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Cloth Toilet Paper? Yay? Or Nay? (aka "Family Cloth")

 
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Been using what we call "family cloths" here for a couple of years. I basically thrift for towels at my local little thrift store, cut them up in squares. Have a diaper pail for used ones. Wash every couple of days. Came in VERY handy during the pandemic...  I keep TP for guests, and gave that away to friends in desperate need.
While I do get a bit concerned about the water use, I think it more than evens out, in terms of not filling up my septic tank, not using paper products.
A good friend also simply rinses/washes his cloths right after use, hangs them to dry.
I am lucky to have a washing machine that can do small loads with much less water.
The roomies I have here, use a clip-on inexpensive bidet, so they also use very little TP.
Reminds me, I need to replace my store of TP, in case the nation goes into a TP buying frenzy again!
 
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Who washes the shit?



Before disposable diapers, there were cloth diapers (used with diaper pins and plastic pants) that went into the diaper pail. The poopy ones were quickly rinsed off in a clean toilet and then popped into the pail. Every couple days or so, the pailful of diapers was washed in the washing machine on the hottest setting and the pail was rinsed out.

This isn't all that different, except no diaper pins and plastic pants! (I remember that as a big sister, one of the first things I checked when my little sister was crying was whether a diaper pin was sticking into her.)
 
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We got some of those garden pump up sprayers to use as a bidets. One per family member and a few extra. We don't use them every day, but in case of emergency like the toilet paper scare of 2019. So, family cloth....no, thanks.
 
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Adam Klaus wrote:Bidet.  The civilized way.  Your bum's never been cleaner.  You're welcome.



And I really wish I had one! I come from France and the bidet is a consistent feature in French bathrooms over there, but not here. I really wonder why? Americans tend to be so focused on removing every germ in the environment...
It is very convenient before or after sex too. It is a way to get that area clean without having to spend more warm water on a shower.
Additionally, if you have physical limitations that make it difficult to clean your bum, well, there goes. When done with #2, you can sit on the bidet and turn on the water. When clean, you can just sit on a towel and proceed to dress yourself.
 
Cécile Stelzer Johnson
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Hannah Holley wrote:Does any one use toilet cloth ?
What are your thoughts ?



When my kids were babies, I used cloth diapers, so using washcloths for adults is not as far fetched as it sounds at first. It sure is messy with babies though, because they defecate directly *in* the diaper. It involved having a homer pail with some bleach and water in it and a butter knife [dedicated, of course] to scrape the worst of it in the bowl.
I was glad to get out of this phase for the smell it created in the bathroom, but if COVID should come back and TP gets rationed again, I could see going that route:
Adults can pee/ poop in the toilet, so the mess is not as bad. If I had to, I would use a wet washcloth to clean my bum and then place the washcloth in a pail with a little bleach again, and a cover. We pee multiple times a day but poop usually just once, so it may not be as bad.
For comparison, I had 2 kids in diapers at the same time, and 12 nappies were used for each kid on average, so I washed one big batch  of nappies a day for about 2 years and I survived.
I didn't finish my thoughts about the bidet: For women at that time of the month, it is invaluable: Not only the odor is minimal but if you suffer from these darn cramps, warm water is the ticket for those. If you were to use a washcloth, I would add some salt to the soaking water. [It prevents the blood from drying out.]
 
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I lived in India for quite a few years as my husband is Indian. We never used toilet paper. There was always a  bucket of water left in the toilet with a small container for washing your self afterwards. Many toilets I used did not even have running water and so no way to have a bidet. Most Indians were grossed out at the Idea of using toillet paper back then and thought of it a a dirty way to leave your bum after pooping. My husband still only uses water to clean with after going to the toilet. He fills an old small soft drink bottle and just pours it on to clean himself then dries off with a towel. He refills the bottle and leaves it sitting beside the toilet for the next use. I also have a a femal friend who has a little bottle with holes in the lid for spray cleaning herself after urinating. Works a treat - just squeeze the bottle. We were confused when we saw people freaking out about toilet paper shortages - no-one really needs it. However as a person who cleans hotel toilets I've found toilet paper to be the most hygeinic 'cloth' to wipe over the toilets when going from seat to seat so to speak. Spray the seat and rim etc., wipe over and flush away then on to the next one.
 
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I started using 'family cloth' back at the beginning fright stage of this 'pandemic', buying a couple of flannel sets in Etsy.  I like the ones that are about the size of a maxi pad...not the square.  They stack easily.  I have a little covered can beside the toilet for the used ones.  I only use them for urine, so we still have regular TP.   But this has reduced use tremendously.  If you have multiple females in a house, I imagine the savings would be significant.  Since they are not visibly soiled, I throw them right in with my load of laundry and have no additional laundry expense.  
Screenshot_20201231-191526-2.png
[Thumbnail for Screenshot_20201231-191526-2.png]
 
Cécile Stelzer Johnson
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In one of the many lodgings I lived in, in France, we had "Turkish-style" toilets: a ceramic appliance with a hole [about 6" diameter", I would say] in the center of a square with 2 elevated pads on each side on each side to stand/ crouch and do your business. Because the hole was plenty big, and TP was expensive, dad would cut/ tear regular newspapers. The ink must have been better than nowadays because we didn't get a black bum from it. [chuckles]
The closest thing I found is still being sold on Amazon for -can you believe it- $128.80:
https://www.amazon.com/GladyStore-Squatting-Household-Defecation-Deodorant/dp/B08GQ3274T/ref=asc_df_B08GQ3274T/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=475826852804&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=7558938832881106722&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9019203&hvtargid=pla-1167851657927&psc=1
They have improved on the model as the gush of water is now coming from *under* the rim of the contraption. Ours had a big water tank and a chain to yank it open. The water would fall from about shoulder height and be [somewhat] guided by a pipe that had the purpose of irrigating all *around* your feet. It didn't always work that way. That is the only time mom would cuss!
 
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Ever since we were forced into lockdown and people began hoarding TP I started using old wash cloths to wipe and only use TP for solid waste. I've saved a lot of money and don't need to stress over empty shelves or limits on how many packages of TP they will sell us. Win win I say and I'll never go back to the old way. Just rinse the cloth until it needs cleaning then start on another.
 
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Cécile Stelzer Johnson wrote:In one of the many lodgings I lived in, in France, we had "Turkish-style" toilets: a ceramic appliance with a hole [about 6" diameter", I would say] in the center of a square with 2 elevated pads on each side on each side to stand/ crouch and do your business. Because the hole was plenty big, and TP was expensive, dad would cut/ tear regular newspapers. The ink must have been better than nowadays because we didn't get a black bum from it. [chuckles]
The closest thing I found is still being sold on Amazon for -can you believe it- $128.80:
https://www.amazon.com/GladyStore-Squatting-Household-Defecation-Deodorant/dp/B08GQ3274T/ref=asc_df_B08GQ3274T/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=475826852804&hvpos=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=7558938832881106722&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9019203&hvtargid=pla-1167851657927&psc=1
They have improved on the model as the gush of water is now coming from *under* the rim of the contraption. Ours had a big water tank and a chain to yank it open. The water would fall from about shoulder height and be [somewhat] guided by a pipe that had the purpose of irrigating all *around* your feet. It didn't always work that way. That is the only time mom would cuss!




Thank you for sharing this. My first experience of this style of toilet was on a tour of a monastery in Taiwan decades ago. I don’t remember it having a flusher. I’ve seen something similar with a flusher at airport restrooms in Japan. But I’ve never seen them this “modern”.

Does it also wash so you don’t need toilet paper? Or is the water only for flushing to clean it?







 
Cécile Stelzer Johnson
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Chuckles. No; it only flushes the waste, not your bum. That would require a particularly good aim unless you wanted to wash your clothes too. [Although if the Turkish hole in the floor is poorly designed, as in the French example I gave, you  could *also* get a free footbath].
Emperor Vespasian created the first public latrines. [They are necessary in large towns like Rome where men will not have the patience to get home before they relieve themselves sometimes.]
It was, essentially a "weeping wall" we called "pissoir" [No translation necessary, I presume] on the outside of a public building and set behind a privacy wall. The water would run continuously and men could urinate against the wall. [Yeah: another thing that was designed by men, for men and not useful to women in the least!].
Incidentally, the French were publicly and internationally shamed for so long over their public restrooms that stank and the stinginess of "Madame Pipi" [who handed you only an amount of paper commensurate with your tip]. So they finally designed a "State of the Art" cubicle [in the late 60s] where a man or a woman could have privacy to tend to their needs. [It was your comment that inclined me to speak of this].
You put a coin in the door to open it. Yep, they are *paying* public toilets. Certain things will never change, but now, the paper is free! [Unfortunately-or fortunately- Madame Pipi lost her job]. As you shut the door, inspiring water starts running gently in the washbasin [for inspiration and to clean your hands afterwards]. You also get soothing, relaxing elevator music as encouragement.
You turn to look at the contraption... But wait!? all that is ... is a bowl... without 'exit'. You hesitate. Then with your needs ever pressing and the fact that you've paid your dues...You squat [A ring to sit on is not hygienic] and do what you came to do, then wipe and toss the paper in the bowl, wash your hands and exit. SHUT THE DOOR! You may want to hang around to make sure that *something* happens [but you have to shut the door locked for the full treatment]. You would be mortified if another customer came and saw your poop there.
You are soon rewarded: A thunderous noise tells you that the bowl pivoted and is now upside down. A high pressure pump from below the floor is cleaning the bowl with a high pressure stream of water, [maybe a bit of bleach too?]
Mission accomplished.
As I join this link for your enjoyment, I see that they are now FREE!. Just push a button to enter! What will we think of next!                   https://toilet-guru.com/france.php
 
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There must be another thread somewhere on the forum about this same subject. In that one I found out about 'pee rags' (here they are called 'family cloth', but it's about the same). And then I made a pile of them using old towels. That was a few years ago. I still use them and am glad with this system. I use them (as the name 'pee rags' says) for pee only. For poop I still use t.p., so that is there for guests too (they never understand why those rags are there).
 
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Inge Leonora-den Ouden wrote:There must be another thread somewhere on the forum about this same subject. In that one I found out about 'pee rags' (here they are called 'family cloth', but it's about the same). And then I made a pile of them using old towels. That was a few years ago. I still use them and am glad with this system. I use them (as the name 'pee rags' says) for pee only. For poop I still use t.p., so that is there for guests too (they never understand why those rags are there).


There is!
https://permies.com/t/137885/ungarbage/finally-Toilet-cloth

I'm still using them most of the time. I made a goal in Jan to see how long I could go on one roll of toilet paper with night time and poop use only. It's about three weeks and that has continued. So, my paper use has decreased a lot, I feel better about my septic tank health and it's lovely not to worry about tp residue from wiping. Generally, I'm a fan of my toilet cloths / pee rags and miss them when I'm away from home.
 
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The Wheaton Eco Scale
https://permies.com/t/scale
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