You arrive at the post-ride cafe stop. You’re sweaty. You’re dirty. Maybe it’s rained a bit, maybe you’ve had to fix a mechanical. There’s a long queue for the toilet. You could just squirt water from your bottle all over your face and hands, but that’s not ideal, plus that won’t really help matters much. I realize that this isn’t an issue that is right up there with the most important or pressing in life, but when the solution is so handy, then why not solve it?
A small start-up from right here in South Australia called h2o wipes brings you the convenience of the wet-wipe without the chemicals or anything for the landfill, and it comes in a convenient little wrapperless package the size of a mentos.
These aren’t cycling specific, but they’re perfect for the bike (and anywhere else you have access to a few drops of water). I keep one in my saddle-bag and have successfully impressed my fellow cyclists before tucking into the food and beverage, clean and comfortable. As one person out of shot in the video below remarks, if you are a fan of white bar tape, you will be a fan of h2o wipes.
Really, this is a basic product from a basic brand, but it doesn’t need to be anything more elaborate to do what it does. I think it’s genius is in it’s simplicity. It works like this:
Grab a pellet, then squirt, quite literally, a few drops of water onto it. Watch it expand, then find an edge and unroll it. The video on their website shows more water than is necessary, but the video below shows just how little water you actually need (though the first attempt was a little conservative). If you are mid-ride and still have a long way to go, don’t worry about wasting the water because it isn’t much to worry about. Wipe yourself down and you’re done. They say that they are resusable, and when the ride was done and we sat down for a bit of food, out came the wipe for a second go. No problem.
That’s it. It’s biodegradable, so you could toss it at the side of the road, but you wouldn’t, because you’re not a wanker. Throw it in the bin, and after about a month it will have taken care of itself.
These will cost in the area of $4 AUD for a tube of 8, I think (rumour has it they are making the wipes a bit bigger than the samples that I have, which includes 11 pellets per tube), so they when you pick up a couple of gels next time, grab a tube of h2o wipes and bring one with you – you’ll be glad you did when you spill that gel all over your hands, and bars, and shifters, and top tube…