We all have that one friend who is super obsessed with saving the planet. Perhaps they only wear natural fibers or refuse to eat meat or shame those who use a disposable coffee cup. And beware the rath of this person when someone doesn’t separate their recycling and compostables!
This friend may also be the one person you know who would be interested in using “family cloth” instead of toilet paper. Yes, it’s exactly like it sounds. It’s a reusable cloth alternative to toilet paper that is saved and washed to be used again and again.
If you’re considering making the switch to “family wipes” or are just a bit curious about how the whole thing works, check out the video below. A zero waste family explains why they ditched traditional toilet paper ages ago and aren’t looking back!
Now I’m sure some of us are feeling a bit uneasy just thinking about trading in our toilet paper for “family cloth” but apparently a growing number of families are making the switch.
The thing is, you don’t even have to buy the manufactured “family cloth” product. Instead, you can make your own reusable toilet cloth by cutting up old clothing. Although there are a shocking number of patterns and designs available for purchase.
The reusable route does involve needing a sealed container to place soiled cloths into since you won’t be flushing these things down the toilet. Think of it as a hamper for your bathroom laundry, except this laundry is likely to smell a lot worse than your sweaty gym socks.
You’ll also be using your washing machine a lot more and it’s recommended that you clean these reusable toilet cloths at a high temperature to ensure all of the bacteria have been killed. This fact has some people wondering if the practice is really that environmentally friendly at all.
While you may be saving some trees and contributing less to the landfill, the amount of energy, detergent, and water required to keep your “family cloths” in good working condition would be high. Though I suppose it isn’t really much different than reusable diapers that plenty of parents still use. (But then again, diapers are only required for a couple of years per baby…)
That being said, if I showed up to someone’s home and all that was hanging on the toilet dispenser roll has a well-worn piece of cloth, I’d definitely be searching my purse for a spare tissue or two to use instead.
And it seems the internet agrees with me. Once word got out that reusable toilet cloth exists, Twitter had an absolute field day! One user suggested that this is “the end of Western civilization”, while another said just the thought made him “want to die”.
Okay, perhaps people are being a little overdramatic, but would you be willing to swap your flushable kitten-soft toilet paper for a strip of an old giveaway t-shirt that’s been soiled and washed a hundred times?
Perhaps, if you really want to save the trees but also aren’t keen on the cloth idea, you should look to the French. They invented the bidet, which pretty much cleans you up without destroying the forests.
Wow! Who knew there were so many options for cleaning your bum?