Review toilet paper from brands ALDI, Coles, Kleenex, Purex, Quilton, Sorbent, Who Gives A Crap and Woolworths on strength & quality, feel, packaging options, value for money & overall satisfaction.
See our Ratings Methodology.
Toilet paper isn’t exactly everyone’s favourite topic of conversation, but it’s an important one. Everyone needs to buy toilet paper, and if you run out it can be a bit of a predicament! Traditionally, consumers have had two choices – the cheap and nasty, or the lush expensive stuff. However, with private labels now seriously competing with big brands, plus growth in demand for recycled toilet paper, picking up a ‘cheap’ pack doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re buying an inferior product. Likewise, buying the most expensive brands doesn’t always mean you’re getting the best value for money.
In a twist, the winner of our 2017 customer ratings for toilet paper is a brand you can’t find in most big supermarkets. For its first appearance in our ratings, Who Gives A Crap has wiped away the rest of the competition with its revolutionary approach to toilet paper. The social enterprise sells its recycled toilet paper through its website and only a handful of selected stores across Australia. This year’s ratings have been based on the survey responses of more than 2,600 Australian adults.
Who Gives A Crap was the only recipient of five stars for variety of packaging options, as well as taking out top marks for feel, value for money and overall customer satisfaction. Other notable results include:
Only 55% of respondents to our survey said that they always buy the same brand of toilet paper – that means there’s plenty of competition between different brands. When it comes to choosing what you use on the toilet, there are a few factors to weigh up. Some go for quilted or the thickest ply possible (54%), but nearly half tend to make their choice based on whichever brand is cheapest or on special (46%).
Recycled toilet paper used to be shunned but, as demonstrated by this year’s winner, it’s now a real draw for many shoppers. In our survey, 69% of respondents said that they would use recycled toilet paper if the quality was better.
So, let’s learn a little more about this year’s top-rated toilet paper brand, as well as the other brands included in our review.
The brand’s flagship double length 3-ply toilet paper (with 400 sheets per roll) is made from 100% recycled material (including books and office paper), with each roll wrapped in colourful recycled packaging. For more luxurious loo paper, Who Gives A Crap also makes a premium 3-ply paper made from bamboo, a far more environmentally friendly and renewable resource than timber, with 370 sheets per roll. The wrap on these rolls is a little fancier, with a black, white and gold colour scheme. Both types of toilet paper contain no inks, dyes or scents (making it safe and comfy for every bum) plus have a few “emergency rolls” in fun red packaging in each box.
Instead of plastic packaging, Who Gives A Crap sells its rolls in boxes of 24 or 48 – the only plastic involved is the sticky tape on the box! Customers can order as they go, or sign up for the subscription service with direct debit payments so they never have to face the dreaded problem of being stuck on the loo with no toilet paper.
What makes this toilet paper really stand out is that not only does it wipe your bum, it also builds toilets for those who don’t have any – 50% of profits are donated to fund water, hygiene and sanitation projects in the developing world. More than $1 million has been donated to date, the company says.
Who Gives A Crap made an impressive debut in our ratings tables. The social enterprise received five stars for overall customer satisfaction, feel of toilet paper, value for money, and variety of packaging options. It received four stars for strength and quality of toilet paper.
From the home of hidden supermarket bargains, ALDI Confidence toilet paper comes in three varieties. The standard 3-ply toilet tissue comes in rolls of 190 sheets and in packs of 8 or 24. ALDI Confidence Hypoallergenic is a 2-ply toilet tissue sold in packs of 12 rolls of 260 sheets. For a little extra comfort, the 4-ply Hypoallergenic Quilted Softness toilet tissue comes in packs of 8 rolls of 140 sheets. All are FSC Mix certified and Australian made.
ALDI Confidence was last year’s winner for overall customer satisfaction. This year, ALDI received four stars across the board, except for a standout five stars on value for money.
Coles So Soft is the more premium of the supermarket giant’s private labels – still cheap but a bit more comfortable than the very budget 2-ply. Coles So Soft is a 3-ply toilet paper, with each roll containing 190 sheets. So Soft is sold in packs of 4, 12 or 24 rolls. The sheets are the traditional white colour, but with embossed patterns. In this year’s ratings, Coles So Soft received a solid four stars for overall customer satisfaction and for all ratings categories.
Famous for its packaging and advertisement featuring cuddly Labrador puppies, Kleenex has a few different toilet paper products. Kleenex Complete Clean, designed with a unique CleanRipple texture, comes in packs of 4, 6, 9, 18, 32 or 48 rolls of 180 sheets. The packaging for the 18, 32 and 48 packs include carry handles. There is also a long roll version of the Complete Clean toilet paper, with 270 sheets per roll (50% more than the standard rolls), available in packs of 8 or 12. For an extra luxurious experience, Kleenex Softest Toilet Tissue collection offers embossed toilet paper infused with a choice of shea butter or aloe vera. These lightly scented rolls come in packs of 6 rolls of 150 sheets. In this year’s ratings, Kleenex achieved four stars for overall customer satisfaction and variety of packaging options. The brand seems to live up to its premium promise, receiving five stars for strength and quality of toilet paper and feel of toilet paper, but just three stars for value for money.
Australian-owned and made, Quilton is manufactured by ABC Tissue from local and imported materials in mills in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth. All Quilton Toilet Paper packaging is recyclable in Australia as part of the REDcycle program – just take your soft plastic wrapping to a participating Woolworths or Coles store with REDcycle collection bins. Quilton is Forest Stewardship Council certified, and the brand’s Ecoply toilet paper is manufactured in Brisbane from high quality waste paper involving a de-inking process that doesn’t use bleach so that all wastewater can be recycled.
The original 3-ply comes in rolls of 180 sheets, but if you really hate changing the roll regularly then you can also buy double length (360 sheets) and even triple length (540 sheets) rolls. Quilton King Size has sheets 25% larger than the standard size, in rolls of 175 sheets. For extra luxury, the Quilton Gold range is a 4-ply toilet paper available in original and shea butter. Finally, the eco-conscious can choose Quilton Ecoply, a 3-ply toilet paper with a 100% recycled middle layer in rolls of 190 sheets.
Quilton received four stars for overall customer satisfaction, value for money, and variety of packaging options. It achieved an outstanding five stars for strength and quality and for feel.
An Australian brand owned by Asaleo Care, Sorbent produces two types of toilet paper, both 2-ply. Sorbent Silky White comes in a choice of a regular roll, with 180 sheets in packs of 8, 10, 20, 24 or 30, or a long roll with 270 sheets (50% longer) in packs of 8. Sorbent Hypo-Allergenic contains no inks, dyes or fragrances and is dermatologically tested to be safe for sensitive skin. This variety comes in rolls of 180 sheets, in packs of 12 or 20 rolls. Sorbent received a solid four stars all round, except for value for money in which it received three stars.
The higher tier of Woolworths’ private labels, Woolworths Select Luxury Soft is a 3-ply toilet paper, offered in standard rolls of 190 sheets in packs of 4, 8, 12 or 24 rolls. For those who want to reduce the hassle of changing rolls, Woolworths Select also offers double length rolls (380 sheets) in packs of four. Luxury Soft is FSC Mix certified, meaning the wood used is from FSC-certified material, recycled material, or controlled wood. In our ratings, Woolworths Select received four stars for overall satisfaction as well as for feel, value for money, and variety of packaging options. It received three stars for strength and quality of toilet paper.
For tight budgets, Coles 2-ply toilet paper offers an affordable toilet paper with FSC certification. Coles 2-ply comes in rolls of 260 sheets, available in packs of 6 or 18 rolls. It’s simple stuff designed to get the job done without costly extra frills and padding. In this year’s ratings, Coles 2-ply received three stars for overall satisfaction and across all other ratings categories.
The other toilet paper prominently featuring precious puppies, Purex can be recognised by its packaging with a brown Shar-Pei puppy resting its rolls on a roll of toilet paper. Made in New Zealand, Purex is FSC Mix as well as Environmental Choice New Zealand certified. The manufacturing process uses steam collected from a geothermal bore, rather than using gas fired boilers, and also utilises NZ Hydro power. The packaging is recyclable with participating soft plastic recycling programs.
The 2-ply extra thick toilet paper is available in standard (200 sheet) and Mega Long (450 sheet) rolls. Both varieties come in a choice of Soft White or Décor patterned appearance. The standard length Soft White rolls come in packs of 4, 12, 18 or 24 rolls, with carry on handles attached to the 18 and 24 packs. Standard length Décor toilet paper is available only in packs of 4 or 12. Mega Long rolls are available in packs of 4, 6 or 12 rolls of Soft White, and packs of 4 or 6 rolls of Décor.
Purex received a three star rating for overall customer satisfaction, strength and quality, and value for money. It showed a stronger performance in feel of toilet paper and variety of packaging options, with four stars.
As Woolworths’ budget brand, Woolworths Essentials toilet paper keeps things simple to save you money. Woolworths Essentials toilet paper includes two options; a 2-ply roll of 260 sheets, sold in packs of 12, or a 1-ply roll of 1,000 sheets, sold individually. The 2-ply toilet paper is FSC Mix certified while the 1-ply toilet paper is FSC Recycled certified, meaning that it is made entirely from recycled material. The Woolworths Essentials toilet paper received three stars for overall satisfaction and most categories, with a stronger performance in value for money, receiving a four star rating.
To conclude our 2017 review, here are some of the light-hearted outcomes from our survey.
The age-old debate – should you scrunch up your toilet paper or fold it up before wiping? Scrunchers argue that their method gives better grip and keeps your hand further away from the ‘danger zone’, while proponents of folding claim that they are more efficient and can cover more ground. Both sides have good arguments, but which way is best? According to our survey, the answer is clear – fold it. 69% said that they fold their toilet paper, while only 24% scrunch (and 8% were unsure).
Another toilet paper debate – and one that can cause some serious tension in households – is toilet paper roll orientation. When you put a new roll on the holder, do you orient it so that it rolls over the top or underneath from the bottom? We found that most roll their toilet paper over side (62%), but a good chunk of respondents didn’t have a preference (22%). Only 12% are dedicated under side rollers.
Going to the bathroom is not anyone’s favourite pastime. That explains why 32% of respondents said they usually take their phone with them to the toilet – it’s reasonable to prefer to play Candy Crush or browse Facebook rather than stare blankly at the back of the door.
Unfortunately, taking your phone into the bathroom is risky business. 14% have accidentally dropped their phone in the toilet bowl. If this happens to you, your precious phone may still be salvageable if you’re extremely quick (and lucky). Dunk your phone into a bowl full of rice to draw out the moisture – hopefully before it does any damage.
Canstar Blue commissioned Colmar Brunton to survey 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased and used toilet paper in the last month – in this case, 2,642 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then alphabetically. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.
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