Toilet paper tablets should be a staple ingredient for survival kits. After looking at dozens of pre-made kits, bug out bags and 72-hour packs it seems they all lack one essential item, toilet paper. And that’s for a good reason too, it’s big and bulky – but not anymore.
What would you use out of these kits if you had to go to the toilet? Gauze or bandages? It seems the designers of many of these kits get lost in the fantasy of survival and fail to realize the one thing they use in their daily toilet breaks, or when they wipe their hands after a meal.
For me, I enjoy having fresh clean wipes when I am outdoors, traveling, or even as an emergency supply in the house. At home, it is easy to keep stockpiles of clean wipes and toilet paper, but in that quick bug out bag, or the outdoors travel bag a simple pack of compressed toilet paper tablets can go a long way for daily comfort.
So let’s look at why these should be added to the inventory of your bug out bag, survival kit, or travel bag by looking at five ways you can use this weird but really handy innovation.
1. Traveling overseas with toilet paper tablets
When I have been in different countries, there have been times when cultural and societal trends would affect the way daily hygiene is carried out. If you have traveled to Asian countries in the Southeast you would be all too familiar with the situation of going to a toilet and not being able to access any toilet paper when you most need it.
A big part of that, especially in countries such as Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, is that there is no toilet paper as their infrastructure has plumbing that does not meet western standards and cannot handle the passage of toilet paper. This means that quite often, you can go to a toilet and find there is no toilet paper in sight, only water to wash with.
The same problem occurs as restaurants and eateries where a paper napkin to wipe your fingers can be as difficult as finding gold.
This is why it pays to carry a pack of these in the bag, and in the worst case, if you haven’t got one ready, all you have to do is add a little bit of water in the bathroom (which there’s always plenty of). To save space in your backpack, you can also get these in a blister pack tablet form which basically keeps them dry and easy to store until you need to use them.
2. Toilet paper tablets in disaster situations
It doesn’t just include bugging out that you might need these convenient sanitary items, they also come in use when you are staying put in your home during a flood or heavy storm and are running short on supplies.
For myself, I have a few of these bags of toilet paper tablets in the kitchen and in the bathroom as they take less space than toilet paper (for stockpiling) and are usable during a flood just to keep yourself clean.
3. For the bug out bag
As these are such a small, compact type of sanitary item, they make sense to keep in the bug out bag or survival kit instead of toilet paper or a pack of small tissues.
I keep these in a small cylinder match container so that they don’t rattle around too much and make noise while I am moving and when I need to use one, I simply pop it in a bottle cap with water and it is ready to go.
The tablets are also a great part of the first-aid kit edition as they are great to use as wound dressings and to help with cleaning a wound.
4. Toilet paper tablets as a baby diaper
As the paper towels are chemical free and fit for use against sensitive skin they can act as a very good disposable and make-do baby diaper if you run out. This is a big thing for families who are caught up in floods as just like toilet paper, diapers also run out (unless you are using re-washables).
5. The perfect fire fuel
I have used these before as tinder for a fire, you can keep it in the solid tablet form and use it as a fire bead with your lighter, or you can dry it out and use it just like you would use toilet paper as a thin tinder accelerant for the fire.
Final thoughts on toilet paper tablets
Even if you’re hesitant about these things, give at least a few a try and see how they work. For a lot of people, the major concern is that once you’ve expanded the towel, it is still wet. Since using these I have found it isn’t an issue as the towelette material is quite porous and with a minute of waving the towel in the air, it is dry.
I would suggest that if you take these outdoors, get one or two of them ready before you have to go to the toilet, otherwise, you’re going to have to expand the towel and dry it while you are still squatting.
While toilet paper tablets have been out for more than a year, there are still a lot of innovations being made around this idea such as compressed beach towels and compact t-shirts.