Gear review: The Scrubba washing bag

I have resisted writing gear reviews on my blog until now. In the past week, I’ve had three requests for information about the gear that I use. One reason I resisted was because I didn’t see myself as sufficiently experienced to comment on travel gear. But after a little over a year of adventure travel, I have started to work out what I like and dislike about my kit. I will only write gear reviews periodically when the inspiration takes me. Usually if I am having an “OMG I can’t live without this item” moment or if I am having an “I wish I hadn’t wasted money on this” moment. So here’s my first gear review.

Scrubba wash bagThe Scrubba washing bag

Paul bought me a Scrubba washing bag after seeing it on the Shark Tank television show. I had been hesitant about the relatively high price tag ($AU64.95) for what looked like a luxury product. But let me tell you, it has been an amazing addition to my kit list and I doubt I will ever travel without it.

What it is

The Scrubba is essentially a dry bag with a washboard built into it and instructions for use printed on the outside. You put your clothes, water (to a marked fill line depending on volume of your load) and washing powder or liquid into the bag. You then roll down the opening and clip it closed (just like a regular dry bag). There is a valve you can use to release excess air from the bag. Then you place the bag on the ground and use your hands to rub / swish the clothes around for 30 seconds – 3 minutes depending on your preference. Open the bag, drain the filthy water from it and fill it with clean water for the rinse cycle. I find it takes 2-3 rinse cycles to get the detergent and grime out of the clothes properly.

The pros

The Scrubba is easy to use, lightweight, robust and practical. I store my dirty socks and underwear in it to keep them separate from my clean clothes until I am ready to wash them. No more trying to wash travel clothes in small or grotty sinks or shower cubicles. I just use my bag. It takes 5-10 minutes a load, so its faster than finding a laundromat. The bag comfortably washes two changes of clothes.

The cons

The bag does leak a bit so don’t do this on your hotel room or tent floor; take it to a bathroom or outdoor area that can get wet. I haven’t found any other issues with the bag.

My verdict

A must have item for any traveler, whether you are staying in hotels, hostels or a tent.


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