LIFE || Public Toilet Etiquette


I know it’s not particularly “ladylike” to talk about bodily functions or calls of natures (but then again I’ve never claimed to be Lady freaking Mary) but there is one part of my day which never fails to make me irate and fire off a flurry of tweets or unload a barrage of uncensored ranting at my work colleagues about, and thats the state of the “ladies” public toilets. I say “ladies” toilets but the state in which some members of the female race leave public restrooms. Public toilets are difficult enough to navigate what with the squatting/hovering over the seat with your handbag hanging round your neck so it doesn’t get swiped from underneath the toilet door/sits in a puddle of toilet water leakage. Sometimes I feel as though I want to carry around a She-Wee or keep my legs firmly crossed until I’m in the safety of my own bleached toilet bowl with a full roll of toilet paper and the guarantee of no foreign objects loitering on the toilet seat/around that area.

I wanted to do a bit of a “public toilet etiquette” for those who aren’t quite as well up on how to act like a sanitary human being when entering these public areas, because most can’t.


The saying “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” should be kept in mind when making a public toilet stop.  It doesn’t take too much effort to ensure that whatever leaves your body makes its way into the recepticle which is specially provided.  This means no splashbacks on the toilet seat or soiling of the toilet bowl – would you really like to lower your butt cheeks onto a patch of somebody elses urine?  Well nobody else wants to do that either.  Same goes for sanitary products.  They’re not particularly pleasent items to extract, thats a given, but the last thing I want to see on the floor of my cubicle is a very much used tampon.  It’s gross.


Flush.  If one flush doesn’t clear it all, flush again.  Simple.

Entering a public toilet should be known as “quiet time”.  Who want’s to be having conversations or making small talk whilst you’re trying to go about your business?  The last thing you want to be doing is chatting about the weather with a complete stranger or the lady who sits in the next office.  Especially if like me you have a shy bladder and the presence of another human in the toilet vicinity renders you unable to pee.

Pick your cubicle wisely. You know when you’re on an empty public transport and some wise guy/gal decides to sit on the seat next to you/infront of you? Don’t be the person who does that in a public toilet. There’s another 5 empty cubicles and you choose to go in the cubicle directly next to another person? You’re a weirdo.

Bodily noises are not okay in public toilets, unless you’re pulling an Elvis Presley. Girls fart. We pass wind we also belch, sometimes we pass wind when we’re sat on the pan. This is fine when you’re in the comfort of your own home with no one but your dog for judgement (and judge he does) but when other people are witness to that sound you’re over stepping the line.

Okay okay, you ate a dodgy prawn or you have a stomach bug and you simply have to “go” regardless of noise, but there’s a way to deal with it. Firstly, go armed with some kind of deodoriser. Secondly, do your business and GTFO. Do you really want to come eye to eye with someone who’s heard you explode your insides onto porcelain? Didn’t think so. Wait for the other person in the toilets to leave before you make your deodorising exit or make a run for it when you hear the begin to pee. You have roughly 45 seconds to wash your hands and leave without them knowing it was you.

When you’re bursting for the loo the moment your butt touches the toilet seat can be heavenly, I’d even describe it as an orgasmic experience (we’ve all been there, right?). Still, that doesn’t give you an excuse to go all Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally with the ooh’s and the aah’s – it sounds weird and highly inappropriate. Expect a few raps on the door.


….don’t even get me started on men’s loos.  I just can’t get my head around that whole “getting out your crown jewels infront of other men at a urinal”.

  • oh my god, this had me laughing out loud!! I LOATHE using public toilets for all the reasons you mention. Especially wet toilet seats – seriously ladies – COME ON!! I was having a convo about a similar thing just last week. I went to work for my local newspaper and bearing in mind, the woman who worked in that office were all supposed to be intelligent, highly respected (< it was back when people didn't hate journos) career women, the toilets were vile. So bad (someone had a bit of a compulsion, I won't share the details with you as it's vomit inducing) that a memo was sent around the office asking them to stop. Considering people moan at men for their loo habits, I reckon their bogs are a damn site cleaner!

  • Oh my god! I thought I was in a minority with my public toilet issues but I’m glad I’m not alone I definitely feel like Michael jackson though doing a hover every time I have to pee in public.

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