Here’s Why You Should Be Peeing in the Shower (With the Math to Back It Up)

man washing hair in shower

Source: iStock

You might have your own reasons for peeing (or not) while taking a shower, and while it’s not something you’d bring up around a dinner table, it’s an interesting conversation once you get over the whole “urinating in a place that’s supposed to be clean” paradox. While there’s no accounting for taste with something quite this polarizing, the math behind water consumption says, yeah, you definitely should be relieving yourself in the shower.

Why?

Because you’re not using extra water to do it, the way you would with a separate trip to a toilet or urinal. Unless you own a dual-flush toilet, your plumbing isn’t discriminating between what you might be flushing, so it’s sending a LOT of water to ensure that things get clear the first time around. If you’re urinating, you’re really overdoing it with the water used in each flush. You actually need very little.

How little?

Enough that the draining from your shower is plenty to ensure that you’re left with a clean shower surface. And if that’s not enough to put your mind at ease on the hygienic issues at play here, remember that you’re also covering that shower floor with soap and shampoo regularly. And that’s using water that you’d be using anyway over the course of your shower. Unless of course you wait prescribe a specific time at either the beginning or end of your shower to focus on whizzing, which would be…weird.

It’s not difficult to see the logic behind the idea that saving a pee a day for the shower saves water, but let’s get a little more practical and mathematical with this study, shall we?

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

Let’s start off with the average flush of one use of the toilet, which we would be saving if we went in the shower once a day.

For a standard, non-conservational toilet, that’s about 1.6 gallons.

Then let’s say you do this every day, so that’s 365 days per year.

You’d be conserving about 14% of your toilet water consumption every year, or roughly 579 gallons. That may or may not sound like a lot of water, but remember that’s for one person and there are about 319 million people in the United States, which means we’d conserve, as a nation, 185 BILLION gallons of water per year. That’s a big number to everyone.

Wanna go global with this initiative? We can. Assuming that there are 7 billion people in the world, and we shower, on average .5 times per day (adjusting for practices in third-world nations), we’d be saving 2.026 TRILLION gallons of clean water per year.

So the next time someone judges you for peeing in the shower, hit ’em with some cold hard math and ask them what they’re doing to save 2 trillion gallons of water every year.

Beyond the water consumption and ecological implications of this taboo act, there are also a number of good health-related reasons to be doing this. So when the doubters come back to you with claims that standing in your shower-pee is gross, you can tell them that they’re gross for NOT doing it. Its acidic nature is known to fight athletes foot and other fungi that can develop on your feet, so there’s really no reason not to.

But if you don’t want to talk about it, that’s ok, too.