Toilet seats are an integral part of your life, even if at first glance you might not realize that. Believe it or not, you will spend about 3 years of your life on the toilet seat. Imagine sitting that long on an uncomfortable, cold seat. Pure torture, right? While you might be used to the classic go-to plastic seat, there is another popular option — wood.
Plastic vs. Wood Toilet Seat: A Quick Overview
Although not as popular as its plastic counterpart, wood toilet seats are slowly gaining popularity. Likewise, plastic seats remain the default option for some, thanks to their already established quality and appeal.
There are many factors that go into choosing your perfect toilet seat — durability, price, and hygiene are just a few of those. Even so, it always boils down to personal preferences. With that out of the way, let’s take a look at toilet seats and what sets them apart from each other.
Plastic Toilet Seat: The Shiny Veteran
You might already own and love using a plastic seat. Shiny, good looking, and cheap — those modern wonders can be found anywhere. From your neighbors’ bathroom to those public portable toilets, plastic seats are indispensable. But what makes plastic seats so widely spread and should you keep using them?
One big factor when it comes to choosing a toilet seat is durability. There is nothing as annoying as having your toilet seat break right when you want to relax after a hard day at work.
Plastic is a tough material that is used in almost everything from phones to windows. Years of engineering have perfected this material so it’s made to take more than a few punches.
What might come as a surprise is that the common culprits of broken toilet seats are the joints and screws used to keep them in place. Those tend to wear down pretty quickly and then just break. That being said, you should choose a toilet seat with metal joints as they are more durable than average plastic. So, with that in mind, it’s clear that plastic gets one point for durability.
Comfort and Warmth
When it comes to warmth, plastic seats really drop the ball. Getting up from a warm bed just to sit on a cold, ice-like material is one of the worst experiences you can have.
Another thing to consider is comfort. As previously mentioned, you spend almost 3 years of your life on a toilet seat — so why not choose something comfortable? Sadly, the flimsy nature of plastic makes sitting on it for more than a few minutes a pain in the backside.
Health and Hygiene
Hygiene is important, so choosing a good, easy-to-clean toilet seat needs to be your priority. Even though it gets stained more easily and it’s prone to collecting bacteria, plastic seats are easy to clean. You can just use just a wet wipe to clean it in an instant. And if you are having trouble with urine stains, here is a great guide with insights into cleaning your toilet seats.
Being easy to clean also helps when it comes to moisture. Sweat or other body fluids are not absorbed by the seat, meaning that while they do stay on top of the seat, they can still be easily cleaned. Another benefit of the all-mighty plastic seat.
Looks and Style
Let’s admit it — plastic seats are not a work of art. Being simple, usually white chunks of plastic, they don’t add that much to the overall style of the bathroom. Plastic works best when you are going for a modern, white, all-clean aesthetic. After all, this choice only affects the look of the bathroom so it’s mainly a situational decision.
It’s time to tackle the belly of the beast — price. In general, plastic seats tend to be cheaper than other alternatives. You can find some great plastic seats for about $20 or if you want to go higher, you can spend hundreds of dollars on one. There are even some smart seats that offer extra functionality like a water spray and night light.
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Plastic Toilet Seats In a Nutshell
- Easy Cleaning
- Good Hygiene
- Friendly Pricing
- Moisture Resistant
- Cheap Looking
- Easily Stained
Best Plastic Toilet Seat
If you intend to buy a plastic seat, you should consider giving BEMIS 800EC a try. Easy to clean and install, it’s one of the most accessible and affordable toilet seats you can find. With over 4,500 positive reviews, the high quality of the product is more than guaranteed.
Wood Toilet Seats: The Stylish Alternative
While not being the popular choice when it comes to toilet seats, wood is starting to make a comeback. You might ask yourself whether you should invest in wood when plastic is already so cheap and easy to find. It’s time to find out if wood is a solid option or just another twig.
You might jump to the conclusion that a wood seat is the more durable option, but there are some things to consider. Much like every wood product, seats tend to crack. That on its own is a big deal-breaker for some — after all, who wants to sit on a cracked, warped piece of wood?
Furthermore, most wood toilet seats are coated with a special resin that makes them scratch resistant. That would be a big plus if it weren’t for the fact that the resin usually wears down with time, leaving the seat unprotected. Overall, that is a negative for wood, with plastic being the clear winner when it comes to durability.
Comfort and Warmth
You already know that plastic is a bad choice when it comes to keeping your backside from freezing off on a cold morning, but what about wood? Well, you’ll be happy to read this.
Gone are the days of hating that morning bathroom walk. As a result of being a bad heat conductor, wood tends to preserve your body temperature.
Now let’s talk about comfort. Being sturdier and heavier than a regular plastic seat is a big plus for wood — especially if you are on the heavier side of the scale. With different types of coatings and wood quality, there are more than a few options to choose from. Therefore, that is a big win for wood.
Health and Hygiene
When talking about hygiene, things start to get a bit more complex. Unlike its plastic counterpart, wood is much harder to clean. As wood is a porous material, there is no doubt that, eventually, it will get damp.
Wood toilet seats have a protective coat that helps against moisture — however, that coating will eventually wear down, as I already pointed out. After that, the wood might start cracking, letting body fluids infiltrate — eventually getting all soggy and moldy. That is a common problem with households where men might go off-target and hit the wood. Combine that with poor cleaning habits, and you have the perfect mix for a bacterial cocktail.
Look and Style
You can ask anyone and they will tell you the same thing — wood looks stylish. From walls to floors, and now toilet seats, wood has always been the more stylish option. With different types of wood to choose from, imagination is the only limit. You can even get a white-colored wood toilet seat if you are nostalgic for the classic plastic look.
That being said, wood is usually the go-to option when it comes to a traditional looking bathroom. The classy look adds to the overall style of your bathroom, adding a friendly touch to an otherwise stale room. All in all, another big win for wood toilet seats.
Last but not least, you need to consider the price. It’s true that wood toilet seats are on the pricier end of the spectrum but it all depends on what kind of wood you prefer. Exotic wood will set you back by about $70, but it will surely be much more stylish and durable than cheaper wood options.
You should also consider the fact that, as previously explained, wood tends to be prone to scratches. Think about that before you invest an arm and a leg into something you are going to replace in a matter of months.
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Wood Toilet Seats on the Chopping Block
- Good Looking
- Customizable Appearance
- Hard to Clean
- Prone to Bacteria
- Low Durability
Best Wood Toilet Seat
Although it’s among the toilet seats, the Angel Shield Wood Veneer is a great choice if you want to fancy up your bathroom. With three options available — oak, wood, and dark walnut — there is no way you can’t find one that suits your style. Combine that with one of the easiest installations on the market and you’ve got yourself a new favorite toilet seat!
Conclusion: A Throne Fit for a King
In the end, it boils down to what you want from a toilet seat. The reality is that not all toilet seats are created equal and so, both have pros and cons. Although you might be inclined to choose plastic, based on the overall hygiene aspect — others might opt for the stylish look of a hardwood toilet seat.
No matter what your final choice is, there are a lot of products for each material. That means that you will find something that satisfies your desires. Do your research and think about what you prefer and you will find your throne in no time.