What Is a Dopp Kit?
What is a dopp kit and why should guys care? Visit We explain what a dopp kit is, how to choose one and what to put in it when you travel.
Guys typically don’t have too many personal care products—not compared to women, at least.
When you and your girl go on vacation together, it seems like she brings half the contents of the bathroom cabinet along with her.
You, on the other hand, are probably good with a few grooming essentials.
And for this exact reason, your toiletries should be packed in a high-quality dopp kit.
They may be few in number, but your grooming products are important.
They deserve better than to be shoved carelessly into a measly Ziploc bag.
So, what is a dopp kit and why should every guy have one?
Allow us to explain.
Here are three things you need to know about dopp kits:
- Dopp kits were invented by a German immigrant named Charles Doppelt.
- When buying a dopp kit, make sure that it’s easy to clean and has plenty of space.
- Face products, shave tools, deodorant and hair products are a few essential items to pack in a dopp kit.
What Is a Dopp Kit?
It was invented by Charles Doppelt, a leather craftsman and German immigrant who settled in Chicago at the turn of the 20th century.
Doppelt’s travel-friendly bag became a huge hit during World War II when the military issued millions of them to soldiers.
Today, dopp kits have become a must-have staple in every guy’s grooming arsenal.
They’ve also become a popular groomsmen gift due to their practicality and attractive appearance.
Dopp Kit Buying Considerations
There is no single best dopp kit for men.
Guys have different needs in a toiletry bag, and this is reflected in the many different features of modern dopp kits.
But if you’re on the hunt for a great dopp kit and don’t know where to start, here are a few things you may want to consider:
Although the original dopp kit was crafted from high-quality leather, dopp kits now come in a variety of materials.
These materials include leather, nylon, canvas cotton and plastic, among others.TRY MEN’S SKIN CARE
If you’ve ever had moisturizer explode in your suitcase during transport, you’ll know why this feature is important.
All dopp kits should be easy to clean because spills are almost guaranteed to happen at some point.
How big should a dopp kit be?
Answer: big enough to store all of your grooming and skin care essentials.
While a 9-inch dopp kit will suffice for most guys, others may need more room for hair and skin care products.
Consider getting two dopp kits in different sizes: one for longer vacations and one for weekend getaways.
How to Pack a Dopp Kit
We’ve already touched upon a few things to put in a dopp kit, but what items do you truly need to pack?
Although what you pack in a dopp kit will likely vary depending on the duration of the trip, here are a few must-haves that every guy needs to have in his toiletry bag:
Don’t skip your regular skin care routine while you’re on vacation.
Traveling without your skin care essentials might seem easier, but it’s not worth the potential breakouts and skin irritation.
If you want to have clear skin on vacation, be sure to pack the basics: face wash, SPF moisturizer, a face scrub and a bedtime moisturizer.
While you’re at it, don’t forget to pack sunscreen for the rest of your body.
Applying sunscreen is critical to lowering your risk of skin cancers such as melanoma, a deadly form of skin cancer which disproportionately affects men.
Thinking about using the cheap bar soap at your hotel?
If you’re one of the 50-60 percent of men who report having sensitive skin, you may want to pack your own (see claim: “…50-60% of men report having some degree of sensitive skin.”)GET OUR RECOMMENDATION
Standard bar soaps can be super drying to the skin and can make existing skin problems (like eczema or psoriasis) much worse.
To avoid unnecessary redness and irritation, consider packing a nourishing bar soap that is gentle on the skin.
It will be one less thing to worry about while you’re on vacation.
Shaving Tools and Products
Shaving products are essential for every guy, regardless of his facial hair situation.
If you have a bushy beard, you’ll for sure want to pack a beard balm and/or beard oil to keep things looking tidy.
If you prefer a clean-shaven look, remember to bring a sharp and clean razor with you.
And unless you’re cool with razor bumps and ingrown hairs, we highly recommend a soothing aftershave as well.
Shampoo + Conditioner
Let’s face it: Hotel shampoos and conditioners are the worst.
If you have curly or dry hair, forget about using the hotel’s hair products altogether.
The harsh sulfates in them will likely do your hair more harm than good.
Instead, pack a nourishing shampoo and conditioner that will hydrate your thirsty strands.
Toothbrush + Toothpaste
You’re probably going to take a few selfies while you’re on vacation.
To ensure that those pearly whites of yours stay that way, pack a toothbrush, toothpaste and some floss in your dopp kit.
If you have bad breath (aka, halitosis), bring along some gum and mints while you’re at it.
Make sure that you choose sugar-free gum and mints, as sugar can feed the bacteria that cause bad breath in the first place.
Going somewhere warm and tropical?
A deodorant or antiperspirant is practically a must.
If you have a problem with excessive sweating, look for an antiperspirant that works by temporarily blocking sweat glands.
If you simply have foul-smelling body odor, a deodorant will work just fine.
Although choosing and packing a dopp kit can be highly subjective, they should always be equal parts stylish and practical.
Ask yourself this: Would you be embarrassed if a TSA agent pulled your dopp kit out in front of all to see?
If the answer is yes, then you may want to invest in a new toiletry bag.
Farage, Miranda A. “The Prevalence of Sensitive Skin.” Frontiers in medicine vol. 6 98. 17 May. 2019.
American Academy of Dermatology