Over or Under? The Toilet Paper Dilemma's featured image

The first official toilet paper product was established in China in 1391 however, unlike today, toilet paper was not readily available until the 17th and 18th century. In fact, Joseph C. Gayetty was the first individual to introduce packaged toilet paper in the United States in 1857, naming it ‘Gayetty’s Medicated Paper’. It wasn’t until 1871 that Seth Wheeler created the rolled perforated toilet paper. Now a days, most people use about 8.6 sheets of toilet paper per trip, 57 sheets per day and 20,805 sheets per year, according to the Toilet Paper Encyclopedia. That’s a lot of paper!

Regardless of the amount of toilet paper used per person, there will always be one toilet paper dilemma we can’t seem to resolve – should the toilet paper hang over or under the roll? Well, those in favour of the ‘over’ side state that hanging it over the roll reduces the transfer of germs from the wall to the toilet paper. It is also more esthetically appealing. The ‘under’ side states that hanging the toilet paper under gives the roll a tidier appearance. It also makes it harder for pets to unravel. Although both sides are compelling, who better to weigh in on the ‘over’, ‘under’ debate than Seth Wheeler himself? In Seth’s initial drawings of his invention, the roll of toilet paper is depicted with paper going up and over the roll. All in all, it seems that the ‘over’ side reigns supreme!25