Sit or squat? graph of japanese statisticsHaving previously looked at bum-washing toilets, iShare recently shifted their gaze towards public toilets.


Between the 7th and 10th of January 2009 412 members of the free email forwarding service CLUB BBQ completed a private online questionnaire. 55.1% of the sample were male, 13.3% in their twenties, 46.8% in their thirties, 32.3% in their forties, and 7.5% in their teens or aged fifty or older.

Note that there is a relatively low percentage of women looking for bum-washing toilets in Q3. Whether this is due to the average women’s toilet being of a higher standard than the men’s or if this is a reflection of women being less trusting of the hygene (see the previous survey) I don’t know!

Sit or squat?

View Results

Research results

Q1: Sit or squat? (Sample size=412)

  All Male
Sit, Western style 89.1% 89.0% 89.2%
Squat, Japanese style 10.9% 11.0% 10.8%

Q2: Do you think toilets in shops and public facilities are unhygenic? (Sample size=412)

  All Male
Don’t think they are unhygenic 9.0% 9.7% 8.1%
Think they are a little unhygenic 62.1% 59.5% 65.4%
Think they are unhygenic 28.9% 30.8% 26.5%

Q3: What features would you like to see on toilets in shops and public facilities? (Sample size=412, multiple answer)

  All Male
Deodorising 62.1% 58.1% 67.0%
Toilet seat disinfectant wipes 61.4% 56.4% 67.6%
Heated toilet seat 49.5% 45.8% 54.1%
Paper toilet seat cover 41.5% 39.2% 44.3%
Bottom washer 35.7% 44.9% 24.3%
Automatic self-cleaner 33.3% 33.0% 33.5%
Oto-hime 24.0% 7.5% 44.3%
Automatic lid open and close 15.3% 16.7% 13.5%
Warm-air dryer 10.0% 11.9% 7.6%
Other 2.7% 2.6% 2.7%


anton · January 30, 2009 at 04:01

For the 49.5% of Q3, including probably several percents of the 62.1% of Q2, they should know that heating the seat would increase the activity of the bacterias of the “little unhygienic” seats. But I feel that despite huge pride and manners more rigorous than anywhere else, for Japanese self-comfort primes.

That’s an interesting survey! Personally I think the bum washing difference is related to the prostate … what do you like and think, WJT readers?

mike · January 31, 2009 at 07:49

I never sit on the seat. I just hover above it so I don’t come in contact with seat germs.

Cynthia · January 31, 2009 at 21:55

I’ve been in Japan last year and I could see by myself how clear all toilet seats is!!! It’s unbelievable!
You couldn’t imagine how disgusting is to use a public toilet in Brazil, even in the most “civilized” places.

And just as curiosity I watched on “Mythbusters” that the seat properly isn’t the place where germs are. There is a lot in the latch, in the tap, even much more in your keyboard at this moment instead of the toilet seat.

haha · February 2, 2009 at 04:36

Well, when I was in Japan, I saw the most disgusting public Japanese style toilets. Like people couldn’t even aim straight when they were squatting and shit was literally all over the place. I walked the hell out and held my crap until I got to my friend’s place. You gotta love those Toto washlets!

tlals · April 3, 2009 at 04:40

hey Asian toilet is far much better than sit toilet

tlals · April 3, 2009 at 04:45

Also You cannot judge Asian toilet culture by Western standard of thinking.

Lurker · July 26, 2011 at 15:04

In English (and also Japanese):

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