Beauty Roundup: Summer Camping

Photo: Jeremy Ricketts

It’s mid-summer and camping season is in full swing. Finally, you get to enjoy some reception-free downtime with the family and reconnect with nature. You don’t want to forget a thing, so you take out your packing list from last year (wow, I am so organized!). Tent and sleeping bag, check. Cooler, check. Sunscreen, bug spray, soap…check, check, check!

Your hope is to reconnect with nature, so you try your best to keep the campsite clean. But what about all the chemicals you’re dragging along in your products? We know these can potentially harm the ecosystem around you and pose a greater risk to the environment and your health in the long run. Although making the switch to cleaner products can take some time, camping is a great opportunity to go green in your beauty routine!


You’ll be living outside for a few days, hiking on trails, paddling the canoe on the shiny lake and maybe going for a dip in the water if you’re brave enough; but remember sunscreen is paramount. You’ll want to make sure to reapply throughout the day and include waterproof protectio
n if you anticipate sweating or swimming.

I like Green Beaver’s Natural Mineral Sunscreen Lotion for Kids (40 SPF). It has clean ingredients, is safe for the entire family and offers waterproof protection.

Don’t forget to protect your lips. Most lip balms contain SPF, but may not necessarily pass the non-toxic test. For healthier lip protection, opt for a product like Badger Balm’s multipurpose waterproof Face Stick. It can be used all year round and is also safe for the entire face.

Bug Spray

Although nothing really works like the real stuff, DEET-free natural bug sprays combined with a fragrance-free beauty regime can help ward off those pesky mosquitos. Natural Bug Spray is safe for the entire family and non-toxic. The essential oils found in its formula are known to repel bugs, not kill them.


Consider packing light with an all-purpose soap that can be used to wash your dishes, hands, body or hair. The natural and biodegradable formulations are safe for the environment and offer a wonderful herbal scent, perfect for the great outdoors.

For all the ritzy glampers out there, I recommend this lovely Cottage Kit from Modern Apothecary that includes a lake-friendly shampoo and conditioner, natural bug spray and moisturizing body oil.

If you prefer to use a bar of soap, opt for a eucalyptus essential oil based soap that doubles as a mild insect repellant. This natural and lake-friendly Mountain Sky Pine-Eucalyptus soap will leave you smelling fresh and clean. I would avoid cedar notes, as mosquitoes love it just as much as we do!


Whether it is for everyday use or camping, switching from an antiperspirant to a deodorant is something everyone should consider. Aluminum found in antiperspirants, the ingredient that stops you from sweating, may be linked to diseases like cancer and Alzheimer’s. I have recently made the switch myself and have found a perfect formula. Green Beaver Natural Deodorant with Tee Tree oil has antibacterial properties and goes on clear.

If bathing is not readily available, consider using a body deodorizer spray like Demes’ Get the Funk Out, with antibacterial properties. This spray can also be used safely on clothing or camping gear that, let’s face it, can smell funky after a few days. Bonus—Demes is an Ottawa based brand that produces non-toxic, vegan and cruelty-free products for the family.