By Kerry Hale

The Nation's Biggest Bathroom Pet Peeves

  • Wednesday 04 November 2020
  • 6 minute read

It is arguably the most used room in the house and certainly one of the most frequently argued about, so it’s natural the UK has pet peeves about bathroom behaviour. But what exactly are Brits bemoaning when it comes to bad bathroom etiquette?

We surveyed over 2,000 people in the UK to uncover the UK’s biggest bathroom pet peeves. Our survey has revealed what people have to say about their fellow housemates’ behaviour and what annoys them the most. Additionally, we have discovered the habits that Brits admit they are most guilty of themselves. Finally, we've also found out how Brits behave in three different settings; their own home, a public and communal bathroom and finally, a bathroom belonging to their friends or family.

It is clear to see there is a divided Britain when it comes to judging each other’s bathroom conduct, with our survey uncovering the most common bugbears as well as some surprisingly unhygienic bathroom habits.

So, what are the nation’s biggest pet peeves? United across the country, it’s when the person you live with doesn’t flush the toilet after going. However, in a public toilet setting the UK’s biggest pet peeve is having no loo roll. Bristol’s residents are more likely to report this lack of toilet roll than any other city. Whereas in Edinburgh, it’s cheap toilet roll in public loos that really angers them.


When asked about hand washing, respondents in Sheffield, said “I rarely wash my hands” after using a public toilet which is more than anywhere else in the UK. In Belfast, a higher number of respondents were angry about people not washing their hands after using the workplace bathrooms than anywhere else in the country.

When it comes to private and personal bathrooms, 8% of men say that they never clean the shower themselves at home, despite 11% of them admitting to weeing whilst in there. Luckily, only 3% of women would avoid cleaning the shower.


12% of women said their biggest pet peeve are people who use up all the hot water. One solution for this would be electric showers, as they heat cold water with electricity. You can rarely run out of hot water when using an electric shower, so it’s a great solution if you’re in a flat share or you’re showering in quick succession. When it comes to choosing the best shower, we have a guide to help pick the electric shower that’s right for you.


When it comes to private and personal bathrooms, women are more likely to clean unpleasant stains off a friend’s or family member’s toilet (26%) than men (19%). 25% of women would never take a number two in a friend’s or family member’s toilet unless they absolutely had to, whereas only 18% of men said the same.


Finally, 57% of those aged between 44-54 and 67% of those over 55 would always wash their hands in their personal bathroom, compared to just 23% of 16-24-year-olds and 30% of 25-34s. The youth of today!

Moving on to public bathrooms, 42% of women state that people who do not wash their hands after using the toilet is their biggest pet peeve. This behaviour bothers men less, with only 29% agreeing that individuals avoiding handwashing would be a number one pet peeve. In the same public toilet setting, women are 12% more bothered than men when it comes to leaving unpleasant stains in the toilet.

Overall, 42% of all respondents said not flushing the toilet after use was their biggest pet peeve, with half of all female respondents saying this and 34% of men. Finally, almost a third of women (27%) said they would not go for a poo in a public bathroom unless they absolutely had to.

When comparing behaviour between personal bathrooms and public toilets, there are huge discrepancies in habits. 38% of women said they would clean their own unpleasant stains in their personal toilet, but only 13% would do it in a public toilet. Comparatively only 28% of men would clean their own mess after using their personal toilet, just 18% would clean up after themselves at a friend or family members and only 11% in a public toilet!


In any potential bathroom scenario women are more likely to clean up their wee drops from the toilet seat, with 42% of them doing this in their personal bathrooms compared to just 32% of men.


Finally, more women than men say they wash their hands after using the toilet in their home, family members or friends’ home and in a public toilet. In fact, 56% of women wash their hands every time they use their own toilet compared to 42% of men.


So this got us thinking about those living with their other halves and how bathroom pet peeves may differ by relationship length and type. Do we become more tolerant of each other’s bathroom habits and hygiene as time ticks on?

Well, it turns out our tolerance levels do change over time, depending on the circumstance. One of the areas which fluctuates with relationship length is when our other halves leave wet towels on the floor. For those in a relationship up to 1 year, this habit is moderately annoying, but after 3 years the annoyance level completely drops. However, after 10 years, this bathroom habit becomes incredibly infuriating.


The biggest rollercoaster of emotions surrounds flushing the toilet after use. In the first year of a relationship not flushing the toilet can provide a small amount of annoyance for our other halves, but after 5 years it is the thing which annoys us the most and it understandably stays that way!


To conclude, it turns out everyone has their specific pet peeves, but we are agreed on one thing, bad bathroom behaviour really does annoy us. Do make sure, whatever the circumstance, you wash your hands thoroughly and always clean your bathroom.


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