef… but not this one! Sunbutter is a zinc-based formula that is safe for sensitive skin, and the planet. Everything from the tins (recycled) to the factory (solar powered) is light on the earth, so you can stay protected now and into the future.
If you’re looking an affordable face and body sunscreen that does the trick, try this one. It’s the perfect option to stick in your pack, your car and your first-aid kit so you’ve always got something on hand. It has a lovely velvet matte finish, but does tend to pill (create little lumps of product), especially if you apply makeup on top.
A Face-And-Body Moisturiser
We’re all about eschewing makeup when we’re out in the wilderness, but you don’t want to skip your moisturiser in your hiking skincare kit. It has to be super nourishing and hydrating to ward off any dry, cracked skin that threatens after a day in the bush.
You can take separate products for face and body, but we prefer one that does both #packlite.
Here are some of our favourites.
It’s not fancy, it’s not fragranced, but girl, it does the job. Slap it on anywhere you feel dry and tight for hydrated, soft skin in no time.
If you love a thick, thick, thiiiiiiick balmy cream, give this one a go. All natural and super hydrating… it’s a cult beauty product for a reason.
It’s designed as a hand cream, but this balm is Di’s favourite for both face, neck and body. It soaks in like a dream and smells like heaven.
This is our Marketing Specialist Lisa’s absolute go-to. It’s the perfect size for camping and is deeply moisturising so you can chuck it on at night and you’ll be good to go for your sunrise hike.
Makeup wipes, begone! Face Halo is your new hiking BFF. They are essentially a reusable makeup pad, made with “HaloTech” fibres that sweep away anything on your cute little face. You don’t need makeup remover or micellar water – just wet them and wipe.
These are a game changer for removing dirt, sunscreen and any bush debris from your lovely mug before snuggling down in your sleeping bag.
If you haven’t made the move to deodorant paste yet… make haste, you heathen! Yes, it takes a little while to get used to rubbing goop under your armpits, but I have yet to find a better non-anti-perspirant that genuinely stops the stank.
Why I recommend it for hiking skincare? It’s super compact, you can share it with your mates (unlike roll on which I find weird to share) and it’s made of ingredients that won’t poison the water if you bathe in a stream. Plus, it now comes in plastic free tin… winning!
I’ve put this in the nice-to-have category, but personally I’d never hike without it. Or camp. Or live, really – I have a pot in my bedside drawer and every bag I own.
It’s this South African ointment that smells weird (camphor?) and is marketed as being for various minor skin ailments. But I use it for mozzie bites. It is the ONLY thing I’ve ever used that stops them itching. If you’re one of the unlucky people that mozzies love (hello, I feel you), this will change your life and that’s not even an exaggeration. Buy it!
If you get dry lips at home, you’ll get them worse in the wild. Lanolips superbalm is the best and I will say no more about it.
A Lil Something Special
Whether you’re a lippy gal, love a mascara or are all about the hair, we always recommend you add a little some extra to your hiking skincare routine that may not be essential, but will make you feel pampered.
Here are my indulgent products.
This dreamy face oil smells like summer and feels like a thousand baby angels caressing your face. Seriously, this is one of my fave products of all time, so you bet it’s coming with me into the bush.
Also, how’s this for timing… Go-To have just announced a limited edition ‘Pick n Mix minis’ campaign, so you can get teensy, hiking size products. I am sold!
If you, like me, have a fringe, you will know the horrors of hiking hair. By 2pm on day one, your fringe is a greasy, sweaty, hat-f*cked (that is the official term) mess.
This cheeky little dry shampoo brush is the ideal fix. Leave the bulky aerosols at home and dab this powder puff onto your cute roots and voila! Camping and chic! Who would have thought?
If you’re not quite ready to ditch the makeup completely, may I recommend this lovely, multi-use balm? I use it as a lip, cheek and eyeshadow vibe, on those days hiking when I want a little flush of colour.