Byline: Robyn Owen - Trail runner, adventure racer, paddler, and general active outdoor enthusiast.
Mostly, I believe that being female doesn’t pose too much of a disadvantage to having active outdoor adventures in wild places. One obvious disadvantage, however, is an increased difficulty in urinating discreetly. We just don’t, naturally, enjoy the same go-anywhere-with-your-pants-still-mostly-on convenience that men do. In fact, some women say that the fear of having to bare arse and squat in the bushes is enough to scare them out of the long Saturday morning group run on Table Mountain that they would otherwise love to join.
Drumroll… enter the SheWee (or GoGirl, Freshette, or other brand of FUD).
What are FUDs?
Female Urination Devices are silicon (or disposable paper) funnels (or “taco-shaped devices”) that allow women to pee like men – standing up with the back part of their pants still on (or into a bottle or even a handy disposable bag which converts urine into a biodegradable gel to eliminate drips).
FUDs are mostly made from flexible and foldable silicon which is water repellant and anti-bacterial. They come in a variety of colours; but most commonly purple, for unknown reasons. Optional extra accessories typically include extension pipes, carry cases and gelling disposal packets.
Tips on using FUDs
Manufacturers recommend that new users practice in the shower first to reduce the risk of an embarrassing leak. “Remember gravity – the outlet pipe must be lower than the inlet end!” is the concluding tip on shewee.co.za. A so-called “squeegee technique” of removing the used funnel, once perfected, eliminates the need for toilet paper.
Who uses FUDs?
According to their website SheWee, which was introduced in 2003, and has become “fully established in the outdoor market”. According to another website “Bicyclists, boaters, campers, fishers, members of the military, hikers, horseback riders, hunters, music festival goers, and marathon runners all use FUDs. Pregnant women, road trippers, athletes, transgender persons, world travellers, and truck drivers all benefit from this invention.”
Who actually uses FUDs?
Out of a dozen Salomon South Africa female ambassadors only one admitted to ever using such a device: “once at a music festival”. A few can recall wide-eyed moments witnessing French or German women taking a stand-up pess next to a trail. Perhaps we Saffa-chicks are rather conservative? We also all have quads of steel and don’t mind a few extra squats. And we’re mostly pretty blasé and okay about occasionally having our bare bums – mildly obscured by a sparse bush – spotted by a stranger passing by.
For myself, I can say that one day when I’m big and go on a high mountain climbing adventure somewhere really cold I’ll be sure to take an FUD for adding to a warm-water-bottle in the tent in the middle of the night.
What brands say about their FUDs?
SheWee: “Stand up and take control”
GoGirl “Don’t take life sitting down”
Pictures: Courtesy GoGirl and Shewee websites
One of the disadvantages of being female in the outdoors is the difficulty of urinating discretely. We just don’t, naturally, enjoy the same go-anywhere-with-your-pants-still-mostly-on convenience that men do. Is a pocket-sized silicon pee-funnel or “Female Urination Device” (FUD) a good solution?
“We just don’t, naturally, enjoy the same go-anywhere-with-your-pants-still-mostly-on convenience that men do.” In the latest blog post up on ___ @robynkime discusses the use of Female Urination Devices (FUDs) for weeing in the wild.
What do you think about women standing to pee?
“One day when I’m big and go on a high mountain climbing adventure somewhere really cold, I’ll be sure to take an FUD for adding to a warm-water-bottle in the tent in the middle of the night.”
Interested (or terrified) to find out what an FUD is – click on the link in our bio to find out Robyn Owen’s take on female urination devices and the fact that in the very near future, you might see more and more girls on the side of trails standing up to pee!