If you’re clueless about how to use a Bidet or what a Bidet even is, chances are you’re American. This is no extraordinary feat of deduction on our part. The rest of the world is very familiar with the Bidet and have been for quite some time. In fact, North America is one of the few places where the Bidet has not caught on so the ignorance is understandable. If you travel abroad to Asia, Europe, or Japan however you will no doubt come face to face with the Bidet where you’ll experience the powerful clean only a Bidet can provide.
There are many types of Bidets and in this guide we will demonstrate how to use each one of them. Even though there are variations of the Bidet the principle and philosophy is the same – using water to clean down under your nether regions after using the restroom. Water provides a superior clean and has proven hygienic benefits. There’s also numerous other benefits including reducing your overall impact on the environment and preventing clogged pipes especially if you live in a place with sub standard plumbing.
Let’s take a look at a few Bidets you are likely to come across out in the wild and learn how to properly use them like a pro.
Using the classic European Bidet
So, how do you use a bidet? If you travel to Italy you’ll no doubt come across the Classic European Bidet in its original form. The classic Bidet is credited to the french and was enjoyed primarily by upper class aristocrats and other figures of high society. The classic Bidet is a separate wash bowl apart from the main toilet. Using it is quite simple. After you are finished with the main toilet you make your way over to the Bidet and straddle it like you would a small pony. Fun fact, the Bidet got its name from a now extinct french horse. The horse was very small in stature and easily straddled. Once straddled over the Bidet you wash up with warm water using your hands and then dry yourself with a fresh towel. As an American this will no doubt test your sanity and instill doubts of just how sane the Italian culture as a whole is. Give it time though and you will find the Bidet provides a cleaning experience second to none. Think of the Bidet like a quick partial shower in the regions that need it the most. Using toilet paper serves to only spread the mud around. Do you really think you’re getting a complete clean with toilet paper alone? The answer is nay!
The upside to this type of Bidet is it’s totally optional. Many places will still have toilet paper alongside the toilet catering to Americans who wish to stick with their barbaric ways of using the loo. Sometimes you will find the Bidet is NOT optional and you’ll be required to use the Bidet like a true person of culture. Don’t worry, they are very easy to use and when it’s all said and done you will no doubt fall head over heels for the Bidet. You’ll wonder how you made it this far in life without one.
Ask any Italian what they miss most when they travel abroad and it’s always the majestic Bidet.
Using the handheld Bidet
The handheld Bidet is a simple spray nozzle that sits alongside the toilet. The handheld Bidet sprayer is also crudely known as the “bum gun” and popular in many parts of South America, Asia, and Middle Eastern countries. The Bidet sprayer caught on like wild fire as a competent replacement for the classic Bidet which took up too much real estate in the home. The Bidet sprayer is simple to use. After doing your business reach over and grab the hose. If you’re a male, lean forward ever so slightly and position the Bidet down in the toilet bowl aiming up at your nether regions. If you’re female enter from the front and do the same. Let her rip. With a bit of practice you’ll learn which angle works best and you’ll be cleaned off in no time flat.
If there’s toilet paper next to you take a small amount and dry yourself off. That’s all there is to it! Notice how when you wipe there isn’t a single brown stain on the toilet paper! Using toilet paper alone leaves all kinds of doo doo and dingleberries down there. Most Americans are walking around all day with stained behinds and dingleberries. If you value being clean and hygienic you cannot understate the value and practicality of the Bidet.
The most common mistake new users make with the handheld Bidet nozzle is getting the angle wrong or underestimating the water pressure. It’s a good idea to give the hose a test squeeze to test the waters (no pun intended.) If you’re in a public place spray off the toilet seat to remove any urine left by other patrons and then go to town with your business. Carry hand sanitizer while abroad and wash your hands afterwards.
Using the Bidet toilet seat Combo
This is the most common type of Bidet you’ll see in Japan. Simply put, this is a toilet that sprays water. The Bidet toilet seat combo is a seat that sits right on top of an existing toilet and provides a jet stream of water. This particular ingenious design was spearheaded by an American inventor who licensed his unique Bidet patent and design to the Japanese. The Japanese took the concept of the Bidet seat and added electronics to provide a complete Bidet solution. Now, over 80% of homes in Japan have some kind of Bidet seat, either electronic or non electric.
The electronic Bidet seat brings forth an intimidating amount of controls and technology into the bathroom. Electronic Bidet seats offer everything from seat warmers, water temperature and pressure controls, air drying capabilities, and self cleaning functions. High end models come with their own remote controls for a truly hands free experience. Once dialed in you can get in and out of the bathroom without touching a single square of toilet paper.
Bidet toilet seats hook into your existing water line and provide a jet steam mechanism to blast away the crud and dingleberries. Non electric models are the simplest design with minimal controls to control water pressure. Operating these models is a simple matter of turning the water water pressure dial to the appropriate setting and then turning it off when you’re done.
Electric models differ by brand and features and require a bit of examination to understand the various buttons and programming. These are truly top of the line Bidets you’ll only come across in Japan or if you take the plunge and purchase a combo seat for yourself.
Pro tips from abroad
The key to having a successful Bidet experience is going into the bathroom with an open mind and confidence. Even if there’s toilet paper available make the effort to try something new and experience a true deep cleaning. If you’re traveling abroad carry tissue paper so you have a familiar backup in case things go horribly wrong. Common mistakes including underestimating the water pressure of the handheld Bidet, incorrect settings on the electronic Bidet, and standing up while the jet streams are washing you down. The key to anything is practice. Every once in a while we must question why do the things we do. How many actions and behaviors do we take in daily life that are not the most efficient, yet we do them because “that’s the way it’s always been done.”
Chances are high you’ll quickly gain confidence using the Bidet and become an advocate for them back in America.