Periodically, we all have to answer the call of nature, as the euphemism goes. The smallest room in the house (and, hopefully, it is the smallest room and the loo isn’t located in the bathroom, giving you an unpleasant view and people hammering on the door while you’re trying to have a relaxing bubble bath) is one that has the potential to be riddled with germs, but it’s important that we make answering the call of nature natural rather than loaded with chemicals OR germs.
* Avoid using artificial air fresheners. These contain some of the worst toxins you can have in the house. What’s more, these nasties are confined into a small space, concentrating them. Open the window, make your own spray from water, vinegar and essential oil, light a candle (burns the stinky methane up) or just put up with the smell ? it will dissipate over time.
* Put a brick in the toilet tank to conserve water. One of those toilets with a dual flush system helps save a lot of water, too.
* Don’t use the toilet downpipe as a waste disposal system. Only body waste should go down the loo. Don’t throw tampons down, even though this is handy. Still less should you get rid of sanitary pads or (aaagh!) disposable nappies in there. Have a handy rubbish bin nearby.
* El cheapo loo paper is not only cheaper, it’s also better for you and the environment. Scented loo paper can cause a nasty bout of candida and is another source of household toxins. Plain white stuff is all you need, and you can even use recycled (as in made out of recycled paper, of course) or unbleached paper. Forget about the fancy embossed and printed papers ? your bottom can’t tell the difference between plain and printed.
* You don’t need to hurl masses of house cleaning products down the loo. A good hard scrub is all you really need on a regular basis, and it’s better for the waterways. An Enjo loo-cleaning brush does a really good job. If you must use commercial cleaning products (and loo-cleaners are usually the last place we switch to natural products), never mix ammonia-based cleaners with chlorine-based products unless you are looking for a very painful and humiliating way to kill yourself.
* Toilet seats and backs can be cleaned with natural germ killers such as vodka and/or straight vinegar. Add a germ-killing essential oil for extra disinfectant power and a nice smell. And you don’t have to get the loo seat so clean you could eat off it, because you’re not going to eat off it, are you? “Clean enough” is good enough ? after all, you’re going to wash your hands after using the loo.
* Not all your body waste has to go down the drainpipes. Urine contains a nice bit of nitrogen, and if you locate your compost heap in a discreet location (or use a chamber pot if you’re not that earthy), one can return some nutrients back into the soil. Straw or dead leaves plus urine makes fantastic organic compost with an excellent nutrient balance. Best to pee into the compost heap, as urine can burn and kill plants if applied directly. However, men have the ability to spray a natural organic weed-killer that breaks down quickly, adding nutrient to the soil directly onto a target…