Typically, residence halls have 3 types of bathrooms: community bathrooms, which are shared by 20-60 students; private suite bathrooms, which are shared by 2-6 students; and private community bathrooms, which are shared by 2-4 rooms.
Every university does their best to keep their bathrooms clean and orderly. However, that’s easier said than done. So, if you’ve never shared a bathroom before your freshman year, take some time to prepare.
How clean is clean?
Most community bathrooms get cleaned at least once a day, but it can still get pretty gross. The mirrors are almost always covered in toothpaste, the sinks are often full of hair (especially if you’re a girl), the showers are permanently wet, and there is often a huge puddle in the changing area (think locker room at your community pool, without the lockers).
Suite style bathrooms, on the other hand, are usually cleaner environments, since less people are using them. However, most universities don’t clean suite bathrooms, unless a special cleaning fee is paid. That means you and your roommates are responsible for how clean and well stocked your bathroom actually is.
I did not forget that?
In both community and suite style bathrooms leaving your belongings in the shower or sink area is not a wise idea, not if you ever want to see it again. Every time you go to take a shower, you have to bring all of your soaps, razors, towels, clothing, hair supplies, and makeup with you. Than you have to turn around and haul back all your bath essentials because you forgot your shower shoes…seriously, don’t ever forget your shower shoes.
Lugging all of that stuff back and forth can get very tiresome. Plus, you have to remember to carefully dry your shower tote and all your bottles or else you might end up with mold growing in your dorm room.
If your shy about showering or using public restrooms you better get over it fast. Even if you wait until midnight there will probably be someone else in the bathroom. Although you’d probably be safe at 4:30AM.
Is it my turn yet?
The worst part about sharing a bathroom is waiting in line, especially in the morning. Sometimes I’d wast 20 minutes just waiting to take a shower, and then there was usually someone waiting behind me who’d complain if I took more than 5 minutes. It could get pretty annoying.
As awful as some of my bathroom experiences my freshman dorm was 100% worth it. Plus, the memories are always good for some truly great laughs.