A shortage of toilet paper is real, at least for the moment, in March and April 2020. What are the best alternatives for toilet paper? What are the top 10 alternatives for toilet paper? What do you use for toilet paper when you run out? Disposable? Or reusable? Or natural?
A Time for Toilet Paper Alternatives
This site is all about laughter and encouragement. A time to weep, a time to laugh. Right now there are dedicated people all over the world, working together, to stop the health situation. And it's a time to consider the optional toilet paper alternatives as we weather this together! What's your Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C? And is it healthy? For you, your family, and your community?
The obvious first choice, if you have spent a lifetime, however short or long, with the standard "roll of toilet paper". It's convenient. It's disposable. It's is used once then flushed down the drain. So what are the best alternatives to the lifetime habit of using disposable toilet paper?
Since toilet paper is, well, "paper", there are other paper alternatives. Note particularly, that these ARE NOT DESIGNED TO BE Flushed in the toilet, the bowl, or the loo. They will create nasty plumbing problems. Yes, read the headlines or search the web for "clogged toilets" and you will find multiple stories. And they are ugly. And also stating the obvious. Anything used once is unsanitary. It must be disposed of with wisdom and caution, or cleaned, washed, scalded, microwaved, bathed in extremely hot water, or otherwise made safe for another use.
1) Baby Wipes are in the news.
Look at this smiling baby and you can see why. What parent or grandparent has not used baby wipes to keep their baby happy. And healthy. And clean. THEN, they throw away the used baby wipe in the trash. They do not throw it in the toilet like toilet paper, knowing it will plug up the toilet bowl. It's a great alternative to toilet paper, feels kind of nice, and can work well. If you can find them in the stores . . . .
2) Facial Tissues are also a most obvious toilet paper alternative.
Unfortunately they have become as rare as the original toilet paper desired. If you can find them, plan to use more than for blowing your nose, they are awesome for your face. More layers are needed as an alternative to toilet paper.
3) With Paper Napkins . . . instead of toilet paper?
Now we're getting to more substantial paper thicknesses. Good for the job at hand. More important than ever, as all these alternatives, is to take them out with the trash. Toilets are not designed for this thick paper. Similarly, Paper Towels fit into this group. And also similarly, you may find them "currently unavailable."
4) Newspapers (and magazines if you are nostalgic) . . .
Newspapers are a time honored early version of bathroom reading, and, ahem, attend to your personal hygiene. Compared to toilet paper, they are no longer a popular alternative. And there's the news print. And how many of us heard the stories (or lived them), with outdoor plumbing, the outhouse out back, and a catalog hanging on a hook?
Reusable Cloth Toilet Paper Alternatives
5) Cloth Diapers are a novel idea.
Why? Look at all those happy babies that wear them every day. Yes, disposables have become the norm. Yet cloth diapers are still available. And stop for just a moment, and visualize what babies put in their diapers. Phew. Moving right along. Just for the sake of discussion, imaging replacing your non-existent toilet paper with cloth diapers. And imagine, if you're really lucky, finding a local diaper service that takes away the soiled cloths and supplies you with fresh, clean, new ones twice a week. Just imagine. For some, it could work.
6) Bandanas and Handkerchiefs are arty and beautiful.
So. You have a few bandanas and handkerchiefs in your house. And you can buy more. What if you had a reasonable supply, to rinse out, maybe deposit in a diaper pail with a lid, and wash a load every couple of days. Reusable toilet paper. With a flair of color. You might even start a trend. Yes, of note, you need easy access to a washing machine and drying to stay on top with this one.
7) Tea Towels or Cheesecloth Kitchen Towels are alternatives.
Continuing the thought that Cloth is an alternative when their is no more toilet paper in your house. It's another example that starts with looking around. What do you have already? What's a reasonable size. The dimensions. What is a reasonable thickness? How many will you need to meet your family's daily needs, and keep a clean supply at the readiness?
8) Water. Yes, now it's time to go natural!
For some, a bidet in the bath is already in place, reducing the volume of toilet paper for everyone needs. For others, there are retrofit hand-held, toilet attached, and other creative appliances to modify your regular toilet. Spraying water upward while remaining seated is a helpful, hygienic alternative to little or no toilet paper. The concept has its audience, and those that prefer other methods. Due to the widespread search for toilet paper, out of stock in many stores, the popularity of bidet attachments has also skyrocketed. Be prepared to search, and possibly wait a bit for shipping. If you practice careful hand, eye, coordination, you may be able to use a small bottled water, water bottle, to "wash" by reaching down, aiming carefully, and squeezing abruptly, to send a manual water spout upward. Good luck.
9) A Rock. What? Err, how do you use a rock for toilet paper?
Well, it's an old method. A smooth rock might be used, or a stick, or pretty much whatever was handy. It's also a simply concept. Clearly the smoother the rock, the better. Fortunately, we live -after- the industrial revolution and have developed more sophisticated solutions such as toilet paper for our daily needs. Nonetheless, an impact of the world wide situation has found our preferred paper in short supply, while rocks are plentiful.
10) Green Leaves have been used for centuries for toilet needs.
The history of human civilization includes the history of toilet paper. Along with rocks and sticks, leaves are handy. Leaves are everywhere. And after use, can be added to your compost pile for a great spring planting garden soil additive. Caution. Know your leaves. Take the time to look them up online before touching, or dragging them across your skin. Consider the outcome should you grab poison ivy, or sharp holly bush leaves, not your best choices for such a delicate use. Leaves as an alternative for toilet paper have that long and, well, not so glorious past. Still, it you want to preserve the forest, they are one of the most natural alternatives to toilet paper.
Honorable Mention Toilet Paper Alternative
The pioneer tradition of using Corn Husks to take care of natures business and cleanup. Often in large supply at the right time of the year, and available for little or no cost in you live in the country, and have obliging farmers and ranches willing to let you gather the scraps. Green is better, softer. Dry and brown can be improved by adding water . . .
Simple Toilet Paper Use Regulator
What does that mean? In short, eat right, exercise, and maintain your physical, emotional, and spiritual health. If you binge-eat cookies, soda, and chocolates, frankly, you will need to use the bathroom more frequently. If you eat ice cream, knowing your lactose intolerance will have unwanted side effects, with the resulting need for a greater amount of toilet paper than usual, be wise for your health and your toilet paper ration!
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