The story of toilet paper: how and when it first appeared in our homes

Who could ever do without toilet paper? It might sound funny, but toilet paper has, without doubt, become an essential item in our daily lives and none of us could ever imagine life without it.

Just think that every time we make a visit to the bathroom, we use an estimated 8.6 sheets and that every inhabitant in Europe consumes an average of about 15kg of toilet paper a year: a record amount! And yet, in many countries around the world, it is still not used today or not even sold.

And if you are wondering about the origins of this paper... let’s find out together!

Who invented toilet paper?

We can describe it as long, strong and soft to the touch, but toilet paper was not always as we know it now.

While neolithic man cleaned up in the nearest stream, the Egyptians chose to use sand soaked in scented oils and the Arabs used their left hand (so much so that still today, Arab culture considers the left had to be impure and it is never used in greetings or prayer), this paper first made its appearance in 1857 in the United States.

It took the form of simple sheets of paper in a box, invented by Joseph Gayetty who was so proud of this revolution that he decided to have his name printed on every single sheet (perhaps not realising how it would be used?).

Gayetty’s paper was so successful that, in the following years, other companies also started to produce their own imitations.

But naturally, it was still far removed from the comfortable multi-ply format we are accustomed to today. For this we had to wait until 1884, when an American company in the sector decided to market it in the form of the handy rolls that we all know now, marking its effective launch on the international market.

Not just white...

So, we now know where it comes from, but have you ever wondered why white is the typical colour of toilet paper? In the past, normal toilet paper was mainly white and made from pure cellulose fibre, differentiated from recycled paper precisely by its characteristic colour.

Just think that Lucart was actually the first EU Ecolabel-certified company in Italy to produce white recycled toilet paper... and it did not stop there! Today, in fact, with the EcoNatural line, Lucart Professional boasts a range of many different kinds of toilet paper made from Fiberpack®, the raw material obtained from recycling the cellulose fibres in beverage cartons; proof that innovation and sustainability can travel hand in hand towards an eco-friendly future.


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