Easily one of the most unique items we’ve reviewed this year, the Scrubba Wash Bag lets you wash your clothes just about anywhere, using only a small amount of water, and a little bit of time. It’s a portable, packable, washing system that’s a must-have for your camping, travel, or emergency kit.
Designed in Australia, the Scrubba is a durable pouch with a flexible washboard inside. It packs down to about the size of a fist, yet will wash a few days worth of dirty socks and underwear, or a couple of shirts, in under five minutes. No quarters required. Operation is very simple too, and only takes a few steps.
1. Fill. Throw your dirty clothes, water, and soap in the Scrubba. There’s a handy window so you can see how much is inside. Don’t fill it more than 20-40% full.
2. Roll and clip. By rolling the top down, you seal it shut, for leak-free washing. Clean clothes should not be messy business.
3. Deflate. Find the air valve, which looks just like the one on a beach ball. Open it, and then give the Scrubba a squeeze, until the air is all out.
4. Rub. Not your belly. A good rubbing motion against the washboard for 30 seconds gets most items back to socially acceptable levels of cleanliness. Extend that to 3 minutes if clothes are soiled or really ripe.
5. Rinse. Undo the clip, unroll the top, and dump out the dirty water. While camping, add enough clean water to rinse well. If you are at a motel or hostel, run your clothes under some tap water or even a hose. Whatever is available.
6. If you’ve got the Scrubba Travelers Kit, use the included Scrubba towel to pat clothes dry before hanging them on the Scrubba travel clothesline. Otherwise, improvise. We like paracord and clothespins, but make do with what you have.
It’s really that simple. There are a couple of videos online showing a demo, but this is our favorite.
A couple of our contributors tried the Scrubba, and they were pleased with the results. Fresh, clean clothes after a long hike or a few days of camping is no longer out of reach. For bicycle touring, where clean shorts daily is a must, you can get by with packing less, and doing laundry just about anywhere. Another benefit is that just about any soap can be used in the Scrubba, which can save you money as well as space. Body wash can do double duty for you and your clothes. If you’re camping (as opposed to traveling), we suggest a soap that won’t harm rivers, lakes, and streams. This is one of those products that has so many uses, we’re happy to share it with our readers. thescrubba.com
Disclosure of Material Connection: We received the Scrubba Wash Bag for free from Scrubba, in consideration for review publication