By: Emmi Buck
It’s that time of year again dusty friends! The gates to the playa open in less than a month and everyone is making their Burning Man packing list. You already know that you need water (lots!), goggles, and good exploring shoes – but the list below will be the items that make people say “Hey, why didn’t I think of that! I need to remember that for next year!”
1. Organic Oral Care
Having good oral hygiene on the playa is so important, and we don’t mean just for fresh kissable breath! While we sleep our bodies are in cleanse cycle and your saliva isn’t circulating, it’s collecting toxins, so when you wake up make sure to swish with some organic mouthwash and get rid of toxic morning mouth! There are very few running water sink situations for brushing your teeth at Black Rock City, so since mouthwash is a liquid, look for a biodegradable brand, and it will be the perfect thing to brush your teeth, no water needed. Just swish, tilt your head back a bit, and brush! Spit it out in your grey water and it will help clean and make it smell good.
2. Instant Coffee
If you’re at Burning Man and not near center camp, having some instant coffee around is a great idea – you never know when a long adventure is about to start! The long nights on the playa mean you’ll want some java to keep you going so you can see ALL the art and do ALL the things (who am I joking, I don’t know anyone who has seen or done it all – but you can sure try). Some of my fondest memories at Burning Man are being gifted coffee and conversation. It truly makes a lot of great introductions.
3. Pre-Made Popcorn
Everyone loves popcorn, it’s inexpensive, and it cures that strong craving for salty foods you get running around playing in the dust. The day before you hit the road towards the greeters gate, pop up some batches of delicious popped goodness and store in re-usable containers. Here is my favorite way to make healthy popcorn in big batches:
- Add 1 hefty tablespoon of coconut oil and 3/4 cup quality corn kernels to a large pot with a lid
- Heat pot to medium heat with lid on; corn will begin to pop and crack the lid so steam can escape
- Shake pot every 20-30 seconds so no kernels burn, for about 5-8 minutes, or until you stop hearing popping
- Add ~1/4 cup melted butter and shake on ~ 2 teaspoons of salt or more or less re: desired saltiness
4. Spritzer With Lavender / Peppermint / Etc. Oil
If you’re lucky enough to already know this secret or have been gifted them before, these are a lifesaver! They cool you down, make you smell nice, and depending on what essential oil you use can have SPF and/or antibacterial properties. Get a small (ideally glass) spritzer bottle, and fill it almost to the brim with purified water then add ~15-20 drops of your favorite essential oil. See list below for oils with SPF and antibacterial properties.
Some SPF Essential Oils
- Almond Oil: around SPF 5
- Red Raspberry Seed Oil: SPF 25-50
- Carrot Seed Oil: SPF 35-40
Some Antibacterial Essential Oils
5. Portable Potty / Emergency Urinal / She-Wee / Travel Toilet
There are a ton of versions of these online, just search any of the above terms. There is nothing worse than being deep playa, miles from your camp or the nearest potty, enjoying an awe-inspiring art piece or dancing to your favorite DJ and getting the urge to pee. You can sneak away and cover yourself with a jacket or sarong and save yourself from having to run to the portos. Store in a tight bag or container so no leaks occur. This is also great to keep in your tent or yurt to avoid 4 am porto potty runs. Remember the time it took the man like 2 hours to burn? This was a lifesaver 🙂