What is a Bidet? (And How to Use One Like a Pro!)

If you’re wondering what the bidet buzz is all about, you’re in the right place. In this post, we’ll explain what bidets can do and how to use one so you’re prepared the next time you encounter one in the wild. And after seeing all the perks, you may decide your bathroom can’t go another day without one!

Bidet in bathroom 2

Let’s get started! What is a bidet, exactly?

Bidets are bathroom accessories that clean off your privates with a spray of water so that you don’t have to wipe. Most people use them after they poop or urinate, but that’s not the only time you might want one!

Bidet in bathroom

Bidets offer a gentle way to clean up after being intimate, during menstruation, after childbirth or when you’re trying to heal tender areas caused by hemorrhoids, fissures, IBS and other medical issues. Some bidets even have special features that unblock constipation!

Bidets are super useful for people who have a hard time wiping due to mobility issues or age. In fact, many of our customers are shopping for a loved one who can no longer use the bathroom on their own. Others come to us because they’re having surgery that will put their dominant arm or hand out of commission, and they need a bathroom solution while they heal.

Many of our customers simply want a better way to get clean, and bidets do just that! Instead of smearing waste across the skin like toilet paper, a bidet’s spray totally removes it. That means you’re left with sparkling clean skin and a shower-fresh feel – no more odor or itching!

Believe it or not, bidets do more than get you clean! They help protect the environment and your budget by reducing the need for toilet paper. And they come in a bunch of different styles and price points, so there’s a bidet for everyone.

Speaking of different bidet styles, let’s talk about that next!

Types of Bidets

There are two main types of bidets: non-electric and electric. Non-electric bidets run on the power of your home’s water pressure and perform a super simple wash. Electric bidets plug into the wall and have tons of features, giving you a deluxe experience!

What is a Bidet Toilet Seat?

Bidet toilet seats replace your regular toilet seat. They can be either electric or non-electric.

When you start the bidet wash, a wand with nozzles on the end comes out of a compartment in the back of the seat and sprays your privates with water. When it’s done, the wand retracts into the seat’s shell to stay clean.

What is a bidet seat
Cascade 3000 Bidet Toilet Seat

What is a Bidet Toilet?

Bidet toilets are just as they sound: a bidet and toilet in one! With a super modern look and tons of deluxe features, they’re your golden ticket to a bathroom that looks great and provides a truly luxurious experience. All bidet toilets require electricity to run.

TOTO Neorest Bidet Toilet
TOTO Neorest Bidet Toilet

What is a bidet attachment, sprayer or traditional bidet?

Bidet attachment
Bidet Attachment

Bidet attachments, sprayers and traditional bidets are non-electric options for adding a basic bidet cleanse to your bathroom.

  • Bidet attachments are inexpensive accessories that fit in between your toilet seat and toilet. They have a water-spraying wand that’s controlled by dials or levers.
  • Hand held sprayers (shattafs) look like a sprayer you’d see attached to a kitchen sink. They have a long, flexible hose and sit in a holster mounted to your toilet or the wall.
  • Traditional (stand alone) bidets look like a mini sink and sit next to the toilet. But don’t be fooled! They’re for washing your bum, not your hands!

Who Uses a Bidet?

A lot of people ask us if bidets are just for women or if men can used them too. Here’s the answer: anyone can use a bidet! No matter what you look like “down there” or how old you are, a bidet will do a better job getting you clean than toilet paper.

How to Use a Bidet Seat, Bidet Toilet or Bidet Attachment

The good news about using a bidet? It’s easy!Here are step by step instructions for using any bidet toilet or bidet seat/attachment with confidence.

1. First, figure out if the bidet is electric or non-electric by checking for a plug running from the bidet/toilet to the wall.

YES, THERE’S A PLUG….you’re working with an electric bidet! Prepare to be pampered by heated water and lots of other deluxe features!

NO, THERE’S NOT A PLUG…it’s a non-electric bidet. Your next move is to see if there’s a hose connecting the bidet to the plumbing under the bathroom sink(Note: All bidets have a hose that connects to the wall plumbing behind your toilet – you’re looking for a separate hose running to the sink’s plumbing).

Electric Bidet Converter Kit
Electric Bidet (with plug)
Non-Electric Bidet Converter Kit
Non-Electric Bidet (no plug)

If there’s a hose running to the sink’s plumbing, run the sink’s water until it’s warm before you sit down. This will tee-up the warm water for your bidet wash

If there’s no hose running to the sink (just the wall), go ahead and sit down – this bidet is cold water only, so your wash will be crisp and invigorating!

2. Check out the controls.

Electric bidets are controlled by a remote or by a panel attached to the side of the seat. You’ll see buttons for adjusting the seat temperature, starting/stopping the wash, water temperature, and much more!

Swash 1400 Wireless Remote Control
Bidet remote
Tushy side arm control
Bidet side arm control

Non-electric bidets are controlled by levers or knobs on the side of the seat.

Tushy side control dial
Bidet dial side control
Bidet side control lever
Bidet lever side control

3. Once you’re seated on the toilet and ready to get clean, start the bidet wash.

TOTO Wash Button
TOTO Washlet wash button
Side arm dial
Side arm dial

Most bidets have two wash options (minimum): rear washing is for cleaning your bum after a poop, and front washing is for cleansing female anatomy.

On an electric bidet seat or bidet toilet, simply press the “wash” button, then sit back and let the bidet do the rest! Once the wash starts, you can use the other buttons to adjust the spray’s position, intensity, etc. The wash will finish on its own after about 30 seconds.

On a non-electric bidet, you’ll need to turn a dial or lever to start the wash. Be sure to use a gentle touch! Non-electrics don’t give you much control over the wash pressure, and you may be surprised by a blast of water if you turn the dial too fast!

Once you’re done with the wash, turn the dial or lever back to the “off” position.

4. Now that you’re clean, it’s time to dry off!

TOTO dryer button
TOTO Washlet dryer button

Many electric bidet seats and toilets have built-in warm air dryers that blow-dry your bum. It takes 3-5 minutes on average, so if you’re in a hurry, just pat dry with toilet paper and be on your way. Non-electric bidets don’t have a dryer, so grab some toilet paper and dab yourself dry.

That’s it! You’re done! You’re ready to continue with your day, powered by the confidence and comfort that comes from having a super-clean derriere.

How to Use a Hand Held Sprayer or Shattaf

Hand Held Bidet Sprayer

Different scenario: you enter the bathroom and see a sprayer clipped to the side of the toilet! What next?

Sprayers are one of the simplest bidets to use. Simply unclip it from the holster and point it at the parts you want to clean. This will involve reaching between your legs or behind you, so take care lest you get any…messiness…on your hand.

Once you’ve got the sprayer positioned, squeeze the trigger. This will release a firm stream of water towards the parts you’re trying to clean. Most sprayers are cold water only, so be ready for a pretty chilly blast!

Side Note: Sprayers are notorious for leaking, so we HIGHLY recommend turning off the t-valve connecting the sprayer to your bathroom’s water source after you finish using it. Just remember to turn it back on the next time you use the bathroom!

How to Use a Stand-Alone Bidet

Classic Bidet

Most North Americans won’t encounter a stand-alone bidet unless they’re traveling outside the country, and they can look intimidating. No need to panic! Here’s how to use a traditional, stand-alone bidet like a pro:

  1. Use the toilet like normal – if you’re wearing pants, you may want to take one leg out completely before you sit down. This will make step 2 a bit easier.
  2. When you’re ready to get clean, shift over to the bidet. Straddle it so you’re facing the bidet handle(s).
  3. Turn on the water – a stand-alone bidet will either have a hot/cold handle or a lever that can be shifted between hot and cold. Water will either come out of a spigot (like a sink), or from a jet in the bottom of the bidet.
Classic bidet lever faucet
Classic bidet lever
Classic bidet hot/cold handle
Classic bidet hot/cold handles
  1. If the bidet has a spigot, use your hand to splash water onto your privates, rinsing them off. If the bidet has a jet, adjust the jet until the water stream is pointing at the right area.
Classic bidet with spigot
Classic bidet with spigot
Classic bidet with jet
Classic bidet with jet

Most classic bidets will let you close the drain and fill the basin – use this if your bottom is extra tender and needs a warm soak.

Dab dry with toilet paper, and either toss the TP in the trash can or flush it down the toilet – never leave it in the bidet! You might notice a towel beside the bidet. This is for drying your hands, never your bum!

What Will a Bidet Cost Me?

The good news is that there’s a bidet for every budget! You’ll find bidets as cheap as $20, as pricy as $20,000, and everything in between. Our team can help you find the right bidet for your needs and wallet.

We’re Here to Help!

If you’re looking for answers to a specific question or just need help finding the perfect bidet, our team of bidet gurus is here to help. You’ll be able to touch base with a real live person (never a bot) through any of the following: