Right, the bathroom police have arrived, and they’re laying down the law. It’s time to assemble all regular offenders and enforce some bathroom basics.
The idea here is not to reduce toddlers to tears but to help raise awareness, raise the bar and hey, while we’re at it, raise the toilet seat.
We’re sure you will agree that this list includes more that just one of your pet peeves, which could all do with some course correction. These tips may not help you win the entire war, but you may gain some ground in the process. If nothing else, know you’re not alone with the bathroom blues.
These gentle reminders may help make an improvement and save your sanity.
1. Bedroom’s en-suite is off limits
If circumstances allow, your offspring should have their own bathroom. The idea is to create a zone in your own bathroom where you can escape and recharge, without the stress of navigating a mess.
Even if the kids’ bathroom is a disaster area, at least you don’t have to see it all the time. You’ll find some tips below on how to make cleaning up easier for you and the kids. That way, if the spare bathroom is also the guest bathroom, you’ll be able to do a flash clean in seconds and easily have it presentable when visitors arrive.
2. Washing goes IN the wash basket
Not next to it, not behind it, and not on top of it. This rule applies to every member of the family and every single article of clothing, including stray socks. Every time!
In larger houses, a laundry basket in each bathroom is a good idea for convenience.
3. Wipe up spilled toothpaste
Next, we have the toothpaste. First and foremost, always put the cap back on.
Second: toothpaste dries to a near impossible-to-remove cement. Thus the reason it can be used as a home hack to seal cracks. If a sizable blob finds itself to the basin, tap, or floor wipe it up with a piece of toilet paper to avoid it drying into a hard-as-concrete piece of frustration.
4. Use towel rails provided
Now comes the family education portion of this post: Why put the towel on the rail, when there is ample floor space available, right? Wrong. Towel rails keep towels off the floor, so they stay clean for longer, and they save avoid having to do an extra load of washing. Towel rails are what separate us from the animals. Well not exactly, but sort of.
Good advice: save the white towels for your own bathroom, or for when the kids leave home. Darker towels will hide dirt and marks from half washed hands, and save them having to be laundered after just one use.
5. Utilize storage baskets and bathroom vanities
Do you know what’s wonderful about bathroom storage? EVERYTHING! Storage allows you to hide a multitude of bathroom items that clutter up the space. From laundry, cleaning products and bath time toys, if they have a place to go, then a mess is easy and effortless to hide.
Also having a child safe cleaning detergent, gloves and a cloth readily available in the bathroom will make cleanup infinitely easier. Baby wipes are the best home hack to ever be invented, so always have a packet on hand. A quick wipe will clean up accidents in moments.
6. Aim & flush
People would have you believe that this step was covered in Potty Training 101. But no, this is not the case. Accidents happen, but miss and runs are not okay. In a home blessed with boys, here’s the brief. If you miss, clean it up.
Hopefully all the adults in the house have this point covered, but for kids with bigger business to attend to, remember to flush. This point may need to be repeated a few hundred times, but will hopefully have taken root before they leave home.
As for the toilet seat up/down saga, this does not make its appearance here. In my humble opinion, boys need to lift the toilet seat as many times as girls need to put it back down. The verdict, adjust accordingly.
7. Replace the toilet paper
Sitting down to use the toilet and finding you’re out of paper is not a good surprise. If you use the last piece of loo paper, or even the 6th last square on the roll, then replace it. Or, leave a spare roll on the toilet tank. The bathroom fairy ensures there is a backup supply available, and replacing the roll is the kind and considerate thing to do.
Step two of the process is more advanced, but oh, in the world of obsessive tendencies, it would be a wonderful milestone to achieve.
Hang the toilet paper the right way around. The sheet of paper should roll over the top towards you, not over the back of the roll and against the wall. And with that achieved, your day will get that much brighter.
8. Use the bath mat
In a family home with kids, surprisingly large amounts of water make it outside the tub during bath time. The solution… a bath mat. Ready and waiting, so use it.
Dripping is not the problem, it comes with the bath time territory. But, let’s avoid groin sprains from those awkward jerking motions, that save us from a near fatal slip. Bath mats are designed for this very purpose.
9. Open a window
For the love of all things pleasant, open a window. When you’re done with your business, it’s a simple step to take to avoid unnecessary pollutants to remain in the bathroom and make its way into other areas.
Fact: rooms that are not ventilated can be 5 times more polluted that outside air. Why choose to expose the rest of the family to any of that?
10. Clean away hair & bath rings
In this department, moms and daughters have to own up to being the biggest culprits. We generally have the longest hair and it inevitably collects in the drain. After a bath or shower, a quick grab with toilet paper around the drain will mean no unpleasant build up.
As for dad, ladies love a bearded man, but the beard should ideally be on his face, not the tiles, sink and soap.
And finally, there’s the circle of shame. 10 seconds is all you need to remove the evidence from the side of the bath. To avoid this step altogether, bubble bath does the trick by preventing a ring from forming.
We would all have a happy family over one that’s terrified to step out of line, so the goal here is not to enforce a zero tolerance policy. If everyone does their part cleanup is a lot easier, and even when you have to step in to clean properly, there will be a little less to do.