It’s been a long time since I wanted to write about the hose that exists next to each Finnish toilet. Something like this:
A strange apparatus to have in a bathroom: a hose. Source: Oras
The first time I arrived in Finland, many years ago, I was surprised by this strange apparatus. I didn’t have time to test it during my first days, so I didn’t know what was it for. I continued ignoring the hose on the following days, but with a veil of suspicion: I was afraid to know. Finally I gathered the courage and, after testing the hose, I still had my doubts.
There are several theories of its use, from what I could gather asking other people. From being the hose the substitute of the bidet, to it being used as a tool for an easy bathroom cleaning operation (this theory is mine and I’d like to think it is used for that).
Threatening the WC
As I said I used it mainly for cleaning the entire bathroom. The after-shaving operation leaves the sink clean, and the floors are clean in an instant thanks to this hose or shower-head. You can also clean the toilet with it, but let’s not get into details here.
All the power in your hands
If you want to activate this Finnish WC shower or hose, you have to open the tap of water from the sink and press the button that the hose has. In this way, the water stream starts coming out of the hose with good water pressure. Personally I think the button-activated mechanism supports everyone elses’ theory of the toilet shower as a substitute of the bidet, but I prefer not to adopt this version. For the moment.
I have seen this hose not only in private toilets – at friends’ houses – but also next to toilets in bars, restaurants, bus and train stations, and other places, although not in each and every one of them.
What’s your experience with the Finnish toilet hose? It is definitely one of the things that surprise foreigners in Finland.
Update 2018: The secret is revealed. Unveiled. If you want to know for sure the use of the toilet shower, you can find it here.
Update 2020: I found this amazing gallery of photos from the Finnish company Oras, which manufactures it. Its commercials seem to be legendary and, after seeing them myself, I don’t disagree.