Eco friendly travel: hair edition

Like all eco friendly gals I try to make sure that the products that I use on my skin and body are not harmful to the environment.

cra..cra...crazzzyyy hair
cra..cra…crazzzyyy hair and are free from nasty chemicals.

This also includes when I travel, as many places off the beaten track don’t have eco friendly products, much less sometimes any amenities at all.

Being an eco backpacker I also need to make sure that the products that I take with me are small and light, as well as being eco.

This has proved tricky at times but I have discovered a few products that fit the eco friendly bill AND are perfect for the travelling gal!

I think everyone will agree that travelling can wear you down and sometimes all you need to lift your mood again can be as simple as putting a conditioning treatment through your hair.

In this edition I want to give my tips on how I keep my hair manageable and healthy on the road, using only sustainable and eco friendly products.

I am blessed with big, thick, curly hair and add in some humidity and my hair quickly turns into an unmanageable rats nest that I want to cut off.

And because of this my hair quickly can turn nuts when I travel.

But luckily I have found out some secret ways to keep my hair healthy and happy whilst travelling:

1. Eco friendly and travel sized shampoo:

When I am home I try to use the ‘no poo’ method of washing my hair (with bicarb soda and apple cider vinegar) but when I travel I find it just doesn’t work. So I had to find another way to wash my hair without using nasty chemicals.

Enter: Lush shampoo bars

lush shampoo bar image
Image credit: Lush


These shampoo bars have literally revitalised my travel experience!

They are teeny tiny (as the picture shows) and you can purchase a small metal tin to store them in and take up no space and weigh next to nothing making them the perfect travel shampoo.

You can also purchase a conditioner as well.

I haven’t heard of any other brand that makes these so thats why I buy Lush.

2. Eco friendly Camomile hair rinse

Credit: Wikipedia Commons
Credit: Wikipedia Commons

This is as easy as boiling some water, letting some camomile tea bags sit in the water until it cools and then pouring it over your hair after you finish your shower.

So easy!

After using the camomile tea hair rinse my normally unruly hair felt soft and oh so light! Also if you have any blonde in your hair using camomile tea will help make the highlights stand out.

I love doing this when I am travelling because I can easily make a cup of tea in a hostel kitchen and take it with my into the shower.

It also helps to make me feel refreshed and as all travelling girls know this can be just the thing you need to bring the spring back into your step!

3. Eco friendly rice water

Image credit:
Image credit:

Pasta and rice are the staple of most travellers diets because you can buy them in bulk and for cheap.

Well did you know that rice water is actually really good for the hair and for your skin?

It has been used for hundreds of years in many Asian countries to promote healthy hair growth and also for youthful looking skin.

Next time you are at a hostel and cooking up some fried rice keep the water that you place the rice in before cooking for your hair.

To make rice water simply place the rice you are going to cook into some water, after a few minutes drain the rice from the water and pour it away (or take it outside and pour it over some plants).

This first lot of water could contain some dirt and things that have washed off the rice so thats why you don’t want to use it.

Instead place the rice back into some fresh water and leave for around 10 minutes.

Then simply pour the rice water into a bowl or cup and continue on cooking.

After your delicious rice meal you can use the rice water a number of ways.

After washing your hair, pour the rice water over scalp and hair and leave for two minutes and then wash off.

This leaves your hair so soft and smooth!

You can also use a cotton pad and use the rice water as a toner onto your skin, leave for a few minutes and then rinse off.

Your skin will literally glow and feel nice and tight.

Making rice water when you travel is so super easy and it has more than one use as a natural beauty product.

4. Oil

Image credit: The Eco Backpacker
Image credit: The Eco Backpacker

One way that I have been able to keep my hair under control in a humid country is using oil in my hair.

Everyone has a different oil that works for them, for example if I put olive oil in my hair I have a greasy residue for a week no matter how many times I wash my hair.

I have seen a huge difference though of using Moroccan or coconut oil by placing it through the mid section to ends of my hair after I have washed my hair.

This is something really easy to carry with you that you can decant into a small travel sized bottle and will help keep your hair moisturised during your travels.

5. A good brush

Image credit:
Image credit:

Now this one might seem obvious but you need a good brush to take with you travelling because brushing your hair is so important.

Trust me, from experience,  it stops dreadlocks from forming!

Also try and make sure it is a wooden and not plastic brush, not only is it better for the environment but it is also better for your hair.


So those are my top eco and travel friendly tips on how I keep my hair looking good decent on my travels.

Not only do I know that what I am putting into my hair is not harming me or the environment, but its also cheap and fits into my backpack easily.

*Do you have other tips about certain products that you use on the road that are eco? Have any advice about the ‘no poo’ method whilst travelling? I would love to hear your thoughts!*


3 thoughts on “Eco friendly travel: hair edition

  1. Thanks, my hair is super curly and thick, I am going to be travelling Eco style for awhile and I am desperate for tips. Question though: don’t you find that brushing your hair breaks the strands and creates unmanageable frizz? I am clueless about how to de tangle my hair without usual products that are super silken and conditioning.

    1. Hello! Thank you so much for reading and commenting! I have found using a wooden brush has really helped my with my curls. BUT I know my sister struggles as well and doesn’t brush her hair. Another secret that I have found that works really well is using coconut oil to help condition and tame my hair (a little goes a long way) just rub between your hands and work through focusing on the ends.
      Let me know how it goes and safe travels!

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