Sustainable Travel

How to Make Homemade Eco Friendly Toiletries for Long Term Travel

Last Updated on November 27, 2020 by queenie mak

If you are travelling with a 7kg carry-on luggage, you will understand how difficult it is to pack toiletries for long term travel. A 7kg suitcase or backpack isn’t very big. Plus, if you are only travelling with a carry-on bag, that means all your liquids have to be in 100ml bottles (as per TSA regulation) and a small ziplock bag.

Typically, I can fit about 2 – 3 weeks of toiletries in my favourite minimalist backpack.

However, if I travel for more than three weeks, I will have to replenish my toiletries at my destination.

But buying specific cosmetic products can be difficult while I am travelling. It might not be available, or it can be costly.

So I found a solution that will solve all my problems: make my own eco friendly toiletries!

By making my own DIY toiletries, I can save a lot of money, be able to travel with my 7kg carry-on backpack and have natural toiletries that are good for my health and the environment. Keep reading to find out how you can make your own eco friendly toiletries for long term travel.





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What is in my Minimalist Toiletry Bag?

From my previous post on what I bring in my minimalist toiletries for every trip, I mentioned that I always travel with a hanging toiletry bag and a TSA-approved ziplock bag.

Here is a re-cap.


Inside my hanging toiletry bag, my set of toiletries include:

  • Toothbrush
  • Floss
  • Comb
  • Eyeliner
  • 2 chapsticks
  • Tweezer
  • Nail clipper
  • Contact lens case
  • Soft hairband
  • Lush Godiva shampoo bar*
  • Diva Cup
  • Cotton pads*
  • Qtips*
  • Other items: hair tie, several hair clips, several safety pins


Inside my TSA-approved bag, I have:

  • Toothpaste*
  • Facial cleanser*
  • Toner*
  • Face cream*
  • Sunblock*
  • Contact lens solution*


*Note – for these items, I only have enough for a few weeks. For a trip for more than a few weeks, I typically buy my toiletries at my destination.





Why I make my eco-friendly travel toiletries for long term travel

There are many reasons why I choose to use earth-friendly products as my travel toiletries. Here are a few major reasons:


1. Easy to find

Most of the products recommended in this post can be found in local supermarkets, pharmacies and specialty stores. They are common products that have multiple usages, so that means you can find the products in most places.

I’ve travelled all over Asia, Europe, Australia and North America and I can find these products pretty easily.

So unless you are going to a remote place, you can find it wherever you go.


2. Products are inexpensive

Because these items are so common, they are very affordable.

While prices at supermarkets and drug stores are very low, the prices on Amazon is very competitive as well. I like buying through Amazon because I can get everything all at once and they ship it directly to my door. Click on the banner below and start shopping.




3. Simple and natural ingredients that are excellent for your health and the environment

Moreover, by using natural eco-friendly products, it minimizes irritation to your skin, and prevent any allergic reaction (you may or may not be aware of).

Plus eco-friendly product is not harmful to the environment.

It’s a win-win for your wallet and the earth!




List of natural products to make your own eco friendly travel toiletries

These are the four natural ingredients I use for making my own eco-friendly travel toiletries:


Baking Soda

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)

Coconut Oil

Witch Hazel


If possible, I either bring these essential oils with me or find them wherever I go. These are optional for some of the recipes below.


Peppermint Oil

Tea Tree Oil




View this post on Instagram

No, I didn't blog about cooking or trying a new recipe. Although, the products in the photo (other than the witch hazel) might hint that I am baking something healthy?! 🤣 . I'm a big fan of packing less for any trip. I typically use a 24-litre backpack where I bring a few sets of clothes and enough toiletries to last a few weeks. . But when it comes to toiletries, I don't bring months of supply. It is not possible to fit everything in my 7kg carry on backpack! . So I found different ways to make my own toiletries – by using simple everyday ingredients where you can find almost anywhere. Take a look at my latest post on DIY eco-friendly toiletries. Link is in bio. . #travel #travelsolo #womentravelsolo #solotraveller #wanderlust #travellife #travelblogger #sustainabletravel #ecofriendly #ecofriendlytoiletries #earthfriendly #environmentallyfriendlyproducts #mstravelsolo

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My go-to earth-friendly toiletries


Natural toothpaste

It is easy to make your own toothpaste that tastes good and whitens your teeth. Just remember to bring a small jar so you can have a few weeks worth of toothpaste.


How to make natural toothpaste


  • 4 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 2-4 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 20 drops of peppermint essential oil (optional)
  • Small glass jar


Instead of using regular toothpaste, I like using baking soda as an alternative. I make a small batch in a small glass jar, and it lasts a few weeks. The eco-friendly toothpaste cleans teeth really well and whitens teeth too.



Natural face & body exfoliant

Baking soda is an excellent exfoliant for the face and body. It is gentle enough for your face and strong enough to take off any impurities on your skin.


How to make natural face & body exfoliant


  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • enough water to make a paste


Mix all the ingredients into a paste and exfoliate your face and body. It will leave your skin silky smooth.

When you use it on your face, gently apply the paste onto your face and massage in a circular motion for a few minutes. Then rinse with water.

As for the rest of your body, you can also use the paste to take off any dead skin.




Natural facial toner

When I run out of my regular facial toner, I will use Witch Hazel, which is a natural astringent for face and body.


How to make a natural facial toner


  • A few drops of Witch Hazel 


Simply put a few drops of Witch Hazel on your cotton pad or put directly onto your face. It is useful for closing facial pores if enlarged pores are your concern.

And it is also a great agent for minimizing oily scalp. Put a few drops of Witch Hazel all over your scalp and massage your scalp for a few minutes. Then let it sit for 15 minutes before washing it off with your regular shampoo.



Natural shampoo

I really enjoy using my natural shampoo to wash my hair. I find that it takes away the hard water grime from my hair and minimize the oil on my scalp. The peppermint oil is excellent to stimulate hair growth while the tea tree oil is excellent for keeping your scalp clean.


How to make natural shampoo


  • 2 tablespoon of ACV
  • 2 teaspoons of baking soda
  • 2 drops of peppermint oil
  • 2 drops of tea tree oil
  • Warm water


Every time I wash my hair, I mix all of these ingredients in a mug and add lukewarm water to the top of the mug and mix well. Use the entire cup of mixture for your hair. And remember to massage your scalp while you are washing and rinse after 5 minutes.




Natural moisturize

Coconut oil can naturally hydrate and moisturize your skin. It improves skin elasticity and promotes collagen production. Plus it has anti-ageing properties.


How to make a natural moisturizer


  • A small amount of Coconut oil 


Many people love using coconut oil as a natural moisturizer for the body. You can apply it directly onto your arms, legs, and body. It is especially great for your hands and cuticles when it becomes really dry.

However, it is a bit oily for me, so I typically like using it for my cuticles and my feet (the driest part of my body).



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Do you know of any other eco friendly toiletries?

I’ve tried all of these DIY natural toiletries throughout my travels, and I love them all. I hope you can give it a try and see how eco friendly products can make excellent toiletries.

And if you have any other suggestions, I would love to hear! Leave a comment below!


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About Author

Hi, my name is Queenie, and I've been a solo traveller for 18+ years and currently based in Hong Kong. Follow me on my adventures through Instagram and my blog!

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