The first I had ever heard of such a crazy thing was when I was 15 listening to a missionary describe her time in a third world country. There are places where people don’t use toilet paper? How can you live without toilet paper?
I promptly forgot about the conversation and life moved merrily along. Fast forward 15 years and I am a mom with a toilet training little girl who apparently doesn’t understand what “reasonable” amount means and an adventurous boy who thinks toilet paper rolls were made for unrolling.
We have been using washable toilet paper for about 2 years now. I am over the gross factor. And I have learned a few things along the way. Don’t think this idea is for you? It might not be. But go ahead and read the rest so that you can make an informed decision.
What Are the Benefits?
The number one reason I started using washable toilet paper was to save money. It is not abnormal for us to use a roll of toilet paper a day. That adds up really quickly. If we were using one roll a day, we would spent approximately $180 a year on something we are simply going to flush down the toilet.
Washable toilet paper is made once and lasts for years.
Using less (or no) toilet paper would lessen the amount of resources used, of course. But I noticed that we were also using less water. Our older system just works better when there’s no (or little) toilet paper.
Simplify Toilet Training
It’s so much easier to teach a pre-counter how much washable toilet paper to get. You get one! How simple! Another bonus, the pieces are bigger than the child’s hand, so every part is effortlessly covered.
It is impossible for paper to beat cloth in softness. Which is really nice. Really nice.
What Are the Costs?
The washable toilet paper has to be made. There is a cost in fabric and in time. If you know a person who sews, you can see if you can raid their scraps. I bought mine from Joann’s when it was on sale, or using a %50 off coupon. Then there’s the cost in time of making it. I think it took me about an hour to make something like 40.
There is some cost in maintenance time. One of my children has the chore of putting the bag in the washing machine. My 3 year old’s job is to sort the clean ones and put them in the drawer. So, for me, it doesn’t take any extra effort. But it does add chores to the family list.
How Do You Make It?
I used two pieces of flannel and sewed them together using a serger. You could probably use a regular sewing machine and just have the edges fray or take forever and hide all of the edges. It’s really that simple. Mine are all different sizes because I didn’t measure anything. But they are approximately 4.5 inches by 6 inches.
How Do You Organize It?
I sacrificed a drawer in the bathroom to hold the washable toilet paper. The used pieces go in a bag hanging from the toilet paper dispenser. We have three bags so that they can get changed everyday. I probably have about 80 so that if I don’t get to laundry every three days, we won’t run out.
We still buy toilet paper in case we run out or we have guests. Although it took time to adjust, it has been worth it in money and softness…especially the softness.
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