Toilet Paper vs Bidets - Which Is Greener?

Toilet Paper vs Bidets - Which Is Greener?

You might know bidets as those squirty accessories you find in toilets mostly in Europe. They’re now common in Japan and are increasing by numbers in Australia as well. A bidet is a straightforward device. It utilizes a jet of water and provides a sanitary alternative to toilet tissue. 

This device comprises a faucet and a basin. The mechanics are simple. All bidets use the power of water to quickly and effectively clean your skin, similar to how a shower removes perspiration after a workout. Most importantly, it doesn't place a strain on the environment as toilet paper does. 

The Problem with Toilet Tissue 

Toilet paper has become a serious problem not only in Australia but throughout the world, particularly during the epidemic. Overconsumption of toilet paper has caused deforestation all over the world. Trees are being cut down for the pulp. It’s upsetting the balance of soil nutrients and more.

Animals are being displaced. And did you know it takes more water to make toilet paper than bidets? One roll of toilet paper uses up to six gallons of water during the manufacturing process. On the other hand, bidets use almost 80 per cent less water than three sheets of toilet tissue. So you can see which alternative wastes more water.

To fight these issues while also considering style and comfort, Australia, like other developed countries such as the United States and the United Kingdom, has begun to promote the use of bidets rather than multi-ply toilet paper.

Moreover, certain bidets are built to consume less water than usual. So modern-day bidets are more cautious than the users are. A bidet uses water for cleaning purposes only. Now is it an economical choice? Let’s find out. 

The Cost of Bidets 

An entry-level bidet in Australia usually costs around $200. You can attach it to your bathroom seat. However, high-end models cost more. These designs are luxurious. So of course they cost more—a high-end bidet can cost anywhere from $600 to $4000. 

There are reputable bidet shops all across Australia these days, including Sydney, Perth, Melbourne, and Brisbane. They not only sell bidets but also offer installation services. For pricing and components installation information, it's best to visit a shop in person, but you may also look at Australia based internet retailers. After that, the bidet shop may provide you with a reasonable estimate based on your budget, allowing you to make an informed selection so you can place an order.

Some might say bidets are an unnecessary luxury. However, once you use it, there’s no turning back. Once you start comparing the two, you’ll notice toilet paper is more expensive than bidets. 

One bidet can last you a long time if you maintain it properly. Toilet paper rolls need to be replaced regularly. In the long run, toilet tissue is simply not economical. Therefore, it’s worth investing in a bidet now rather than later. 

The Battle of Hygiene 

The main question is, which cleans better? Toilet paper physically removes the waste from your skin. Bidets use water to cleanse them. Toilet paper does a better job in theory, especially in efficacy. However, it can irritate your skin. 

People claim bidet wastewater, but that’s not the case. Toilet paper consumes more water and wastes trees. In terms of cleaning, bidets are a clear winner. It’s healthier for your body as you aren’t using chemicals to clean. 

It boils down to personal hygiene. Toilet paper is the chosen alternative for some, while bidets are for others. The constant wiping back and forth makes people opt out of toilet paper. 

Bidets are more hygienic because they clean better. Water is always the best alternative to tiny sheets of paper. There’s no risking yourself by using dirty tissues as well. Also, you won’t have to worry about accidentally handling your excrete. 

How do Bidets Work?‍

Bidets come in a wide range of styles. Some are low-tech. Others are pretty futuristic. You’ll find heated seats, multiple nozzles, and various drying settings. You can even find bidets that make background sounds so you can do your business in peace.

Designers are getting creative, though. For example, there are some chic French-style fountains next to the restroom. In addition, you’ll find portable bidets that you can fill with water and use on the go. Nonetheless, they serve the same purpose—cleaning you with a targeted jet of water. 

Which is Greener? 

Neither bidets nor toilet paper is carbon-free. Some bidet users dry off with paper towels for added measure. The water they’re using must be filtered and treated. The futuristic bidets take electricity to warm up. 

However, bidets aren’t causing deforestation. They’re not as energy-intensive as towel papers are. Moreover, the manufacturing process generates a lot of pollution. There’s chlorine bleaching involved too. That’s why it’s white!

Installing a bidet is a more environmentally friendly choice than toilet paper. However, every household and its inhabitants are different. If you don’t want to give up toilet paper, you can seek more eco-friendly options

The real question is, is there an eco-friendly alternative to toilet paper? Yes, there is. An increasing number of brands in Australia and Japan are investing in recycled toilet paper. Some even sell bamboo-based rolls with beautiful packaging. You can repurpose it into a gift wrap!

Other companies are repurposing inevitable agricultural by-products. For example, did you know leftover wheat straw could make eco-friendly toilet paper? Who knew! Compared to utilizing virgin tree fibre, these are great alternatives! 

However, can you fathom how much virgin forest fibre goes into making these tissues? Studies claim that reducing the production by half can save millions of metric tons of pulp each year. In addition, the trees that are being cut down will take thousands of years to grow back. 

Moreover, these recycled toilet paper emit significantly lower carbon emissions. One-third of it, to be specific. It also takes less water to produce these tissues compared to new ones. Imagine how much water can be saved!

In addition, pulp mills emit an insurmountable amount of greenhouse gasses. Deforestation is only the tip of the iceberg. There are emissions caused by the pulp mills and manufacturing factories too. 

Reducing your carbon footprint is crucial to making the future more inhabitable. Bidets are the winner in this regard. For those aspiring to lead a more sustainable life, it’s time to act up!

The Taboo with Bidets 

Toilet paper has been a bathroom staple for years. You can tell it’s a favourite family, considering how soon it ran off the shelves during the pandemic. Toilet paper, unfortunately, comes with a lot of detrimental environmental effects. 

Bidets reduce your carbon footprint by a long margin. Spraying water to clean is an age-old practice. Yet, it continues to be the ideal choice of personal hygiene in several parts of the world. So let’s look at a scenario to assess what works better. 

You chose to take a walk in the park barefoot. Weird, right? It gets worse. Now you’ve stepped on dog poop. What would you do? Use napkins to wipe it off? Of course not! You’d wash it with water. Similarly, people opt for bidets. It’s merely a reasonable choice! 

People in Europe, South America, the Middle East, and Asia agree. So why it’s taking time for bidets to become popular in America, Australia and other developed countries? What’s the problem? Let’s dispel the myths. 

Fun fact: Did you know bidet means pony in French? 

All right, let’s get to the point. Bidets first appeared around the 1700s in France. However, using water for cleaning has been there for centuries before that. People in the Middle East and South Asia opted to use lotus or bamboo leaves. 

Here’s how bidets got a bad name...

People would scoop out the water with their hands to wash first. It was only the upper class who did this. However, by the 19th century, indoor plumbing enabled others to get it. It spread across Europe but didn’t reach America. 

Americans first came across them in World War II in European brothels. They began to associate bidets with them, which soon got a bad name. People who tried to introduce it to the system couldn’t beat the stigma. 

On the other, Japan took it up a notch. They introduced electric bidets. Sadly, bathrooms in the United States can’t accommodate bidets. There’s simply no space for it. Moreover, the additional plumbing is quite costly.

In the end, it comes down to habit. People grew up using toilet paper. They simply don’t know any other way to stay clean. So you might ask, why don’t people use wet wipes then? Doesn’t it do the same thing? Well, not really. 

Constantly using wet wipes to clean your skin can irritate it. It might even lead to rashes. Moreover, the residue could be left behind. You’re smearing the residue with paper. It’s just not done. Wet wipes can also lead to sewer damage. 

So opt for better and cleaner options. Bidets help with cleanliness and lead to lower possibilities of infections and rashes. Give bidets a chance. It’s just cleaning yourself without jumping into the shower!

Final thoughts

Toilet papers come with a plethora of environmental concerns. For example, dry paper is harvesting trees for virgin pulp, draining the resources. Nonetheless, some brands are addressing this and providing more eco-friendly options. 

Just pay attention to their manufacturing process. Are the companies really what they claim to be? Or is it merely a marketing ploy? Always do your research before making your final investment! Even recycled tissues use bleach, which is just as harmful as regular toilet paper. 

Bidets, on the other hand, are an excellent alternative. It’s not entirely green. No product truly is. However, it leaves a lower carbon footprint than toilet paper by a large margin. They don’t utilize chemical additives and can be recycled. Once installed, they can go a long way. 

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