Your Say: Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

by Paris B on · 71 comments

in Bath & Body,Discussions,Musings

I love travelling for leisure, but I haven’t had the chance to indulge this year. Still, the occasional work trip has served to fulfil that tiny bit of wanderlust in my soul. And one of the fun things about travelling is hotel stays. Ok, I can’t possibly be the only one out there who secretly (or not so secretly) enjoys staying in a hotel? icon biggrin Your Say: Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

Where else can you have a lovely plush bed, full air-conditioning, watch TV while in bed, a lush bathroom, lots of clean towels, and be allowed to create a mess knowing you don’t have to clean up? erm… oops! icon wink Your Say: Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

I was away for an overnight work trip a few days ago and while I was in the bathroom, a curious question struck me.

hotel toiletries Your Say: Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

You know how hotels always provide little compact bottles of shampoo, conditioner, bath/shower gel etc? Do you use them? Or do you bring your own?

I know of people who don’t bother packing toiletries when they travel because every hotel will usually provide something. This means they don’t have to add to their luggage weight nor do they risk liquids leaking out into their toiletry bags (I’ve had a shampoo leak all over the inside of my toiletry bag – it foamed up when I tried to clean it!)

I however, always pack my own toiletries and rarely use the ones provided by hotels, no matter the class of hotel I stay in. I find something comforting in using a familiar product while away from home and it is sometimes my chance to indulge.

The other reason is because I find most hotels, even chain hotels, provide generic products for hair and body and I don’t like how drying they are and how they strip my skin and hair. I’ve stayed in some hotels that provide “branded” toiletries from Molton Brown and L’Occitane but that was when I also learned that my skin and hair do not take kindly to toiletries from these brands as I find that they make my hair and skin dry.

So whenever I travel, aside from my facial toiletries, I always have a shampoo and conditioner that I know my hair can handle, whether in travel size or sachet form, and a small bottle of body wash. Currently, it’s the REN Moroccan Rose Otto body wash and I can tell you that it’s so comforting after a long road trip or after a long day, to envelop yourself in the scent of lovely fresh roses.

Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

I bring my own everything, even cotton pads when I remember, because not every hotel gives cotton pads as their amenities. When it comes to bath/shower stuff, I’m quite fussy and I love a bit of indulgence so little travel sized bottles of some luxe shower gel usually finds its way into my travel bag for my next hotel stay! icon biggrin Your Say: Do you use hotel toiletries or do you prefer to bring your own?

Paris B

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[ 71 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

lisa May 20, 2014 at 8:43 am

I always bring my own. End of the day during travelling, you just want to get back and have a clean, reliable, comfortable, therapeutic even kind of wash up etc…. I do not want to take my chance to deal with some of these dubious looking formulations provided in the hotels which most of the times just do the basic job and leave hair and skin kind of stripped dry. This i know because while i do bring my own stuff, i still can’t resist testing some of these stuff out. In japan however, there are some really great hotels that provide packages for ladies, and oh yes…they are so thoughtful. E.g. reputable star products from brands we do come across, evening tea, cotton wash cloth and even bath soaks. Even got facial steamer, hair curler etc provided in the room. Now, this, i don’t mind using them up.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:21 pm

LOL You must have been staying at some really nice hotels in Japan! The ones I stayed at were quite basic but you’re right at least the shampoo and body stuff were by Shiseido and Kao so I knew what I was getting! I too prefer to get the guesswork out of the way. As you say, at the end of the day, what we want is to come back to something familiar and relaxing and if shampoo and shower gel does it, so be it!

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LeGeeque May 20, 2014 at 8:45 am

I love that you blogged this the day before I fly off :D I was struggling with luggage allowance as well because I refuse to check in my bags in. I’m actually not too fussed about toiletries in general but I. MUST. HAVE. PANTENE. CONDITIONER. I can take all sorts of crap shampoo or body wash but I must have that conditioner so I decanted some into an old bottle that I will toss before I fly home.

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Irene May 20, 2014 at 10:04 am

Hi there! Hope you don’t mind me butting in. Which Pantene conditioner is it? You’ve my curiosity pigued! :D

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LeGeeque May 25, 2014 at 2:49 pm

Nothing specific. Just the Pantene pro-v colour therapy because I’ve coloured my hair. That’s it. I’vegot thick hair and I need a thick conditioner to weigh it down. It’s odd

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:22 pm

Haha so specific! So, what is this miraculous Pantene conditioner that we need to know about eh? ;)

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Kaolee
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 9:15 am

I definitely use their shampoo and conditioner. However, everything else I do use my own. I feel like my hair can withstand a lot of different shampoos and conditioner so I don’t bother with those.
Kaolee recently blogged…clinique’s even better clinical dark spot correctorMy Profile

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:24 pm

You lucky gal! That’s one thing less to worry about with luggage weight restrictions! :D

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Fathin May 20, 2014 at 9:16 am

I love bath gel and soap that hotels provide, they usually smell nice, same thing goes with the body cream :D But for shampoo, I try not to use them as my hair will get much coarser or drier as if I just replace my hair with broom hair plus my scalp will feel much more itchier, uhuh. Hotel shampoo do smell nice but they are not suitable for my hair and scalp :( So, I get small bottles for my shampoo and conditioner and wrap them tightly in a plastic bag before I put them into my travelling toiletries bag but only if my trip more than 3 days :D

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:24 pm

LOL broom hair! I feel that way too the minute hotel shampoos touch my hair and I thought my hair was hardy! So now I’d rather err on the side of caution :D

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Giddy tigress
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 9:19 am

A long time ago I used to use hotel stuff but I’ve stopped now, for the simple reason that I’m allergic to almost all hotel lotions and shampoos.
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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:25 pm

Good point GT – a lot of these hotel toiletries are generic brands so they aren’t exactly well formulated!

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shasha May 20, 2014 at 9:51 am

Definitely bring my own. Hotel toiletries are always too drying and I would definitely prefer bringing something that I’m already used to and love instead of a weird smelling shower gel/shampoo/soap. But I’ve seen Bvlgari stuff in hotels before, now THAT would be something I would wanna try! I even sometimes bring my own towel just because. LOL! Who knows where your hotel towels have been :D
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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:26 pm

There’s that thing about it being drying right? I never understood why but I think it’s because they use generic formulas that are probably as good as dishwashing liquid :P Oh if I saw Bvlgari I’d use it too! Nevermind that it could be drying LOL! And towels! Ok I haven’t gone that far yet hehe

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Isabel May 20, 2014 at 10:02 am

I love staying in hotels! The only thing I use that is provided by the hotel is the shower gel because the skin on my body seem to be able to handle pretty much anything I use. Other than that, I pack my own toiletries especially shampoo and conditioner. My hair is terribly fussy.

But I do “ta pau” the shampoo for future travel to use as …. laundry detergent! I find the little bottle easy to tote around and they don’t create a mess or dissolve as packets of soap powder might. I use the hotel shampoo to launder my thin basic tees that change every day when I travel to colder climates and my delicates :P

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:26 pm

Ooh laundry detergent, that’s very clever! My dad takes them and uses them to wash his car LOL Swears it gives the car a better shine than any car shampoo out there so why not?! :D

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xin
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 10:03 am

i like to bring my own when i travel :D i agree that most of the hotel shampoos/shower gels are rather drying and i certainly won’t like to have my skin killed when i travel.
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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:27 pm

Especially not hair too!

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Angelina May 20, 2014 at 10:07 am

For shampoo and shower gel, I might not bring my own and use the ones provided by the hotel (because I know which hotel I’m going to stay at and what brand they are using). For skincare, it’s always my own set. I can’t risk having a breakout or dry skin due to unsuitable skincare products.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:28 pm

Oh I’d never ever not bring my own skincare! But for bath and body products I’ve realised that even top hotels don’t give decent products unless you stay in their suites or higher end rooms which I never do so I don’t get the L’Occitanes and Molton Browns often or actually, not at all if I’m paying my own way! LOL!

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retty May 20, 2014 at 10:07 am

Coincidentally Im on my first day of a 6day work trip. I always bring my own. I dont mind using their body soap, cotton buds, tissues etc. But there is NO WAY will be using their toiletries. If the bottle is cute, i’d discard the liquid n keep the bottle hehehe i appreciate smart packaging!

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Ooh! I used to collect hotel toiletries for their packaging too! Haha Some bottles are really quite adorable and clever aren’t they? I can then take them home and fill them with my own products for travel use :)

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Shija Rahim May 20, 2014 at 10:16 am

Shampoo n body lotion r my own.. But i dont travel wth bath gel… I’ll use whatever they provide… And also my very fav Magicboo hair treatment its individual packed.. I only use this treatment when i travel bcoz its super convinient ..safe to use everyday too..

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:30 pm

Sachets are such a boon when travelling right? Use then toss! :D I keep samples for this purpose even if I don’t travel as much anymore. I used to use the hotel shower gel and I still do sometimes if it smells nice but ever since I discovered that my hands were sensitive to formulations, I prefer to pack my own. At least I don’t end up with dry, peeling hands!

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synical
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 11:59 am

I bring my own, mostly to clear all the accumulated samples I have been, erm, hoarding.

Doesn’t stop me from tarpauing the little bottles half the time because it’s already paid for. Last time I did was from Sydney’s Westin, which (hilariously enough) was Made in Malaysia :P

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:32 pm

LOL If I’m staying in a nice hotel, yes I also tapau and yes, also because I think the same way you do :P But even at these top hotels, I’ve found their regular rooms get only the most basic of stuff, with the branded stuff reserved for the more expensive rooms :P

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Arpita May 20, 2014 at 12:26 pm

It really depends on the hotel I’m staying at because some hotels are wonderful with what they provide. For example, Hilton provides Peter Thomas Roth hair and body products, and that stuff is amazing! I’ve actually accumulated enough of the stuff to have a bottle of shampoo and conditioner of my own at home now (Asian habits ahoy!). DoubleTree provides Crabtree & Evelyn stuff and I love that as well! However, if I’m staying with friends or in an unknown hotel, I take my own stuff or stop by a pharmacy and buy stuff I’m comfortable with.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:33 pm

Wow Hilton does? The last time I stayed there, I got some generic Hilton Hotel stuff :( I mustn’t be staying at the right rooms then? :P I stayed somewhere once that provided Crabtree & Evelyn which was when I realised that I didn’t like their stuff LOL! Dried out my hair and skin a treat! Weird!

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Seraph May 20, 2014 at 1:18 pm

I usually bring my own face cleanser & shampoo… but soap, i’ll use the ones provided by the hotel, especially when i wanna have a bubble bath… heehee… simply coz i dont wanna risk a breakout on my face and my hair cant take the shampoo they provide… hahaha… soap wise, i’ll just slap on tonnes of lotion on my skin after that…

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:34 pm

Ooh yes, bubble bath! :D I do that too if I want a bubble bath – I use the hotel one and then I add an oil that I bring myself for even nicer scent! :D

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Tine
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 1:18 pm

Haha good question! I don’t use hotel toiletries if I can help it (Molton Brown, on the other hand, well that I’ll give a good ol’ go ;)). Most hotels use generic brand products and I don’t know how harsh they can be on the skin and hair so I’d rather not take the risk. I always bring my own if I can. The only place I’ve used hotel products is Japan because more often than not, they have better products than I do, even the ones I’ve never heard of! :P

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:35 pm

I’m hearing about hotels offering Peter Thomas Roth and Crabtree & Evelyn and I’m thinking “Damn! I’m staying at the wrong hotels!” LOL But yes I had the pleasure of using Molton Brown in Sydney but that was because I wasn’t paying for the room right? If I was, it might have been the cheap seats with just generic brand LOL I’d rather just bring my own just to be safe :)

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Hani Lutfi May 20, 2014 at 2:24 pm

Always bring my own because frankly, hotel toiletries are crap. They don’t do anything for your hair or body.
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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Absolutely agree! :P

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Lizette May 20, 2014 at 2:51 pm

I don’t use them, as I also find them too drying. What I do though, is terrible… :( I take them home (my daughter makes me!) and put them out for guests. They always think they’re staying in a hotel when they come visit. :)
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Sandra
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 5:39 pm

Hi Lizette, I always do that too! :-P Then I reuse the bottles for my next travel after they have emptied it.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Haha That is quite sweet actually and sometimes if guests forget to bring their own, they’d appreciate it I’m sure!

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Indira May 20, 2014 at 2:54 pm

I work for government so I don’t stay in luxurious hotels, so I bring my own LOL.
Besides, for the sake of environment, I bring my own because the tiny cute bottles only last in garbage. When I bring my own, I refill it at home. Less waste.

The only disposable I bring when I travel is shampoo in sachet (they sell sachet here in Indonesia) and I skip conditioner because my regular shampoo and conditioner are in bars..not too practical for travelling :)
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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:36 pm

Oh girl, I can’t afford to stay at luxurious hotels all the time so I have to bring my own too! HAHA :D Ah they don’t sell shampoos in sachet form here so I rely on samples but that’s so clever! They should sell sachet shampoos and body washes for everyone :P

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beetrice
Twitter:
May 20, 2014 at 4:01 pm

I’m okay with certain hotel products but not with others. I usually bring my own conditioner and body lotion, but use the hotel shampoo and shower gel. Luckily most of my “regulars” were about to run out, so I brought them all with me for my recent trip, then tossed the empties when I finished – more space to bring back souvenirs! :P

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Yay for souvenirs ;) Usually if I see a generic hotel brand, I skip it. Rarely have I been surprised with good quality generic hotel brand products :P

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Victoria May 20, 2014 at 4:03 pm

I always bring my own because hotel products no matter how good they are will always dry your skin and hair. When I was a long stay customer in Four Seasons Doha a few years ago (I stayed for 1.5 months), I did use their body wash and body lotion because it was from the brand Acqua Di Parma and also it was a hassle to bring a shower gel that would last for that duration. Four Seasons usually provides L’occitane products for short stay customers and I remember bringing back so many bottles of shower gel, body lotion, shampoo and conditioner for a girlfriend and myself. It is a very bad Asian habit I know but could not help it as the products smelled so good. LOL.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:38 pm

Oh wow! Acqua di Parma in the hotel! I’d have tapaued the lot! LOL :D Not to worry about it being a habit, I do it too figuring, it’s there for me to use so taking it home serves the same purpose. At least to my warped little mind LOL

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Anne May 20, 2014 at 10:01 pm

i only used their body wash and that’s it! im the type that will tug the full set of own toiletries when i travel, i.e. toothpaste, shampoo, body lotion etc. Yes, i am a heavy packer! hahaha

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:39 pm

LOL! I bring my own everything too! I sometimes am curious so I may sneak a use of a nice body wash but I stick to my own toothpaste too!

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D May 21, 2014 at 5:24 am

Accessories such as cotton swabs, cotton balls, etc. I always bring, and hair and body wash I used decide depending the star rating of the hotel I’d be staying at. However, ever since my stay at a supposedly 4* hotel in Vegas; my hair and skin became so dry and itchy after one use that I had make a pit stop at Sephora to grab something decent.
Now I bring everything ^_^

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:40 pm

I experienced the same thing D. I thought a good hotel would have better quality products but apparently not! So it’s safer to bring my own and then experiment if I like with what’s in the hotel, but I know I have a backup if needs be :D

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Applegal May 21, 2014 at 8:27 am

Grand Blue Wave is a lousy hotel! Bearable rooms but the food is really terrible. I bring my own stuff for face and hair. If I can’t bring my own shampoo, at least I bring my own conditioner.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:41 pm

Hahaha… To be fair to them, the rooms have been refurbished (I made sure I checked because the last time I stayed there I was so disgusted by the rooms!) and are now quite decent. Breakfast was also quite decent, but I didn’t eat in there otherwise. Do you have other suggestions for hotels in JB though? :P

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JackieA May 21, 2014 at 2:38 pm

I always bring my own….especially since I have an aversion to strong smells and hotel toiletries sometimes have very funny smells! The only thing I take away with me are their lotions which I tuck into my handbag – not for me but for my two almost teenage daughters who always ask for “cream, mummy!” to slather on their sensitive dry skins!

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:42 pm

Ooh you’re right about them smelling funny, almost chemical even! My mom used to swipe the hotel lotions too. Saved her buying, she said LOL

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Beauty Box May 21, 2014 at 5:01 pm

Def a fan of bringing my own! I totally agree with you that even if hotels provide good brands – they still don’t cut it for me. I’m quite high maintenance when it comes to hair care because my scalp is quite sensitive to conventional products. I tend to shop at a local drugstore if I don’t want to pack too much. If it’s a location I’m very unfamiliar with, then I would bring the whole kitchen sink and more haha.

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Paris B
Twitter:
May 22, 2014 at 6:43 pm

It’s funny right, how even some “good” or “decent” brands don’t cut it. I wonder if it’s to do with the dry air in hotels that makes us feel this way? Or maybe the products just don’t work. I found out this way that I don’t take kindly to L’Occitane and Crabtree & Evelyn hair and body washes because it was so drying!

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