Skid marks in the toilet are gross and even embarrassing if you leave them behind at a guest’s house. However, when the urge to go comes, you must take care of business.
There are a few strategies that you can use to stop skid marks in the toilet. You can put down cleverly placed toilet paper before you use it, especially if you are away from home. Additionally, there are some DIY and commercial products to help keep skid marks away by creating a slippery surface.
Good-Bye Skid Marks: 6 Strategies
Cleaning the toilet should be done as soon as it is dirty, or at least several times a week for overall maintenance.
That being said, skid marks can be stubborn. Preventing them from occurring in the first place can save you time and effort.
The following strategies include ones using things you have at home or commercial products. In this way, you can keep your toilet clean and prevent embarrassment when using someone else’s toilet.
1. Make A Toilet Paper “LilyPad”
Informally called a “lilypad”, you can place three to four pieces of toilet paper down into the toilet before you go.
Position these to fan out like a lilypad, so that you can defecate onto them. The center of the shape overlaps to create a thick center that pulls the paper and the waste down to the drain hole.
This will keep the waste from directly touching the toilet bowl and reduce splashes.
However, you must avoid clogging the toilet with too much toilet paper overall. Thus, you should flush before you use more toilet paper to wipe.
This is a quick and easy method to prevent skid marks, especially if you are at someone else’s house. This method does use up toilet paper more quickly, so reserve it for those times when you have no other strategies.
2. Squirt Dish Detergent
Dish detergent has surfactants in it that wash away grime and grease. It assists in removing stickiness and debris that are stuck to surfaces.
Before you use the toilet, squirt dish detergent onto the back interior of the toilet bowl, where streaks are likely to happen. Start at the top edge and allow it to drip down to the water’s surface, coating the toilet bowl’s surface.
Dish detergent is also a great hack for flushing toilet bowls that are full of toilet paper and waste, reducing the clogging risk.
Keep a bottle of dish detergent near the toilet in your home. Encourage family members to put in a squirt before they go.
If this strategy works for you, you can keep a travel-size bottle in your purse or pocket when you are using toilets elsewhere.
3. Use Non-Stick Cooking Spray
Much like dish detergent, you can spray some non-stick cooking spray onto the back interior surface of your toilet bowl. The oil will help to prevent waste material from sticking.
Oil can build up over time, especially in your pipes, so use this method conservatively. If oil builds up on the toilet bowl’s surface you can clean the bowl with dish detergent. A commercial drain pipe cleaner can also remove build up.
Take care not to get oil on the toilet seat or your clothing, as this will make the surface slippery or stain your clothing.
4. Apply Polymer-Based Car Wax
Polymer-based car wax comes in liquid form and can last on surfaces for up to six months. It can be used off-label to prevent skid marks on your toilet bowl.
To use this, complete the following steps:
- Thoroughly clean the toilet with your choice of cleaning solution.
- Flush the toilet several times to rinse and remove the debris and solution.
- Empty the toilet bowl by turning off the water supply line.
- Flush the remaining water out. If a little water remains, you can scoop it out or absorb it with a towel.
- Buff the interior bowl completely dry.
- Apply the car wax following the instruction label, using a soft and clean towel to rub it on the interior surface. Allow it to fully cure.
- Turn the water supply line back on, and the toilet is ready for use.
It is recommended to do this if you have another toilet to use in your home while this cures, or overnight.
5. Use Liquid-Entrenched Smooth Surface (LESS) Coating
Developed by scientists at Penn State, this spray product applies a coating that repels liquids, grime, and bacteria.
This product is slipperier than Teflon, coating the toilet bowl to prevent skid marks.
There are two layers of application. The first layer bonds permanently to the surface. The second layer is a lubricant that needs to be reapplied after about 500 flushes.
Follow all instructions to apply this product. Your toilet must be empty, clean, and dry before application.
Alternatively, some other commercial sprays prevent surfaces from getting wet. Before you use any of these products, refer to the instruction label to see if they can be used on your toilet bowl’s surface.
6. Change The Trajectory
Several factors can increase the likelihood of skid marks.
- Composition or nature of the stool
- The speed at which stool comes out
- Shape of the toilet bowl
- Seat position on the toilet bowl
The only one of these that you can control consistently is your position as you sit on the toilet.
In general, you should sit in the middle of the toilet so that your waste is directed towards the deepest part of the water and the drain hole.
The deeper level of water slows down the trajectory of the waste as it lands, keeping it from hard contact with the toilet bowl’s surface and reducing the likelihood of skid marks.
If you sit too far forward, urine or splashed water can come out underneath the toilet lid gap. If you sit too far back, your waste is more likely to hit the backside of the toilet bowl, leaving marks.
How To Clean Skid Marks
Skid marks happen, despite our best efforts to prevent them. To minimize buildup or staining, clean skid marks right after they occur.
If you are not looking to replace your toilet with a self-cleaning one, you can use a commercial product designed for cleaning your toilet, or you can try one of the following methods.
Please note: Other cleaning agents, such as vodka, mineral spirits, or rubbing alcohol are commonly used off-label for cleaning things such as toilets. However, do not use these since they can negatively affect the environment and water systems, as well as the healthy bacteria in septic systems.
A pumice stone can effectively clean a toilet and can be found manufactured with a handle for toilet cleaning.
Pumice stones are harder than mineral deposits but softer than porcelain, making them a great choice for toilet bowl cleaning.
For effective cleaning, both the toilet’s surface and the stone must be wet.
Flush away the debris as you work to rinse and repeat scrubbing as needed.
Toilet Scrub Brush
These can be bought with a cover and stand, so they can sit discreetly near the toilet.
Use as needed to scrub skid marks away. Flush during the cleaning process to remove loose debris.
Vinegar And Baking Soda
The acidic properties of vinegar combined with the alkaline properties of baking soda will eliminate grime, stains, and bacteria.
Complete the following steps:
- Pour one cup of vinegar into the toilet.
- Use a toilet brush to mix it in and scrub the offending skid marks.
- Add one cup of baking soda to create a fizzy reaction.
- Scrub again with the toilet brush.
- Let it sit for 30 minutes.
- Flush to rinse it all away. Repeat as necessary.
Do not use more than one cup of vinegar and baking soda. Or else, the combination might bubble out of the toilet and onto your floor, making a bigger mess.
The phosphoric acid in Coca-Cola breaks down residue and grime.
Pour two cups of this soda into the toilet bowl, and let it sit overnight. Scrub with a toilet brush and then flush to rinse. Repeat as necessary.
Handheld Bidet Sprayer
Two main kinds of bidets can be installed by the homeowner. These connect to the water service line that leads to a toilet. The water that comes through this line is clean and is the same as the water that goes to your sink.
One model of bidet is mounted so that it sprays water to cleanse by turning a connected dial.
The other model looks like a small garden hose sprayer with a flexible hose. This style can be used to cleanse oneself and also to spray skid marks away with the force of water.
You will need to take care not to spray water out of the toilet with a handheld model. You also need to make sure you do not get dirty water on the head of the sprayer.
Skid marks are a common occurrence. Thankfully, you can take steps to reduce the likelihood they will occur by using cleverly placed toilet paper, changing your seated position, or making the interior surface slippery.
If skid marks do occur, clean them up right away using common household items such as a toilet scrub brush paired with a cleaning solution of your choice.