10 Items You Need To Hoard

Anyone who has been interested in survival or general preparedness for a while knows by now how important food, water and other basic necessities are.

For those who have opted to plan for a bug in, or who have a very secure bug out retreat they intend to relocate to and would like to stock ahead of time, this article offers 10 everyday items you could probably live without, but you certainly won’t want to.

1) Soap, including hand soap, dish soap, laundry soap and any other cleaning detergents that your home wouldn’t be the same without; but hand, laundry and dish soap is the most important. You can stock up on soap and/or learn how to make your own soap and possible store soap making supplies if you see fit.

2) Razor blades are a modern convenience that you can pretty much kiss goodbye in a post-SHTF scenario of whatever variety. Still, if you want to be able to shave without needing to sharpen up that knife, several extra packages of blades or a quality straight-edge razor will be worth their weight in gold if you ever find yourself in that post-SHTF scenario.

Indeed, you may even find yourself with a valuable commodity that can be traded (so you keep the straight edge and trade the razor cartridges).

3) Toiletries such as cotton swabs, toothpaste, floss and new toothbrushes are all important for maintaining quality dental hygiene, and considering that a disaster could last years, limiting or eliminating your access to medical and dental care, you’ll want to care for those teeth. You’ve only got one set, after all, and brushing with baking soda just isn’t the same as using a nice, quality toothpaste to shine your pearly whites.

4) Feminine hygiene products; ladies know what I’m talking about, and men, trust me you want your wives and daughters to be well-stocked on these supplies. Just because the world as you know it has ended doesn’t mean mother nature’s going to change her course, so unless you enjoy using a rag for a week each month… you get the picture. Stock up and start growing cotton, ladies.

5) Hair care and grooming supplies such as barber’s scissors, clean combs (they are often available in bulk for very cheap prices and in a variety of sizes), several replacement hairbrushes and a reasonable supply of shampoo and conditioner (pay attention to how long it will last, though).

Again, learning a bit about making your own shampoo and conditioner may also be a good idea (if nothing else, it’ll be a marketable skill for you to use in the future when the uneducated, unwashed masses would love some shampoo).

6) Toilet paper, oh yes; we’ve been chopping down Canadian old growth forest for decades to wipe our bottoms, but post-SHTF our supply of all those soft rolls of TP (Toilet Paper) may be severely curtailed or cut off altogether. And if you think going without TP is something that might not be so bad, try it for a couple days and let us know what you think then.

Call it a luxury if you will, but it’s one you’ll enjoy if you have it; and yes, you might end up in a situation where you decide you want something more than your TP and you trade it away, but hey, at least you’ll have it to trade even if you don’t use it. Personally, I’ll be monogramming my TP stash with my initials for easy identification.

7) Socks are one of those things that are often overlooked, whether you’re bugging in or hightailing it for the mountains and countryside. Our feet take a lot of wear and tear, day in and day out, so naturally our socks do too; but when was the last time you sat down to darn the holes that developed in your socks?

Of course, everyone will do what they can to fix and repair their clothing and other materials as they go along after SHTF or the world as we know it ends, but socks are generally pretty cheap and easy to stockpile so go for it.

8) Condoms or another form of reliable birth control; this may seem like something that won’t be a priority, but you might be surprised by how adaptable human beings are. Natural biological functions and urges will still be around, and may even be heightened in some people, but you probably won’t want to risk bringing new infants into the world during a post-SHTF scenario; at least not for a few years or until things stabilize.

Aside from their obvious use, condoms can also be used to protect weapons from water damage, they can be used as temporary tourniquets and for a variety of other non-sex purposes.

9) Spare eyeglasses and/or a one or two-year supply of contact lenses with appropriate fluids and eye drops. The importance of your vision in a real survival or post-SHTF scenario cannot be stressed enough, so make sure you have at least one backup pair of sturdy glasses (nothing flimsy or trendy, your backup glasses should be utilitarian and sturdy, they are there to serve a purpose and to endure for as long as possible in case of an emergency) in your current prescription, same for contacts.

10) Comfort food, you’ll want to ration it carefully of course, but a sweet snack here or there or a bit of cinnamon and sugar over your oatmeal can do wonders to improve the mood and raise morale, especially when times are figuratively or literally dark. Sugar, molasses, honey, jams and various syrups can last for years when stored properly, while canned fruits, fruit leathers and dry fruit medleys or trail mix can last anywhere from several months to upwards of several years.

Raspberries, blackberries and blueberries are all reasonably easy to cultivate, as well, as are many fruit trees, which can be planted for long-term production year after year. In a slightly less nutritious vein, many hard candies (like traditional lemon drops) can last for several years when stored properly.

Know you know our list of top items to hoard. What’s yours?


This article has been written by Gaia Rady for Survivopedia.


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  • HI,
    i’ve thought of this stuff.
    have plenty of most of it on hand.
    but honestly how can you store that much TP?
    i get big bundles already, because i hate to run out, and it uses half the closet.
    is there any alternative besides, old sears catalogs and corn husks?
    ( my folks said those used to be keep in the outhouse…)
    i used self -made, from old towels, baby wipes that i washed with the diapers,
    but that takes water of course.
    thanks for this info service!!!!!
    smiles, julie

    • Indians used smooth rocks, twigs or leaves (be sure you can identify poison ivy before using!!!)

      • I am thinking. of making a gadget and using the water . to( Saving paper.)

      • Due to there being very few toilets in India.

      • There is a plant known as “Wooly Lambs Ear” it has a varied range of uses.. including being used as a maxi-pad, and as a natural bandage. The leaves are soft and fluffy, and the plant is also edible, antibacterial, antiseptic, and has anti-inflammatory properties. I’m quite sure it could be used as a natural TP and would probably help with hemorrhoids since it has the medicinal properties.

        • Mullein (some other common names are blanket-leaf, old man’s flannel and velvet plant), considered a weed and found in yards, fields, pastures and roadsides, could also be used. The leave are large, soft and kind of hairy – a lot like the Lamb’s Ears. Maybe not quite as soft as Lamb’s Ears. I read once that Indians used to use them as diapers.
          The flowers and leaves are medicinal.

    • I have TP but I also go to dollar store and buy baby wipes, they are cheap and wonderful for sponge baths or as TP. leaves you much cleaner.

      • Baby wipes are not the best for this sponge bath. I backpack for my hobby and I have hiked the Appalachian trail so I lived in the woods for 5.5 months using personal wipes for baths. The baby wipes leave a sticky feeling. If you get the ones in the toilet paper section like cottenal they are so much better than wetones or baby wipes.

        • Some time back we ended up with several of the larger boxes of Kleenex, probably because we were expecting to need them for cold/flu season. After we moved a few months ago, these things showed up and we didn’t know where to put them. Here at our new apartment complex, we have recycling bins, and I was about to toss the Kleenex in them, when I realized it could be used in our BOBs for any number of uses–including TP. So I took the tissues, folded them into stacks, put them into a couple of Ziploc bags, and stuffed them into our bags. Bingo! Problem solved. And the Ziplocs can be reused for other purposes if need be.

    • For TP, I’ve started to keep the old clothes that end up with holes that I would normally toss. I’m keeping them in a tote and will use them when needed to cut up for TP or for patches on other clothes or even to sew squares together for blankets.

    • I have over 6 years of TP stored—I had it in one closet that was in an extra bedroom and then moved it in the attic.
      So far, for 6 years, I have not seen any evidence of a mouse–watch them come out now and chew my TP.

      • If you use cotton balls with drops of peppermint you will find your mice problem dissipate. We did and this is first winter without signs.

        • I talked to a exterminator and he said that both the pepperment oil and garlic oil are good for mosquitoes and other bugs, both inside and out–incase you are trying to sleep outside and don’t want to use poisons on yourself.

    • Ladies, sorry if this is to graphic, but this is info women should have for SHTF scenarios. There are excellent alternatives to menstrual pads. Here’s info from Wikipedia: “A menstrual cup is a flexible cup or barrier worn inside the vagina during menstruation to collect menstrual fluid. Unlike tampons and pads, the cup collects menstrual fluid rather than absorbing it. Menstrual cups are usually made from medical grade silicone. Manufacturers recommend replacing the cups between one and ten years.”
      Trying to stockpile enough feminine napkins for two or three years for just one woman would be a massive storage issue. This is a really good alternative. It actually resembles a diaphragm. Google ‘Menstrual Cup’.

      • I highly recommend the menstrual cup. I’ve used it on long expeditions (0ver 4 weeks). You just need to take it out, rinse it in some water if available, and reinsert. It’s incredibly simple and nothing to dispose of.

      • This is awesome information that I never knew existed, and I’m forty six years old!! Thank you for sharing this even on a public forum! Indispensable info.!

        • You can also make your own feminine pads. Yes, they do have to be washed out, but if you put them in cold water when taken off, it will be much easier to get clean. Also, did you know that hydrogen peroxide will take out blood stains?

          • Your own saliva will also remove your own blood stains.

    • a squirt bottle filled with soapy water is a great alternative to toilet paper but only if your water supply is not an issue

    • Sweater bags that you can get all air from. Also, leaves and newspaper will work, or sand….

    • I have about 6 months of TP. I buy the two ply so it can be separated; so now I have twice as much… or a years worth. Yes its bulky (I have mine on the top shelves of a storage system in the garage) but lately I’ve been pulling the core out from the middle and squashing them down. You can fill up a large tote and save some space that way or use those space saver bags and suck the air out with your vacuum cleaner. You can also use the squashed rolls as filler inside various other totes.
      Another storage idea is to get cardboad ‘pylon’ tubes from home depot and put your tissue in these, cap the ends and store in the attic.
      And if SHTF… everyone is limited to 4 squares.

      • I already limit TP! Two sheets for #1 (fold in half and fold in half again, pat dry) and four sheets for #2 (wipe, fold in half and wipe again – usually sufficient). When you are on a very limited budget you do whatever you have to! Also saves money to buy more TP to put away for SHTF.
        I used to buy Charmin Ultra Strong until Consumer Reports said that Walmart’s White Cloud was just as strong and WAY cheaper.

    • If toilet paper is a concern (or the space consumption) use the MRE style wads. They’re tiny…a bit tricky to master using. ; ) But you can carry a “shit-ton” of wipes in a small amount of space. I don’t know the actual manufacturer offhand but a years worth of TP could be fit in a very very small space.

    • use a vacume sealer “food saver ” is just 1 brand, there are many. buy the bulk rolls of tubes to make your own bags from. i purchase mine at ebay.
      always make your bags longer than they need to be and seal it 2 times at the ends to gurante a good seal. it the bags are longer than required you can cut off only the seals s you can reuse them. also you can get large storage bags that you use a vacume cleaner to suck all the air out of the bag. if you take each roll and flatten it first it will make a smaller package i remove the cardoard tube form each roll first before i vacume seal it.
      i vacume seal brand new clothing items in the food bags so they are water proof, bug proof etc… and take up less space.

    • My top 10 include:
      – Rooibos tea (that I cannot grow but love)
      – dry cocoa powder for baking
      – Tea light candles for making tea. They are good little heaters if you burn one under a clay pot… makes a nice hand warmer.
      – Vinegar, plain white. Spray on weeds and it kills them without effort or toxins. When you grow your own food it saves time and your back and knees. Pick up dead weeds the following day for compost.
      – Solar garden lights. I have six that hang outside during the day and wall mount inside at night. These were awesome when I lived off grid.
      – Solar cooker! I use mine a lot like a crockpot with no electricity.
      – Solar heater much like a cooker but I put it in a window all winter… cold air is sucked from the bottom and warm air flows out the top. It is cold here and this makes a lot of heat. I used foil covered bubble wrap from HD and window itself. About 1″ open at bottom and 4″ at top so it never heats too high.
      5. My garden is crucial to my happiness and well being. I dry, can and freeze food. I have a new garden here in the mountains and am focusing on nut and fruit trees and perennials like asparagus. Potatoes are very easy
      here. I have a Mish mash of herbs and medicinals. Learning more edible natives and including them in my garden. They are embarrassingly easy to grow and taste great. Wild Violets are my favorite salad reen and try to get them to not grow! They have a lot of vitamin C and are evergreen in most of the country. I have a pot indoors all winter.
      6. All summer I can use wild leaves for TP, in the winter regular. I could live with cloth but it uses a lot of water.
      6. Chickens for eggs and
      want to add a rooster for chicks.

    • Ever considered a hand held bidet attachment with washcloths to pat dry? Its been working for me. 🙂

  • I am pretty well stocked and got some novelty TP with Obama;s face on each sheet

    • Where did you source the O Bama face Toilet Tissue? Got to have much of that to teach future history lessons!

      • You can get the “O” TP at Patriot Depot.com

    • And some choice quotes from the Koran?

      • Many of the ingredients are made in a lab. And atnihnyg made in a lab was not meant to be put in your body. Now I must say that I am openly a natural-remedy nut. And if I were to find a cost effective laundry detergent made out of wheat grass and almond milk that was equally effective on stains, I would recommend it in a heartbeat. But alas I have not found mother nature’s equivalent to borax and fels naptha. So instead I give you this recipe and hope you just trust me and try to avoid breathing in dangerous chemicals that likely will kill braincells and have carcinogenic effects with extended exposure. 🙂

  • Do not forget good Zip lock bags to put stuff in that you do not want wet

    • Ziplock bags are one of the 10 best kept secrets of survival. You can put almost anything in them, depending on size, of course. You can get them in big packages at places like Costco and Sam’s Club. I keep several cartons of them around all the time. I also keep everything in them from dried foods (grain, flour, beans, beer-making supplies, etc.), to gun parts to keep them from rusting. Gun parts are not usually considered contraband even in places where they’ve outlawed the citizen’s right to defend himself. I can assemble two semi-auto firearms from the bits I have in plastic bags scattered around the house (I never keep them in one place because it’s less obvious what they are and they have less value to a thief). You should keep matches in Ziplocks, too. The matches stay dry and since no air can reach them, they are unlikely to accidentally burn. Keep two Ziplocks with at least a thousand matches in each of them because Zippo and Bic lighters will run out of fuel even if you don’t use them (the fuel leaks/evaporates over time) and if TSHTF really bad, you’re not going to find replacement fuel anyway. With Ziplocks, you can even make your own survival foods. If you fill a 5-gallon bucket with rice or flour, when you open it, you have to use 5-gallons of food in a relatively short time or it will spoil. Instead, put one-meal-sized portions in Ziplocks and then put those in the buckets to keep rodents away from them. A one-meal portion will be whatever your family will need. That is to say, a family of four will use bigger portions than an elderly couple, so size your portions accordingly. If you add an oxygen absorber, that bucket can last a decade or more. Finally, Ziplocks are reusable. Depending on what you put in them, they can be washed and propped open to air dry overnight and you’re good to go again. IMHO they are essential for building your survival/bugout kit. You are limited only by your imagination. But Ziplocks are wonderful for everyday life, too, so you’ll naturally rotate your stock. DIEHARDPATRIOT has this one exactly right.

      • Ziplok bags, paper towels…and aluminum foil.
        I can not see a future without it!!

      • Those ziploks can also be used for cooking certain things in boiling water; saving water and no clean up saving soap and rinsing!

      • If you take the cardboard out and use a big zip bag that you can attach your hose to withdraw all air you can store tons of TP. We have! We then put in totes and store in shed and garage

        • This is a tough one. When you have several homes cetenred around one family, you better hope you get along with them. Even then, when push comes to shove, they are going to watch out for each other only. I would certainly not suggest letting them in on your plans. Perhaps the others in neighborhood would be willing to align with sane, law abiding folks like yourself. I’d suggest just feeling them out to see if they are prepared for an emergency. What has worked for us is to discuss a recent weather emergency like a hurricane and mention that you were thinking about stocking up and maybe getting a generator. Just to get them talking about the subject. Remember, you want them to start preparing so they are not a burden to you. When the SHTF then you can approach them about banding together. At least then, they will have some supplies and the right mindset.Any others out there have ideas for this scenario?Thanks for the comment and keep us posted.

          • Good Luck, with that,have a friend whose tried talking with people she knows really really well, not even neighbors but personal friends, and she told me the majority of their attitude is we’ll come to your house since you will be all prepared. Of course she also claims she has never fired a gun in her life and she is ex-navy.HA!

          • I also say good luck. Most people I know want my new address just because I garden… like I could carry endless freeloaders. I will admit that one of my coworkers started a small garden this year.
            I don’t talk much about food storage and even less about my other projects. Partnership is essential but hard to come by. I used to trade garden produce for beef. Yum. That is my idea of cooperation. Everyone brings something to the table besides a ravenous appetite.

      • You need to use freezer bags if you want them air tight. The others leak–at a slow pace, but still leak. They cost more, but will last longer.

      • Hi..How do you know that the Ziplock bags you are using for your foodstuffs stored in your plastic buckets aren’t leaching xenobiotics into the food?
        And are you using the freezer or regular Ziplock bags for this purpose?

  • As far as stocking up on feminine hygiene products goes, all that is needed is a divacup. No cotton needed; besides, most of the cotton in these products is genetically modified anyway and not safe for the human body.

    • LOVE my Divacup!!!

      • WHAT’S A DIVACUP???

    • I found out about these about the time I was undergoing chemo which ended that for me, but I have daughters, so thanks for the reminder.

      Jaime, a Divacup is a brand of menstrual cup.
      A menstrual cup is a silicone or other similar material flexible cup which is used to “catch” menstrual discharge. It can then be removed and emptied regularly. Many prefer this, because it is much more economical compared to store bought absorption products, and more convenient and discreet compared to natural cloth absorption. Some women use the cup exclusively, while others use it mainly while away from home, or when camping or participating in sports etc.

  • I’ve heard of storing toilet paper in a space saver bag to reduce storage space. Also, feminine napkins serve well as bandages & tampons to stop bleeding of puncture/bullet wounds.

  • Some things I have never seen this site mention for hoarding for “currency” are: sewing needles, thread, buttons.

    I am sure there are a lot of other good ideas for barter supplies that don’t take a lot of space, too.

    • Also scissors, large ones and small ones. Nothing replaces scissors, a haircut with a knife leaves you looking like you were attacked by a deranged squirrel.

      • I just ordered 2 wound kits from American Scientific Surplus. It has several different scissors. These will go in each of our first aid kits. Also got 2 fire starter kits from there.

    • I buy sewing kits and manicure kits from dollar store. They will be good for bartering.

    • Great barter items, thread, buttons, needles, scissors.
      Add, thimbles, shoelaces, pocket combs, knife sharpeners (manual, not electric), so many other items.

  • It would be appreciated if you would add a plug at the end of each of your informative subjects. I can select, copy
    and print. However, I have a Brother printer and when I select gray scale and select properties then choose FAST
    my printer uses at least 2/3 less ink. and that makes a big difference when printing hundreds of pages. Hope I made
    that clear.

    • Do a search for “printfriendly” button for your browser. You can print or download a pdf. Include pictures or not and delete anything you don’t want to include. I love it and use it all the time. Even has an “undo” button in case you delete more than intended.

    • At the bottom of the article, hover your mouse over the “share” button … this will bring up a list … in that list is “print” … click that and then follow your Brother printer instructions as normal.

  • Needles and thread is something few people think of. In the olden times this sometimes was used to sew up bad cuts. Alcohol and iodine to keep the equiptment safe for use.

    Thanks for the practical tips !

    • I have some handy sewing kits stocked away for the same reasons you mentioned along with alcohol and iodine.

      • I buy sewing kits and manicure kits from dollar store. They will be good for bartering.

    • When getting sewing needles be sure to get some curved ones as they work better for suturing wounds

  • Good thing about alcohol, it is usually cheap, in plastic bottles-less fragile- and you can use it as a “fire”; old military trick-it burns hot and with a blue flame–less visible from a distance. Only make sure you use only a little in a sturdy tin can!!!

  • Trying keeping your old phone books. In fact, pick up the ones that get left in front of houses that no one lives in. The pages make great toilet paper and it’s free!

    • Great idea. When I was growing up in Ecuador, if I had to use the toilet at my father’s little store, the toilet paper was single sheets of the local tabloid-size newspaper. (We had regular TP at home) Same thing when we went to my maternal grandparents home, with bedpans in the house, and an elevated wooden box with suitable hole out on an open terrace, available to adults only.

  • I didn’t see matches anywhere, possibly storing them in the plastic bags would be great or inside the condoms would work.

    • I store matches in an empty, washed and dried medicine bottle. In fact I have several. You can also save a plastic jar and put some sandpaper on the inside and store matches in it.

      • Don’t put the sandpaper on the inside, face it out. You could accidently light some on fire if you move the container around or it’s bouncing around in your BOB.

  • Buy Archery Equipment (Traditional Recurves and Longbows), not Compound Bows because if the draw string is damaged or cut you cannot re-string it without a limb press device which is large and heavy. But with a Recurve or Longbow; you simply take a back-up string out of your backpack or possibles bag and string it up. Also, buy black powder weapons, bullet molds (lead tire weights work VERY well for projectiles), learn how to make your own black powder (safely, of course) as ammunition will be scarce as hen’s teeth. Black Cherry and bamboo make excellent arrow shafts and buy a Fletching Tool!

    • Using wheel weights is not a good idea for muzzleloaders because of the hardness. Use pure lead only, please.

  • don’t forget super glue

    • Amazingly, “Super Glue” is issued to most SAS operators as it is the best way to seal an open wound.
      To dissolve the “Super Glue” once medical attention can be properly applied with suture etc, “Nail Polish Remover” is what you need to remove the “Super Glue”. “Super Glue” is made specifically made for SAS operators in large tubes, i.e. 500 grams. This can be sourced from large hardware stores, such as Bunnings, Masters etc. I hope that this has been of some assistance to all the preppers here. – ‘Live for today and Prepare for Tommorow’ – Peter Foeden, Melbourne, Australia.

      • As a nurse, I know that surgeons have been using super glue to close incisions for years, it is also very good to put on caps and crowns that fall off teeth.

        • My husband used Super Glue on a hand wound when he was in the middle of nowhere and cut his hand at work. There is a small scar, but he didn’t bleed to death!

      • I would not want to be conscious when that nail polish remover is poured on an open wound lol

  • Diva Cups are the best option for long-term feminine hygiene.
    And keep in mind that condoms to expire! They lose their durability and effectiveness after just a few years… so don’t hoard too many.

  • Matches, fire starter, kerosene lamp(s), hand tools (wrenches, pliers, screwdrivers, tape measure, various saws, hammers), hatchet, wood drills (with an old fashion hand brace for drills — remember, no electric or battery operated tools) — hardware (nuts, bolts, screws, wire, chain, pulleys, rope, PVC pipe & fittings, glue, lots of duct tape, calking, concrete/rock hammer drills), flashlights + batteries, surgical tubing (many uses), seeds (to plant), tarps, shovel, axe, bow saw, rack for drying jerky (learn how to make it or you will end up with maggot food), pepper/chili powder, salt (for preserving meat), cooking utensils including a large Dutch oven, water filters, large pot for boiling water, first aid supplies (and knowledge!), hats, sunscreen, sturdy shoes, sand bags (empty) AND so much more!!

    • SALT. Your heart will not beat without salt. It is good for wounds, for drying and canning food. It is not readily available in most areas and it is definitely necessary for most everything. Can’t live without it.

    • I love sterno cans for extra heat. Alcohol gel fuel is good for cooking too, I have a pan designed for it. Mostly I used it in a Zen sand garden on my coffee table as a campfire. I have an alcohol burner. I have things because old house was off grid. I am on grid but shifting off after I build a small house that is passive solar and bermed.

  • Another 5 items that were brought to our attention by a reader. Thank you Katie

    1. Wooden matches, at least four boxes.

    2. 200 large safety pins for emergency fixes, many unforeseeable under
    normal conditions.

    3. Salt, iodized and regular, at least two pounds each, much more if you
    grow your own food . Salt may become your only preservative and disinfectant
    for surface injuries.

    4. Needles and thread. Large and small needles on cards. Curved upholstery
    needles to repair large items. Regular and heavy-duty thread.

    5. Nylon cord, several spools, white or colored, for bundling items, tying
    them down, surveying, etc.

    • I purchased covered plastic boxes, labeled each with kids and grandkids names, put 1 roll TP, a toothbrush, toothpaste, nail clippers, nail file, tweezers, towel & wash cloth, soap, shampoo, comb, brush, deodorant, lip balm, scissors,sunscreen,tea tree oil, kleenex, etc. in each box. Everyone is responsible for their own stuff. I’m hoping it will help individuals be more conservative with their use. When it’s used up, do without until the majority need refills.

    • these are great items to remember, I’ve been thinking of putting dental floss in a kit it could be used as thread and many other uses besides what its intended for.
      does anybody know what oxygen absorbers are?

      • I use oxygen absorbers for food stored in mylar bags. They just absorb O2 and help food last longer. They also make good foot and hand warmers.


  • A very unimaginative article. Flippant even!

    TP: A very good substitute of TP is Water. more than half the world use water instead of TP. If you don’t know how that works try to find out now. TP is a waste of space and money in normal situations let alone in a crisis.

    Soap: soap can be made by boiling fat/oil with sodium hydroxide and throw in some perfume. You don’t need soap to wash hands and utensils. Fine sand or even soil mixed with water will get that grease off your hands and utensils.

    Razor blades: get a good shaving knife that can be sharpened. It will last more than a lifetime and it can be shared.

    toileteries: more than half the world don’t have them. ’nuff said.

    Socks: hay is a very good insulation is freely available, used by caveman and very effective. get an oversized boots if you plan to go to cold areas and stuff the empty space with hay to keep warm.

    • Yes, and Dysentry from cleaning your ass with water will be so much fun.
      Make the apocalypse that much more memorable.
      Good times.

    • Water is a good replacement for TP unless you live in the SW, or the Great Plains or anywhere that has a drout. Last time I checked that was just about everywhere.

      Making soap is good unless you have limited access to animal fat and sodium hydroxide. In a shtf situation animal fat will be far to valuable as an energy soure for people to waste on soap.
      As for using fine sand and dirt for clean the object is to remove bacteria and other such things not add more to your dishes, pots etc. “Nuff Said”
      As for using a straight razor good idea if you are steady enough to use it. But with the aging population I’ll wager the vast majority are no where near steady enough to use a straight razor.
      Toiletries: look at the numbers of third world people who die or get serious infection because of a lack of basic hygine pratices.
      In the middle ages men wore make up not so much because it was a fashion statement but because it covered up a host of skin conditions brought on from lack of oetsonal hygine.
      Hay in boots . . . Wrong . . . It was straw that was used as hay which is food was saved for any livestock that you had. So by suggesting hay you are suggesting livestock which most people dont have. Ok lets use dry non feed grasses. Obviously you have never actually tried this. The grass shifts and moves as you walk so then you pack more in and wind up inhibiting blood circulation risking frost bite, gangerine and ultimately death.
      And that doesnt take into account accidently getting a thistle in there or a wild hosetail or a host of other plants that will at minimun poke you and make walking painful to those that will actually work their way into your flesh.
      Ever had a grass sliver? “Nuff Said”
      The ACTUAL point here is that if you have the means and the space to stock more items, do it. But do it judiciously with things you use or NEED to use. It is obvious to everyone here this is a bug in situation not a bug out situation. So if you want to clomp about your property in oversized boots stuffed with an assortment of dried grasses and whatever else, kicking who knows what over (which will happen because we are used to having our footware a certain size and enlarging it by even a couple of sizes will throw off your perception) and cleaning your hands and bidy with dirt . . . Go right ahead. I’ll wipe my butt with soft TP, wear warm good fitting boots and eat the animal fat for the calories and aid in digesting protiens. Have fun!!!

    • So, this doesn’t make sense to me.

      I got the invite to survivopedia because I bought one of the products Alec Deacon offers. One of the freebies that came with that is a rather large document called “27 Items to Hoard Before a Crisis”.

      That book lists Personal Hygiene as item #17, and includes the first 6 items on this list.
      Item #19 from the 27 Items is clothing, which includes socks (#7 from this list).
      The only new things from the previous article are Spare Glasses, Condoms and Comfort Food.

      Why not amend the previous 27 item list and make it a nice even 30? Or are these 10 items simply the most important of the 27?

      • Have any of you thought about learning to make your soap? I learned several years ago, and love it. I need to make some more soon as we are running out, and so is my sis-in-law. I use this for my laundry soap, too. Just add the washing soda and borax. It is the BEST degreaser I have ever used!

  • I am a young mother of two small children, my husband and I plan on one maybe two more. So when it comes to my stockpiling, I need to consider meeting the needs of infants… Some things I hoard in my stockpile for when SHTF are:
    — diapers, diapers, diapers…. I use coupons and go to stores that have BOGO sales on the generic brands. I have at least 6 packs in every size, as well as the waterproof diaper covers for when disposables run out, so I can make my own reusables.
    — I, as well as thousands of other women, have troubles breast feeding. So I hoard canned formula, as well as a reliable breast pump w/unopened spare parts. One main reason for hoarding the formula is, what if something happened to me after SHTF, how would my baby survive without my constant supply of pumped milk?
    — microfiber cloths.. Lots and lots. These are amazing for about a million uses. I hoard these, because they work as, baby wipes, paper towels, toilet paper, bathing, cleaning, dusting, etc etc.
    — canned baby food. Infants 4 mo + are ok to start eating it. Which means the formula won’t be used up as fast. Considering that, if a baby has a 6 oz bottle every 4 hours you’re going through that one can of formula in just 3 days.

    • {{I am a young mother of two small children, my husband and I plan on one maybe two more}}

      In a SHTF situation, I am betting one month of TP you WILL change your mind.

      • America is composed of pepole who bugged out to come here. Your question in short on its’ face mischaracterizes everything I have said and taught about the concept of a BOL. 4. Your comments here and at other times seem to seek a sort of moral relativism from me. I find it extremely hard to understand why you would expect this knowing my work over the last 2.5 years. TSP is a community built on a very clear cut set of principles and they create a pretty damn clear line between right and wrong. It is nice you admitted to being wrong about Jules Dervaes and all but I am speaking more to the over all tone, you past complaints about my occasional vulgarity, your own desire for exposure on my site but refusal to come on the show, your somewhat lecturing tone you have used in emails and other comments to me etc. I am not a politician and I am not here to try to make friends with all pepole. I do not hesitate to condemn any action I deem evil, immoral or moronic. Why you constantly seem to come off like you know better how to run my show than I do mystifies me. To be blunt, age alone doesn’t make one wise, and being loved is far less important to me than being clear about my principles, what I stand for and being uncompromising in my moral fortitude. Many pepole may disagree with me but none can deny my clear language, willingness to back up everything I say and loyalty to my audience as a whole vs. the feelings of a few individuals who are some how offended or hurt by calling a spade a spade.You don’t get moral relativism at TSP you get honest fact and honest opinion. I am not here to save polar bears or the wales I am here to help pepole keep their asses alive and thriving no matter what does or does not come our way. My show is The SURVIVAL Podcast not An Hour of Moral Relativism with Jack Spirko .Current score: 2

  • Start saving the lint from your dryer, it makes a great tinder for starting a fire.

    • And from your navel.
      And foreskin.
      Aint nothing like dickwad tinder.

      • fore skin residue makes good cheese

        • You can eat all that cheese you want. As for myself, I’ll do without.

  • I want obama tp,if you were not joking would you please tell us were you got it! I would really like to have obama tp! now i know the NSA is recording this and will probably visit us! oh well

    • NSA toilet paper, NWO tp, ….

  • Don’t forget salt, both iodized and non-iodized! Salt is often overlooked because it is easy to get and inexpensive…for now…thanks to cheap energy and transportation. Once this is gone it will become extremely valuable. The word “salary” comes from the Latin as Roman soldiers used to be paid in this commodity if he was “worth his salt”. Indians used to fight over salt-licks. The body has to have it for electrolyte balance, especially after sweating heavily (and I think we will all be sweating more if the crap hits to fan).
    Salt is a valuable seasoning. Iodized salt is necessary for a healthy thyroid. Non-iodized salt is needed for pickling, vegetable-fermentation, canning, and preserving food, and making homemade saline solutions, etc. Salt has an indefinite shelf-life if kept in a low-moisture location.

  • What about medications- Well try getting the book on Amazon called “The One Minute Cure” $10
    The go back to Amazon and order the inexpensive product ” Hydrogen Peroixide Food Grade 35%”
    It comes with an eye dropper brown bottle. This product cures virually all disease, even cancer. Cured
    many of cancer and other health problems. A bottle will last you a year.

    • I went to Amazon to buy the book and there are a couple of different ones with different authors. Could you tell me specifically which one?

      I am a RN and great believer in Peroxide. Even on my animals it’s the first thing I grab, it’s only after that you can tell what you are dealing with.

      Thank you.
      DB Fairchild

  • I think a slingshot would be a good thing to add to the list. You can use rocks, marbles, steel balls. There are quite a few things you can use as ammo to shoot rabbits squirls or birds with for food.

  • I have seen many recommendations to store toilet paper but have yet to see any guide as to how much to store??? There are guides for food and other things of necessity but not TP. The more the better, I know but how much is an adequate supply for a year; what is the guide?

    • We use Scott TP- it lasts longer. What I did is kept track of when I put a new roll on and how long it lasted. I homeschool so it’s not like my kids are gone for most of the day, but my husband is at work, so I tried to adjust for when he’d be home after SHTF. With that brand TP and a family of five (I’m the only female however), I figured we’ll go through 2 1/2 rolls a week. Of course once it’s in short supply, I might be able to get my boys to be more conservative in how much they use!! (might stop clogging the toilet even!)

    • I am retired; I use about 1 roll every 3 days and I urinate a lot.
      Even with my husband home, not much difference in amount used(don’t even go there, ladies!!).
      That’s one 24 pack of DOUBLE ROLL TP every 10 weeks and adapt to number of family members, etc.
      I can sure tell the difference in regular and double roll, but buy what is on sale.

      • Get the 1000 or 3000 sheet TP- it isn’t as soft but does the job in a quarter of the space. But frankly you get a lot cleaner with water than paper and get fewer infections on skin or urinary tract. I live where water is pretty good- we tend to lose electricity, phone and road access instead so I got a T valve and kitchen sprayer hose and attached it to my toilet. Or get a mechanical bidet toilet seat. TP uses a lot of water in manufacture and the bidet actually uses less.

  • Don’t need to toot someone elses horn, but: Sportsmansguide.com has waterproof matches and all kinds of useful gear for when SHTF.
    I bought a NEW intermediate bulk container (IBC) from Amazon, filled it with 275 gallons of water, dropped a Silver dollar in it to keep germs dead, as pioneers did when crossing great plains. Garlic is also a great anti-everything. TRUE Christians will never have to face SHTF. We’ll be outta here! where’s your faith?

  • Most of us use a paper towel to dry our hands. Your hands are clean and basically sanitary, especially if you also used some hand sanitizer. I keep those towels for spills or shop cleaning. They can also be used in an emergency for TP.
    If it is a full sheet, simply tear them down the middle to get half sheets. When they dry, stack them and store them in sealable zip bags.

  • About glasses.
    1: Get safety glasses for lenses that are hard to break or scratch. or
    2: Use the buy one get for half price sales (metal frames). Then you replace the lenses in the ones with the oldest lens and use them, and keep your extra pairs in your bug out gear. Label (date) them to keep straight which ones are next to update the lenses in.
    3: If you have cataracts, get the surgery done earlier rather than later especially if you need strong glasses. Also, if you wait and things go south you could wind up for all practical purposes being blind because of the cataracts. For more information this is a good place to start http://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/iols.htm. Then check out the makers’ web sites for more details about the different lenses. I no longer need glasses to drive, watch TV or to read a clock that’s across the room. It’s also nice to see well enough to be able to find my glasses when I need them.

  • Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I definitely enjoyed reading it, you’re a great author.I will always bookmark
    your blog and will come back from now on. I want to encourage you to ultimately continue your great posts, have a nice morning!

  • Something I have never seen listed is to learn distillation. You can make a small still from an old stainless steel pressure cooker and 15′ of 1/4-3/8 inch copper tubing run through a 5 gallon plastic bucket filled with water or ice. Shine can be made into Bourbon by adding a small chunk of white oak charcoal to each jar. Its not top shelf but its drinkable and a great barter item. Alcohol has many other useful purposes as well from fuel to first aid. Years ago we did this in our college dorm rooms so it takes minimal space. Mash can be made from corn, rye, or any fruit.

    • Thank you, Jim, for you feedback. We’ll take into consideration the idea, and write about it as soon as possible.

    • Distillation equipment can be used for more than alcohol. Being able to distill clean water could be a life saver. Of course, there is always more to any process than it seems at first. Check and double check everything.

  • As for feminine hygiene, I’d recommend some reusable products such as mooncups or divacups (http://www.mooncup.co.uk/). Make sure you have some way to properly clean/sanitize it as well, but you won’t have to have stacks of tampons to hoard, just one cup per lady. Also, there are re-usable/washable pads (http://www.partypantspads.com/). As a woman, these are invaluable to reducing waste and would be an easy way to stay clean/prepared in a SHTF situation.

    • I’d get more than one per lady as you ought to boil them after each week of use. They last a long time but not forever.

  • 1. ammo
    2. ammo
    3. ammo
    4. trusted friends
    5. hiding place

    When people get hungry they will be desperate and turn to looting. They won’t be looking for safty pins and toilet paper.

  • Baking soda, honey, yeast, black pepper, salt, candy,alcohol, fishing gear, candles, hydrogen peroxide, iodine,matches, bandages.

  • When the grids go down and there is no more fuel, horses and bicycles will be the only reliable transportation. You can figure this out according to your own personal circumstances. It will be very important since roads and sidewalks may not be navigable because of earthquakes and other natural calamities. In all this it is VERY important to remember that our CREATOR IS IN CHARGE! Read OT and NT for many, many examples, some very similar to this time we are encountering. Have FAITH. PREPARE. Never Fear or Panic. Keep the commandments. Then look for and expect the best while helping the less fortunate around us.

  • Take the lint from your clothes dryer, make a small wad, place in egg carton (not styrofoam)
    cups. Put a few drops of melted wax on top of the lint, cut the numbers needed and you have inexpensive fire starters.

    • I save TP rolls in a bowl on my dryer. When I clean the lint tray; I stick the lint in a roll. When they get full (or I need them to start a fire; I just pull out a couple and voila..fire.

  • You can water proof wooden matches by dipping the head into melted wax. Do not let the temperature of the wax get to hot, well you imagine what will happen.

  • If you want to store salt, hit the nearest farm store, like Tractor Supply etc. Look for the white salt blocks. You can pick up 50# blocks for about $5 each. Store great, last forever, and cheap. Just need a grinder or morter & pestal to get it fine enough for cooking, pickling, fermenting, tanning, etc. Heck, at that price use a ice pick and use it in your drive way for now or salt deposites for game, or to kill tuff weeds. (Be careful as a weed killer, your not going to be able to grow zip there for decades. They salted the land for a reason…)

  • Do not stock up paper products. This is a waste of money and space, plus it is a fire hazard. Find alternatives instead. Cloth is a good substitute for both paper items on the list, and if you have access to soap and water, it is reusable so you have to store less.

  • In third world countries they cannot afford TP. Rather they carry a tin can of water to wash themselves when finished. Get use to it, as it cleans better than leaves and Sears Catalogs, and it may be a long time before you get more TP after a SHTF scenario.


    • I have used these when hiking. I was told the water is ok if running and clear. That is if you are not ingesting it. Lakes, ponds should be boiled or filtered. I have had no issues.

  • I just attended a seminar on what to use as TP when you have no extra TP or your stored TP has run out. They suggested to hoard all of the many telephone books we get almost every month and use the paper a TP.
    When I was young and traveled to wilderness areas, many had one-hole outhouses and a l;arge, useful Sears calalog. Also, we often hiked in places where there were no facilities at all and no TP. We used larger leaves or smooth sticks as emergency TP. Another good suggestion was to learn how and where to dig your own latrine. There were once Army booklets on how to do this, but I don’t know if they are still available.

  • Something that isn’t often mentioned is multi vitamins and minerals. When SHTF you are not likely to get the quality of foods you are used to and getting sick isn’t desired

    • Especially vitamin C; stress raises your requirements, and you WILL have hogh stress! Watch for scurvy: easier and more extensive bruising is an early sign. Scurvy will cost you your teeth, cause dangerous tendency to bleed and scars to open up. I nearly lost one of my thumbs to it a couple years ago. Although I saw seven doctors and countless nurses over several months, and had clotting and other bloodwork done, ***not one professional even suspected it, let alone recognised it.***

      • “high stress”

      • Lets not forget B-12. It helps you feel better and is also good for stress. It also helps with energy.

  • Instead of getting salt blocks, wouldn’t the bags of salt used for water softeners be just as good to store if you had the space?

  • I travel a lot and one thing I always take home from my travels is all the soaps, shampoo, toiletries that are in my room . I use, like most people my personal shampoos and things I bring along with me. But i figure that I’m paying for those products in the cost of the room…so I always take them with me and throw them into a box. It doesn’t take long to fill the box and I have plenty now. Plus, this stuff is good for bartering in a “zombie” situation.

  • I travel a lot and when I get to my hotel room I always take the shampoo, soap, sewing kits, plastic clothes bags for wet swimsuits, etc with me when I leave. I figure that I’m paying for this stuff in the price of the room so what the heck. I throw all this stuff into a “zerox” box when I get home. I have it full now and in a “zombie event I have lots of stuff to barter when needed. Soap and shampoo are simple things that can brighten your day when you haven’t had a shower for some time. Sewing kits could be used to stitch a severe cut / laceration if needed in an emergency. Plastic bags can stop a sucking chest wound, etc. Just my 2 cents!

    • I/we also take this stuff from hotel rooms. I help and encourage people in our area to prepare bug out bags. I get them started by providing these little items for their bags. It’s not much but everything helps.

  • For personal use and for barter, do not forget fish hooks and line. Hooks take up little space. Their value may depend on where you decide to be/go when SHTF.

  • I haven’t seen anyone mention a VERY important item: 550 Paracord. Each member of my family keeps a 100′ hank of paracord in their go pack. Paracord is made up of 7 strands of high strength nylon thread inside of a high strength and durable nylon outer shell. The inner strands can be used as thread for sewing tears in a tent or clothing for example. Uses are only limited by your imagination…

  • *One Ear picker INSTEAD of q-tips.
    *Washcloth INSTEAD of sponge.
    *One Menstrual Cup INSTEAD of pads and tampons.
    *Hand held bidet attachment or bidet portable bottle spray + washcloths (to pat dry) INSTEAD of toilet paper.
    *Tweezers or thread to remove hair (apart from razors.)
    *Manual hair clippers INSTEAD of hair scissors and comb.

    • Microfiber cloths work even better than a washcloth, but great list.

    • As a bidet, just a McDonald’s type plastic cup with water – and soap if possible – works wonders and is pretty durable. Squat and pour, repeat as necessary. I found doing it naked from the waist down, weather permitting, was easier and neater. Old friends traveling in an RV called it a ‘bird bath.’

  • I have a ton of matches -all safety- but the abrasive strip gives out early into the box. I understand that the strips are impregnated with something necessary to cause sparking. Can I get it elsewhere?

    • I store my matches in a tightly sealed jar or zippered bag. Put a piece of sand paper in there. If you place the matches head down, you can glue the sand paper o. The inside of the lid. I always add sandpaper to my match container.

  • I was reading the story this week of a model who got toxic shock from her “natural” but big brand rayon tampons and lost a leg because she slept in it overnight as many women do. The author pointed out that cotton does not allow the bacteria to proliferate. TSS seems like the flu, exhausts your ability to think straight and can kill in a few hours. Almost lost my sister to it. Store the hippie cotton tampons and use a washable pad at night.

  • Just use a bath cloth and water in a tin can. After all you don’t want to foul up your water source.

  • I sure wish someone would do an article on making fuel for the vehicle in case of an EMP, shutting down the grid, because that would make getting gas or diesel totally impossible to obtain from a service station….No need for a bug out vehicle if you cant fuel it!

    • William, thank you for asking.
      CLICK HERE for our articles on making fuel. Read them, and send us your feedback so we could prepare more content on the topic.
      Merry Christmas!

  • I saw in the comments about having soap. Its very easy to do just respect the lye. I bought an egg beater to get used to doing it manually, the beef fat recipe takes me about 1 1/2 hours to get it thickened enough to pour into molds- get the silicon ones, so easy to remove soap from them. Also about lip balm, 1 tablespoon beeswax chips, a spoon of shea butter and a couple spoons coconut oil ( go to Amazon and buy the jug for making popcorn, much cheaper), add a couple drops sweet almond oil, melt in the microwave and pour into an empty Altoids tin. Best stuff ever. Buy the wood matches from Dollar Tree- 300 for $1.00, also get candles there. I made fabric paper towels from flour sacks. Cut each one into 4 pieces and hemmed the edges. As far as the toilet paper, cut up a soft old t shirt into 3 inch square, hemmed it. Get some pool shock without the additional algaecide, 65-70% active ingredient calcium hydrochloride to treat water, 1 grain will treat 1 gallon water. Your bleach has probably broken down and won’t treat water. I bought a lot of supplies from Amazon, less driving around. Hope this helps