There’s a lot of variety in van dweller bathing. Some people carry five gallon buckets to stand in while they dump water over their head. I don’t have room for a bucket and I can’t stand up, so my strategy is a little lower key.
I have two and a half main bathing strategies: one for when I’m in the woods, one for when I’m in a city dancing, and half of one for when I’m on the highway or in a city not dancing. I’ll address hair completely separately.
You need only three things – a spray bottle, a washcloth, and soap. I use the soap my Aunt Diane makes, but if you don’t have an Aunt Diane Dr. Bronners is a good multi-purpose non-toxic soap (plus the stuff on the bottle is funny).
First look around and make sure there still aren’t any people around. Then put your dog in the van so that if a hostile person happens to show up you can just jump in the van without worrying about your dog. Always best to be prepared.
Second, spray yourself down with water, head to toe. Don’t worry about getting your hair wet. It should take about a quarter of the bottle of water. Then take the washcloth and scrub, head to toe, armpits, cunt, and ass last.
Spray again to rinse and you’re all done! Either lay in the sun or dry off really quick and jump into a bunch of clothes and a pre-warmed van.
I don’t recommend doing this outside below about fifteen degrees, or in cold weather if you’re not healthy.
I’ve done it in the van in cities or in the cold. I just do it over a bath mat that’s on the floor anyways, and hang it up to dry afterwards. There’s not any more water involved than it easily absorbs.
City Bathing for Strippers
When you’re stripping you need to get super clean every day. This means a shower. There are a few options, depending on the town, which I’ll list in order of cheapness:
1 – The city pool or park system. Usually about $1.50 to go swimming and get a shower.
2 – A gym. Anywhere from $20-50 for a weeks membership.
3 – Truckstops. $5-10 for a shower.
City and Road Bathing for the Non Stripping
This is a mixed half strategy. If you’re in a city and not stripping, perhaps you are visiting friends? If they’re from Alaska, they’ll offer you their shower straight away. If it’s the east coast, they probably won’t offer at all. In any case, it’s not healthy or necessary to use soap on your skin every single day. Catch an intermittent shower at truckstops or gyms, and use the spray bottle in the van (or just spray the washcloth and wipe) in between.
First, I think everyone should know that just wetting your hair down and letting it dry will go a long ways most days. Try it. But on to the actual cleaning and shiny-making of it.
It’s just not good to put a bunch of nasty chemicals on your hair all the time. Your hair produces it’s own natural oils, which make it shiny all on it’s own if you don’t wash them out and replace them with conditioner. The only things I put in my hair are vinegar, baking soda, and olive or coconut oil.
Most of the time I just add some vinegar to a cup of water and dip my hair in it before pouring it (slowly) over my head. I do it about once a week and I’m good to go. If my hair gets oily, I do some baking soda in water before the vinegar in water. If my hair is dry, I rub a tiny big of coconut oil through the ends the day before I vinegar. Once or twice a year, I do an egg for deep conditioning.
When you start doing this it takes a little extra effort. You’re used to just slapping on shampoo and conditioner, not looking at your hair and seeing what it needs. At first your hair might get oily (mine didn’t, but people say it does), but it will adjust.