8 Bad Bathroom Habits You Didn’t Realize You Started — And How to Fix Them

published Apr 2, 2021
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Credit: Jessica Rapp

Your bathroom sees a lot of action. It’s the place where you wash away the day, freshen up, soak away your cares in a bath, maybe apply your makeup, and, well, answer the call of nature. Of all the places in your home, it deserves some serious love and appreciation! However, the bathroom tends to breed more than a few bad habits, from relying on the convenience of wipes to forgetting to swap your toothbrush on a regular basis. 

While we’re more than happy to keep some bad bathroom habits a secret, if you’re guilty of any of the below, it’s time to change your ways! We’ll help you clean up your act.

Flushing your “flushable” wipes.

We get it, they’re convenient, and in the early days of the pandemic when toilet paper was scarce, everyone was grabbing what they could get. However, so-called “flushable” wipes aren’t the best thing for your plumbing, or for city sewers. As noted by Green America, toilet paper is designed to break down once it’s been flushed, but wipes are made with synthetic materials that don’t easily disintegrate, potentially leading to a huge mess in your sewer system. If you must use wipes, toss ‘em in the trash can instead.

Not replacing your toothbrush regularly.

We’ve all been there: You’re standing at the bathroom sink, brushing your teeth as usual, when you look down and realize you’ve been using that toothbrush for a really, really long time. Oops! The American Dental Association recommends replacing your toothbrush every three to four months, but when time feels like a never-ending loop, it’s easy to forget how long you’ve been brushing with that cute lime green brush.

To stay on track, set a reminder in your phone to replace your toothbrush at the start of every other month, or invest in an electric toothbrush with bristles that change color when it’s time to switch things up.

Not washing your shower curtain and liner.

Sure, you toss your cloth curtain in the wash when you remember, but you’ve got to wash your shower curtain liner, too! Merry Maids recommends tossing plastic liners in the wash on warm with detergent, vinegar, or baking soda. Aim to do this every month to keep your shower looking sparkling. (Alternatively, our Lifestyle Editor invested in two nylon cloth liners, to swap out and add to each week’s load of whites as needed.)

Washing your face with the same cloth too many times.

Just how many times have you used that washcloth to wash your face? If you can’t remember, it’s time to replace it! Ideally, you should only be using a washcloth once — yes, you read that right — before tossing it in the laundry, so do yourself a favor and buy a big stack so you’ve always got a fresh cloth at hand. 

Leaving wet towels on the floor.

OK, this might not be a habit you have as much as it’s a habit of someone you live with. In either case, hang that towel up ASAP! Otherwise, you run the risk of your favorite towel becoming a breeding ground for bacteria, not to mention developing a funky smell. Hang up your towel after you use it so it dries thoroughly, and launder it after about three uses.

Not washing your loofah.

A loofah makes the most luxurious, bubbly lather when paired with your favorite body wash, but that little shower accessory can harbor a lot of bacteria if you aren’t washing it regularly. (Yes, you need to wash the tool that washes you, too!) Make sure you hang it up to dry completely after every use and try to clean it once a week — according to Cleveland Clinic’s Health Essentials, you can submerge a synthetic in a water and bleach bath, or even stick it in the dishwasher!

Forgetting to replace your razor blades.

If you shave, you know the tell-tale rasp of a razor blade that’s been used too many times. If your formerly super-sharp blade is dull and dragging on your skin, it’s time to replace it! The more you have to drag the blade, the more small cuts and nicks you could be making — giving bacteria, infections, and other nasties room to hang out in your body. How often you should change your blades depends on how often you shave; if you’re a daily shaver, every few days is best. You should also be sure to thoroughly clean your razor of any cream or soap after each use, and set it outside the shower to dry.

Not replacing the toilet paper roll when it’s empty.

Even if you live alone, that’s just basic human decency!