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If you love to explore the wilderness through camping or hiking trips, you may have faced the question of what to do with your hair in a setting where you don't have time or many resources to care for it . When Sopiadevita inquired in the Curly Q&A  about how to care for her hair when she is out on a camping trip, I knew she was in need of minimal products for long-term hair maintenance. If you're a curly with a busy lifestyle and little time to dedicate to your hair, this minimal regimen will help you out too. 

Question

How to care for my hair in the wilderness? I am going on three-month camping expedition and will only have access to a shower/conditioner about once a month. I obviously don't need my hair to look nice, but I don't want to end up having to cut off my hair because of the knots. Any suggestions on something to bring or a habit to get into to keep my hair tame during this time? Thanks!

Answer

Your hair should not get in the way of the lifestyle you want to lead, no matter what you are doing! There are a few items, tips, and techniques that will make for an easier expedition, and since space is probably limited, bringing the right essentials will make for a better trip. So let’s get into some tips that will keep your hair looking great and knot-free with minimal effort or products.

Dry shampoo

Dry shampoo can be a useful tool when you don't have many opportunities to wash your hair. It will help with the sweat, dirt, and bugs that you may encounter while out becoming one with nature in-between your hair washings.

Read more: Top 15 Dry Shampoos

Double up on the products

Since space will probably be a factor, make sure to find products that can double up on duties, for example a cleanser that can be used on both your body and hair, or a leave-in conditioner that also has the hold of a styler or the slip of a detangler. Shampoo bars can be great for cleansing your body and hair at the same time and they last . A leave-in with amazing slip will be your best friend, as you want to deter knots. Kinky-Curly Knot Today is a great idea as it will give amazing slip and many use it as a styler.

Braids

Keeping your hair in braids will keep the hair out of the way while preventing tangles. French braiding the hair with at least two on either side is good and tucking the ends up will help keep your hair out of the way. A braided updo, ponytail, or twists are all smart options. Since you are camping for such an extended time, bunning, twisting, or braiding your ponytail will prevent further knotting and dry ends.

Read more: Ask Dr. Kari: Effective Protective Styles

Natural oils

Bringing your favorite natural oil (a lighter one of course) may be a good way to keep hair from getting too dry or just to make your braided hair smoother and stay together. It can be a great sealant when you do wash your hair and condition and with the spirit of doubling up, oils (olive oil) are great for removing ticks and yes, I am a country girl so I know a few things about ticks.

Keep it covered

Covering your hair with a scarf or a hat is a great option for protecting your hair as well. It will also keep your hair out of the way and out of your face. Baseball caps help with shielding hair from the sun and keeping hair covered and out of the way. This also helps to prevent damage from the extended sun exposure.

Read more: Protect Your Hair from the Sun