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Old 09-09-2007, 05:33 PM   #1
VelvtRide OP
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Specific to Women

LR and I are planning a 3 or 4 month long trip to Mexico/Belize/Guatemala this coming winter. In the last few months, I've been thinking about the things that are specific to women for traveling long distances on a motorcycle.

We have to worry about menstruation, washing, laundry, shaving among other things. I have some suggestions and I would really hope our other female inmates could post their thoughts/questions/suggestions.

1. That time of the month
  • I have purchased disposable underwear that I chuck in my tankbag for problems where I'm not near a city or gas station. You can buy these at any beauty salon, a dozen at a time, for less than $5. Handy if you have an accident. These are in addition to the 7 cotton pairs I have stuff in my saddle bags.
  • Using a DivaCup, instead of tampons or pads, will save space and get rid of the waste problem.
  • WetWipes are available in convenient travel sizes and are extremely useful for lots of different situations.
  • Feminine spray is also available in travel sizes if you're camping and don't have time(or is not available) to wash with soap & water.
  • You can purchase soap 'flakes' in itty bitty containers - usually 50 flakes(one flake is enough to wash your hair/hands/pits/feet with only a tiny bit of water added).
  • If you're camping(or there's no bathroom where you are) there's the mess of what to do with pads and the like when you've used them - lighter and/or matches will solve that.
2. Bathroom duty
  • I carry a small(50 sheets) roll of Charmin, which comes in a plastic case to keep it clean and non-damaged, in my tank bag for emergencies. You can also purchase Sanitary Seat covers in travel size for less than desirable places to pee/poo. $.99 at any WallyWorld.
  • She-Wee. If you haven't heard of it, google it. Fantastic product made for women so we don't have to squat or take our pants all the way to the knees just to go. Stand up and pee right next to your man.
  • Inflatable toilet seats. It's been mentioned to me that many hotels south of the border do not have toilet seats. Bring your own - inflatable means it'll pack very small but provide big comfort.
  • Wetwipes as stated above or the feminine type to reduce odor.
3. Chafing & skin protection
  • Exoficio makes wonderful mens boxers that are odor resistant and dry out within hours of washing. Chafe free, comfortable and extremely cool in hot weather. They don't bunch or have seams to grind into your skin after hours and hours of being on the bike.
  • HoneyDust, by Kama Sutra, works awesome to help keep you dry and keeps your skin comfortable - plus it smells good and is edible so it's a 2 in one product.
  • Face cream - find one with a high SPF which will double as sunscreen. Lip moisturizers are especially important!
  • A sports bra with no seams will help keep your underarms and shoulders from getting irritated. Nike & Bali both make them. I usually have 2 of these, plus a nice push up bra for special occasions.
4. Washing and the like
  • Shampoo. Lush makes shampoo solids. They are small and round, come in a canister to guard against damage, you'll get more than 50 washes with one. About $6 each. I have found these to be absolutely indispensible! Some come with conditioner built in, so no need to carry the extra weight of conditioner.... plus, you can also use this as a wash bar for your body. They are soap free.
  • Face cloths will clean your pores and moisturize, too. Coupled with SPF lotion, you're covered.
  • Shaving. If you can get used to it, try an epilator. Emjoy makes one that doesn't hurt near what the others do and leaves you free of hair for up to 6 weeks. It also makes hair grow back slower and thinner over time. You can find Emjoys that are battery operated for when you don't have power to draw from. Gillette Venus Breeze disposable razor has lubricating pads so no soap is necessary. These work very, very well with little water. Disposable wax strips work well, too, if you wax.
  • Disposable brush wipes(by Oral B) for your teeth are excellent and take up almost zero room. They come impregnated with toothpaste, fit on your finger and have nubbies on them to get all the grit off your teeth.
  • Tide makes Sink Packs. Comes in 3's for $.99 and will do a few pairs of 'roos, socks, bra or shirt/pant. I love these things and carry about a dozen. 3 of them in the tub worked wonders on LR's 10 day camping-old-crusty shirt and pants. We won't talk about his socks.
  • Deoderants. Try a 'crystal' or other natural solid. They last an extremely long time and are very small. Also, you won't have the problem of them melting.
5. Clothing
  • Rayon is a great fabric for traveling. Comes out wrinkled as hell, but after splashing lightly with water, all the wrinkles just fall right out.
  • Scented sachet packs are great tossed in the saddle bags. Keeps things freshly scented even if you've worn items a time or 2.
  • If you don't already, try wearing thong underwear. They pack ultra small and don't take much to clean and dry.
  • I bring dryer sheets(Bounce) in a plastic bag. Not only do they work good as sashets, but also repel ticks/fleas when rubbed on pant legs/socks/shoes. They also get rid of static cling problems by just rubbing them on the clothing/sheets.
  • Jelled socks at night will keep your feet soft & supple and help with painful callouses.
6. Miscellaneous
  • If you have to wear makeup, use Mineral Powder foundation. Good for the skin, doesn't clog pores or leave a mess in your helmet liner. It also comes with sunscreen. Lots of mineral eye shadow colors that pack small and last a very, very long time.
  • Waterproof mascara and lipstick with SPF in it completes your makeup kit.
  • Ziploc bags are good for many things. I always keep several handy.
  • Hair ties. I used to keep these around my brush handle, but now they are on a 'hook' hanging off the tank bag. These, too, have many uses.
  • I repack all my hair/face care products in plastic bottle/tubs. Up and down in elevation can sometimes cause burst contents. It also saves space.
I found a thread on the Horizon's site that is geared toward women and traveling that's very informative. I would appreciate any other links or comments from the female contingent......
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VelvtRide screwed with this post 09-17-2007 at 08:37 AM
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Old 09-09-2007, 05:40 PM   #2
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Lordy, lordy.....

Glad I ain't a wimmin...
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Old 09-09-2007, 05:49 PM   #3
BigX
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I think I'm gonna be sick...
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Old 09-09-2007, 05:50 PM   #4
VelvtRide OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lone Rider
Lordy, lordy.....

Glad I ain't a wimmin...
Yeah yeah yeah.... but you love this wimmin.
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Old 09-09-2007, 06:06 PM   #5
santaferider
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a hysterectomy will cut that list in half



just sayin'
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Old 09-09-2007, 06:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigX
I think I'm gonna be sick...
Quote:
Originally Posted by santaferider
a hysterectomy will cut that list in half



just sayin'
OK guys, that's enough, if you want to play, head off to JM.
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:05 PM   #7
twisty sister
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Quote:
Originally Posted by santaferider
a hysterectomy will cut that list in half



just sayin'

Worked for me!! One less (major) thing to worry about!!!
Lotsa good tips...but....
Should body hair be a concern on a trip? .. HHMMMM...
(Remember, you are traveling on a motorcycle...who cares??)
But if you wanna be "fresh" and "hairless" (for entertainment purposes, for example) then get a bikini/leg/pit wax a week before you leave.
You will stay hairfree for 6 to 8 weeks.
I don't worry much about that, though...
( "Grass don't grow on a playground"!)
Make up? Non essential item. Skip it.
Lip balm is a must, as is SPF lotion.
There are swivel stick sunscreens (look like large lip balms) that can be used on lips and face and elsewhere if you dare..good multi-taskers, and they pack light.
And bug repellant is a good idea,too. (they make bug-off wipes, to save space)
All drug stores carry small travel "sample sizes" of all kinds of things, like deoderant, toothpaste, body powder,lotion, soap,shampoo, aspirin even toilet seat covers and laundry soap!
I am personally not a fan of "disposable" stuff..I like to reuse the stuff on my next trip, or refill the bottles...but I agree, sometimes it ain't a bad idea to leave SOME stuff behind! ;-0
Wet naps are INDISPENSABLE!!! For MANY purposes. They make BIG ones that you can clean your whole person with, and they pack flat!
They can take the place of bar soap, use the shampoo if you need soap...Shampoo ( in a small, refillable screw top bottle) can double as laundry soap, dish soap and body wash...and bike wash!

+1 on the zip loc bags, too.
Bring bandanas...can be used in countless ways, on and off your body
Items that multi task are great!!
just my two cents... gleened from years of experience, mistakes and lessons in downsizing! Your trip sounds awesome!!! Take lots of pics!!

Below is a pic of myself utilizing a typical Baja restroom.
(Note "AC" shrub just off to my right where I can plug in my portable blowdryer and lighted vanity mirror!!)

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twisty sister screwed with this post 09-10-2007 at 11:47 PM
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:09 PM   #8
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I think I'm gonna be sick...
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:10 PM   #9
kootenay kid
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I aint laughed like that in awhile
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:22 PM   #10
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God, I'm glad I'm a man. If you is menstruating you're gonna need some birth control.
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:51 PM   #11
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I like your list a lot VR. It's really comprehensive. I travel by bike a lot but you suggest several things that I hadn't thought about. The longest I've been on the road is about 3 weeks. For me hygiene goes out the window on a long trip (to hell with shaving fer chissakes) but if I was sharing a bed with a special someone - as it sounds like you are - I might be a bit more inclined to observe regular habits....

What I am even MORE interested in is your trip - it sounds wonderful!! I am also really interested to hear a critique of your own list after you get back - I want to know what worked for you and what didn't.
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Old 09-09-2007, 08:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boxergrrlie
I like your list a lot VR. It's really comprehensive. I travel by bike a lot but you suggest several things that I hadn't thought about. The longest I've been on the road is about 3 weeks. For me hygiene goes out the window on a long trip (to hell with shaving fer chissakes) but if I was sharing a bed with a special someone - as it sounds like you are - I might be a bit more inclined to observe regular habits....

What I am even MORE interested in is your trip - it sounds wonderful!! I am also really interested to hear a critique of your own list after you get back - I want to know what worked for you and what didn't.
The longest I've been on the road is about 3 weeks, too - from AR to Key West, then out to CA. I was way over packed and when I look at it now, I crack up because I didn't use half the crap I packed. Here's my realization thread of just that. I did take a solo trip of about 2,500 miles. I was gone 12(?) days and it was such a great experience for me and I learned more about having just myself to rely on.

This will be my first trip across the border exploring more than just big cities. And I'm excited.

Thanks for the kind words.

VR
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Old 09-09-2007, 09:04 PM   #13
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If you girls are done having babies and want the freedom of No more periods--I have 3 words for you --Endometrial Balloon Ablasia---got it done 4 years ago and wish I had done it 14 years ago---outpatient-insurance covered it and it doesn't affect your hormones or bring on menapause or anything...win win situation for me and my active life--no more nasty days of staying home and not being able to go when I want --not to mention what I save not having to buy all the girly time stuff
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Old 09-10-2007, 11:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VelvtRide
LR and I are planning a 3 or 4 month long trip to Mexico/Belize/Guatemala this coming winter. In the last few months, I've been thinking about the things that are specific to women for traveling long distances on a motorcycle.
Valuable survival/comfort stuff!

As a male, I hope women will also be aware of cultural differences when traveling in Latin America....or other non US destinations.

Big tourist places don't matter...already assimilated. But small, country towns, mountain towns, with large indigenous populations....there are certain things western women should avoid or be sensitive too....especially if traveling alone. Most of this becomes obvious once you're in country a few days....but you know....there is always one who just doesn't get it.

Be aware of Machismo and what it really is and how it affects everything you will do being female....how you are perceived and how even the most sublte
friendliness can be misinterpreted. Many think they understand what "Macho" is...but you don't. But once you learn "the way" you can use all the tricks to make Macho work to help your trip go smoothly....and avoid some very uncomfortable situations involving (sometimes) guns and police.

Obviously, dress and makeup come into play here too. Eye contact language and all that girly stuff. Use sparingly.

I wouldn't go the other way either...I've seen Gringa women dressing like the Guatemalan indian women. Uh....no. That one got some good laughs from locals.

I know on a bike its hard to fit in or be invisible...

TIP: Rough Mescal bars are MEN ONLY. Don't be a pioneer.
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Old 09-11-2007, 04:32 AM   #15
Ladybug0048
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Great list with some very good information. I like the idea of not letting ourselves go just because we ride a motorcycle. Being clean is always a good thing.

My motorcycle and I spent some quality time together traveling the United States and camping for 6 months. There are a few things on your list that I wish I would have had at the time.

Thanks for taking the time to post your suggestions.
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