What are Bidets?

Zero Waste Bathroom, Bidet

Bidet? Don’t mind if I bidoo!

Yes, yes – I stole that line from Bob’s Burgers. It kills me every time I say it.

Eco Bidets recently sent me one of their gorgeous handheld bidets to try and honestly, I’m in love.

I remember the first time I used a bidet. I was at a gas station in the middle of nowhere. I think in Nebraska somewhere. We had stopped to take a bathroom break and get something to eat since we’d already been driving for what seemed like an eternity – ok it had only been 2 hours but still.

I proceeded to pass the most obscure items that shouldn’t probably be sold in a gas station but whatever, no judgment. If someone wants to buy a mattress, or a lifesize doll, or a puppet, sure why not?

Anyway, I got into the bathroom area and was first excited to see that every stall had their own room. This should be standard everywhere I say! I sat down and noticed that “Holy Crap, the seats are heated.” Weird for a middle-of-nowhere gas station but I’m not complaining. But then I also noticed that wasn’t the only surprise. This toilet had a full bidet system. Wash, dry, the whole bum car wash experience.

Ugh, I was nervous. Why was I nervous about using a flipping bidet? I knew I would regret it if I didn’t use it so I sat there for probably 5 minutes encouraging myself to take a leap of faith.

And I did.

Seriously, the heavens opened up. Life. Changing.

Ok, ok, I might be exaggerating a bit but come on. Bidets are awesome! Once I started using one, I can’t imagine going back to just TP. Just saying. I have one attached to every toilet in my house with no shame what so ever.

What are Bidets?

Simply, bidets are toilet attachments that connect to your water line to clean your bum. Instead of wiping with toilet paper, you wash. Which if you think about it, makes a little more sense considering what we are removing – if you know what I mean.

Types

There are a few different types of bidets that you’ll see floating around the web-o-sphere. What you choose solely depends on the kind of experience you want.

Stand Alone Bidet Basin

A standalone basin is about equivalent size to your toilet. Quite expensive and it my opinion, a little over the top. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have room in my tiny bathroom for another toilet sized fixture.

Bidet Seat

These seats attach to your toilet water system and give you many options for butt cleanliness such as heated water, an array water jets, and possibly a heated seat. This was my experience from the above story. I’m telling you this thing is pretty great.

Bidet Sprayer

Honestly though, if I had to choose, this would be my go-to as a mom. This thing is a workhorse and all-in-all a perfect multi-tasking tool for so many things.

Not only does it do a great job at cleaning you (and for certain parts of the month it’s a lifesaver), it also works great for dirty cloth diapers! I use the sprayer to remove the “bits” off of my son’s cloth diapers so that when I throw them into the wash they aren’t absolutely gross. And not to mention, the sprayer eliminates the need to dunk the diaper like a filthy tea bag. Ugh..nasty. The one I’m currently using is from EcoBidets and I love it. If you get this one, you’ll thank me later, I promise.

Bidet Attachment

Bidet attachments attach to our toilet seat. They connect to your water system and are operated by a button on the side. Very basic so probably won’t have the air dryer or heated water capabilities. Of course, there could be an option out there.

But why use a bidet?

I know you’ve probably heard this comment before but really think about it. When we get waste on ourselves should we just wipe it off? Why wouldn’t cleaning ourselves be a preferred choice? I know for a fact if any of you get poo on your hands you’re scrubbing them with soap and water for at least 5 minutes. Shouldn’t we treat our butts the same way?

Properly cleaning ourselves also reduces our risks for infections caused by excrement and bacteria. Not a very appealing topic but it’s obvious.

Resources

Also, let’s consider the environment. We use a lot of TP. “The United States spends more than $6 billion a year on toilet tissue — more than any other nation in the world. Americans, on average, use 57 squares a day and 50 pounds a year.” This demand is causing massive deforestation and several other not-so-great affects just so we can wipe our asses with paper.

Many have the question of how a bidet could be any more environmentally conscious when it requires the use of water during use. It is a valid point but let’s break down the resource usage of both toilet paper and a bidet.

Making a roll of toilet paper uses 1.5 pounds of wood, 37 gallons of water and 1.3 KWh of of electricity. There’s a lot that goes into producing and re-producing toilet paper. And here I’m only referring to virgin toilet paper which makes up most our our market. (That’s for another post)

As for a bidet – that doesn’t have to be continually replaced, it uses a fraction of the water used to make virgin pulp. It may seem counterintuitive but when comparing apples to apples, bidets use considerably less.

So, yes I just spent about 5 minutes or so talking about my bathroom habits and no I’m not saying you all should stop using toilet paper and wipe with moss. I’m merely showing you another perspective on something we’ve normalized for decades. My question to you is, “Is it so normal?” Maybe you should give a bidet a try?

If you would like more information about recycled toilet paper, check out Who Gives A Crap!

One thought on “What are Bidets?

  1. We just started using a bidet attachment and LOVE it, except for the water temp (very cold, so not great in the middle of the night!) I’ve definitely noticed that we already use less TP, and it’s great during my period for getting a little cleaner.

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