Vertical Vs Horizontal Toilet Paper Holder: Is One a Better Choice?

Written by

Paulk Webb


Freddie J. Hagopian

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vertical vs horizontal toilet paper holder

Your toilet, as they say, reflects who you are. Your style, design, accessories, and toiletries all contribute to how comforting and elegant it appears.

Most often, between a vertical vs. horizontal toilet paper holder, many can make a quick decision.

But hold it; it might not be that simple! Choosing between a vertical and horizontal toilet paper holder needs some consideration. You would not want your holder replaced after having it already installed.

Here’s your smart guide to selecting wisely without a glitch!

Vertical vs. Horizontal Toilet Paper Holders


  • The most commonly used design in construction is the horizontal toilet paper holder. When installed, it’s often practical, convenient, and accessible. That’s why you see the horizontal paper holder in most households.
  • For a unique appearing toilet paper holder, a vertical design is a good choice for its simple yet stylish look. Furthermore, these designs allow users to keep the toilet paper neat in its place instead of rolling down to the floor.

These qualities depend, however, on many factors, such as the height from the floor, distance from the bowl or sink, and the holder’s design.

Which is Which: Front Facing/over Toilet Paper Vs. Back Facing/under Toilet Paper?


The over-under-facing debate is now well settled with the inventor’s patent, Seth Wheeler, in 1891 putting the proper placement at over.

Furthermore, an online survey by Houzz shows that more than 85% prefer front-facing toilet paper over back-facing toilet paper.

Arguments for the front facing horizontal toilet paper:

  • Easily accessible and convenient
  • Hidden from bugs
  • Provides better hygiene for users
  • Sensible design
  • Kids can easily spin the roll resulting in wastage

Arguments for and against the back facing roll:

  • More difficult for cats and toddlers to spin the paper roll out
  • Much easier to tear the toilet paper
  • Not as easy to access
  • Fingers may touch the back wall when getting the roll end, which could be unhygienic.

Whether the holder is placed right or left, the answer is it depends. The general rule is – where it is most convenient for the user.

But for most righties users, it follows that the holder is placed on the right side though it could be challenging to reach.

How to Choose the Best Toilet Paper Holder?

Six things are to be considered when choosing the most fitting holder for your toilet paper: type, material, size and capacity, convenience, aesthetics, and cost. These elements will either add life to or dull your toilet ambiance.

1. Type and sizefor-small-spaces

Three conventional types of toilet paper holders are wall-mounted, freestanding, and tank mounted.

  • Mounted models need a flat surface like a tile wall or the side of a cabinet. Their simple yet stylish appearance makes them an elegant fixture. Typical European toilet paper holder designs are horizontally mounted types. For tight spaces, wall-mounted types fit well for a single roll.
  • Freestanding designs don’t require installation because they’re not really designed for small spaces, which can be a downside for small bathrooms. Just unpack or assemble and put it at your desired place, and you’re ready to go.
  • Tank-mounted models, on the other hand, are attached to the toilet tank’s side, making it a bit concealed but convenient. It easily hooks onto a tank’s top. Its drawback? Placing a toilet roll holder behind the toilet might be a tad inconvenient to reach for the roll.

2. Material and aesthetics


Choosing the right material and finish for your toilet holder will ensure that it lasts long despite moisture and other elements.

Indeed, these factors also matter in terms of design, as the toilet holder should blend well in the bathroom decor, depending on the vibe you want to go with.

For instance, a durable wooden holder will go well in a vintage bathroom. Furthermore, it’s rust-resistance, thus ensuring long-lasting use.

You can also choose modern and sleek materials such as crystal glass, metals, or ceramic. Those heavy-duty toilet paper holder are the top choice for damp conditions.

Regarding the toilet holder finishes, options include natural wood, chrome, or brass. It all comes down to your preference.

3. Convenience


As mentioned above, the choice of vertical and horizontal toilet holders can be a matter of convenience. Many vouch for front-facing horizontal design due to its easy access and use.

Other than that, you can consider features such as spring-loaded, simple slide-on, or pivoting post for easy replacement.

To make for a multi-use holder, choose one with additional functionality, like a toiletry caddy or phone tray. Such an option better organizes your bathroom and adds to its stylishness.

4. Price

A vertical toilet paper holder with a chrome polish finish might cost you around $30 – $50, while a simple wall-mounted one costs less than $10.

Modern brass and polished nickel models, on the other hand, can be as pricey as $100.

An elegant horizontal toilet holder can cost $20 only. However, if you want a chrome or antique silver design, the price can go up to $40 – $60 per holder.

For wooden holders and shelves, expect to pay around $45 for a horizontal design.

Frequently Asked Questions


Does it matter which way you hang the toilet paper, or is there a right way to hang?

A definite yes. In making your toilet amenities comfy and smooth to use, it is really necessary how you hang your toilet paper.

It should be within reach when you’re doing your thing for utmost convenience. As a rule of thumb, the holder should be placed 8-12 inches away from the bowl rim.

What is the standard placement of a toilet paper holder?

Popular and expert opinion puts the ideal height for both types of toilet paper holders at 26″ from the floor to the middle of the tissue paper roll.

If you want the manual measurement of the distance, sit on the bowl, close your eyes, and reach for the area you would typically find your toilet paper.


Selecting which one between the vertical vs. horizontal toilet paper holder to purchase, install, and use for your bathroom certainly depends on several issues you decide on. Its type, material, size, aesthetics, and cost ultimately rest on your preference and taste.

Considering several elements to remember, though, clarifies which fits and complements your choice and style. We hope you can use these ideas and information as your guide for that basic yet very functional toilet fixture.

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