How to make waterproof matches


Nothing will dampen your campfire quicker than a wet box of matches. Pardon the pun, but it’s a real no-win situation. On a camping trip it can mean no dinner, no warmth, and no ghost stories. And at the cottage it can lead to a s’more-free night—no one wants that! So how can you ensure your matches will work even after getting soaked by rain or a capsized canoe? Make your own waterproof matches.

Here’s how:


  1. Buy some high-quality wooden matches and some cheap, clear nail polish.
  2. Fill a small container with the nail polish. (A lid from a screw-top wine bottle is the perfect size for this.)
  3. Dip each match head into the nail polish and lay the match on top of a table with the now wet head extending off the edge.
  4. When the polish is dry, hold the match by the head and dip the wooden end of the match into the nail polish (still in the bottle).
  5. Lay the matches on  wax paper until they’re dry. Do as many matches as you think you’ll need for your next adventure. Of course it’s always better to have too many than too little.