Toilet brushes are items you use once or twice a week. Yet, they hang out in the bathroom all day, every day. When you’re looking for a new toilet brush, you need one that does the job efficiently, while simultaneously looking good. It needs to be made from sturdy materials in an ergonomic design for easy use.
Let’s look at what goes into the best toilet brush.
How to Choose the Best Toilet Brush
Toilet brushes are not glamorous by any means. However, they should be functional and efficient at performing the task they are made for. They should also have a design that is pleasing to the eye or unobtrusive to the observer. Here is a list of features you should consider when selecting a toilet brush for your home.
- Quality – A poor quality brush will start to fall apart in a short time. Bristles will loosen and the brush will turn a yellowish color. Also, a lower quality brush will have trouble getting the bowl completely clean. Choosing a higher quality brush will give you longer use and a more thorough clean.
- Functional Design – Outside of quality, the most important feature is functional design. The brush shouldn’t bend too much when you apply pressure to scrub the toilet. The bristle configuration should allow efficient cleaning of all parts of the toilet from the underside of the rim to the drain opening. The handle should be long enough so you don’t have to reach into the bowl when scubbing the bottom and drain opening.
- Appearance – Most people keep the toilet brush next to the toilet itself. Because it’s a visible part of the bathroom, the brush and its holder should have, at least, a neutral appearance that blends in. Some brushes come in different colors and finishes for a designer touch.
- Storage – A toilet brush without a permanent holder is not ideal. The brushes we reviewed all come with their own holders, making it easy to store the brush between uses. Some completely enclose the brush while others allow it to hang from a slot for easy drying.
When Should You Buy a New Toilet Brush?
Toilet brushes do a nasty job. With repeated use, the brushes will start to become a haven for bacterial growth. This decreases the ability of the brush to clean the toilet effectively. Plus, a dirty brush can spread bacteria and germs to the rest of the bathroom.
From a financial perspective, you want to get the most use out of the brush. On the environmental side, you want to reduce the amount of waste you send to the landfill.
The question is, how often should you replace your toilet brush with a new one?
A common recommendation from experts is to replace it every six months. However, you may need to replace it more or less often, depending on how you often use it.
Here are some signs you should replace your toilet brush:
- The bristles on the brush become frayed or soft
- The bristles turn a yellow or orange color
- The bristles stick together
- The bristles have a sticky or slimy residue
One option to consider is buying a toilet brush set that has replaceable heads. This allows the user to replace the dirty brush without throwing out the entire unit. It’s better on the wallet and for the environment.
Can You Clean a Toilet Brush?
One way to extend the life of your toilet brush is to clean and disinfect it between uses. Here’s a simple routine you can use.
- After cleaning the toilet bowl, flush to clear out the cleanser and residue.
- Allow the toilet to refill.
- Place the head of the toilet brush into the water, then flush again. This helps rinse residue off the brush.
- For 20 minutes, soak the brush in a bucket filled with 10 parts water and 1 part bleach.
- After soaking, place the head of the brush into the toilet bowl again and rinse.
- Place the head of the brush under the toilet lid and allow it to sit until it dries.
Cleaning and disinfecting the brush won’t stop it from degrading over time, but it will keep bacterial growth to a minimum.
What's the Best Way to Use a Toilet Brush?
Cleaning the toilet bowl isn’t difficult. However, there are a few things to keep in mind.
Use a cleanser to clean the bowl and to disinfect it. You can make your own cleansers using coming household ingredients like distilled white vinegar, salt, baking soda, and oxygen bleach. Or, you can purchase a commercial cleanser.
In either case, flush the toilet and apply the cleanser before the bowl refills. This allows the cleanser to reach all surfaces of the bowl. Another option is to turn off the water valve and then flush. This will empty the bowl and make cleaning easier.
Let the cleanser sit for at least 10 minutes. This allows it to most of the hard work for you.
Take your toilet brush and start scrubbing the bowl. Start on the underside of the rim and work down. Be sure to hit all sides of the bowl. Then, use the end of the brush to scrub inside the drain opening. Once all sides are scrubbed, flush to remove the cleanser and debris.
Rinse the brush and place it back in its holder.
The Best Toilet Brushes of 2019
Here are five of the best toilet brushes available in 2019.
The Good Grips Hideaway toilet brush from OXO offers a compact design that’s ergonomically friendly and discrete at the same time. The best part of this toilet brush is the head design and superior bristles. The tapered head efficiently cleans under the rim and in the drain outlet. The bristles are strong and capable of getting rid of the worse grime.
- The holder automatically opens when you pull the brush out and closes when you put it back in
- The holder contains a drip tray with air vents to allow water to evaporate and smells to dispel quickly
- The non-slip handle makes it easy and comfortable to get the bowl clean at every angle
- The tapered head and strong bristles make it easy to get the entire bowl clean with minimal effort
- Stainless steel staples hold the bristles in place for a rust-free, long-lasting brush head
- The brush and holder come in black, gray, biscuit, and white, making it easy to match to your bathroom colors.
- The holder is difficult to clean with water often getting trapped in the hinges
- Replacement heads can be difficult to find in stores, though they are usually available through Amazon.
- Excess water can leak out of the holder if the brush is put away too wet
- The brush comes with a large sticker attached that can be difficult to remove
The Mr. Clean Turbo Plunger and Bowl Brush offers two essential tools for keeping your toilet bowl clean and running smoothly. A strong round design makes it easy to reach under the rim and into the drain outlet, while also getting the bowl sides clean. Tough bristles can remove most stains with ease. The plunger offers easy removal of clogs and simple storage near the toilet.
- The brush has a rubber grip to make it easy to scrub the bowl without losing grip
- A tough round brush to reach every part of the bowl
- Plunger creates a tight seal with the drain for effective removal of clogs
- Brush and plunger set comfortably in the specially designed holder
- The brush sits snugly into special holder slot, which allows drips to fall into the holder below
- Compact design allows the set to fit into the tightest bathroom spaces
- Plunger head has extension flap to reach further into drain
- Blue and white colors work well in many decors or are at least unobtrusive
- The brush head is larger than many which can be troublesome in smaller toilets
- The handle of the plunger is shorter than others
The IXO Toilet Brush and Holder offers functional design with an elegant appearance. The brush itself is soft and flexible, yet sturdy, with bristles that are dense, providing a thorough clean. A stainless steel handle offers an elegant grip that is easy to keep clean. The lid sits between the brush and the grip, to protect the user from splashes. A sealed brush holder keeps the drips and stains inside.
- Elegant white base and stainless steel handle make this set pleasing to the eye
- The strong, yet flexible, brush head makes it easy to clean the entire bowl with minimal effort
- The longer handle allows the user to scrub the bowl while remaining removed the bowl
- The stainless steel handle and lid are easy to keep clean and sanitize
- The wider base of the holder keeps it upright and less prone to tipping over
- Good match to modern bathroom designs
- Comes as a two pack making it easy to add brushes to every bathroom
- Care must be used in order to avoid scratching the toilet with the lid
- Some units are harder to assemble
- The lid can get in the way when cleaning deeper toilets
The hemispherical brush head on the Marbrasse Slim Compact Bathroom Toilet Bowl Brush sets it apart from most of its competition. The head makes it easy to clean under the rim and in other hard to reach areas. The strong, yet comfortable, handle allows for effortless cleaning. Its space-saving design makes it easy to tuck into tight corners, while the holder allows the brush to hang for quick drying.
- The stiff, durable handle offers comfortable cleaning strenght
- The hemispherical brush head gets into the deepest points of the bowl with minimal effort
- The brush head has no metal so there is no issues with rust or bending
- Soft brush fibers allow for effortless cleaning
- Space-saving design makes it perfect for tight spaces
- Brush holder offers a slot to hang the brush in, allowing for quick drying and easy cleaning
- The holder is unobtrustive in appearance, working well in many bathrooms
- Brush head is not replaceable
- Holder is a bit flimsy
The mDesign Compact Freestanding Plastic Toilet Bowl Brush is a notable mix of efficient design and affordable style. Available in a number of colors, this brush and holder combination blends into any bathroom design. The sturdy bristles offer effortless cleaning. The handle is easy to use, while the built-in lid keeps splashes away. Made from shatter-proof plastic, it’s easy to keep clean and sanitary.
- The simple, classic design of the brush and holder works in any bathroom
- Holder hides the brush completely from view while catching drips
- Non-skid foam base prevents the holder from moving or causing damage to the floor
- Space saving design allows it to fit into the tightest bathroom spaces
- Made from durable plastic that’s easy to clean and disinefect
- The head is replacable
- Available in a number of colors including bronze, white, cream, light blue, charcoal, silver, gray, light pink, espresso and light gray.
- The attached lid can make it difficult to get into the deeper parts of the bowl
- The handle is shorter than the competition
The Winner Is....
After reviewing a number of toilet brushes, we’ve decided the OXO Good Grips Hideaway Compact Toilet Brush is the definite winner. Made from high quality materials and solid construction, this toilet brush stands up to multiple uses a week without any effort. The replaceable heads makes a winner when it comes to getting the most for your money.
This brush’s ergonomic design and tapered head makes cleaning the toilet effortless and comfortable. The sturdy bristles do a thorough job of clearing debris from every surface in the bowl.
A key reason for declaring this brush at the top is its unique holder. There’s no reason to struggle taking the brush in and out. The holder opens and closes automatically, which helps prevent the spread of bacteria. It hides the brush when it’s not in use, while allow it to dry quickly. The small footprint of the holder allows it to fit into the tightest bathrooms.
Its compact size allows it to blend into the bathroom rather than stand out. It’s available in different colors to help you find the right one for your bathroom space.
While the OXO Good Grips doesn’t have the elegance of the IXO or mDesign toilet brushes, it’s functionality and unobtrusive holder make it the definite leader.