Brits no longer care what the mother-in-law thinks
Mothers-in-law are renowned for being the most feared member of the family, however a new survey reveals that when it comes to a visit from a partner’s mother people no longer roll out the red carpet; a mere 11% of Brits, make the effort to clean and tidy their bathroom when expecting a visit from their mother-in-law – we are nearly twice as likely to tidy up for friends.
Instead, research from the UK’s No.1 shower manufacturer, Mira Showers, has found 30% of men will tidy and scrub the bathroom to impress a potential partner whereas women aren’t that fussed (13%) what their future boyfriend thinks of them.
Jenni Trent Hughes, relationship expert said "It's interesting to see that mothers-in-law no longer have the same fear factor that they used to. In former decades when you married you tended to become part of your new spouse's family which meant that their mother became your mother as well. Now a woman’s role in society in particular has changed and we are much more independent and in charge of our own lives.
“Another interesting development in society is what we now refer to as 'framilies' which is an extended and diverse group of friends which we surround ourselves with, often in place of our real families. This has come about for a host of reasons mainly geographical movement. Because of this you will often find that impressing our friends can take precedence over impressing our families.”
When it comes to embarrassing products and features to hide away from visitors, feminine products are at the top of the shame list. A variety of personal feminine products were listed by the majority of Brits (57%) as products they would hide away from visitors and over a third of men (39%) would hide feminine products before the arrival of guests on behalf of their partner. Other features which made it onto the shame list are cleaning products, own label bath or shower products and old magazines.
"For many women the bathroom is an Aladdin's cave of secrets. Everything from makeup, lotions, potions, to even more personal products - our secrets are there. We need them to hand but we certainly don't want them on display for all to see! And while Modern Man may now be persuaded to pick up 'feminine items' for us at the chemist they still don't want them in full view for all their mates to see" Jenni continued.
Some of the more unusual products found in the bathroom by the British public were a pyramid of used toilet rolls, motorcycle handlebars used as a wall hanging, a sack of potatoes, as well as live snakes, dead frogs and a prosthetic thumb. What Brits really want to see in a desirable modern bathroom, the survey revealed, is minimal clutter (22%) and for women - coordinated towels and bathmats.
“The fact that women want to see so coordinated towels and bathmats is a natural reflection of a world where we want our undergarments to match and our eyeshadow to coordinate with our nail varnish. Most women thrive on order. We want things to be neat, tidy and visually coordinated. One school of thought is that we are that way because we tend to have many more things to keep track of - house, children, career, whose birthday is it etc. and the more coordinated and ordered things are, the easier it is for us to maintain control."
The research also highlighted that youngsters, aged 18 – 24 are far more concerned with brands. More people this age than any other age group said they would hide away own label bath and shower products before visitors came round and a further 25% said they would go as far as buying in luxury brand products.
Roger Crabb, marketing manager at Mira Showers said “The bathroom is most definitely one of the most important rooms in the house. It is one that, when decorated and fitted stylishly, can add thousands of pounds on the property of your house, so at Mira we weren’t surprised to find out that nearly half of Brits make a split judgement on someone based on their bathroom décor and cleanliness. It doesn’t seem too hard to impress judgemental Brits either, as long as there are no live snakes or hair in the plughole then homeowners should be ok!”
The top of Brits’ wish list for a desirable, modern bathroom:
1. Bath screen or shower cubicle as opposed to a shower curtain
2. Minimal clutter
3. Tiles or linoleum floor
4. Coordinated towels and bathmat
5. Luxury high end products on display
What Brits look to avoid when creating a modern bathroom:
1. Feminine products
2. Cleaning products
3. Old Magazines
4. Own label shower/bath products
5. Knitted/doll shaped toilet roll holders