When buying a new piece of luggage at The Travel Store KLCC, I found that they carry the Sea to Summit brand. I’ve been interested in their soap leaves since reading about them some years ago, so I bought one to try. Cyn asked for a review, so here you go.

Sea to Summit Pocket Shampoo with Conditioner, RM18.90

There are 50 leaves of soap inside the plastic dispenser, which weighs less than a pack of gum. Definite plus point if you need to travel super light and save space. I picked the shampoo with conditioner because anything that does double duty saves just a little bit more space.

Here’s how it works: Remove a few leaves of shampoo with dry hands. The instructions suggested 1-2 leaves, which should work if you have short hair. I have thick, shoulder-length hair so only on the second try with 6 leaves did I get any decent cleansing done.

Remember: dry hands.

Drop your leaves into some kind of receptacle (I used a glass from the hotel bathroom) and add enough water to dilute. You’ll have to swish it around a bit to mix it once the leaves melt.

Shampoo production

Congratulations! You’ve made shampoo, which you can now use normally.

Now I’ve been waiting for my hair to air dry to feel the results after my second try with 6 leaves, and I’m pleased to report that my hair feels clean and conditioned. My hair wasn’t very dirty today, so 6 leaves did a great job with just enough cleansing power. If I went without a hair wash for more than 2 days, I expect I’ll have to use 7-8 leaves.

Now let’s talk about how expensive this shit is versus how it shouldn’t be vital part of your ‘travelling light’ gear unless you are going some place where they don’t have convenience stores. Or you’re going some place where bottles of liquid will explode under pressure.

At RM18.90 a pop (a travel products site listed this as USD$4.50), we’re talking nearly RM0.40 per leaf. This means my hair wash today cost nearly RM2.30 in product alone. I’m quite sure that I’ve bought small trial bottles of shampoo (with or without conditioner) for under RM3 before, and those things last nearly forever.

So if you want to travel light to some place where new bottles of shampoo and conditioner doesn’t magically appear on the bathroom counter every day, try these tips instead:

  • get travel-size bottles and fill it with stuff from your own bathroom
  • hoard the unused bottles from your hotel stays
  • hoard samples you get from magazines or promotion counters
  • buy something small and cheap when you get to your destination

If you’re afraid your bottles will leak, stick a bit of cling film over the mouth before you screw the cap back down.

As for me, I’ll stick to regular shampoo. This pack will go into my toiletry bag, to be forgotten until I run out of shampoo while standing in a towel in a bathroom somewhere. Fortunately, it’s light and inconspicuous like that.

Sea to Summit products are eco friendly and biodegradable.

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