We all love going to the beach and enjoying everything that it has to offer. From dreamy waves to sunny spots in the sand that are perfect for chillaxing, it's hard to have a bad time at the beach.
In saying that, post-beach clean-offs can be a mission. And the removal of sand from your feet, your equipment or the kids is always a hassle (especially when there are no taps or showers nearby).
This is where a portable beach shower comes in handy.
Instead of bringing half the beach into your vehicle or tracking it through your just-cleaned home, you can rinse the sand and salt from yourself or others and return from the beach 100% detritus free.
It might sound too good to be true, but portable beach showers can quickly simplify your life. So how do you choose one that's right for you and your family without paying too much?
In this article, we outline what you should look for when buying a portable shower.
From the carrying capacity to the features and its construction, the following tips all but guarantee that you'll save time and money getting the perfect beach shower for your lifestyle!
What is a portable beach shower and why would I want one?
Portable beach showers are exactly what they sound like.
These pressurised showers come in a variety of sizes and shapes and offer an easy and efficient way to rinse off after a day at the beach, or anywhere else you might find yourself wanting to clean up.
Essentially, a portable beach shower can make your day-to-day adventures infinitely easier by ensuring that you always have a source of freshwater on hand.
And because they’re lightweight and compact, you can take them just about anywhere.
What are the different types of beach showers available?
Beach showers come in all shapes and sizes.
Some are made to be kid-friendly and easy to use, while others cater towards those who want a more professional-looking product.
The best type of beach showers, however, offer a mix between performance and convenience with some nice designs thrown in for good measure.
After all, beach or bush adventures should be fun, so doesn't it make sense that your beach shower is also down to play?
Beach showers can also be very simple with only one type of showerhead and a very straightforward setup, or they can offer multiple nozzle settings for different types of cleaning.
There are battery-powered portable showers that require a constant charge and beach showers that can be pumped and pressurised by hand. There are big beach showers, small compact ones, beach showers that are meant to stay in your vehicle and portable beach showers that you can bring with you on your expeditions.
In fact, there are lots of different beach showers out there, which can make finding the right one for your needs somewhat tricky.
Which portable beach shower is right for me?
As we just said, finding the right beach shower for your needs can be difficult.
Fortunately, you only need to ask yourself a few different questions in order to discern which type of portable shower will suit you best.
Do you want a shower for yourself or do you need to de-sand and de-salt the kids too? Do you need a large-capacity portable shower or are you cool with one that's small and compact? Will you be camping or caravaning with it? Or is taking it to the beach in the boot of your car its main purpose? How much are you willing to spend on your new beach shower?
By answering these questions, you can begin to zero in on the ideal beach shower for your needs.
9 things to look for when purchasing your first-ever beach shower
Capacity - Am I able to choose from a few different sizes?
The first thing you want to consider is the capacity of the portable beach shower.
Are you going to be using it as your primary source of freshwater? Or do you simply need one to rinse the sand off your feet post-surf?
The size of the beach shower you choose should depend on your anticipated usage. If you plan on taking it camping and need to keep a large group of people clean, then you'll likely want one with a larger capacity.
On the other hand, if you only expect to use it for personal use on a day-to-day basis,
Price - How much do I really need to spend?
You might want to lash out and buy the top-notch beach shower with all the bells and whistles... but is that really the best idea?
Consider your budget and the different price points that are available. Some beach showers come with a hefty price tag while others will set you back less than $100 bucks. Some beach shower brands will even dangle a few discounts in front of you - take advantage of these!
As with most things, the best ones are found somewhere in the middle. Not too cheap but not ridiculously expensive either.
then something smaller and more compact should suffice.
Features - What am I getting for my money?
When we talk about a portable beach shower, it's easy to imagine a simple tank-and-hose setup.
In reality, most portable beach showers come with lots of extra features to make hosing off or rinsing down easy peasy.
For example, the beach shower might have different showerhead modes for different purposes. There might even be a neoprene sleeve that you can slip over the tank in order to keep the water warm. There are even nifty products that can be used in conjunction with a beach shower in order to make the overall experience hassle-free.
Within reason, the more features your beach shower offers, the more bang you’re getting for your buck. Just make sure they do the main things right, like having a robust but easy-to-use design, and you can’t go wrong.
Am I able to effectively rinse, wash and hose off detritus?
While a decent stream will get you through most days without a worry, there are times when you'll need a powerful blast of water in order to rinse salt, sand and dirt off your body, your kids, your pets or your equipment.
If this is something that's important to you, then you should pay special attention to the pressure available. Some beach showers offer no more than a slight drizzle, while others could be used to wash muck and mud off a car.
You obviously want a portable shower that errs on the side of powerful, because at the end of the day, you should be able to control the amount of pressure that you’re showering with. This is where a hand-pump beach shower can be of use.
Not only can you manage the water pressure, but given that it doesn’t require a power source, even the kids can use it safely.
Are there lots of complicated components? Does it require a power source?
There's nothing worse than buying a product you think will make your life easier, only for it to actually complicate your daily adventures more than you anticipated.
Anything that requires a charge can fall into this category. And for this reason, we suggest buying a portable beach shower that has zero need for a power source.
The benefits of this are twofold.
On one hand, you'll always be able to pump it up and use it regardless of whether you have a battery hookup or outlet. On the other, you'll save money given that electricity-powered beach showers cost more to buy and set up.
Easy to carry
Is it effortless to carry to and from the beach?
A beach shower is always going to be somewhat cumbersome to carry when it's filled with water.
The good news is that there are various design features that can make this easier. The shape of the shower, for example, might allow you to slip it easily into a wetsuit bucket alongside your other beach or surf gear. This will make it easy to carry to the beach.
Another element that affects how easy it is to carry is whether or not the beach shower in question has a handle. If so, you'll find that lifting it in and out of your vehicle or caravan is infinitely easier and safer for all involved.
Am I able to use my beach shower for other purposes?
While a beach shower might be advertised as the solution to sandy feet or salty skin post-beach, there are actually heaps of other uses for one.
You can use it to wash off a dog's paws before they paint the inside of your car with mud. You might even use them to rinse the dishes while you're camping.
One of our favourite uses for a beach shower is as a way to clean your fishing gear after a long day on the boat - no more waiting for busy boat ramp taps or trying to juggle your equipment and a 2-litre bottle of water.
Ultimately, a beach shower should offer a combination of practicality and versatility so that its only limit is your imagination.
In our experience, the possibilities are endless when you have a portable shower at your disposal.
Will my beach shower hold up to daily usage?
Any beach shower on the market will most likely be made almost wholly from a type of plastic. But will this plastic hold up during your daily adventures? And what about the handles, seams and other parts? Are they built to last too?
The best portable beach showers will use high-grade BPA-free plastic and welded seams to prevent rips or tears. And feature a robust, sturdy design that feels stable in-hand.
Admittedly, this can be tricky to ascertain if you don't have the beach shower in question right in front of you. But any good portable shower brand worth its salt will be transparent about the materials used in the construction of their beach shower.
Remember, a quality portable shower might cost more upfront, but it'll save you time and money in the long run.
Are the materials and the brand a friend of the environment?
Last but not least, you should assess the eco-friendliness of the product itself and the brand behind it.
After all, as someone who is buying a portable shower to use outdoors, it makes sense that looking after the environment should be high on your list of considerations.
Do they offset their carbon footprint through green initiatives? Are the showers designed for longevity using quality parts? Do they offer advice or information on how to properly care for your product so that it doesn't end up as trash before it reached its full potential?
A brand that's serious about creating products that allow you to live in sync with Mother Nature should be able to back up its claims.
Look for evidence on their website that they're doing their bit for the environment. And don't be afraid to reach out if you need more information before making a purchase.
Adding a beach shower to your daily routine or your travel kit can be a fast and easy way to simplify your adventures. But you need to make sure that you purchase a product that's going to serve your needs.
By taking into account the points above, you'll be able to find the perfect portable shower for your beach or bush expeditions.