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For Women: How To Pee Standing Up


Men, look away now. And women, if you never knew you wanted to pee standing up, this article is for you.

First, let me make clear that I have no problem squatting in the woods. I can even handle grotty bathrooms (I’ve had my fair share of practice in squat toilets) but sometimes on our trip, I longed for the advantages of the male plumbing system.
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Mostly it seemed to happen in Asia, when I’d be dying for a pee and yet there wouldn’t be a tree or a bush to run behind for miles. Then, just when I spotted somewhere perfect, something would always happen. Like this time in Laos, when I was just getting ready to run behind the only cover I’d seen for hours, and this man showed up with all his friends to film a karaoke video (no, I’m not kidding).

Other times, fences and pastures formed barriers to more discreet spots so Andrew was put on guard. “All clear!” he’d yell, as I whipped down my pants and tried to pee before the next car or truck came flying by. Sometimes it worked. Other times the passing motorists probably got more than they bargained for. And let’s not even talk about exposing yourself at the call of nature when hungry mosquitoes are swarming…

So, with all of these situations in mind, I decided it was time to try a few of the female peeing devices on the market. Here’s what arrived in the mail:

pstyleThe pStyle

Price: $12.99
Size: 3.8cm x 3.8cm x 19cm
Material: Hard Plastic

The Whiz Freedom

Price: $24.95
Size: 15cm long (unfolded)
Material: Flexible Medical Grade Plastic

whiz_freedom
gogirlThe Go Girl

Price: $9.99
Size: 16cm long (unfolded)
Material: Flexible Medical Grade Silicone

Now, if you never knew that these sorts of things existed, the fact that there are 3 to choose from may come as a bit of a shock.

The idea between them is all the same. Unzip your pants, or pull them down slightly in front if you’re wearing trousers without a zip, slip the device into place and pee away. Sounds easy, right?

I wasn’t so sure. Honestly, I was slightly afraid that I wouldn’t know how to work one. Maybe I would be a peeing failure, when it came to stand-up peeing at least. So, I started with what appeared to be the simplest of the 3 to me, the pStyle. Into the bathroom I went, taking care to read the directions:

“Tilt the open end slightly down, relax, and pee. It may feel strange at first but don’t worry – relaxing is key. When you have completely finished peeing, bend your knees slightly and pull the pStyle forward to remove the remaining drops.” – How to use the pStyle

Of course, there were other considerations too.

“It is possible to pee on yourself if you tilt the pStyle sideways or get it caught in your underwear. This often happens when you are so confident about it that you don’t focus on what you are doing. Also don’t pee into the wind…”

Well, at least there was no wind to worry about in my bathroom. I took my place in front of the toilet, hesitantly put the pStyle in place (or at least what instinct told me was the right place) and let nature take its course. To my amazement, it worked perfectly! I particularly loved the fact that I could use the pStyle to clear any drips as well by simply pulling it forward. So often on our tour, the toilet paper was buried at the bottom of the bags and we when we did find it, carrying it to the next garbage can was never very pleasant. Eliminating toilet paper was an unexpected bonus of the pStyle.

Feeling emboldened, I drank a lot of tea and then returned to the bathroom to try both the Go Girl and the Whiz Freedom. Their funnel design made me think about writing my name in the snow (hasn’t every girl always wanted to do that??) and the pStyle’s slightly wider, less flexible design didn’t seem so well suited to that task. Unfortunately, these dreams were interrupted by an unpleasant dribble down my leg…. twice.

Was I doing something wrong? Well, yes actually. With the Go Girl, I apparently needed to hold it at the ends and not the sides of the funnel, to help keep the seal.

goGirl_howToHold_correctgoGirl_howToHold_incorrect

As for the Whiz Freedom, it’s a bit stiffer so how you hold it is not so crucial. I think my troubles with the Whiz Freedom came from simply letting it all flow out too quickly. Apparently you can overwhelm a funnel. How embarrassing.

I tried each one several more times and while I got better with my technique, I still prefer the simplicity of the pStyle. You just don’t have to worry about how you hold the pStyle as much. It’s hard plastic, so there’s no danger that you fold it on yourself, creating a mini tidal wave of disaster. I also find it’s much easier to slip into place beneath my clothing.

Do I have any critiques? Nothing is perfect and it’s worth noting that the pStyle is not as flexible as other peeing devices, so you can’t fold it into a small package to tuck away somewhere. It would never fit in the back pocket of your jeans, for example, so if you’re not wearing a cycling jersey or a jacket you’ll have to think about where to store it for easy access. Your handlebar bag, perhaps?

Also, I didn’t find the length a problem for hitting the target but if you think you might need a slightly longer hose (maybe you’re not riding a bike but stuck in bed and need to pee into a bottle, for example), then there is the option of an extension tube for the Whiz Freedom, so that may swing some people’s decisions.

Finally, you’ll probably want a bit of water to wash off all of these devices (even though urine is sterile) so if you don’t have any to hand, you’ll need a plastic bag to store it in until you get to a water source. The Whiz Freedom and the Go Girl can be shaken reasonably dry (a little more so than the pStyle) but keep a ziplock baggie handy nonetheless.

Thanks to all 3 companies for supplying a sample so that I could test their products.

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19 Responses to “For Women: How To Pee Standing Up”

  1. Joanna says:

    I heard about the GoGirl recently and think the whole idea behind it is incredible! Would love to try it as I am planning to go camping with friends soon and I have NEVER managed to squat without peeing on myself! Embarrassing but true. Guys have it so easy… :)

  2. Ingrid says:

    Hey, that thest is absolutely great. I’ve been thinking for years now of trying these devices, not only to pee my name in the snow). More because I can’t really deal with squat toilets. I’d love to try the pStyle. I also use the mooncup since I’ve read about it in your fantastic journal. There was an urgent need for someone to look into these intimate issues. Thank you very much!
    Hugs,
    Ingrid

  3. lysanne says:

    Hi Friedel,
    A couple of years ago I did an outdoor gift exchange with my two best friends. One of them did receive the pstyle. As we had already a couple of beers down, and we were a bit drunk, we went the 3 of us in the bathroom to try the device! We all tried it and it works great. Now, I have to buy one before leaving on my rtw in july.
    Lysanne

  4. Becky says:

    I bought a similar device about 10 years ago to use while travelling. I used it once and don’t recall any issues with drippage – but I found it generally wasn’t worth the effort. I did find this little article describing how to pee standing up for women – it might be more useful for cycletouring and carrying a device … http://clipmarks.com/clipmark/C7E7C27A-7035-4CD1-94F5-D145D2639A6A/

    Enjoy!

  5. Sara says:

    Thanks for the review! I need to try one of these – I do randoneurring events, and after 24+ hours of cycling, squatting and getting back up again gets progressively more challenging! ;)

  6. friedel says:

    Becky, those are good tips. Thanks for sharing. I suppose they would work even better in a squat toilet where you have a wider ‘target’ to potentially work with. On the other hand, you still need to pull down your pants so it doesn’t help on busy roads where there’s nowhere to hide.

    Sara, Joanna, Lysanne and Ingrid, I’ll add you to the list for possibly winning one of the 2 I have to give away (unfortunately I didn’t get an extra pStyle so it’ll be either a Go Girl or a Whiz Freedom).

  7. Barb says:

    I have used the pstyle for a few years and everyone who has seen it buys one. I have given them for gifts (even to my motherinlaw who walks her dogs in the woods) I whole heartedly recommend it! I also recommend practicing in the shower till you get the right spot! P on~!

  8. jeanette says:

    Hi

    I’ve always been jealous to my husband and 9 year old son when we’re on our biking trips. This may solve all the problems and they might get jealous to me!
    If I don’t win one I’ll buy one before the next trip!

    jeanette

  9. Stani Velomad says:

    Didn’t know about these models but I had one although it was different brand for a few years before it got stolen about 18 months ago – I’ve missed it ever since :-(.

    It was a present from another cycle touring friend about 5 years ago and he’d sent it to another friend for me as we sold our house when we left to go touring, so we didn’t (and still don’t) have any permanent address.

    It was meant to be a Xmas present and Johny advised Neil (our friend acting as the post office) that I wasn’t to open it early (I have rather a bad reputation for not being patient or honest regarding leaving presents untouched until the appropriate day).

    Before we arrived, Neil had informed us we’d received some post and after nagging him incessantly for days he finally agreed to tell me what was on the label.

    “Looks like it says Fermette Director”

    “What? Say that again”

    “Fermette Director”

    “What’s a Fermette Director?”

    It had both of us stumped. I just assumed the writing was incredibly bad and when I finally got to read it I’d make a better job of deciphering it.

    Well Neil was right – when I finally got the package it did quite clearly state: “Fermette Director” and I still had no clue as to what it was.

    Neil was MEAN and wouldn’t let me open it until Xmas day when there were a few friends around and quite a lot of drinks imbimbed so we had absolute hysterics when I actually opened it and had to read the instructions to figure out what it actually was.

    No one I ever met over the next 5 years had ever heard of it but it was one of the best pieces of kit I ever had.

    Richard (my husband) loved it as we could have “who can pee the furtherest” competitions – though of course he always won having had a few more decades experience.

    It’s brilliant in many ways (no splashing on your legs for 1) but definitely it came into it’s own in Siberia in the summer when the mosquitoes were rampant. We wore mosquito nets over our heads continually and waterproof jackets & trousers even though we sweated like mad as they would just bite through normal clothes. If I’d had to pull my trousers down to pee I might never have been able to sit on the bike seat again!

    Also – I have to be honest – I adored having the freedom of just peeing against a tree in a busy city when no free or bearable toilet was available. No one ever expects a women to pee against a tree so they just don’t realise what you are doing!

    And YES – of course finally not having to scamper out of the tent in the middle of the night when it’s snowing, raining or howling makes it worth it’s weight in gold.

    But the best thing about it is you ALWAYS have a fun & slightly dis-believable topic of conversation for people you meet on route – I’ve never met anyone who didn’t get a kick out of hearing or seeing it (though I generally draw the line at demonstrating how to use it!!!)

    It also came with it’s own little zip-lock bag so if you didn’t have access to water you could stow it away for later.

  10. Karen says:

    Well this is great information for our up and coming world cycle tour.. but there is also the “SheWee” model sold at MEC!

    Tanks for the article,

    K

  11. friedel says:

    There are some great comments and stories here. Thanks everyone for participating! Keep them coming through Sunday, and then Monday I’ll let you know who the 2 lucky winners are.

  12. friedel says:

    Stani, you’ve won a peeing device! I’ll email you and the other winner and we’ll see who wants which one (I have 1 Go Girl and 1 Whiz Freedom to choose from).

  13. sarah says:

    Oh my goodness–I laughed so hard, Friedel!! I have never heard of such a thing and I’m still a little in shock. Practical, yes, I admit. But bizarre.

  14. Jackie says:

    This is great information!! I’m getting more & more into cycle touring, and have done a lot of back country camping, and have always been jealous of my boyfriends easy ability to pee without without the same worry! I think I will definitely invest in one of these this summer.

  15. Barbara Smith says:

    I have used “She-pee” at the Glastonbury festival here in England. It saves time & quieng for a pee… I use them in tent at night after beer drinking at folk festivals too. Also, when out drinking with the girls, occasionally a pee in a private place in the town is needed! My friends are using them more & more, preferable to squating for one!

  16. Steph Bond says:

    Hey there!
    I notice you did not try a PEE-ZEE! This Stand to Pee device folds up nice and is also reusable like the products you have listed above. Perhaps your experiment is done and have fond something you really like, but it not…I bet you could email them and ask for a sample (especially if you were going to add their info to your review :)(just google the name)

  17. Blanche says:

    Lately i get concerned about thicks. When you’re hiding in the bushes to pie and squad… Maybe this is the solution? Thanxs!!

  18. Maria says:

    A great Product. Been using it for Years. I have to Travel because of my Job, So this makes my job easy. Now i dont have to expose myself when i have to pee. I can easily pee on Availiable Positions like in Parking lot,Trees, Bushes, Inside cars.. Also now i need not wait in Queue in for Toilet. Just face a Car or something and let go.

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