Simple Shower Review
Cons: Very small capacity, easy to lose pieces
Manufacturer: Simple Shower
Compare to Similar Products
|Price||$13 List||$38.65 at Amazon||$34.95 at REI||$24.99 at Amazon||$10.03 at Amazon|
|Pros||High rate of flow, lightweight, inexpensive||Great coverage, comfortable and consistent pressure, decent battery life, easy to use||Lightweight and packable, easy to use, heats up well, comes with everything you need||Efficient solar heating, easy to use temperature gauge, quality construction, lightweight||Inexpensive, efficient solar heating, portable|
|Cons||Very small capacity, easy to lose pieces||Short hose, can't empty its container, durability concerns||Low pressure, can be difficult to hang high enough, roll-top is leaky||Low pressure, heavy when full, doesn't fold up intuitively||Clamp leaks easily, not durable materials or construction, hard to hang|
|Bottom Line||For a quick rinse, this small, inexpensive shower will do the trick||By adding a bucket and a battery, this shower brings you all the comforts of home in the outdoors||An affordable, easy to use, and super packable shower that can come with you anywhere||A durable take on an old design, this is a gravity shower you can take just about anywhere||Not a stellar performer, but it is cheap|
|Rating Categories||Simple Shower||Ivation Portable||Sea to Summit Pocke...||Advanced Elements S...||Coghlan's 5-Gallon|
|Ease Of Set Up (20%)|
|Specs||Simple Shower||Ivation Portable||Sea to Summit Pocke...||Advanced Elements S...||Coghlan's 5-Gallon|
|Heating Method||Manual or Solar||Manual||Manual or Solar||Manual or Solar||Solar|
|Shower Head Usable Width (inches)||1.5"||2.1"||1"||1"||0.9"|
|Time Until Empty||30 sec||52 min
|9 min 47 sec||3 min 33 sec||4 min 20 sec|
|Weight (shower only, ounces)||.9 oz
(1 lb 5 oz)
|Packed Size (L x W in inches)||13" x 2"||72" x 3.25"||5.5" x 3.25"||14.5" x 4.5"||19.5" x 3"|
|Filled Size (inches)||Same plus a 2 liter bottle||Same plus a bucket||20" x 8.5"||19" x 14.5"||19.5" x 15" x 6"|
|Hose Length (feet/inches)||N/A||5' 9.5"||N/A||1' 3.5"||1' 10.5"|
|Shower Head Diameter (inches)||2.0"||2.5"||1.4"||1.4"||1.25"|
|Capacity||1 or 2 L||(bucket)||2.6 gal||3 gal||5 gal|
|Rate of Flow (gallons per minute)||2 gal/min||1.2 gal/min||Extremely variable||0.6 gal/min||07. gal/min|
|Construction||Recycled material||2200 mAh lithium battery||70D nylon dry sack, plastic components||4-layer construction||Lead and cancer causing chemicals warning|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Simple Shower is an attachment showerhead for a 1 or 2-liter bottle. Made of recycled materials, this option puts out a 1.5-inch wide spray and weighs less than an ounce.
The Simple has a relatively wide shower head with plenty of large holes for water to come out and boasts some of the best coverage of any shower we tested. The flow is fast, thorough, and comfortable. However, in conjunction with a 2-liter bottle (as you have a choice between a 1 liter or 2-liter bottle when you start), this gives you about 30 seconds of constant flow. This is fine to rinse the soap from dishes or grubby dog paws, but even the most efficient shower-taker in the world would be hard-pressed to get completely wet, soap up, and rinse off with that amount of water. It's also not exactly the most comfortable to hold — you're literally palming a 2-liter bottle upside down!
This shower has the highest rate of flow of any non-pressurized shower we tested. While this sounds like a great thing, it also means you run through those two measly liters very quickly! Setting your bottle in the sun for a few hours before you use it makes quick work of heating your shower with no extra effort on your part. The Simple also comes initially with two different lengths of straw that you can use. This straw puts air back into your bottle as water flows out, to keep a steady stream of water without you having to squeeze the bottle — pretty handy! However, the straw is a bit short, and if it starts in the water when the bottle is upside down, it seems to have issues working the way it was designed. Letting a little water out and then flipping the whole contraption back upright and then upside down again seemed to fix the issue.
Ease of Set Up
With such a simple design, the Simple is incredibly easy to set up. Just screw it onto the top of an old 2-liter water or soda bottle, and you're good to go! You can also choose to heat water on a stove to add to the bottle if you don't want to wait for the sun to do its magic (or if it's cloudy or cold out). If you're only using it to rinse objects or extremities, you might not even need to bother with heating up your water, making the whole thing that much easier. But if you're not a soda drinker, you may spend a little extra time tracking down an appropriate bottle, and of course, the narrow opening of these bottles makes getting water into them a bit more challenging. We also really wish that this shower had a way to close it. More than once, it was accidentally knocked over and quickly spilled its contents everywhere. Overall though, this shower is one of the simplest ones to use among the models we tested.
Made of recycled materials, there aren't a lot of moving parts to break on the Simple. Even dropping this thing repeatedly on concrete and rocks didn't seem to phase it in the slightest. However, the straw is quite thin, and the connection point to the lid is questionable — even Simple tells you not to put on and remove this straw repeatedly as it is likely to stop making a tight connection if you do. So once you make the call — 1 liter or 2? — you may be stuck with that decision forever!
This tiny thing is so light it didn't even register on the first scale we used to measure it! Weighing less than an ounce and taking up a practically minuscule amount of space (bottle not included), it's hard to say this shower isn't easy to take along with you. You could even fill multiple 2-liter bottles of water and leave them in your car while you're out adventuring and use as many as you need to clean up your boat/dog/gear/self when you get back. And even considering the additional weight of the 2-liter bottle, it's still a very lightweight shower overall, though not overly compactable. It's possible that you could find a collapsible water bottle with the right size opening to add to the portability of this ultralight shower, and then it might be your new best friend for backpacking!
As one of the cheapest showers we tested, it's hard to go wrong with the Simple. Even with its limitations as a full body shower, it's a pretty useful little device that can keep you quite comfortable and reasonably clean for very little monetary investment. We think that for what you pay, this shower is a pretty great value — as long as you're not after a full-body, shampoo-your-hair kind of shower, cuz this isn't it!
A pretty useful little contraption, the Simple can help you keep things clean with ease. Simple to use, you'll be able to rinse things like a pro. Though if you're looking to take a full shower, you're unlikely to be satisfied by the 30 second capacity of this little gizmo and you will have to track down a compatible bottle. But if what you want is something easy, functional, and inexpensive, the Simple Shower may just be what you're looking for.
— Maggie Brandenburg