3/14/20 update, during the Coronavirus outbreak the price on my bidet has more than doubled; here is a similar option.
I have not tested the one above, but assume it will work well as it looks to be the most similar and has the ‘Amazon choice’ tag. My favorite one should cost no more than $35 and is currently $75.
The Southeast Asian Bidet; my favorite.
That’s right! I installed a butt sprayer on my toilet. I never really got into bidets in Europe- they were too complicated and I never actually thought they were necessary. Then I went to SE Asia. There they are more of a kitchen sink sprayer than a European style ‘bidet’. This was the first time I’d seen a sprayer hanging on the back of a toilet tank. At first it was intersting, and then I learned it was a necessity in Asia. It took a little bit of getting used to… but to be honest- other than Vietnamese coffee, it’s the one thing I missed the most! You don’t know you need it until you don’t have it anymore. It is a GAME CHANGER. I wish I would’ve installed mine sooner! Not only is it super sustainable, it’s also much cleaner. Before you go searching the internet for one… click here to get mine.
switch single-use paper for a better clean.
Again, I wasn’t really sure why I saw a kitchen sprayer on a toilet. I hadn’t seen this until I was in more rural parts of the countries I was staying in. I found out majority of SE Asia should have had them- the plumbing in this region of the world is not capable of handling paper waste caused from toilet paper. The places that didn’t have it actually requested travelers to use the trash cans beside the toilet to dispose of used toilet paper. This bum gun was a way to properly ‘wipe’ yourself BEFORE you dried with the paper counterpart- meaning you use MUCH less. Genius!
…ok, again it wasn’t that quick. Once I realized I wasn’t supposed to be flushing toilet paper, I was crossing my fingers that bathrooms would have one of these sprayers. Luckily, most of them did!! So, after spending more than 4 months praying for the spraying I became hooked. It’s hard to switch back to just toilet paper once you know how much cleaner you feel after using a bidet. I prefer the sprayer because, as weird as this sounds, you can properly aim the water. I feel like with the European style bidets this is more challenging- the bum gun gives the user more control.
What’s taking so long?
Ha! Well it takes less than 10 minutes to actually install the sprayer but I wasn’t fully settled anywhere- I’m still not. When I first arrived back to the States (and plumbing that could handle toilet paper) I wasn’t finished traveling. I still had more than a month of traveling here. Once I was more ‘settled’ in my temporary home and implementing other sustainable practices I could not stop thinking about how much waste I was creating… in the bathroom. I knew in my next apartment I’d have a bidet. As I searched for a new career the holidays started rolling around. And I knew it was the perfect gift to bring to a White Elephant gift exchange Christmas Party.
If no one wanted it, it would at least be hilarious. And it was! Everyone thought it was so funny… and in the end, I got to steal it. I was hoping this would happen- and even if I didn’t end up with it, at least someone else would introduce a sustainable solution to their bathroom waste. Still, I was in the final stages of an interview and was packing some of my things to take with me across the country. It was not time to install it just yet. In the end, I didn’t get the job and now I have a butt sprayer in Maryland. If only I installed it sooner! I promise you will love it if you just try it, give it a week. Pro Tip: go easy on the handle until you know the pressure. =)
No more rawness during bouts of food poisoning type situations.
I’ve also switched to Scott’s Brand Forest Stewardship Council sustainable toilet paper. They are currently providing $4million to support WWF until May 31, 2020. It is packaged with paper- no plastic, and is 100% recyclable and safer for septic tanks. I don’t have a septic tank but for those who do- this might matter. There are many ‘better’ toilet paper options out there than what I was previously using. So far, I like this one, I also tried Seventh Generation TP. Before the switch I was married to Charmin Ultra Strong. If you are not quite ready for a bidet, please look into switching toilet paper. The Scott one I use is made of paper from responsibly managed forests around the globe. I’d also recommend looking for ones made of bamboo. Bamboo easily regenerates itself and uses little water to grow- a much better alternative to tree grown paper options.
What else does that gun do?
People also use the bum gun if they use cloth diapers, so for you sustainable mom’s or soon to be mom’s, this can be your excuse! I also think it will be a great way to clean menstrual cups. Lastly, it makes cleaning your toilet much easier.