Instead, business owners started getting innovative with their bathroom signs. The visionary geniuses behind these signs got so creative – one might struggle to understand them once you’ve had a drink…or five…
To the Left, to the Left...
Remember that Beyonce that went "to the left, to the left?" Well, that's the first thing that comes to mind when we read this bathroom sign. Of course, the men's room is to the left because women are always right - it couldn't and shouldn't be any other way.
We cannot imagine the distraught the man that just got into a major fight with his girlfriend must have felt when he got up angrily to use the bathroom and had to read this sign on his way there!
An IQ Test
We can't help but wonder if you have to pass some sort of IQ to enter this restaurant. For those who may not know, females typically have two of the same kind of sex chromosomes - XX. Males generally have two different types of sex chromosomes XY.
This was a smart way to get both XX and XY guests to use their brains before entering the restroom. The more you know, right?!
Keeping it Sanitary
When you're sitting in a crowded bar, you're bound to come into contact with a plethora of - how do we put this lightly - sketchy things...and people.
This bar is doing their part to make sure that they stay as sanitary as possible - to their standards - that is. They honestly don't care what you are, or what planet you're from - just, please! Wash your hands.
Wash Closet Secrets
For some odd reason - people are under the notion that women talk more than men. We're just going to say it - it's not true! What is true is that women tend to have heart to heart, soul-wrenching, eyeopening conversations in the bathroom.
To all the men out there, we're going to let you in on a little secret, when women are in the bathroom, chances are they aren't powdering their noses - they are talking about you! Sorry ladies - the secret is out!
Make it Rain
This gardening nursery got creative with their bathroom signs in a unique way. They turned the anatomy into something that helps the flowers bloom!
What's most surprising about these signs is that the creators of them thought that both men and women have perfect aim. If only it were that easy...we're hoping that this isn't a hint at the fact that they use human waste in their gardens!
You Do You
There has been a lot of controversy over the generic "men" and "women" signs in the bathroom. As we evolve into a more inclusive - diverse world, it would only make sense that one of the only places where there is separation, the toilet, would be one of the first places to find a way to make everyone feel included and welcome!
At the end of the day, no matter who you are - everybody goes!
A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Well, these bathroom signs are worth a million words! We're just going to come out and say it because we're sure we're all thinking the same thing, what a brilliant take on bathroom signs!
These two animals are ones we know exceptionally well, and seeing these two signs next to each other suddenly makes all the more sense. We don't envy the parent that had to explain these signs to their kids! Mom, Dad, we salute you!
John and Jane
We love this bathroom sign! And we love the fact that this bathroom sign took time and consideration and understood that people who prefer martinis cannot be mixed with those who prefer wine.
This sign has no room for interpretation, and there is no room for mixups. If you're a wine lover, go left, and if you enjoy a shaken but not stirred kind of drink, you are right.
Ladies and Gentleman
We're all about recycling and repurposing - anything to prevent extra waste in such a waste-filled world. Of course, this consignment store was thinking outside of the (shoe) box with their bathroom signs.
They used a true lady's and fine sir's shoes to differentiate between the two stalls. We love it!
A Hero Can Be Anyone
We're all superheroes in our way. And even superheroes need to use the bathroom. The designers of this sign got creative, appealing to everyone's inner geek/child/superhero.
Of course, they wanted to be as inclusive as they could be and added R2D2. We don't know about you, but we love this bathroom sign, and we'd love to see more like it!
Out of My Way!
You know that feeling you get when you just have to use the restroom—nothing else in the world matters, no one else in the world matters. You will make it to the bathroom if it's the last thing you do.
Come on, don't act like you don't know what we're talking about! We've all been there, you're driving down a highway when suddenly it hits you - you have to go to the bathroom, and you have to go now! Bye-bye speed limit, hellooooo freedom!
It's All About Perspective
It's an argument as old as time, should the toilet seat be left up or down? We're going to settle this debate once and for all. If you're a male living with other males, keeping the toilet seat up is a courtesy! But! If there are females in the house, courtesy is shown when the toilet seat is placed down, not up.
If you're looking for reason beside common courtesy, try this: we should actually all be putting both the toilet seat AND the toilet lid down, because flushing with the toilet lid up may cause germs from the toilet to spread into the air.
At first glance, these two signs look pretty similar, right? But then you notice there is the slightest distinction between the two - a distinction that makes all the difference.
We love this minimalist approach to these signs. In all honesty, you don't need much more than the information provided to you right here!
Some pinballers get so into the game - they lose track of time. What eventually ends up happening is in a single moment they remember they drank three gallons of Gatorade and that they MUST use the bathroom immediately.
Because the game hall is so big, people couldn't find their way to the restrooms and well...there are accidents on the way. That's when the owner of this joint deiced to make bathroom signs so big they are absolutely impossible to miss. And just like that, everyone's problems disappeared!
Beer There, Done That
No matter who you are and what your bladder capacity is - we all know that beer has a life of its own. There's something about the beverage that makes us need to go far more often then if we were to drink anything else. It's magical in that sense, really.
This bar caught onto the fact that their customers use the bathroom quite a lot, so they used the culprit as their bathroom mascot!
When there's only one stall, it's hard to understand if it was intended for your use. This cafe made sure all their customers felt welcome as they put an inclusive sign on their bathroom.
If that wasn't exceptional enough - they added a pride flag to the sign to make sure everyone knew how accepting they are. We dig it, and we hope other business owners use this as an example!
In the Bush
Admit it; you're guilty of picking protected flowers. Who isn't? You see a flower, you think it's pretty, you pick it, and story over.
Some random person who likes picking flowers decided to put the habit to good use - helping people know which bathroom they should go into. This is a very simple, nature-inspired design, yet it delivers the message.
Lego to the Toilet
We loved Legos - granted, we hated stepping on them, but playing with them was pure joy. So you could only imagine the happiness we felt when our parents told us we were going to Legoland. We spent all day wandering around, enjoying the rides, and taking in as much Lego as we possibly could.
That's when, sometime after lunch, it hit us, we hadn't used the bathroom all day, and suddenly it is all we can think about. According to this bathroom sign...we weren't the only ones!
Not Too Far
Forget about genders, there is one thing we all want to know, and that is, how far is the bathroom? Will we have to take a long hike every time we want to tinkle? If you don't enjoy walking while needing to use the restroom, it's your lucky day, this improvised restroom sign is here to tell you the closest bathroom is just a few steps away.
Maybe what they are really trying to get at is that the bathroom is worthy of a sign telling you how far it is, just like any other big tourist destination.
Bananas and Peaches
Listen, we have to admit that this one is making us feel a little bit more uncomfortable than we're comfortable admitting. Sure, these are just paintings of a Banana and a Peach but there is something about them that just creeps us out.
We don't want to be mean but we think it is partly because of the way it was drawn. Maybe someone with better drawing skills would have made this one work better.
It took us a couple of seconds, but we are proud to say that we finally understood this bathroom sign. It's for males! From all galaxies.
Whether you're a robot or an underwater sea creature, if you need to use the bathroom and you're a male (of any sort), you've come to the right place!
We have a strong feeling that this sign was designed by someone who just enjoyed creating chaos. How else would you explain creating a bathroom sign that leaves people confused about where they should actually go?
Imagine already needing to use the restroom, your brain isn't going to be at its highest functioning capabilities, and then you have to stand, stare and ponder if you should enter the door that says "women" or maybe the door the woman is pointing towards. The stress of making a mistake here would alone be enough to cause some accidents.
A Creative Genius
Someone had a lot of time...and tape on their hands, and we're not complaining. Who knew it was this easy to get creative with different colored tape!
Impressive work, we're going to see if we can come up with something similar at home! We definitely have the time for it...though we're not so sure we have the tape or the talent!
Chicken Salad Chick
These are the bathroom signs at a restaurant called "Chicken Salad Chick." While we are not fans of women being referred to as chicks, nor do we think all men are "chick magnets" (many of them are the opposite) we do have to commend these bathroom signs for staying on theme.
We think they really could have gone for something different, but it seems that their customers love these signs, and hey, maybe they know their audience better than we do.
Mom & Pop
You must love The Simpsons, right? This comic book store used everyone's favorite mom and dad as their bathroom mascots - and we love it! It could have been cool if they decided to use all the cartoon and comics' males and females and fill up these doors with hundred and hundreds of stickers!
If the owners are reading this and you like our idea, please go for it! We'd love to see the updated version!
An International Symbol?
One thing that connects everyone is Pizza. Is a person who doesn't love Pizza really a person? Or are they just an alien faking it? The problem is that there has got to be a better way to tell the difference between a men's and a women's restroom. On the other hand, does it really matter?
These signs do little to help us know which bathroom we should go into, but at the end of the day, all that really matters in life is Pizza.
Listen, we swear that we come from the west, but we still have no idea what we are supposed to understand from this sign we're staring at. Maybe they are trying to communicate that these toilets are western-people friendly? As opposed to Japanese toilets?
We've never been to Japan so we're really confused, but at the end of the day, if we can go through that door and do what we gotta do, maybe that's all that matters.
Like a Sailor
We've all heard the expression cursing like a sailor, but what happens when you need to pee like one? All that spinach will make you healthy, but it also requires a place to be discarded. In a world of cartoon characters, we see every day - be an Olivia or a Popeye.
Over the years, Popeye has appeared in comic books, television cartoons, video games, advertisements, and apparently bathroom signs!
Have a Slice Day!
This pizzeria took a very creative approach when it came to their bathroom signs. We've never thought of comparing human anatomy to a pizza, but now that they made the bold move and did it - we see it.
Although we must admit, we may never look at a slice of pizza the same way ever again.
All Bats Are On
We all like to imagine that we could be superheroes from time to time, and this bathroom sign is here to help us feed that fantasy. No ordinary man and woman in this one, but batman and catwoman themselves. This is actually something you could implement at home if you'd like.
The person who shared this picture told us that they got this sign on Etsy. So if you want to be copycats or copybats, you know where to look!
Bouys And Gulls
The obsession level for these beachy signs is 11/10. So simple yet so adorable. The blue color is simple but it still really pops. The cartoony art is super adorbs and calling girls “gulls” and boys “buoys” is borderline sending us into hysteria.
It’s just so fricken cute! Where can we get one? If any of you gulls and buoys out there know the answer to this, holler at us, we’ve got to know!
Out of This World!
Of course, a simple addition of alien antennas and boom! This bathroom sign is out of this world - literally! We never thought that aliens would look like the bathroom characters, but now that we're looking at it, we can't say it doesn't look right!
We've always wondered about the anatomy of aliens, and knowing that they are just like us brings us peace of mind.
We're not sure if this a bathroom sign or a warning sign to women using this public restroom. Either way, it has us cringing! Why would anyone feel the need to creep up on women in the bathroom?
In any case, the woman isn't even doing anything other than standing there, so even if this peeping Tom thought he was going to catch some "action," he is mistaking!
Bathroom in Bali
As part of us showing you all different types of bathroom signs, you also get to have a tour of many different countries. This sign, for example, was taken at Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali.
Now, we're not sure about you, but when we're traveling abroad, we love learning the country's language. Of course, we don't learn the whole language, just key words that we know will help us through our visit. One of the first terms we learn is "bathroom," which comes in handy more than one would think. Thanks to this bathroom sign, we now know how to say "boys" and "girls" in Indonesian.
When you stop to think about it, bathrooms are a reality no one likes to talk about. But, why not try and turn that boring, something disgusting reality into a full-blown fantasy?
That's what they decided to do with this Ashland, Oregon bathroom sign. According to this one, we're all fighters and princesses with horses. Wouldn't that have been a much better reality? Till it happened, we can keep on dreaming.
What Are We Even Looking At?
Listen, we don't really vibe with this one. It's not that there's anything particularly wrong with it, it's just that we feel it's kind of uninspired. Why do they both look like bad stock images of people who are in a big hurry to go to work?
Why does it seem as if they are running away from each other? And what does any of this have to do with bathrooms?
Barbie and Ken Can't
If you thought you've seen it all - look again! These bathroom signs are literally framed Barbie and Ken dolls. While it could be nice to imagine we look like them, we all know that's far from reality.
Not to mention the fact that if you think about the way these dolls are designed, they are definitely missing the parts that one would need in order to use the bathroom...
A Royal Wee
At Kensington Palace, know that you are treated like royalty when you go to the bathroom. You read that right; as soon as you walk in, someone is waiting for you with a warm towel, finger sandwiches, and some afternoon tea as soon as you're done using the toilet.
There are even two Queen's Guards waiting outside to make sure no one bothers you or accidentally walks in. Okay, so maybe none of this is true...but we can dream, right?
Thinking About It
We love the aesthetic of this sign, it is incredibly simple, and it's obviously inspired by the classic bathroom signs, but it offers a twist. We've all been known to think while sitting on the toilet.
When you think about it, it's a great way to spend some quality alone time with yourself and with your thoughts. Also, we love that this sign doesn't place any significance on your gender.
The Wrong Gender
At first glance, there's nothing wrong with this design. It's just a beautiful mural of a man and a woman hiking, drawn on the doors to the bathroom stalls.
The problem is that usually, the bathroom with the woman on them is, well, the women's bathroom. But, alas, the mural wasn't thought through, and the opposite gender is drawn on each one of the stalls. We bet that has led to some awkward mistakes.
Baby Changing Room
Finally! A sign we can very easily read! This bathroom stall is for everyone, men, women, disabled, and women who need to remove their babies' heads. Or maybe, they just need to put it back on? Either way works.
Oh wait, we feel so foolish for not understanding it's a baby changing room. Is that where you can put one baby and get another one instead?
This was a "you only had one job" moment that turned into a spark of genius. Jeremy, the summer intern, was asked to go out and buy a bathroom sign. When they asked him to buy one bathroom sign, that is precisely what he did.
He purchased a single sign. Instead of getting mad at the intern, they got creative. The manager had the brilliant idea of cutting up the sign where it mattered and making two different signs. Voilà! A stroke of genius! We just have one problem, we think that assuming that only women wear heels and only men smoke pipes is super old-fashioned.
Where's My Body?
Instead of the conventional "women" and "men" signs, this person decided they can use their somewhat questionable drawing skills in order to try and convey the message.
The result? The men's bathroom seems fine-ish, but the woman here completely lost her body, which is both uncomfortable and will make it very hard for her to actually use the bathroom. Maybe they are just trying to be extra inclusive? One bathroom is for people with bodies and the other one is for floating heads?
Been There, Thai'd That
Apparently, in Thailand, men don't have arms and thrust their body's forward when they need to pee, and women seem to be...frightened?
We're trying to wrap our heads around what exactly is going on here, but it seems to us that this sign was chosen for a specific reason, and we want to understand what it is!
Who We Truly Are
These signs really get us, it shows us who we are on the inside - fierce lions and lionesses. We can only imagine these two signs are hanging at a zoo.
One thing we do find funny is that whoever designed these didn't really trust us to understand them. Not only did they put up pictures, they also made sure to include the words "Lion" and "Lioness" and for those of us who are struggling, they also included the regular bathroom symbol next to the words.
A Bathroom From Outer-Space
Or maybe, this bathroom is from the future? One where we all just have three heads? What would a toilet for being with three heads look like? Do they also need three toilets? So many questions and zero answers.
Now, being more serious we appreciate the idea behind this sign - at the end of the day, no matter your gender or how many heads you have, we're all just beings.
All the Ladies
When it comes to bathrooms, women have a harder time than men. Usually, the line in the women's bathroom is always much longer, and it's a lot harder for women to tinkle in nature. This sign is here to right a couple of wrongs by saying all the stalls are saved for women.
The men can just go and do their business in the back. While this sign is funny, we actually do believe in bathroom equality for everyone, men included.
In A While, Crocodile
There is so much going on here; for a second, we forgot we were looking at bathroom signs. We have so many questions we don't even know where to begin.
First of all, why on earth is the male crocodile holding a crab? Why are there two random butterflies on each of these signs, and why is the female crocodile wearing only heels? We need answers
Let’s be real; this bathroom sign design is pretty genius if you think about it. Obviously located in the Middle East, we get a dual meaning here. Is this identifiably typical Middle Eastern architecture? Yes. Does this, ahem….clearly portray which gender goes where? Absolutely.
You have to give it to whoever designed this sign; they definitely thought outside the box. We’ve already got ideas for toilet signs in Paris, for example, or Washington D.C, or any other city that might have a tall monument.
Beetle Juice, Beetle Juice, Beetle Juice
Please, oh, please tell us you recognize this image! We love a great movie reference, and this one really takes the cake. Can you remember? It’s our favorite dead couple from "Beetlejuice" (a killer Tim Burton film for those who haven't seen it), played by Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis.
These spooky faces come when the ghost couple is trying to scare Wynona Ryder and her family from their property. This one is for cult film fans worldwide, no need whatsoever to speak the same language; it spooks, we mean, speaks for itself.
All Genders Are Welcome
Mr. and Mrs., his and hers, ladies and gentlemen…. and also differently-abled people, and also transgender and non-binary people - everyone is invited! This simple yet clever design sends the right message.
This is so simple and so important but it isn't done enough. In the future, we hope all bathroom signs will include everyone. Also, finding different ways to represent the different types of people who use bathrooms opens the door to endless creativty with future signs.
Optimus Prime at His Prime
In this day and age, the relevance and accuracy of this bathroom sign are top-notch! Just by virtue of a simple sign in the middle that isn’t gender-specific, this Spanish speaking location exudes acceptance with a touch of humor.
You can be whatever you want to be and feel totally comfortable about it, whether that's a man, woman, or even Optimus Prime! We're sure he would be here to give his seal of approval if he weren’t out saving the earth once again.
Well, this is undeniably adorable. Who doesn’t love things that also come in miniature? This bathroom is clearly for the whole family and adds a touch of fun and whimsy while they’re at it! It’s the kind of thing one might expect from Ikea, for example...or maybe we’re just free-associating the yellow. Either way, whatever size, whatever age, this bathroom sign is fun, endearing, and simultaneously utilitarian. You can’t get any better than that!
Donuts for All
Calling all dessert lovers! This signage is so clever for a bakery bathroom. We love the pop art style, and there’s no questioning who goes where….while somehow also kind of making us want a donut….or maybe an eclair!
Now, this is what we call good branding. If your business deals with something specific, why not go all the way with the decorations! We get the feeling this is a bathroom situation Homer Simpson would 100% approve of.
We are completely living for these African-themed bathroom signs. These toilets can be found at a zoo in East Sussex, England. We have a feeling these bathroom stalls are right next to the section of the zoo where you can find all of the animals that originally reside in Africa.
On the right, you can see a woman wearing her tribe's traditional clothing, while on the other side, there's a man sporting his gender outfit. Who knew the trip to the bathroom would be educational?
Jack & Jill
One thing that connects all humans no matter their nationality, race or gender, is the need to use the toilet from time to time. This is why we get to see cool bathroom signs from all over the world.
This photo was taken in china, and for those of us who can't really read Chinese characters, they added two figures who seem inspired by Chinese calligraphy. Anyone can look at these two images and understand which bathroom is which, and that's all that matters.
Bucks and Does
Sometimes, simple does the trick. You don’t need too much detail to send a clear message. This cafe in Vienna, Austria operates under the less is more philosophy when it comes to their signage. These simple characters are perfectly representative of men and women while using imagery from the animal kingdom.
Whatever you got goin’ on, you can easily choose your stall with no words and no fuss! Also, we find this one super cute, don't you?
Nuts & Bolts
Think about it for a second…this is pretty well thought out. Let’s take a closer look, shall we? First, we have the nut and the bolt. We already know these are often identified as male vs. female hardware, just like on a battery!
On top of that, they really decided to go all the way with the industrial theme, choosing to have metal doors and standout bolts. Now whether the rust was on purpose or not, it sure does add to the whole vibe.
Spot the Difference
We’re dying to know where this sign was posted and why they decided to go with the nut, squirrel theme, but either way, it’s perfect. The concept is great. Take the same picture, switch up the accessories, and voila!
You don’t even need to write men or women; we think the nuts speak plainly for themselves! We can clearly picture every person going to use the restroom at this establishment chuckling a bit when they see the signs. And isn’t that what it’s about? Adding a bit of joy to everyday, mundane tasks. No ifs, and, or nuts about it.
A Hearty Breakfast
Clearly, a breakfast restaurant, maybe even a diner, and the signage is spot on. There are so many nicknames for….well….you know, and if you’re serving brekkie anyway, why not match the signs to the food?
Just a cute little reminder that even a bathroom sign can brighten someone’s morning. The longer we look at it, the hungrier we get, so maybe it’s actually just really good marketing.
When In Turkey
This picture was taken in Turkey, and for all we know, this is what all Turkish bathroom signs look like. We never thought we would have to discuss something like this, but just to make sure we're all on the same page, this sign tells you which bathroom you should go into based on the position in which you... tinkle.
While this probably applies in Turkey, you'd be surprised to hear that in some countries, men sit down as well. The more you know...
Bikini for Women, Trunks for Men
We can't really argue with this straightforward yet overly colorful bathroom sign. You know which bathroom you should get into based on what type of swimsuit you wear to the beach. Of course, we find the doors a bit too colorful, so much so that it can be distracting, but hey, nobody asked us anyway.
If these bathroom stalls are located in a pool or even at the beach, we'd say this is a win. Anywhere else? We would have preferred to see something classier.