When we were preparing for our trip to India and Bhutan, we had read that the Kolkata Airport was a stickler for liquids in carry on luggage (by only one tourist, mind you). This encouraged us to search for non-liquid replacements for some of our liquids. We had reduced our liquids quite a bit, but we still had some. I had decided that we would try going through with some liquids and if they got taken away, we had replacements or we would buy new. As it happened, the security in both the International and Domestic airports in Kolkata didn’t even bat an eye about liquids. We did not even have to take them out of our carry on bags, like we have to in Canada, the US and Europe. False alarm!
We used four non-liquid products extensively in India and Bhutan. Here are our thoughts on these products.
Laundry Detergent Leaves
We took the Laundry Wash, but not the Shampoo, as shown below. I found that the leaves did not do what I would consider a stellar job. I felt I had to use too many leaves in a sink of water in order to feel I got the clothes clean. For lightly soiled clothes, this might work fine, but for the heavy dirt we encountered in a third world country, this product didn’t do its job. We took a laundry bar given to me from a swimming friend and it worked quite well. The bar was called “Sunlight”, but I do not know where it came from (my friend is well traveled) so I will have to investigate to find more.
I was disappointed with this stick. Even in hot hot temperatures, the sunscreen would not spread or rub into the skin. I would be left with lines of sunscreen on my legs etc from where I applied it. It would not rub into my face and I had this white pallor. It may protect really well like this, but I would rather not look like a ghoul.
Murray used this toothpowder and loved it. He said it cleaned his teeth better than toothpaste. He had to put very little on his wet toothbrush, so this small bottle would last about a year. He said it tasted pretty good – he had the minty favour. I did not try it as I have sensitive teeth and my Sensodyne made it through security.
Shampoo and Shaving Bars
We took both these bars, but only used the brownish one on the right – Tea Tree Shampoo. It worked great for shampoo. My hair always felt clean afterwards, even after being in salt water. We only used about half the bar in five weeks, using it only for shampooing (short haired people!). I did not take conditioner and my hair was not as soft as it is at home. But I can handle that not so soft feel for five weeks. We had brought a bar of Lux for washing our bodies. Murray tried to shave with the Tea Tree bar but his razor got too gummed up, so he switched to shaving with the Lux or some of the generic soaps from the hotels. These worked just fine.
From our experiences on this trip, we will now travel with the toothpowder and the bar shampoo. We will have to investigate laundry soap and solid sunscreen a bit more to find other possibilities.