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If my roommates can use recycled toilet paper anyone can!

by Guest Blogger

October 7, 2009

The debate over toilet paper softness is not going anywhere soon, not in the blogs, not in the media, and certainly not in my parents’ house.

I will admit I was a loyal Angel Soft user for years, from high school when I would ask Mom to "buy the TP with the baby on the front" (how is that for brand imaging?) to college when I would throw it in my own cart at the grocery store.  I do not know what it was about that toilet paper that made me love it so, but I was one sure hooked consumer.

In college there was no Kleercut campaign on my campus.  We all happily used our Kleenex, 3-ply toilet paper, and Bounty paper towels like there was an endless supply of one roll after another.  All that changed though when I learned I was wiping up party spills with virgin wood fiber.  With the aid of the Tissue Guide I switched brands.  Yes, when my roommate and I ran out of TP one day this past spring I stopped in the paper products aisle and stared, stared at the baby and back again at the recycled toilet paper.  I had never paused before, had never considered buying another brand, but I did it.  I slid the package of recycled toilet paper under my cart and went about my grocery shopping.

When my roommate did not say anything about the new toilet paper in the bathroom I figured she had not noticed.  Not like I was trying to hide the package and trick her into thinking it was the cushy 3-ply we had been using, but a whole week went by without comment.  What was going on here?  Was the girl that had bought only Charmin really using recycled tp without a fuss?  Turns out, she was.  We went through roll after roll and when it came time to buy tp again I bought recycled.  I finally had to ask, "How do you feel about the recycled toilet paper we have been using?"  Her response, "Umm.. I don’t know if I knew it was recycled."  She had even kept a roll bedside during a particularly nasty cold, how is that for an argument against all those tissues with lotion for red, scratchy noses!

Mom, on the other hand, is still a change in progress.  Before my younger sister left for college Mom bought a pack of recycled tp for the house but she promptly replaced it with that baby on the front tp.  Does she know what that baby stands for?? 

This past weekend, I was home enjoying an afternoon with my parents when a stray paper towel blew across the backyard.  As Dad chased it down, Mom joked, "In 20 years it’ll break down!"  I stood up, walked to the paper towel holder, and said, "You know, you could at least use recycled paper towels, I don’t think the countertops will complain." 

Take this time to thank Kimberly-Clark for their commitments to protect the Boreal Forest, and please sign those petitions we mailed to you demanding sustainable practices from Proctor&Gamble!  Shop with the tissue guide and introduce those in your life to recycled paper products.  I promise you, if my twenty-something year old friends can make the switch you can too!  In the meantime I will keep working on Mom to get those paper towels changed out..

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