No one said to stock up on toilet paper, but fear can lead people to act on instinct. Now, some stores are limiting how many packs a person can buy, and consumers are roaming the aisles for the last roll before a restock. One Forbes’ contributor’s cheeky suggestion? Shower toilets. With their bidet-and-toilet combination, shower toilets allow consumers to nix the toilet paper and activate the cleanser instead. And the fun doesn’t stop at hygiene: Many models include heated seats, warm-air dryers, and night lights for those precarious trips in the dark. Going out and buying an expensive unit to avoid running out of toilet paper may be extreme, but smart shower toilets have been recently gaining traction in the U.S. as they are beneficial for aging homeowners and intriguing to those who are into tech. Find out if a shower toilet would be right for your next project.
Shower-toilets, which combine the bidet and toilet into one consolidated product, were first available in Japan. The Washlet, an electric toilet seat with an integrated bidet that has rear cleansing, a dryer and a heated seat, was first presented by Toto in Japan in 1980. For Japanese and Europeans, shower-toilets and bidets have long been a mainstay in their cultural ideals surrounding hygiene and bathroom habits. Toto brought these shower-toilets to the United States in 1990.
In more recent years other manufacturers have added shower-toilets to their bathroom lines. All of these units are quite attractive: some of the units are wall hanging, while others are just slim line and unobtrusive.
In North America, the United States, in particular, shower-toilets are gaining traction in luxury bathrooms, with several leading manufacturers currently offering them. And while people are becoming more aware of them, this is still a relatively new product—it is takes time for consumers to adapt to a completely different hygiene product, which calls for habit changes. These shower-toilets afford a superior hygienic design and the most natural form of hygiene.