If you’re like me, you are always looking for ways to save money. I want to be able to spend money on doing things my family loves, like camping, playing sports and making art. I’ve recently made a major decision for my family that will help us save some money. We spend roughly $280.00 on this ONE item every year! If I could even half that cost, we could use that money for a camping trip or to pay for my son’s baseball. Today I’m going to show you how to do just that.
According to Kimberly-Clark, the maker of Charmin, “…the average person uses 57 sheets of toilet paper per day.” Chuck Jaffe, a columnist on marketwatch.com, shows how we can easily use this information to estimate the cost of toilet paper. He writes, “A typical brand’s 12-pack retails for $6.99 and has 352 sheets per roll, meaning that it will last a family of four about 18 days. That means that family needs to buy a 12-pack 21 times per year, putting the annual toilet tissue costs at just under $150.”
We spend roughly $280.00 on toilet paper. Isn’t that just sad and ridiculous?! One reason that cost is so high is that we have 5 people in our family. The other reason that cost is so high is that I insist on buying Charmin. Anything less is just unacceptable. We’ve tried other brands, but they always rip and/or soak through. It might be just me, but I don’t want to take a dump in my 21st-century toilet only to have poop and urine on my hands! Shouldn’t we be past that as a civilization?
We could all follow Sheryl Crow’s advice and use only one sheet of toilet tissue per bathroom visit, but that seems impossible to me. How do you clean yourself adequately with only one sheet?! So it dawned on me, there is only one clear way to solve both the issue of spending too much on toilet paper and having toilet paper that doesn’t hold up: cloth wipes. Cloth wipes are reusable; you just wash them in your washing machine, dry them in your dryer, and put them back in the bathroom for repeated use! We have started using cloth wipes, and I will never go back.
Here are the main reasons to switch to cloth wipes (reusable toilet paper):
- You could save your family up to $150 per year by using cloth wipes! Using cloth wipes does have some costs associated with it. Obviously you will have to buy cloth wipes (or the materials to make your own cloth wipes), but this is a one-time investment. In addition, you need to factor in the cost of laundry detergent. If you buy detergent, plan on spending around $50 per year. If you make your own, plan on spending around $20 per year. Last, consider the cost of water and electricity used to wash/dry the wipes. This would cost you around $100 per year if you wash the wipes every 3 days.
- Cloth wipes are durable, reducing the risk of bodily fluids soaking through to your hands. We’ve found that one washcloth-sized wipe is usually adequate for both urine and poop. We use a dry wipe for urine, but get it slightly damp in the sink for poop.
- Using cloth wipes is easier on the environment than disposable toilet paper. Think back to how much toilet paper Kimberly-Clark said the average person uses every day: 57 sheets! In an article about the impact of toilet paper on the environment, Mandy Adwell states, “With Americans using an average of 7 billion rolls of toilet paper a year, and a typical tree provides about 1,000 rolls of toilet paper, we’re using 7 million trees just to wipe our butts every year.” Isn’t that crazy?!
So there you have it- all the reasons my family decided to switch to cloth wipes instead of toilet paper! (If you are visiting my house any time soon , don’t worry, we will have disposable toilet paper on hand for you to use.) 🙂 We are so happy about our decision and I hope that many of my readers will join us in wiping our butts the smart way!
April Fools, everyone!
We have not really switched to cloth wipes, but I couldn’t help but play a little trick on all of you. 😉
If you thought this cloth wipe thing was a great idea, there are many resources out there to help you get started. Like this one from Angela at frugallivingnw.com. If you think you can handle touching everyone in your household’s poop, more power to you!