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Peak Design Small Wash Pouch Review: Great for the Essentials

Rating: 9/10 ?
  • 1 - Does not work
  • 2 - Barely functional
  • 3 - Severely lacking in most areas
  • 4 - Functions, but has numerous issues
  • 5 - Fine yet leaves a lot to be desired
  • 6 - Good enough to buy on sale
  • 7 - Great and worth purchasing
  • 8 - Fantastic, approaching best-in-class
  • 9 - Best-in-class
  • 10 - Borderline perfection
Price: $49.95
Person holding the Peak Design Small Wash Pouch
Justin Duino / LifeSavvy

Peak Design might be best known for its camera backpacks, but the company’s travel bags and accessories are just as great. If you’re looking for a new toiletry kit and are either tight on space or don’t carry much, the Small Wash Pouch from Peak Design is the bag for you.

I’ve taken Peak Design’s full-size Wash Pouch with me on every single trip since I purchased it back in 2018. Knowing how well it has lasted over the past four years, I had high expectations for the Small Wash Pouch, and it did not disappoint.

Here's What We Like

  • Premium build materials
  • Compact design

And What We Don't

  • Only room for the essentials
  • High price tag

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Design and Quality Are Top-Notch

Peak Design Small Wash Pouch open and hanging up
Justin Duino / LifeSavvy

Peak Design didn’t make this a hard-shell toiletry bag, but I’m not too worried about any damage to the items inside. The Small Wash Pouch is made from a 100% recycled nylon canvas, giving the bag a premium yet sturdy exterior.

Externally, you also have a small grab handle and a metal hook that you can use to hang the Small Wash Pouch on a towel rack to make it easier to get items in and out. The aluminum hook can be rotated and stowed in the bag when not in use.

Opening the bag using what Peak Design calls a “#8 weatherproof UltraZip” zipper, you’re greeted with a silicone-coated mesh divider that creates four pockets for your toiletries. There’s also a zippered pocket on one side and a magnetically sealed pouch for your toothbrush on the other.

The gray nylon and polyester interior is made to be highly visible, stain-resistant, and easy to clean if something leaks. As someone who tends to put their toothbrush into the Small Wash Pouch while it’s still wet, I enjoyed being able to wash it out after getting back from a trip.

With use, I found that the four divided sections within the pouch made the bag feel more significant than it was. I initially thought this would limit the number of items I could pack into it, but having dedicated spaces for longer and shorter items made it easy to organize my toiletries.

Additionally, when you’re not using the metal hook to hang the Small Wash Pouch, Peak Design designed the bag to sit upright when open and on a counter. Not having to hold the sides of the bag open while grabbing something is one of those small conveniences that make this an essential travel accessory.

Small Wash Pouch vs. the Original Wash Pouch

Storage size is the biggest difference between Peak Design’s original Wash Pouch and the Small Wash Pouch. Coming in with a volume of 1L, the Small model is more than half the size of the Wash Pouch’s 2.5L.

Comparing the two bags using the toiletries I usually travel with (toothbrush, toothpaste, comb, deodorant, cologne, beard trimmer, and small miscellaneous items like floss), the standard Wash Pouch normally has room to spare. Pack all of those items into the Small Wash Pouch, and you’ll find that things are just a bit more snug. You could squeeze in a bit more, but not much.

I did miss the original Wash Pouch’s external zip pocket while testing its smaller sibling. This little bit of extra storage is handy for items such as razors as it ensures debris like beard hair doesn’t make a mess of your other things. Peak Design’s website states that you can use the Small Wash Pouch’s internal zippable pocket to hold razors, but I preferred to use that pocket to hold loose items.

Easily the Best Small Toiletry Bag

Peak Design Small Wash Pouch internal compartments
Justin Duino / LifeSavvy

From a quality standpoint, there’s no beating the Small Wash Pouch. As long as it fits everything you need on trips, I don’t envision you ever needing to buy something else.

My only real complaints with the toiletry bag come from its size. I prefer something bigger, but that’s what the original Wash Pouch is for. If you’re not like me and don’t need more than 1L for all of your items, there’s no reason not to purchase the smaller model.

The Small Wash Pouch can be purchased directly from Peak Design for $49.95. It comes in Black and Sage, with the only difference between the two (other than the color) being the Peak Design logo badge on the side of the bag. The patch is made out of a Hypalon synthetic rubber on the Black model and is leather on the Sage.

Rating: 9/10
Price: $49.95

Here’s What We Like

  • Premium build materials
  • Compact design

And What We Don't

  • Only room for the essentials
  • High price tag

Justin Duino Justin Duino
Justin Duino is the Reviews Director at LifeSavvy (and LifeSavvy Media as a whole). He has spent the last decade writing about Android, smartphones, and other mobile technology. In addition to his written work, he has also been a regular guest commentator on CBS News and BBC World News and Radio to discuss current events in the technology industry. Read Full Bio »
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