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Etiquette at Someone Else’s House

We were recently featured in a spot on ABC Radio Australia where the subject of the day was whether or not you could use the toiletries when you visited somebody else and took a shower on their place. In response to that we’ve crafted a series of guidelines about peeing, pooping and showering when you are a guest in somebody else’s home, many of which are shared from rules around your own home.

Use the Fan

Not all bathrooms have fans, and that’s too bad. But if the bathroom does have a fan, you should probably be using it – especially for #2. Not only is it going to help with the smell, but it’s going to cover up all those lovely noises that have a tendency to emanate from the bathroom under the most opportune of circumstances. Heck, it’s even good to help prevent mold and mildew, and I think everyone can agree that’s a good thing.

Clean Up After Yourself

If you can’t aim wipe the seat. Then wipe the floor, because that’s gross too. Take a kleenex and wipe the sink area down if you made a mess there, and make sure you didn’t leave a wad of hair clinging anywhere. You don’t want your guests to leave your bathroom dirty, so don’t do it to them.

Be Mindful of Towels

Hopefully there is a hand towel which is clearly designated for general use, and this is the towel you should be using to dry your hands. If there is no obvious towel, consider some kleenex, or maybe your socks/pockets to get the drying done. Don’t be afraid to shake and airdry a bit too. If you are going to be showering and don’t have your own towel you should definitely ask about the situation beforehand. Nobody wants to share their towel with you!

Be Mindful of Toiletries

It is expected that you will be using the handsoap in the sink to wash your hands, be it liquid soap or a bar. If all you are doing is going pee or doing a #2, then this is all the toiletries you should be helping yourself too. If you are showering though, things are a little different. Generally, any toiletries inside the shower that are contained in a bottle are fair game. This is stuff like shampoo, conditioner, facewash and liquid soap. Don’t be wasteful, and use just as much as you need. You might use the soap if you are very good friends with the host, but be careful where you stick it (avoid the ass and crotch, lather up your hand for that), and for god’s sake don’t leave any hairs on the soap! If you leave any hair, you might as well go pee all over the seat too because you aren’t going to be welcome back in that house. Outside the shower, toothpaste is probably fair game, but you’d better have your own toothbrush. Hair products like gel are fine, but don’t go using their deodorant unless it’s spray on. And when in doubt, just ask.

The Host has Some Responsibility

If you are hosting somebody in your house, you have the responsibility to help them act the way you want them to. Make hand towels and hand soap readily available. And if they are showering, be up front about your towel and toiletry expectations. A little communication goes a long way.

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