Although most of us use it daily, few of us can even name the three main ingredients in toilet paper. Perhaps you have pondered the origins of toilet paper, the manufacturing process, and the alternatives to paper towels.
The next logical step is finding the answers to your burning questions about custom toilet paper. If you take the time to learn about the evolution of toilet paper and the various papermaking techniques, you may make more sustainable and economic choices when stocking your bathroom.
What Was Used Before Toilet Paper?
They did it in much more imaginative ways, some of which were perhaps too original. From the time of the Romans to the Middle Ages and beyond, humans have used various methods to clean up after using the restroom. What did people do before the invention of toilet paper?
The Roman Apology
It is widely accepted that Roman residents were accustomed to using public lavatories that were very comparable to contemporary toilets and outhouses. However, unlike modern times, they did not follow their bathroom business with a few squares of toilet paper to clean up.
They utilized something called terrorism. Essentially just a sponge mounted on the end of a stick. After using the restroom, Romans would wipe their hands on the person kept beside the commodes.
Keeping Clean In The Middle Ages
Books, pamphlets, and other printed items could now be mass-produced and disseminated after the discovery of the printing press in 1440. Paper products were widely available, even if not everyone could read. In the absence of toilet paper, tearing a page from a magazine or newspaper was the next best thing.
Cultivating a Fix
It’s safe to assume that everyone living on a farm did so many kilometers from the nearest town. Because of the lack of modern conveniences such as toilet paper, early farmers had to learn to rely on themselves and become resourceful.
Farmers and their families used corncobs more than any other tool for cleaning. After using the outhouse, they would wipe their hands on a corncob that had been cleaned of all kernels.
The surprising popularity of the corncob persisted long after toilet paper had been produced so that even in the 19th century, people were still using them in the outhouse.
When Did They First Use Toilet Paper?
Toilet paper has come a long way over the past few centuries. So, rather than a single moment in time, the development of toilet paper took place gradually over time, and its early forms looked nothing like the modern toilet paper we use today.
The technique started in China and resulted in many eco-friendly alternatives to traditional toilet paper. National Geographic claims that in 1393, the Chinese imperial dynasty commissioned the first usable toilet paper. The rice-based toilet paper used by the imperial family came from fragrant individual sheets.
How Contemporary Toilet Paper Came to Be
While the prototype of toilet paper dates back to the 1400s, mass production began in the 1800s. Hemp toilet paper with aloe was the brainchild of Joseph Gayetty, who created the product in 1857. Gayetty believed it was such a good plan that he had his surname imprinted on each sheet. However, Americans’ preference for using free catalog pages from Sears Roebuck meant that his toilet paper never caught on.
Eliot is an avid outdoorsman and has a wealth of knowledge to share when it comes to recreation. He loves nothing more than spending time in the great outdoors, fishing, camping, and hiking. When he's not enjoying nature, Judd enjoys spending time with his family and friends. He's always up for a good laugh and loves telling stories around the campfire.