Washable toilet paper: pee wipes as a sustainable alternative…

You can’t do without toilet paper – or can you? More and more people are now voluntarily giving up disposable cellulose wipes. They are opting for reusable solutions, such as washable toilet paper – also known as “pee wipes”.

Washable toilet paper as an environmentally friendly alternative

Washable toilet paper is the trend par excellence on numerous DIY blogs. The cloth rags are called “tinkle towels”. However, they are also intended for “big business”.

The main reason behind this is the desire for greater sustainability. Because the consumption of toilet paper is enormous. Every American uses an average of 134 rolls per year. That’s around 12 kilograms of high-quality paper that disappears into the toilet forever. A cloth wipe, on the other hand, can be used several times.

The advantages of pee wipes

What hardly anyone knows is that around 800 grams of CO₂ and 10 liters of water are used to produce 1 kilogram of toilet paper. The balance is slightly better with recycled paper. But this also has to be processed and transported. On the other hand, you can simply use old comforter covers or other soft fabric remnants for the pee pads.

Hygiene is also an important aspect for some users. The pee wipes can be used wet, which means they clean the genital area better.

Another plus: it couldn’t be softer! People with sensitive skin or haemorrhoids are particularly enthusiastic about the cloth wipe idea.

The disadvantages of washable toilet paper

But there are also reservations about the eco-trend. Kelly Reynolds, a health expert from the University of Arizona (USA), sees the risk of cross-contamination. During storage, strict care must be taken to ensure that no germs spread in the bathroom. And when washing, a sufficiently high temperature and a detergent containing bleach are necessary. So the pee wipes are definitely more work. Just like cloth diapers, which have been experiencing a renaissance among many parents of babies for years.

In the end, it’s a question of personal choice as to how much comfort you want to sacrifice for the sake of the environment and a fluffy, clean feeling. A look at other cultures shows that toilet hygiene is basically possible without paper towels: In India, Malaysia and the Arab world, the use of toilet paper is largely uncommon. So perhaps we can remain a little more relaxed when the next toilet paper crisis occurs.