Sunday, August 24, 2014

College Survival Series: Communal Bathrooms

The College Survival Series introduces and discusses different aspects of college life, and aims to prepare college students for all situations they might encounter during their college career.

Communal Bathrooms

This may seem like a silly topic to write about, but as a first year student who had the privilege of a private, 1-person bathroom with a door that locked my entire life, I was super nervous at the idea of having to share with 50+ other girls on my floor. Eventually I got used to showering and brushing my teeth in the same room as my floor mates, but it wasn't without picking up some tips along the way! If you're entering a situation where you'll be sharing a bathroom with the students in your building (which the majority of students living on campus will be) and you're a little freaked out by it, check out these tips to navigate the awkwardness:

Have a bathroom survival kit. Communal bathrooms means that you won't be able to keep all of your toiletries in there, as it causes clutter and will probably be thrown out by housekeeping staff. It's handy to keep everything you need for the bathroom and showers in a caddy. It sounds stupid, but literally everyone has one, and it definitely beats fumbling with everything while you're walking down the hall! Here's some recommendations for your kit:

-Shower caddy (I recommend the plastic ones, like the one shown above, so it doesn't get ruined if it gets wet.)
-Bodywash (much less messy and much more travel-friendly than bar soap)
-Washcloth or loofah
-Toothbrush with a plastic cover

Figure out your routine. This will be a little awkward at first, especially if you already have a specific bathroom routine that you're used to at home. If you tend to take longer than usual to get ready in the morning, figure out what you can do in you own room (make up, hair styling, etc.) so you don't hog the mirror in the bathroom. If you feel pressed for time in the morning, consider becoming a night shower-er, or figure out when everyone tends to wake up and try to shower before them. It's going to take some adjusting when you share a bathroom with your entire floor, but you'll figure it out eventually!

Invest in rubber flip flops. The floor of a bathroom can get pretty gross when 50+ people are sharing it. Grab some $2 rubber flip flops from your local WalMart or Target and leave them right by your door so you can slip them on whenever you run to the restroom. PLUS they can be used as shower shoes!

Don't forget your key! Nothing's worse than being locked out of your room in a towel. (Trust me, it's happened to the best of us.) If you really have trouble remembering, try making it a habit to store your key in or near where you keep your toiletries. That way,you'll see your keys and (hopefully) remember to bring it along. Any way that you can, make sure your key is in your hand before you let the door swing shut behind you!

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