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With a GI disease, Squatty Potty is a game-changer

As a person with ulcerative colitis and a J-pouch, I love this thing.

Wooden Squatty Potty in front of modern-looking toilet against teal background Credit: Reviewed / Squatty Potty

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As a person with lifelong gastrointestinal disease ulcerative colitis, for which I had J-pouch surgery in 1995, toilets are of particular interest to me. I know where all the clean, working public toilets are in my town.

As I no longer have a large intestine due to the surgery I’ve had, I have to poop more frequently than others—something many people who have IBD and IBS understand.

Explore the Squatty Potty collection

I’d seen the weird-looking toilet stool at a few people’s homes. Perched in front of the base of the toilet, the plastic Squatty Potty was a mystery.

Why do I need a step stool in front of my toilet? After a friend urged me to try it, I finally got one. It was a revelation!

What is a Squatty Potty?

On left, white plastic Squatty Potty sitting in front of toilet in front of blue background. On right, white plastic squatty potty in front of blue background.
Credit: Squatty Potty

You (and your toilet) have found your perfect match with the Squatty Potty.

The original Squatty Potty is a 7-inch high plastic step stool that nestles around the base of a toilet. The premise is as simple as the device—lift your feet and place them on the top of the step while sitting on the toilet and your body goes into a squat position for eliminating waste.

The squat-to-poop position is adopted by much of the rest of the world, but in the United States we have clung to our tall toilets, even though the science indicates squatting is superior.

The feet on the ground/butt higher up in the air Western toilet model may feel more “dignified” than squatting to poop, but it isn’t ideal for passing stool. The simple ergonomics of shifting the body by using the Squatty Potty makes pooping quicker, easier, and less messy than with a conventional Western toilet.

What I like

The Squatty Potty works

Three images of woman sitting on toilet using Squatty Potty while sitting on toilet in front of yellow background.
Credit: Squatty Potty

Using the Squatty Potty is as easy as 1, 2, 3!

While the original purpose is to help bowel movements by preventing constipation, the Squatty Potty has gained a major fan base among people like me with bowel disease. When you have a J-pouch, basically an internal pouch that tries to mimic what the colon and rectum used to do (draw water out of the stool and hold it until elimination), completely “emptying” the pouch (it’s pooping, just internally) can be a challenge.

The minor body position change caused by using the Squatty Potty can benefit anyone who poops. In fact, it’s an FDA-approved medical device.

Squatty Potty comes in many styles

On right, tan Bamboo Flip Squatty Potty in front of toilet in bathroom. On right, black and white Carrara marble Squatty Potty in front of toilet in bathroom.
Credit: Squatty Potty

Picking the ideal Squatty Potty that is just right for you seems a bit reminiscent of Goldilocks, no?

Since the original model became massively popular, with celebrities like Howard Stern and Hugh Jackman singing its praises, the company has come out with quite a few additional models, including prettier bamboo and teak wood styles, foldable models, a travel version, one with a nightlight, styles for kids and a “flippable” model that goes from 7 inches to 9 inches.

There’s even a fancy marble version! As it’s something that permanently lives in view at the base of your toilet, it’s nice to be able to select one that matches the decor.

Squatty Potty commercials minimize embarrassment

woman on toilet beside squatty potty stool
Credit: Amazon / Reviewed / Brigitt Earley

Squatty Potty marketing makes a tough subject digestible for everyone.

Advertising a product used for pooping could be a delicate proposition for even the best marketing team, but Squatty Potty nailed it. The brand voice is playful and fun, and it gets the message across with quirky language and cute images like, “The best poop of your life, guaranteed,” and “Happy colon, happy life.” You can review this website and hilarious commercials with your family without embarrassment.

What I don’t like

Squatty Potty could use more height adjustment

On left, two pieces of the adjustable Squatty Potty in front of a blue background. On right, adjustable Squatty Potty in front of toilet on blue background.
Credit: Squatty Potty

Unfortunately, with the Squatty Potty, one size doesn't necessarily fit all.

It’s hard to nitpick a simple device that offers so much help. If pressed, I would suggest a new “deluxe” model be developed that comes with a remote to allow for automatic, custom positioning of the foot shelf. The Squatty Potty only comes in two heights (7 and 9 inches), and that might not work for everyone.

Placing your feet on a pad on the ground and then using a motor to get it to a custom height that works for your body and your toilet would address this.

Squatty Potty’s commercials could be more inclusive

As someone with ulcerative colitis, it would be helpful also if they didn’t only use the word “colon” to talk about people pooping, as there are a lot of folks without a colon who still eliminate waste into toilets.

Not just J-pouchers, but ostomates who eliminate into a bag which then has to be emptied into a toilet. I had a temporary ostomy as part of my surgery journey with colitis, and I think the Squatty Potty might also be good for this community as it could help you get into an ideal position to empty your bag. They could reach even more consumers with broader language.

The Squatty Potty is tough to clean

On left, Invisibrush Hidden Toilet Brush by Squatty Potty in front of blue background. On right, Invisibrush Hidden Toilet Brush by Squatty Potty in holder in front of blue background.
Credit: Squatty Potty

While the Squatty Potty is a fantastic tool, it's not exactly easy to keep all of its nooks and crannies squeaky clean.

Finally, there have been complaints that the plastic model is hard to keep clean. I concur. My plastic model seems to attract more than its share of dust and grime, especially in the ridges where the feet sit and around the rubber feet at the bottom. Bathrooms are hard enough to keep clean without any extra hassle from a stool located in a pretty grimy location.

Should you buy a Squatty Potty?

Wooden Squatty Potty sitting in front of toilet on grass surrounded by flowers.
Credit: Squatty Potty

The Squatty Potty is definitely a step above the rest.

The Squatty Potty has a lot of positives. I recommend it for almost everyone, but particularly folks with IBD or IBS—it helps with elimination whether you struggle with constipation or diarrhea. However, if you are short or have mobility problems, it might be challenging to use.

For the $25 price, you get a sturdy, helpful item that supports a company dedicated to “improving bathroom health” around the world. The plastic is manufactured with recyclable or renewable materials and a portion of sales are donated to organizations that spread awareness about digestive health. Their mission is a good and helpful one and though it seems simplistic, the benefits are great.

Explore the Squatty Potty collection

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