Toilet architecture: A case of bad UX

September 2011

A toilet is meant to be a place of relief and cleansing. It's even known as a restroom. While plenty of work has been done on decoration, ambience and feature placement, one fundamental flaw exists in pretty much all toilets: you have to pull a handle to exit.

Is it really so complex a thought? You've (hopefully) just washed your hands. You're clean and ready to face the wild world again. What stands in your way? A door. Not a door that you can push with your foot, elbow, hip or shoulder. No: a door that you must pull and for that you need a handle. A handle that you need to grasp. A handle that has been touched by several people before you. A handle that has potentially been (mis)used by individuals who choose not to wash their hands after taking care of business.

Why? Why must I use a tissue or my sleeve as a weapon against the tyrany of user experience oversight? Someone, please, solve this once and for all. Make the world a better place.