Communal bathrooms add to unique college experience


The Daily Illini File Photo

An I-Guide helps a freshman move into Hopkins Hall during move-in week in Fall 2016.

By Jackson Janes, Assistant Sports Editor

One of the scariest parts of college dorm living for some students is the communal bathroom situation. With several students all using the same bathroom, I often feared there would not be a shower available when I needed it, or it would be too crowded to use a sink when getting ready in the morning. 

The University has announced new bathroom cleaning procedures and guidelines to limit the spread of COVID-19. All bathrooms will now be cleaned daily with “hospital grade disinfectant and electrostatic devices,” all surfaces will be cleaned three to four times per day, shower walls and fixtures will receive a deep cleaning once per week, all occupants must wear a mask unless in the shower or at the sink and social distancing efforts are emphasized.

Though it may be hard to adjust to sharing a bathroom with other people, here are a few tips and helpful hints for getting used to communal bathroom living.

Always wear shower shoes or flip-flops into the shower

The bathroom is one of the biggest areas of concern when it comes to the spread of COVID-19 among students. With so many handles, fixtures and surfaces that get touched by dozens of students each day, limiting skin exposure in the bathroom is extremely important. Wearing shower shoes or flip-flops in the shower is safe and easy (athlete’s foot is a real thing!), as the shower can sometimes be pretty gross and be covered in bacteria after multiple people have used it in a day. Last semester, there was a student who never wore shoes into the bathroom and repeatedly got called out for it; don’t let that happen to you.

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Bring a shower caddy

Probably one of the most underrated college dorm purchases, a shower caddy is super handy (and cheap) and makes bathroom trips super easy and convenient. Put your shampoo, conditioner, soap, razor or deodorant in it; anything you could possibly need!

Clean up after yourself

No one likes a floormate who leaves their stuff everywhere and doesn’t clean up after themself when using the shower or sink. Body hair is disgusting and no one wants to touch it; clean it up so you don’t have to force others to deal with it. Be courteous to others and they will do the same in return. 

Don’t forget to bring your keys with you

You never know when your roommate will leave the room, even if you are only gone for a few minutes. Avoid the embarrassing trips to the front desk with your shower caddy and clothes in your hand; bring your keys everywhere you go!

Avoid peak hours

Definitely consider avoiding the bathroom during peak hours, usually between 8-9 a.m. If you are a morning shower person, don’t wait until the last minute to get ready in the morning because you never know if a shower is going to be available. If you know you are a slow-moving person in the mornings, set out your stuff the night prior (your roommate will thank you as well) and plan your time accordingly; you don’t want to be late to your classes, whether they be online or in-person!


For more information regarding the University’s COVID-19 procedures, visit 

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