Backpacking Light Editor, Aubrin Heinrichs, swiping a dripping nose with the Snot Spot mitten model.
Snot Spots are a very simple idea. They are reusable, washable, microfleece additions to gloves or mittens that provide a soft place to wipe your runny nose. Snot Spots fit around your wrist and have an extension to slip your thumb (mitten style) or index finger (glove style) through. The wiping surface area is generous, covering the back of your hand and finger (or thumb) to about the first joint. There is surface area available for wiping even with a trekking pole strap over the back of your hand.
Of course, simple ideas don’t always work in practice – but this one does. I took along a Snot Spot on a three-day snowshoe trip in Yellowstone National Park. My nose usually feels sore after a few days of winter backpacking from the constant wiping – with a tissue if I have one handy and don’t mind de-gloving to grab it or, more typically, with the back of a glove or mitten – but the Snot Spot saved my nose. I had a mitten style Snot Spot along but ended up wearing gloves or nothing on my hands in warmer than expected conditions. I wore the thumb ring over a finger and it worked just fine with mid-weight gloves or barehanded.
The Snot Spot didn’t fall off my glove when I removed the glove and added a little warmth to my bare hand. The Snot Spot picked up a lot of snow when I was pushing in tent stakes so I learned to stow it in a pocket, or remove my finger from it and flip it over and tuck it into my sleeve when I set up camp. Even with a lot of snot wiping, the Snot Spot wasn’t gross after three solid days of use and washed easily in a standard washing machine.
The regular size Snot Spots fit over thin to thick gloves and mittens and the kid size is a good fit for an adult’s bare hand.
Two other Backpacking Light staffers used Snot Spots on the Yellowstone trip and I’ve used one for day hikes in 60-degree desert "winter" conditions. Options we’d like to see:
- A thinner, less bulky version for warmer weather or personal preference
- How about just a finger ring?
Features and Specifications
- Weight: large 0.3 oz (9 g), small 0.2 oz (6 g)
- Sizes: large mitten type and large glove type fit adult mittens (over thumb) and gloves (over index finger), small fits thin adult or youth/junior gloves and bare hands
- Fabric: 100% polyester microfleece
- Colors: black (hides dirt) and alabaster (hides snot)
- Parent Company (When I Grow Up, Inc.) mission: To donate $1 million to charitable organizations by 2015
- Website: www.snotspotvail.com
- Features: reversible, washable, fit on either hand
- MSRP: $9.95
Snot Spot glove model (left) and mitten model (right) next to a snow stake for size perspective.