With the looming toilet paper shortage (smh), I thought this might be a good time to make this post, which I’ve been meaning to do for a while.
There’s been a lot of talk over the last few years about the use of bidets and cutting down on toilet paper, but there’s always a discussion about how expensive they can be, and that’s true. There are more affordable bidet attachments that you can attach to your existing toilet, which take (cold!) water from the same water supply that attaches to your toilet tank. Well, my lady bits are cold averse.
I also wanted something that I could take to my cottage to cut down on tp usage; I have an outhouse, and anything solid gradually fills up the waste hole.
Enter the very cheap travel bidet. I bought a Brondell Gospa travel bidet, which is a soft, squeezable plastic bottle with a screw on nozzle, which has five little holes at the end, which direct the water flow where you need it.
Twenty bucks at Bed, Bath and Beyond
There are other brands on the market, and another style may suit other people better, but this seems to work just fine. It can hold about 2 1/2 - 3 cups of water, and I can control the temperature (remember what I said about cold water?), and direct the flow where I need it, not just where a bidet manufacturer thinks I need it.
So, down to brass tacks; the reason you no longer need toilet paper is that after peeing, you rinse with clean water and then you dry your now clean nether parts with a small drying cloth. I cut up an old, torn flannel sheet into strips about 7" x 12", which I fold into 4 and pat dry. Then I wash the cloth, the nozzle and my hands at the same time, and hang the cloth to dry. Bonus environmental points; use of old, but still useable cloth.
More brassier tacks; after pooping (yes, I know, this is tmi, but nobody tells you these things), I use toilet paper to get rid of “Klingons”, then rinse and dry. I’ll give my hands an extra washing after washing the cloth. So I’m still using some toilet paper, but I’ve cut it down drastically.
At the cottage, since I don’t have hot, or running water, I heat water on my camp stove and fill a thermos with hot water, so I always have some on hand. I fill a thermos at home as well, just to avoid running the water a lot to get it to a desirable temperature; I get it to warmer than comfortable, because I can always add cooler water, and then fill the thermos for use when I need it. Saving water too!
A caution: very hot water can burn you! Be careful; test on your hands first.
If you live alone, you can flush less often too. Saving even more water.