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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Do or Don't: Magazines in the bathroom

We were at our friends' house the other day when I noticed something funny...

In their guest bathroom, they had a pretty wicker basket with books and magazines. And smack in the middle was the book 401(k)s for Dummies. It made me laugh. How long are people spending in there?!

I know it's a random question, but I'm curious: Do you have magazines in your bathroom? I know a lot of people do. Something about bathroom reading weirds me out, but Alex says I'm crazy, and maybe he's right! Thoughts? Do or don't?
P.S. Do you pee in front of your significant other? And our bathroom makeover.

(Top photo by Patrick Cline for Lonny)

243 comments:

1 – 200 of 243   Newer›   Newest»
Desiree Fawn said...

Haha, I'm all for the reading material in the bathroom.. but come to think of it, there's nothing in my home bathroom... but there ARE fashion & retails mags in the bathroom at my shop!

HRH Susan said...

There is NO reading material in our bathroom. Too dirty. If a book or magazine make it in there, they stay in the bathroom until they are thrown out.

We were once hosting my husband's friend for a week, and our guest took one of my husband's graphic novels into the toilet with him one morning. My husband told him he could just take it home with him when he left if he liked. the friend thought it was the nicest gesture, little did he know...

RobbinTheHood Vintage said...

No! haha, I never understood this approach to the bathroom. I am IN AND OUT. no reading necessary. Although, that said, my BF disagrees strongly, so in that case we MUST HAVE AT LEAST one book availible for him, haha.

Nicole said...

Yeah of course we do. I like to read in the bathtub most nights. Its a favorite way of unwinding.

cassiopeia said...

i have ikea (and other brands) catalogs and some brochures we get in the mail (i change them regularly). i don't really use them (ok sometimes ikea :P) but the man in the house sometimes does. although now he's more into his smartphone and all those games he can play ;) he spends large amounts of time in there so he must have something (else) to do :þ

Joanna Goddard said...

haha so funny, i'm loving these answers:)

Joanna Goddard said...

(glad i'm not the only one who wondered about this!)

Daniella said...

There is absolutely no reason for magazines to be in the bathroom. I mean, seriously... why? and gross. So unnecessary.

If you want to read while in the bath... just bring the book in with you. No need to stack them in the bathroom.

Chelsea said...

if someone wants to bring reading material in the bathroom, then thats their business...but leaving them in their to collect germs is gross. Plus, why would anyone want to touch a magazine someone else was flipping through while going to the bathroom, yuck!! On a side note, LOTS of people bring their cell phones in the bathroom with them. That is really gross! you put that to your face! I try to remember that before I reach for someones phone.

Twinkle Star said...

Yes! Most of the time it's for decorative purpose, but sometimes it comes in handy when we're staying there longer than expected.. ;)

Elaine said...

We have a little wicker basket with magazines in our bathroom but not the guest bathroom. Somehow, having magazines on display like that seems to me like we're all admitting that we're not just "powdering our noses" haha, which to me seems a little too open. At my parents' house growing up, though, there was an entire bookcase in the guest bathroom, stock-piled with books like "Small Businesses for Dummies" and I would always find myself spending way more time than necessary perusing the bookcase (which was accessible without even having to get up! Eeek!

Jennifer said...

My concern is hygiene.... I don't have a problem with myself or others reading in the bathroom but leaving reading material in the room weirds me out. Love the bathroom with the map, though!

Lindsay said...

Yep. Got magazines. Though now I'm sorta thinking I should toss them...

When I was younger my parents friends house was the coolest place to visit, in their bathroom they had a GAMEBOY! Also crossword books & joke books, so people would often come back to the BBQ or pool party with a funny joke to share...

ha.

Lindsay @ Darling Clementine
www.darlingclementineshop.com

alice in nomansland said...

My fiance and I do not agree on this one and we are moving in together in a couple months. Seeing any reading material in the bathroom makes me uncomfortable--which I know is silly since everyone knows what is going on in there. On the other hand, my fiance has TONS of magazines in his bathroom and when he stays at my place, he leaves reading material in mine. That said, we use the bathroom very differently--I'm an in and out kind of person and he is not. Am I being unsympathetic?

Mariclare Cole said...

Yes! When I was in England it seemed like most of the people whose houses we visited had not just a basket, but a SHELF dedicated to light, humurous reading. Personally I loved the idea. I think it's funny and welcoming, haha! I know have a small book of art on the wicker table by the toilet. LOL :)

Alyssa said...

Once someone in my family is done reading something, it usually makes its way to the basket in the bathroom in case you want a little distraction. However, I'm never in the bathroom long enough to get through any articles. So it's not so much my thing.

Meadow said...

I guess if you think about it, it is a bit weird, but I love to read in the bathroom and so does my bf. I always end up reading shampoo bottles and things like that if I don't have something to read, so we tend to keep our magazines in there LOL.

Colleen / Inspired to Share said...

This is funny! I'm with you - I've always thought it's kind of weird/gross. ;) I'm sure if I did have reading material in the bathroom, though, my husband would enjoy it. Ha!

Pistachio said...

We seem to have a pile of J. Crew catalogs...I have to wonder how Jenna Lyons would feel about it ;)

nancykate said...

I can't do it! It grosses me out and makes me think of people lounging on the toilet while they read. Sorry guests! Read elsewhere!

Idle Wife said...

Of course! Where else would I get my reading done? It's the only place in the entire house where absolutely NO ONE can bother and interrupt me!

domonique matthews said...

read in the bathroom - yes keep material in there - NO. tacky. ick.

Wendy said...

I guess when you take a step back it seems kind of weird. However, it definitely makes the time go by quicker. The only down fall is that sometime you end up staying there longer than you need to because you're hooked on what you're reading, lol... And -ick.

Brigette Olmos-Arreola said...

It totally weirds me out too! Mac and I have the biggest debate about this so now he has gotten a midcentury box to keep all of this reading material in but out of sight as well, haha.

Rebeka said...

No books or magazines in mine. I don't feel like I'm ever in there long enough to warrant having them in there. Plus it just seems kind of dirty to me.

But, I do love that map bathroom picture! So good!

Alessia said...

My husband's bathrooom is more like a library... I on the otherhand don't understand the whole 'relaxing on the toilet with a good book' thing, and am in and out. I think this is a venus vs. mars thing...

Amy said...

I tend to be a bit impatient in there, so having something to do while I use the facilities, take a bath, etc. is nice. I take books in sometime too!

http://coffeebeansandbobbypins.blogspot.com/

Rachel said...

It kind of weirds me out too! I always thought it was a guy thing, but maybe not.

Sarah said...

Oh! I have issues about reading material in the bathroom but I covered it in a cute way. I framed 2 posters from banquet that match my bathroom (it's in shades of navy, grey and gold) that both have fun little nuggets of reading material. One is mounted so someone sitting down - with good eyesight- could read and the other is mounted where someone who might, ahem, stand to do their business could check it out!
Here's one of the prints I bought: http://shop.banquetworkshop.com/product/northern-animals-poster
The other seems to be sold out or discontinued, but they have lots of good choices!

Alessia said...

p.s. remember this?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NygOFsExGMU&feature=related

Melissa Douglas said...

I keep some reading material in the bathroom...but only for when I'm taking a bath!

Alexandra said...

Nope. Magazines in the bathroom totally gross me out. Not because of germs or anything but just because it's like...I don't know. It's a fairly intimate and revealing image to give people of yourself? Magazines stored in the bathroom would be like a vibrator stored right smack on top of the dresser, or prescriptions stored on a spice rack near the fridge, or upper lip hair remover stored on the sink counter. Everybody knows that people do these things, but nobody really needs to KNOW about it.

I don't really ever spend much time at all in the bathroom, unless I'm, like, really sick, so maybe I just have really extreme, gross associations with bathroom reading material.

Meredith said...

This TOTALLY weirds me out. Glad to know I am not alone.

Bluebird Shop said...

Yuck. No. Never. No reading material in the bathroom ever never ever. And thank you for bringing this up! It's always been a pet peeve of mine!

And regarding your PS - yes I pee in front of my mate and my kids! It's kind of hard to avoid. Seems like - whichever room I go in, they follow!

Charlotte said...

i read in the bath but that's it, I'm not a huge fan of sticking around for hours in the bathroom unless I'm bathing xx

sbt said...

No way. I'm like the bookstore in the Seinfeld episode - any reading material that makes it into the bathroom is "flagged."

Lisamarie @ Loveliness of Life said...

Oh Joanna... you have got to be the most polite girl on all of blogland. I do not know of any man who doesn't read in the bathroom. Magazines in my house have been replaced by the iPad...

ale norris said...

my husband & i don't keep any in our restrooms - we're usually in & out! but we always laugh because when we go to my parent's house, there's national geographics and newspapers. we're talkin' stacks of these things. i mean, really?! that's some heavy reading.

-ale @ http://24thru30.blogspot.com

Laura Kunkel said...

My father-in-law keeps sodoku books in his bathroom. Ha!

meaghantothemax said...

Ha, I come from a big family of bathroom readers - I'm always wandering around the house with a book. Although because our bathroom is small we don't leave anything in it, I certainly have no problem with people who do.

I don't really get the hygiene complaint - we clean our bathroom twice a week, and it's not like I'm, uh, *doing* anything on my hands or the shelf...

Rebecca said...

Does anyone really need to spend that long in there that they need something to entertain them? Surely if it's taking that long, there's something wrong with your diet :D

Carol said...

We have separate bathrooms and mine has the occasional catalogue but his is chock full of discarded newspaper sections and half read books and all kinds of esoteric reading material. My bottom falls alseep if I sit too long but he spends days in there. Must be a male thing.

Christy said...

My in-laws have a huge backet of catalogues right next to the toilet in the main bathroom. It totally grosses me out. I think it's tacky too. Glad I am not the only one who doesn't like this.

Kate Sheldon said...

We actually have a stack of children's book in our bathrooms. The reason being - our toddler loves books and the only way we could get her on the toilet to potty train her was to bribe her with books! Plus, our guests get a kick out of reading some of them when they visit the bathroom.

Jana Miller said...

Why???? Why would you read in there. Get in, get out!

lexielou said...

I LOVE that you asked this question! Confession: I sometimes do a little reading in the bathroom. However, I am totally opposed to having magazines or books on display in the bathroom. It's like we all know that goes on, but we don't need to draw attention to it or promote it. ICK! Plus, I don't like to think about the germs on those periodicals!

Miyan said...

i think magazines are ok, but i seriously never spend more time in there than i have to :)

Miyan
fly far

Giulia said...

I have always hated it. I know many lovely people who do this but even as a young teenager I remember thinking, "It's tacky. Yuck."

If I'm taking a bath, yes, I take a magazine or two in...a book. But not like what you're describing. I loathe it. I'm so glad you brought this up!

Jamie said...

LOL when I was growing up we always had Calvin and Hobbes books in the bathroom, and we (my brother and sister and I) would always leave one open right in front of the toilet in our bathroom. Never really discussed it, we just always did it and the next person would just pick up reading where the other one left off. My mom made a comment about how weird this was once, and we were all like "well yeah, makes it easy for the next person!" she CRACKED up laughing at our mutual and unspoken understanding over this matter LOL!! I actually don't have reading material in house now, but I should. Thanks for reminding me! :)

Helen said...

I'm not a fan and have no space anyway. However someone did a health study on this last year for those who are worried about that: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/booksblog/2011/oct/21/reading-on-the-loo-study

Brandon Steiner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tiffany said...

I don't get it. For me in and out as quickly as possible. I'd rather read in a comfortable chair or my bed.

truffle oil said...

i so agree with lisa marie. such a gender divide here. if it werent for the bathroom, i never would have finished east of eden. on the other hand, i agree it's not the *classiest* thing to think about. maybe keep an ipad in there with a short cartoon - and when it's over a message pops up that says, 'ok, finish up you weirdo!'

Kate said...

Joanna! I totally agree- bathrooms are where you should do your "business" and then get out! The idea of having reading material in the bathroom has this old bourgeois kind of feeling to me- like it might be classy or something, but yikes- I think it's just kind of icky to spend so much time sitting on a toilet!!

Micol said...

Joanna... Alex is right! You are crazy.
I can't believe the comments about germs.

choosethegoodlife said...

haha I never understood why people read on the toilet, I don't sit there for long so what's the point right? But since i moved in with my lover and he has some little funny books there, i started flicking through some and it's pretty cool :-) i just didn't grew up with magazine in the bathroom.... and now there a little book to learn italian that i read there.

Angry Asian said...

our bathroom isn't big enough for a stack of magazines... however, in the age of electronic devices, i have been known to take my kindle, ipad and/or android in with me.

when i was a kid and first discovered the reading in the bathroom thing, i used to HIDE OUT IN THERE with my book to get out of doing homework or chores.

Mersey said...

That's funny! My boyfriend leaves his "German for Dummies" in the bathroom!! Also, I remember my parents would put the Readers' Digest short stories collections in their bathrooms, which I always thought was a good idea.

Georgine said...

It's a free country so bring what you like to the john with you, but then by all means bring it on out with you too. I think leaving magazines for others in the loo is just yucky. You can guess what people have being doing while holding that magazine before! Thanks for thinking of me and my reading needs, but I'll peruse your coffee table next time I'm curious what you've been reading lately ;)

Lottie said...

i am kind of with you--something about it weirds me out.

i don't know i just can't stop thinking of all the germs on the magasines and stuff.

ElsaD said...

Neither me or my family has ever kept magazines in the bathroom. I just don't see the point/functionality. It doesn't work for me. Of course, it's something I could live with in future...XOXO

Jenn said...

My friend has a copy of "Everyone Poops" in her bathroom for humorous decor, but that's about as far as I'll go.

Keep the door locked, turn on the fan, wash your hands, get in and get out. I want it to seem like you just stepped into and came back from Narnia. Less I know, the better!

Love your blog! :D

momentofjenn.blogspot.com

Rebecca Frascone said...

OF COURSE!!!! It's perfect for bath time!

suzanne said...

yes! with three little ones chasing after me, the bathroom is a great place to hide for a few minutes and flip through a magazine :) no shame here!

Mindy Day said...

My American friend does so I thought it was a US thing, we dont in the Uk :P

Sara said...

I keep crossword puzzles in the bathroom! (And a couple catalogs or magazines.)

amber said...

I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm commenting from the can!

I put all copies of new magazines from the mail directly on the back of the commode. That's just where they live in this house.

Mariana said...

I am a recent convert to magazines in the bathroom. I used to find the entire concept utterly repulsive, but gradually have come around to the idea. Am still a bit gross out at other peoples homes, but am ok to have a few copies of Elle Decor or Living Etc. in my own 'loo'. I don't hang around in there - no point having books!

Carly said...

Jamie's comment at 11.41 made me laugh!

When I first started dating my boyfriend he lived with a group of 5 guys and they had books in the bathroom. It really grossed me out because I always noticed how long his housemates spent in the bathroom and the stench that followed (too much information?)

Anyway, we don't have any reading material in our bathroom but I do like to take one in with me when having a bath but I'm guessing that's quite common isn't it?

Unknown said...

I don't get why people think books in the bathroom are so gross. It's not like theyre any closer to your business than your face is while you're in there. You touch them BEFORE you wipe, right? Plus you keep lots of other stuff in there, like towels and your toothbrush. Why isn't it gross for those things to be around?

marf said...

we have a stash that my husband reads while he's hiding from the children. our kids (ages 6 & 8) now pick up a magazine while they are using the toilette. it cracks me up every time i see one of them in there reading wine spectator, little legs dangling in the air.

Meg said...

Oh my goodness, that's hilarious! I definitely keep magazines in the bathroom...but AFTER I'm done reading them ;) I keep feeling like guests would get bored in there...and I don't want them to notice my dirty mirror ;)

Sophie said...

What is up with all those commenters saying it would be "gross" and there would be "germs" on the magazines and books in the bathroom? Can we clean up with the belief that bathrooms are unclean rooms? You can have reading material in your bathroom and please, don't make people believe that this was something forbidden and gross. You go to the bathroom with mostly clean hands (as you go everywhere with hopefully clean hands) and you read while sitting. When would this be gross? Did you ever go to a library? Do you read at the doctor's? Do you have reading material on your work desk? Then you shouldn't, if you tell people they are gross when they read in the bathroom. Sorry for being a bit upset, but this really is something I cannot believe - all those cleaning fanatics when it comes to toilet-things. It is just normal and you do not get sick by reading a book that someone else has touched.

Kerikins said...

Nope! Totally creeps me out. I dated someone a few years back and when we visited his parents house I noticed a whole basket of novels, crossword books and loads of magazines in the bathroom. So gross. ;-)

Ashley G said...

Unless you are ill, how long does it take to poop? I mean, REALLY? The only time I have ever taken reading material to a bathroom is when I've had running induced IBS, or have had a stomach bug.

I also agree that it's unclean. Which, I would say is fine in your own household, but I wouldn't dare touch a magazine in someone elses.... eeewwww.

Ana F. said...

My husband keeps his science magazines there. I find that hilarious. I don't think I spend enough time there to think about going through a magazine...

Sara said...

I have no problem with reading material in the bathroom. A long book, haha, that is funny, but that kind of reading can be done in a bath tub or ... when my toddler takes a bath I sit in their and read. I don't consider bathrooms dirty or germy. I keep my tooth brush in their, are the same germs landing on books landing on my toothbrush too...????

What is funny to me is how many people think sitting on a toilet seat in a public bathroom is OK (have read this topic on a similar kind of forum) but reading in a bathroom is "Gross".
Very contradicting in my opinion!

Kristina said...

I don't actually have anything in the bathroom in my apartment, but there were always magazines and books in the bathrooms in my parents house. I don't think it's gross as long as you put the lid down before you flush so germs don't go everywhere.

The bathroom in this picture is so charming, is this one of yours or something you found?

Kristina

Kristina does the Internets

Sara G. said...

My friend in college kept him jounalism textbook in the bathroom and would read everytime he had a....ummm...."long one". By the end of the week he'd finish the chapter he had for homework. Haha

sydney85 said...

I prefer to read in a comfortable place so the bathroom is not the place for me. I would choose my couch or my bed for my reading at home.

Laura J said...

I am also weirded out by reading material in the bathroom. Ho wlong do people sit in there?? It also gives me a terrible bathroom visual of the resident...

dc said...

My husband complemented my dad on his toilet paper holder with a built in magazine rack so of course he was gifted one just like it.

I don't worry about hygiene and the people who are should be more worried about their toothbrushes! I've been to lots of people's houses where the toothbrushes are on the sink right beside the toilet. I'll have to say that grosses me out!

near and far said...

Good friends of mine wallpapered their guest bathroom with pages from romance novels the former owner had left in their apartment. I often wish I needed more time in the bathroom than I did (and that you could read the other side of the pages:).

Emily said...

Are you serious? Unless you ladies are in a constant state of diarrhea every time you've gotta go #2.. I don't see how it's a quick "in and out" process (just being honest here). The bathroom is a quiet place to get some reading done while working on some.. other things as well. ;)

Allison said...

Um, sometimes you CAN'T just "get in, get out." Sometimes things just... take awhile.

::cough cough::

That said, we don't always have reading material in our bathroom, but I will take my iPhone in with me if I think I'll be awhile. That's usually how I quickly check blogs while I'm working! ;) Hey, what else am I going to do? Just sit there?

kaela said...

hahahaha this is cracking me up....

we always had magazines in the bathroom when i was growing up from highlights to jc penney. maybe there was a "fix it yourself" book or something in there from time to time, but never novels just hanging out.....if those make it into the bathroom it's reading material while taking a bath. now that i live in my own place, i find that she brings over magazines she's looked through and leaves them in my bathroom of all places LOL....

I was casually sleeping with a guy who took showers only so it was a little off putting to see this STACK of novels, TIME magazine, etc. in his bathroom... but at the same time it was nice to see intellectual material and not maxim.....hahahaha I'm glad you reminded me of how baffled I was by that every time i was in his restroom.....

kaela said...

and by she i meant my mother hahaha

brooklynash said...

omg no. reading material in the bathroom weirds me out. just like seeing a cute boy in the grocery store while holding an extra large package of toilet paper rolls. no. just no.

Sarah said...

I don't do it. I just want to get in then out lol

- Sarah
agirlintransit.blogspot.com

theboxwoodblog said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jessica Kulick said...

I have to be honest, I'm surprised at how many people find it unhygienic to leave magazines or books in the bathroom. Here's a little (admittedly gross) tidbit: when a toilet is flushed, those droplets of water can spray up to 6 feet in the air! So the fact is, unless you're deep cleaning you're bathroom daily (and who has time for that?!), there are going to be some icky particles flying about.

And just think of all the studies they've done on the disgusting microbes that are found on dollar bills and such! I'm all for cleanliness, but at some point we just have to come to terms with the fact that everyone poops.

:D

Dom at Belleau Kitchen said...

I don't understand why people obsess about germs, as if any other room in the house is germ free? Germs are everywhere on everything we touch. No getting away from it and if you think the books on your shelves are any cleaner than the books and magazines in your bathroom then you're wrong. Assuming you wash your hands on a regular non obsessive basis you'll be fine! Needless to say I have a stack of magazines and books in the bathroom, kitchen, living room and garden shed!

CYLiou said...

Huh. I didn't realize people looked down so much on reading materials in the bathroom. We do keep magazines in our bathroom because our family has some people who simply aren't physically able to do their business very quickly. (On the other hand, I'm built as an in-and-out girl.) I do expect common hygenic courtesy, meaning that you don't handle the magazines *after* you've wiped or otherwise touched your body. With that, I really don't see why anyone should be judged for keeping reading materials in the bathroom.

inaina said...

a fried of mine used to work in a nursing home. She spent a lot of time accompanying the elderly people to the bathroom and (I'm sorry but it's true) pushing back their intestines. The anus muscles tend to wear out, especially when you waste too much time reading, sitting on the toilet. You're pushing (subconciously) all the time you're sitting there. Pelvic floor exercises are very helpful...

Do I have to mention that I never read with dropped pants ever after? (((o;
ina

VintageDanielle said...

I've seen it alot but I wouldn't do it personally. It depends on where the reading material is compared to the toilet but it could be unhygienic. Plus most people now and days just bring their smart phones haha.

Heba said...

I love to have something to read in the bathroom but I don't keep magazines or books in there, I keep magazines in a table next to the bathroom door and when I want to go I take a magazine with me.. its crazy but not a bad idea

amber said...

When I was a kid, my dad always kept copies of the WatchTower in the bathroom. My grandma would send them and despite his differing beliefs, he said he couldn't throw them away.

No reading material in my potty room. Though, my fiance has been known to bring his phone in with him when he takes care of business :)

Manda said...

Welllll....
Sometimes.
It's nice to have something in there to keep you occupied.
Flu, much?

Also...
My Parents have always had electronic games in their bathroom. :) I think Yahtzee is the preference :)

Ha!
Such a funny post. :)
I'm surprised how many people are clearly one way or another!
Eat Cake

Kate said...

@Idle Wife - Yes! Totally agree!

@Jessica Kulick and @Dom - I totally agree with you! I would add that almost all of the un-hygienic commentors keep their toothbrushes in the bathroom, eh?

I am loving all these responses. So funny. Seeing a stack of magazines someplace kind of weirds me out in the lets-all-acknowledge-whats-really-going-on-here kind of way, but more often than not I appreciate it.

Not so esoteric said...

It's kinda gross. But sometimes I end up spend more time in the bathroom than I wanted to so reading material does come in handy.
But I also always close the lid, and not doing so is REALLY gross.

Jeanne said...

Yes, magazines, books and crossword puzzles. I recently began bringing in my Kindle Fire and surf the web. It began as a child with 3 sisters and one bathroom. Privacy was rare in our small three bedroom ranch. Then as a mother...and now the habit is ingrained in my senior years. Too bad for hubby that we recently traded in our 3 bathroom tri level for a 1 bathroom bungalow in Florida.

Amy P said...

I think now that smartphones exist magazines in the bathroom are kind of unnecessary...I see why people like to have them in there, but it is a little funky to think about especially when it comes to guests.

We have an Uncle John's bathroom reader for my husband in our only bathroom, but I find it a little weird (and tacky) and try to keep it hidden in the cupboard beside the toilet. If we had an ensuite to put it in I wouldn't care.

Alexa said...

dying over these comments, especially marf at 12:10: "we have a stash that my husband reads while he's hiding from the children. " hahaha!

my parents have a book of random facts in their bathroom, which is how i know that the glue on the back of postage stamps is the favorite food of cockroaches. and, believe it or not, that information has actually come up in conversation once or twice :)

Sarah Cox said...

honestly, i didnt realize people didn't read in the bathroom...hahaha. i highly recommend it if you havent, especially if you have kids, its one of the only places to escape!

Rachael {all things beautiful} said...

Definitely a DO in my book :) I love reading material in the bathroom. Haha!

jodi said...

This is too funny! I'm surprised no one has mentioned the Seinfeld episode about this exact thing:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NygOFsExGMU

Oh, and no for me : )

Jessica M. said...

I house my collection of home design mags in our hallway bathroom. I just don't know where else to put them... so now the collection has grown into an obsurd number of magazines in one tiny bathroom, it's sort of a joke.

ZADIN said...

During our entire life think how much time we spend in the bathroom?

I personally don't want to waste any moment... so... I DO... I have a pile of magazines in the bathroom.

www.zadinblog.com

Julie M. said...

It is fascinating for me to read about this kind of subject. I am French, and every time this type of " intimate " subjects comes out, I can totally see the cultural differences and how " prudish " American can be. It's so interesting to see how much people are in denial of being simply human ! Guess what Ladies, we are ALL THE SAME, we all go to the bathroom, you might as well be productive or relax, there is NOTHING wrong with it !

PoetessWug said...

What a great post!...Number one, in our house, there is no point to putting reading material in the bathroom. We go in there "for a reason!" LOL And if my friends have to use our bathroom I don't want to put reading material in there, encouraging them to ignore US!! ^_^ ...As to your 'P.S.' question: OF COURSE we do! We've been married for 30 years, and together for at least 4 years before that. Whatever secrets we used to have, are long since forgotten! Besides, I don't understand being married to someone, that you're intimate with!, but that you have issues of dressing, or undressing, in front of! Really?!....Why?!! O_O

Sammi said...

it's not for me. i can't sit on the loo for that long, but when i lived with a boyfriend we totally had magazines and newspapers in the bathroom

Shelley said...

I seriously don't know what men are doing in there. I am in and out like 3 min tops! My fiance takes about 30 min...haha maybe it's a man's time to get away

I find reading material disgusting in the bathroom - just take a second to look up the spread of germs from a toilet flushing and you'll know why

Candice said...

When I was a little girl I read books in the bathroom. Now I take my smartphone and play solitaire. Usually I have one hand on the phone and one hand petting the cat that bothers me when I am in there!

K said...

As someone who suffers from ulcerative colitis, I spend a ton of time in the bathroom. It sucks, and I am happy to have magazines, catalogs, or a book. I draw the line at computers/phones/ipads, though.

My dream bathroom would have a big open window facing the ocean and a large stack of magazines.

Sunny said...

Apparently people who read in the bathroom are more depressed than those who don't. Interesting, right? No reading materials for me, but my boyfriend will take in books, magazines-- even his iPad!

Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

No! It totally grosses me out. And I feel weird when I am in a bathroom that has a stack of reading material. Ew!

KK

Heather said...

We don't have reading material, but we do have the hand-held Hangman game that is left in the bathroom.

Nicole said...

don't! i'm totally with you joanna, reading material in the bathroom weirds me out. there are entertainment magazines in the women's bathroom at my office and i always wonder who is in there catching up on their gossip.

tomandemma said...

We have a stack of Empire magazines - so great. Do the business, decide on a movie to watch in one go.

Gabrielle said...

I think its fine. Not germy/unclean either - there are so many worse germy places than that, that you happily put your hands on all the time (handrails, door handles, elevator buttons) so why stress. Making sure you wash your hands before you eat, prepare food, touch your face etc. is what matters.

For all the comments regarding "I don't know how people take that long...get in and get out". Its not a matter of it taking longer, and you having more time to read, its a matter of it being a relaxing, quiet, chilled out place in the house. Maybe its just a matter of being more comfortable with your bodily functions rather than being so freaked out by it and thinking its 'dirty' and that its something you have to get over and done with in such a hurry to be away from. I wonder if there is a correlation between people who are worried about this, and those who have worried about being naked in front of their family members (including children) for functional purposes (showering, getting changed etc.).

Loved this part in the linked article someone put earlier (http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/booksblog/2011/oct/21/reading-on-the-loo-study):

"To be blunt, bugs in your poo can get on your hands, be transferred to your reading material, and on to the hands of some other unfortunate. That risk is quite slim though. As Curtis says, "we don't need to get anal about it".

"The important thing is to wash your hands with soap after using the loo to get the bugs off," Curtis says. This way, even if you flicked through a shit-smeared copy of the Metro left on the toilet floor at Reading station, washing your hands before leaving should keep you quite safe. Of course, if you ran your hands over the most soiled pages, picked your nose and rubbed your fingers in your eyes, you might well get an infection. For the determined, there is always a way."

Crystal (theweekendhomemaker.com) said...

I do not read in the bathroom but I do talk on the phone - not sure which is more weird. Though I usually do it to hide from the kids.

Lauren said...

I'm with you! I find it kind of gross. Growing up, my dad always kept tons of magazines in the bathroom, and he'd sometimes be in there for such a long time. I really didn't understand it. And my cousin refers to the bathroom as "his office". Yuck! When my husband and I were first living together, I found out that not all men do this. Thank goodness!

Gabrielle said...

To add, when we were kids we had laminated maps (world, and more detailed ones of different countries) on the walls and back of the door in the toilet. Maybe those would be easier to clean for those who are fearful. Why not make the most of your time in there and learn something.

Flo~ said...

Love this post. There's this whole category of "bathroom readers"(someone mentioned the Uncle John reader) that I've always been fascinated by--there's quite a few of them, so I imagine that a lot of people buy them and put them in their bathrooms.

I think the bathroom's too damp to keep any kind of paper in it. Plus I have a tiny NYC apartment bathroom--adds too much clutter.

Carol said...

I place all critical reading material (mutual fund prospecti, self-help books) in the bathroom wine-crate "book cases." It's the best-lit room and has a captive audience.
I wrote and sized my second book with bathroom readership in mind: www.liquidgoldbook.com
(Also: Love the bathroom in the photo. I inherited one of those giant Nat'l Geo wall maps and will do same now.)

Anetka said...

magazines MUST be in the bathroom!

we have a basket full of magazines next to the toilet: design magazines and also cooking magazines :-DDD

a friend of mine has also Bible there...

Unknown said...

I, too, am quite weirded out by reading material in the bathroom. I feel like if you have time to read on the toilet, you might need to add some fiber to your diet, if you know what I mean? My boss used to disappear for a good 30 minutes or so and emerge from the bathroom with a magazine dogeared with articles to share (shudder).

Cláudia G. said...

We have a gorgeous orange plastic basquet (with hearts) were we keep the newspapers, magazines and even some comics' books. And it works, because that way the newspapers and magazines articles will be all read! :)

Laura said...

Have them but hide them! :)

Alexa said...

We always have a bunch of magazines in our bathroom - simply because that way, we ensure that they get read!

Michael and Natalie said...

No way dude, there are poop particles ALL OVER THE PLACE in bathrooms, and think of all those people who poop or pee, then wipe, then close their book, then wash their hands, GROSS.

Kristi said...

wow, i'm with the few people who don't understand all you delicate "eww"ers -- no one holds onto the reading material WHILE they wipe, or even after--after wiping you wash your hands and leave, duh. nothing unsanitary about it.

as for the many, many people who "don't get" why someone would be in there long enough to read: i envy your prompt pooing. some of us have more complicated systems! and, as you age i hear it is far more common to, so to speak, take your time. nothing disgusting about it, bodies are bodies, doin their thing however they do it.

Amy said...

I think the moral of this story is that men take FOREVER to do their business. I think women are just in and out. Less time for reading.

Alicia Marie said...

I would never get to a read or browse a single one of my fashion magazines if they were not in the bathroom. Not that that happens often. I have two small boys that seem to think it is their job to interrupt. However, we us one of the drawers for the books and magazines, so it is not seen or around for possibly accidents due to potty training...

IR said...

The funny part is...most people are worried about the germs that get on the reading material...but their toothbrushes, hair brushes, toileteries are all in there all the time!

Nina said...

I think it's gross. My sister and her family think I'm weird and she and her husband and 2 young kids all read in the bathroom. Sometimes when her daughter is engrossed in a book, she take forever to come out of the bathroom! Glad to know I'm not the only one grossed out by this! :)

Nicole Crocker said...

i'm with kristi, some of us have more complicated systems!

also i think its so funny that everyone is freaking about the germs. we keep so many other things in the bathroom all the time! what about your toothbrush? that goes in your mouth!

HeatherK said...

The comments about germs make me laugh a little! I'm not sure if anyone ever got sick from reading something in the bathroom! Plus, don't you just wash your hands when you leave anyways?

My parents (actually, my dad mostly) used to have reading material in the bathroom. We don't but I don't think it's tacky or anything... I've actually been over to friend's houses that keep catalogs in their bathroom, and guests come out and talk about interesting things they saw! They guests seemed to really appreciate it.

Becky [Apples of Gold] said...

haha! I would prefer NOT having magazines in the bathroom, or even books for that matter. However, my husband thinks it's absolutely necessary to have 'em in there. So I've pretty much had to compromise.
=(

haleysuzanne said...

Reading in the bathroom is a must. I have been caught, more than once, doing the potty dance in front of the bookcase because I needed new reading material. I even bought us a TP holder that has an attached magazine rack.

That being said, this is all for our private ensuite bath. The hall bath that guests use sports no reading material. I used to have a Garrison Keillor joke book in there, but I haven't had a book in there for a while. I figure if you're a guest, you're probably want to get in and out so no one knows what you're up to...

Margaret said...

DON'T...just say no!

Lisa said...

Joanna, this conversation reminds me of a favorite Seinfeld episode where George brings an art book into the bookstore bathroom! ha! :)

Nina Leung said...

Absolutely must have magazines (The New Yorker)in the bathroom! It's my only time to have an excuse to be in there reading. With two kids I never get time to myself, except when I'm doing my business! I take full advantage!
I do agree they should not be in the guest bathroom, only your own bathroom.

Bakehouseblog said...

I'm not sure what your Doctor's offices are like in the USA but here (England) we have magazines in our waiting rooms! Now that is horrible as everyone there is ill! I cringe at the bacteria on the old 1990's Living Etc's :)
So your own bathroom seems not as bad in the scheme of things as we all wash our hands!!!

lauravaughn said...

Haha! I have always been grossed out by this - it just feels vulgar to me, but I know so many people who think it's totally normal. One of my roommates in college even left a book of crossword puzzles in there!

becca ann said...

I love reading in the bathroom!

livefreeandfashionable said...

I have to say it is a definite DON'T in my book. Imagine all of the germs involved... Eww...

http://livefreeandfashionable.wordpress.com/

Bridget said...

Huh. I'm stumped by all the people who think it's gross or weird to have reading material in the bathroom. i do and think it's great. That is basically how I get any reading done. And I don't need it to pass the time, so to speak, it just feels like multi-tasking. My legs have even gone numb occasionally from sitting there too long, engrossed in whatever it was I was reading.

We don't have a guest washroom though so now I'm wondering how many of my friends have been grossed out by the existence and visibility of the reading material...

Danielle said...

I'm not a huge fan, nor am I an avid bathroom reader.... but I'm moving in with my boyfriend in the fall and it's a necessity for him (sidenote: boys are gross). We're stocking out bathroom with Where's Waldo books, Eye Spys and Magic Eye books, though!

- Danielle

simplemittens said...

I don't know why anyone would be in the bathroom that long, unless they're sick.. In which case, I wouldn't want to read.

Shan said...

LOL. Joanna, what a funny topic. Our bathroom in our apartment is too small to keep reading material in there but as someone who gets a little anxious sitting still for more than a minute, I wouldn't mind reading material in a guest bathroom XD Also, is it really that unhygienic? We keep our toothbrushes in the bathroom, after all.

Also, my father used to keep a little handheld electronic yahtzee game in his bathroom. Maybe that is too far, but I agree with other posters--I think it might be a man thing!

One more thing, did you know there is actually a "bathroom reader" book? I can't remember where I saw this, but it's kind of hilarious.

http://bathroomreader.com/

H said...

I do not keep reading material in my bathroom simply because I find it embarrassing! Living by myself though, I tend to have a lot of weird habits that I don't notice until my friends point out. For example, the other night my friend said, "So are you reading like seven different books right now? Because you have like seven books scattered throughout every room and each one has a little bookmark tucked halfway in." My house is littered with books but I hadn't even realized that I was currently reading that many, or that I had spread them out in every room! Every room except the bathroom...haha (:

Lauren Belteau Gerfen said...

My husband use to work in an office of about 5 other people (all women) once or twice I used their office bathroom and noticed there was a big stack of books mostly daily inspiration type stuff (specifically geared towards women). I thought this was weird. Do whatever at home but should you really be getting that settled in at work?

cozyurbanhome.blogspot.com said...

I have to be honest...I am not a fan. That said, my husband walks out of the bathroom with MY magazines and I want to kill him! REALLY? Once in the bathroom, they should not be allowed out! Just a thought.

tamara said...

Definitely some more Puritanical commenters here than I am.. I don't personally keep reading material in the bathroom, but I get a kick out of it when others do (and I will usually settle down to read for a few minutes even though I'm done using the restroom.) A funny friend of my mom's used to keep the book Everyone Poops in her bathroom, which always cracked me up.

jacobithegreat said...

I'm never in there long enough to read. My future hubby, though, enjoys it. It doesn't bother me. I figure as long as you put it down between wiping and washing your hands, there's no harm!

TwentySixEast said...

this is so funny! my husband is outraged by magazines in the bathroom. it doesn't bother me, but it is like the biggest deal in the world to him. i can't wait to show him this!

kelly of http://www.twosixe.blogspot.com

Shelley said...

I've seen people commenting about correlations between super anal people who dislike magazines and books in bathrooms and being uncomfortable with their bodies and such - I love my body, have no shame of talking about these things or of being naked - I don't care about these things. :) I don't have to "get away" from my natural functions as soon as possible - it just simply takes me like 20 seconds to do my business and I'm certainly not gonna hang around afterwards haha

Shelley said...

maybe try kombucha ;) haha

Leigh said...

My parents and brothers always had magazines and books in their bathrooms, but never the guest bathroom. I always just thought it was normal for people to read in there every once in a while. Haha what's wrong with multitasking? :)

jkaye said...

So glad I'm not the only one weirded out by this. I just really don't think reading material belongs in the bathroom... but obviously this is a personal thing! I don't care if other people do it. Although, I agree with other commenters that it puts that mental image in your head, haha.

So R. said...

this is hilarious, why people get so grossed out about magazines in the bathroom, you keep your tooth brush in there too don't you?

Christy said...

These comments are so fascinating! Books or other reading material in the bathroom are a nice idea- they can be quirky or reference, or entertainment- anything to pass the time when spending a little longer than anticipated in the powder room :) Other people's bathrooms (*not* their medicine cabinets!) are always interesting to check out. Besides, I'm all for being real and acknowledging something that some call "gross", and I call something we all do as a natural bodily function. (reminds me of that children's book, "Everybody Poops" :)

This is giving me ideas for designing my own bathroom- and I love your makeover photos, Joanna! What a difference!

Jennie said...

What I do in the bathroom is strictly business, not pleasure, so no, I do not have reading material in my bathrooms. Occasionally I have brought a book in there with me throughout my life, but not recently and not often. I spend as little time in there as possible.

brianna said...

I have my own bathroom (we're lucky to have three in our little townhouse) and I keep reading material in there. I found that after I had my daughter, I find my alone time is only unquestioned/uninterrupted if I'm in the bathroom, so I tend to linger. Now, I know this sounds gross, I actually look forward to my little escape. It's not like I'm having appetizers and wine or anything. I also store my mags up on a shelf away from the toilet. :)

Karen D said...

We totally do! Maybe it's because I live in a house full of boys, but we all read in the bathroom. I think we probably made it seem okay and normal because books in the bathroom were part of potty training. I guess we just don't freak out about germs...after all, we do wash our hands and the bathroom is spot cleaned every day. We don't leave magazines out for guests, but I'm pretty sure our guest bath has a drawer full of Lego magazines my boys have stashed in there:) When my boys were babies, the bathroom was often the only quiet time I had all day. So, yes, I did bring a magazine in with me on occasion!

brinnet said...

Ugh, no. I am so not a bathroom reader. I'm trying to "train" my husband to stop doing it, but little success so far.

Hannah Rosette said...

I think it's don't! Besides the "cootie" issue, I don't think toilets are very comfortable so why read a book in there? Leave books and other reading materials for company to curl up with on a comfy couch =)
TheLittleRosette

Meredith said...

Haha, I'm with you! I can't imagine what the heck people are doing in there that would take so long as to merit reading a book! I'll take a book in the bathtub with me every once in a blue moon, but it doesn't really touch anything other than clean hands! But I do take my phone in with me sometimes, which is probably more disgusting as it is closer to my face.

Michelle Foster said...

Haha love this!
I used to be okay with it when I was growing up but since living with the BF it's kinda started to gross me out.
The funniest part is when one of my magazines go missing I go running to the bathroom and come out saying "baaaaaaaaaabe - come on" , which he replies with a smirk.
Dang it! now I hide my magazines lol
-Michelle {LiveLoudly}

Sarah Jane said...

i couldn't help but laugh at the post, I have a range of material in my bathroom from Bobbi Brown makeups how to's, to National Geographic Traveler to the actual Bathroom Book series, haha!

paisleyjunk said...

When I want my husband to read an article about raising kids, being more awesome than he already is, or look at something I want to discuss buying, I set it in there for him.

sumslay said...

I do in the guest bathrooms, but...no. I think it's gross. Once in the bathroom, they are only for bathroom. I do have a funny book (I can't remember the exact name) that's specifically for bathroom reading.

Kristen from Try, Try Again said...

I'm with you, I find it super weird. Do you really want people to hunker down and stay a while?

Unknown said...

Funny post- We don't have a guest bathroom but I was always against any sort of bathroom reading material until I got married. I have to compromise on some things, right? My husband thinks is totally normal to have reading material in there so we have a basket that holds our New York mags and other related reading material. I've laid down the rule of- once it's in there, it stays in there until it's ready to get tossed. At least he agrees with that!

fleur_delicious said...

hubs and I just carry our own in if we're going to be a while. We do keep one book of sudoku puzzles in there. We jokingly call them the "poozles" =)

Alejandra Ramos said...

I'll bring something into the bathroom to read with me (as does my husband), but I won't leave magazines or books there when company come over.

Deborah Matalon said...

OMG I didn't realice about the germs!!! I have a chic basket full of chic magazines in MY GuEST BATHROOM!!!... there is nothing chic about it :-&

Melissa Blake said...

A definite DON'T for me. Although, it might be fun to do a little social experient. You could put some magazines in there and see who is more likely to be in the bathroom longer hahaha

Jillian said...

Sometimes you need to take your mind off of things to let everything....relax?

jean goddard said...

i really like this map wallpaper.

Emily Wachelka said...

PEOPLE! How can you think reading in the bathroom is weird?! I keep magazines in the bathroom and I always read a bit, even if I am only in there for a few seconds. It's a lovely escape (especially if you have a baby).

Also - why is it gross? You are touching the magazines BEFORE you do any...er... wiping or flushing. So I see no problem there.

Also... if I am at your house and you have no reading material, I will find something to read for sure. Shampoo bottle, lotion bottle.... anything within reach is game!

katilda said...

I was at my little sister's house last weekend and noticed a children's book in her bathroom called "Underwear Do's and Don'ts"...and I thought that was really funny. Then I remembered I gave it to her for Christmas a few years back...and then it was even funnier.

Tara Marie said...

I keep my Jcrew catalogues and old magazines in my bathroom. I really like having my space and alone time, so sometimes I just sit in there and chill out away from my fiance. I throw them out every couple of months, and I don't really care what kind of message that sends to other people. There's WAY too many other things to worry about than if my guests are creeped out by a magazine. Just don't touch it then! Plus, I read them before my hands come in contact with anything, *ahem*. And even if there's germs on the reading material, I always wash my hands before leaving the bathroom, so that problem is taken care of. Actually, I'm more grossed out by the idea that some people AREN'T washing their hands at home!

mp said...

don't! i just think it's weird and i have never in my life felt the need or been in the bathroom for a length of time that required reading material - i don't understand it. not to mention i'm a total germaphobe and i feel like they are just so gross!

Karen Travels said...

Always! grew up with magazines and gardening books next to the toilet. now I have a plethora of reading material (but only in MY bathroom, not the guest!! I guess I can see how it could be gross . . . maybe something could splatter??

Kelli @ Life at 818 said...

yeah sure we do! Just a natural thing around here. No biggie :o)

Gillian said...

We have baskets of magazines in both bathrooms at my parent's house. It's the only time anyone has a chance to read them! And my mum and I are both bathtub readers... some of my favourite books are sad and wrinkled because they've been dropped in the bath :-)

Luna said...

If the loo is in a seperate room, it's nice to have a read while soaking in the bathtub.

We have a full bathroom; bathtub, shower, wash area + loo = NO. There is just something irksome about toilets and reading material. Hygiene? Time factor?

Audrey said...

Absolutely! We have a huge basket full of magazines. There's a little something for everyone. I often catch my five year old sitting there with a magazine spread out on her lap. It cracks me up!!!

Virginia Valdez said...

Funny thing ... I think men and reading in the bathroom go together ... but women ... no. My husband always takes his phone in the bathroom and scrolls through his Twitter feed and totally takes his time. I get in and out quickly. Even when we're out, and we both go in a public restroom at the same time, I always beat him out.

Michelle {lovely little things} said...

haha, 401 K's for dummies sounds like a book I should read!

Jenn said...

The other day...in 2010?
http://www.glamour.com/sex-love-life/blogs/smitten/2010/01/moving-in-together-do-or-dont.html

I love your blog, but isn't there another way than to lie about when conversations/events occur? (such as, "a couple years ago, I was at a friend's house [I mentioned this on Glamour at the time] and they had magazines in their bathroom!")
Just a thought to consider for any similar future posts.

Michelle said...

That is so funny that you wrote about this. I was *just* thinking about it this morning. My husband has been known to finish a novel while on the John. I, on the other hand, only go in there if I have business to take care of. Then I leave. There is no lingering and finishing novels for me.

Brooke said...

Yes to reading material in the bath area, one of the only changes I get to read at home is in the bath. But no to reading material in the toilet. Get in get out, on need to hang around people.

GeezLouise! said...

Lol some opinions around this are funny! My hubby spends forever on the loo (which is slightly annoying when it's only one toilet in the house!), and if my system is moving a bit slow, then it's nice to have something to do while you're waiting - and besides, if you shut the lid you shouldn't have too many problems (and the smell dissipates faster too). I mean, you have toothbrushes, bottles of face cream and deodorant and all sorts of things... just wash your hands and you're all good! Germs/bacteria find it difficult to live on a magazine page, mostly because they require a surface that stays warm and damp to be able to breed, and they don't get terribly close to anything that will give it enough time to breed. Things like your phone however can provide nice places for germs to breed, because of its proximity to your face/hair/ear when you use it.

Abbey Rodriguez said...

I'm fairly certain the whole 'red flagging' thing is pretty exclusive to men. Forget about the reading material in the bathroom being weird. Let's talk about the residue possibly left on said reading material. Yuck! I'm a bit of a germaphobe though.

z said...

Joanna,

As others have pointed out, this post is pretty much a rehash of a 2010 Glamour post.

What I don't get is why you haven't bothered to make any reference to the old post, when you acknowledged the need for it in your apology for the "misstep" in http://joannagoddard.blogspot.com/2012/07/what-sex-feels-like-to-guys.html

The apology rings hollow when you jump straight back into making the same "misstep".

Megan said...

Wow, I was just thinking about this very thing the other day! Growing up we never had magazines or any reading material in the bathroom. But my husband likes to have magazines in there, so we have them in our bathroom now. I remember thinking it was gross at first, but then I got used to them being there. And now we have the habit of just putting magazines of his in there as they come in the mail. The problem is that they start to stack up... the other day I was cleaning the bathroom, noticed the overflowing stack of magazines, and realized that our guests must be totally disgusted thinking about how much time we must spend in there!!

-Megan
meganesass.blogspot.com

Nostalgia said...

After having children I started reading in the bathroom - that's the only place I seem to have to myself for a few minutes. Children change us so much. :)

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