Health

What Your Toilet Paper Preference Says About You

If you assumed that hanging a toilet paper roll one way over another was an arbitrary decision, you'd be wrong. Your toilet paper preferences might actually be correlated to your demographic and political identity, research shows.

toilet paper orientation

The latest study — a 2004 survey from Bathroom Confidential — shows that 72 percent of Americans favor toilet paper that hangs in the "over" orientation. That's consistent with earlier studies from Georgia-Pacific and the Poretz and Sinrod Survey, both of which found majority support for the "over" paper model.

toilet paper

Research conducted in 1989 found that younger, wealthier and more liberal individuals were most likely to report a over-orientation preference when it comes to TP. Conversely, older, more conservative, and poorer individuals tend to hang their toilet paper in the "under" style.

That research, which can be found in "The First Really Important Survey of American Habits" by Barry Sinrod and Mel Poretz, found that money was a really important factor in determining how one hangs their toilet paper, as 60 percent of those who made over $50,000 ($96,000 in 2016 dollars) preferred the over style, while 73 percent of those who made under $20,000 ($38,000 in 2016 dollars) go for the under hang.

Asked what he made of the results, Sinrod said "I don’t know, but it’s sure interesting."


And it is interesting! After all, there are pros and cons that come with each respective toilet paper preference, as WendoverProductions reports in a video dedicated exclusively to toilet paper trends. Housekeeping services at most hotels, airlines, and cruises often go for the over hanging model because they're more easily able to indicate when the roll has been changed, for example.

RELATED: Study Finds That Low-Income Households Pay More for Toilet Paper