It takes tens of thousands of trees to create the amount of toilet paper that’s used every single day. But in the minds of corporate executives, Americans, at least, aren’t using enough paper during their bathroom routine. In particular, we’re not using enough Cottonelle Fresh Care — “the leading flushable wipe.”
These executives, being corporate executives, know that if they could just convince us that we need dry and wet paper to clean our bums, they could sell sooooo much more product. Right now, ashamed of the wipes, people are hiding them under the sink. But people who keep the wipes out in the open use twice as many, and as the Cottonelle execs told The New York Times:
“We know from our user data that the growth is 100 percent incremental,” said Mr. Simon of Cottonelle. “If you used six squares of dry toilet paper before, you’d still use six squares, and one or two flushable wipes.”
Now, toilet paper execs don’t want to get bossy about your TP routine. (“What Cottonelle does not do in the campaign is suggest to the uninitiated a sequence (like dry-wet, wet-dry or dry-wet-dry),” the Times reports.) They just want to “activate the conversation,” ensure “the democratization of toilet etiquette,” and let their product “be defined by consumers and what their preference is.”
What that really means is that they want you to buy their wasteful product and come up with a cute name for the toilet routine results. (The “freshy fresh“? Really?) Our submission: “no better than a bidet.”
Update: We said TP comes from “virgin forests,” which isn’t quite right. It generally comes from “virgin wood” or “virgin pulp.” So it’s not recycled, but it doesn’t mean pulping trees that have been standing since time immemorial.