Flushing Money Down The Drain

In this post I’m going to do a cost analysis on Costco toilet paper vs. my long time favorite ScotTissue toilet paper.

Everyone uses toilet paper, unless you’re extremely frugal and then you might use cloth toilet paper also known as family cloth. I have to admit when I first heard about family cloth I was a little squicked out, but then I thought it might save quite a bit on toilet paper if you only used it for number one.  I mean really, what’s the difference when you laugh real hard and accidentally pee your pants?  It’s not like you throw out that pair of underwear.  But I digress, onto the analysis!

For years I only bought ScotTissue toilet paper. Then we started making more money and I allowed other members of the family to make the decision on which TP to buy. Costco’s 36 pack embossed rolls became a real favorite. One of the things I did not like about Costco was the individual plastic wrapping on each roll.  I imagine they do this because businesses buy their toilet paper and it seems to be an important practice to have the new roll wrapped, you know the one sitting on back of the toilet.  But the roll in use isn’t wrapped and sanitary, so it is really kind of weird how the “new” roll has to be protected.

I have my own bathroom – my husband and our sons use the main bathroom – and it seemed like I was constantly unwrapping another roll of toilet paper. So I decided to run an experiment.

When I unwrapped a new roll of Costco’s TP, I wrote down the day and the time. When it ran out, I wrote down the day and time. The Costco brand roll lasted TWO days.

I purchased a 12-pack of ScotTissue on sale from Walgreen’s, so I could complete my experiment. It was on sale, $13 for two 12-packs.

The ScotTissue roll lasted SIX DAYS.

Below I have inserted a cost comparison chart. ScotTissue goes on sale fairly regularly, pretty much every week a different store has it on sale. I used to buy four 12-packs, while on sale, which would last several months. As you can see from the chart below, if I had to buy the ScotTissue at regular cost, which is typically $8.99, it would still cost half as much.

From my estimation, if I am able to get ScotTissue on sale for $6.50 per 12-pack, plus tax ($7.06) the cost per roll is $0.59. I estimate that I would use 5 rolls in one month, to the cost of $2.94. My yearly cost would be $35.30.

By comparison, the Costco toilet paper costs $0.51 per roll, but I would use 15 rolls each month. The monthly cost is $7.69 and the yearly cost $92.26.


Now I’ve heard people complain about toilet paper being too rough, and they only want soft toilet paper. If you really think about it, unless you have some terrible rash or sores… can your bottom really detect the softness of toilet tissue? Isn’t it really your hands that detect the softness?

Oh, I’ve used toilet paper that’s similar in quality to newspaper, but ScotTissue is not like that. It’s not cushion-y soft, but it’s not rough like sandpaper by any means.

How much money are you flushing down the toilet?

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1 comment to Flushing Money Down The Drain

  • Tom

    Have you noticed what
    Scottissue has done to your “value statement”. When the 1000 sheet rolls were a standard in the industry, they were 4.5 inch by 4.5 inch sheets. Over the last three years the marketing of the product has pushed 1000 sheets but check out the size. It’s like selling a 9.5OZ pepsi can and trying to hide it. The Scottissue you buy today morphed from 4.5″ length, to 4.2 inch and is now I believe 3.7 length. They cut 20% out of your product and charge you more. While it remains a relative good buy, the message is, you have to watch the the product changes. They still roll the size of the product as large so most people cannot tell. In marketing it is called the “just noticeable difference”. Scottissue slipped these changes in over time to stay under the radar, and create revenue. I produced and sold the product for 20 years.

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