10 Cheeky Toilet Paper Facts You May or May Not Know.
In these recent times of panic buying and toilet roll shortages I thought it would be apt to dig up some fun facts about toilet paper, and lo and behold I found some! Here are my top 10 fun toilet paper facts, so lift the lid, sit back and enjoy…
A Bit of History
- The first toilet paper use was recorded during the Tang Dynasty in China. It was later, during 1391 that the first modern toilet roll was created for Emperor Ming and his family. The paper was formed in 2ft by 3ft sheets, or family-size, if you will.
- Before toilet paper, as we know it, became popular, folks would use leaves, grass, straw, corncobs or wool. In the middle east business was carried out while squatting over the side of a river and the left hand was used to swill away (hence in India it is still considered offensive to eat or pass food with your left hand). The Romans favoured a sponge on a stick, while the Japanese opted for just the stick. European Royalty used an assortment of washable fabrics and even lace, probably administered by a young serving lad or ‘Master of the Stool’. Lucky chap.
- It was in 1935 that the first guaranteed splinter-free paper was released. Ouch.
Toilet Paper Competitions
- National Toilet Paper Day is on 26 August (who knew?). On this day in 2011, Charmin produced the world’s largest, record-breaking roll coming in at a whopping 8ft high with a 9ft diameter. It contained over 1,000,000 sq ft of paper, the equivalent of 95,000 rolls, which is nothing to be sniffed at. It would certainly keep most of us going through lockdown!
- Each year, Charmin holds a competition to design Wedding Dresses made from toilet paper, with a prize of $2000. The paper can be moulded into Wedding dresses and ball gowns made from toilet paper are the ideal disposable/recyclable outfit, just don’t go out in the rain without an umbrella.
- 70-75% of the world do not use toilet paper. Either due to cost, availability, their culture or their plumbing systems. Many opt for the more hygienic option of a bidet, especially popular in Europe and Japan.
- There is however toilet paper on the International Space Station. Paper is used in space, compacted and then brought back down to Earth for disposal. Well that seems to have cleared that up.
- According to a poll, when researchers asked what essential goods people would choose to take to a desert island, 49% of people said toilet rolls over food. But surely if there’s no food….?
- In 1973 Johnny Carson made a joke on the Tonight Show about a shortage of toilet rolls. The US audience believed him and raced to the shops to stock up causing mass panic buying. It took shops 3 weeks to catch up on their supplies. Sound familiar?
- The most expensive toilet paper is made by Portuguese company, Renova. This 3 ply luxury roll, is wider than usual, is more absorbent and is perfumed for that extra extravagance. With a choice of bright colours including red, fuschia and neon green it wipes the derrieres of the rich and famous such as Beyonce and the Kardashians. They say money can’t buy you happiness but it can certainly buy you a super-duper toilet roll.