Last updated on December 7, 2021

If you don’t already know, Feng Shui was developed a looooooong time ago.

Many of the Feng Shui rules and practices that you might have read are also developed a long time ago. That includes one the most popular concept: restrooms and bathrooms have bad Feng Shui.

But are they really? 

If you haven’t noticed, our living standards have GREATLY improved in the last century. Technological advancements and new scientific knowledge have greatly improved our way of life.

Because of this, some Feng Shui concepts have become outdated (whereas some are just plainly wrong). This includes the notion that ALL restrooms have bad Feng Shui by default. In this article, I’ll be using a scientific perspective and a little bit of history to explain why modern restrooms do NOT have bad Feng Shui.

Restrooms in Ancient Times

Can you imagine what restrooms are like in ancient times? In ancient China, restrooms were built in a small hut outside of the house.

Why is that?

That’s because, back then, there were no sewer systems like we have today. They did not have a toilet where they could flush every time we finish taking care of business.

A little hard to imagine, right? Below is an image that shows what ancient restrooms in China may look like.

Ancient restrooms outside of house Feng Shui min - Do Restrooms and Bathrooms Really Bring Bad Feng Shui?
A restroom located outside of the residences.

Further, in ancient times, water doesn’t come that easy. People had to carry water from the closest water source and store it inside the home. Water is used on essential items, such as cooking, cleaning dishes, laundry, and washing themselves up (they didn’t have showers, and only the rich can take hot water baths). Thus, restrooms were cleaned around one to three times a week.

Knowing that, can you now imagine the stench and sanitation of the restroom?

In fact, in the late 1990’s, I’ve traveled to a small village in China’s country-side where there was no sewer system. And yes, I’ve used their restroom. It was quite common to find yourself with flies, worms, or other strange insects swarming inside. (I went during winter time, but I can only imagine how it would be if it was summer time.)

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The above image is a VERY clean toilet from ancient times.

In fact, you can smell the stench of the restroom from quite a distance! I can remember it took me about 1-2 minutes to walk from the residential area to the restroom.

Can you now see why restrooms have bad Feng Shui? Imagine if the restroom hut is only a 10 second walk from where you live. I’m sure the WHOLE house would reek of its foul smell when the wind starts blowing towards the direction of the house.

Restrooms in Modern Times

The toilets we use today was developed in the last century. The key difference is that we can flush away our bodily fluids and waste after every use!

Also, cleaning a restroom today is VERY different than cleaning a restroom in ancient times. Even if we don’t clean our restrooms for a week, its filth would be NOTHING compared to the restrooms from ancient times. Your restroom wouldn’t have piles of feces mixed with urine waiting to be washed away.

Now, can you see the Feng Shui differences between ancient and modern-day restrooms?

Feng Shui Interpretations of Modern Restroom

Why do modern day Feng Shui practitioners still claim that restrooms bring bad Feng Shui? In their words, they say that it’s because restrooms are where we take care of business. Bathrooms are where we wash off our dead skin and clean ourselves from unsanitary germs that we’ve gathered throughout the day.

To me, those statements are half true at best because they neglect the fact that our bodily wastes are washed away with clean water. It’s unlike ancient restrooms where our bodily wastes are cleaned once to three times a week. So in a sense, the Feng Shui modern restrooms aren’t remotely close to the Feng Shui of ancient restrooms.

However, bathrooms today can be much more humid because we take much more baths and showers. Constant humidity can cause black mold to grow, and its presence can be devastating to our health. That is why it’s highly suggested that you keep your bathrooms well ventilated. If you have a window, open it. If not, have some kind of ventilation in place.

Black Mold in modern Bathroom bad feng shui min - Do Restrooms and Bathrooms Really Bring Bad Feng Shui?
Modern day bathrooms will have problems with black mold if there’s no proper ventilation.

With all these factors considered, it is safe to say that the bathrooms we have today do NOT have bad Feng Shui. Of course, that’s assuming that you keep your restroom clean. But even if you don’t, its Feng Shui won’t be as bad compared to the ones in ancient times. NOT EVEN CLOSE.

4 Restroom Feng Shui Rules and Concepts that Should be Updated

Because of the huge difference between ancient and modern restrooms, some restroom Feng Shui concepts should be updated, which I’ve listed below:

Restrooms Do NOT Bring Bad Feng Shui by Default

I’ve explained why in the section above. To summarize, your restroom will only have bad Feng Shui if you don’t keep it clean. Even if you don’t clean your restroom, your restroom Feng Shui won’t be as bad because we flush our toilets after each use.

Restroom Door Facing Kitchen

You might have heard that restroom door facing kitchen can bring sickness and affects the digestive system of the family. This is likely true in ancient times because the toilet hut is a perfect breeding ground for flies and insects.

Flies and insects are attracted to the heat and smell of the food in the kitchen, and they can end up in your food unbeknownst to you. Also, the ancients likely didn’t know much about hygiene. They probably don’t even know why they got sick after ingesting food that was crawled and contaminated by flies and insects. My guess is that this is the main reason why restrooms facing kitchen is bad Feng Shui in ancient times.

Fly on hamburger min - Do Restrooms and Bathrooms Really Bring Bad Feng Shui?
Flies can carry bacteria, viruses, and parasites from waste to our food.

As for today, this can be true when someone’s constantly using the restroom when you’re cooking. That’s because the flushing of the toilet launches harmful viruses and bacteria into the air, traveling up to 6 feet away from the toilet! These can range from the notorious E. Coli to Hepatitis A, to name a few.

So instead of having the insects and flies carry those virus and bacteria to your food while you cook, the toilet flushing is doing the same job today.

Still, even when the restroom door is open when you’re cooking, it shouldn’t affect the sanitation of your food unless someone’s constantly using the restroom when you’re cooking. Restroom Feng Shui just isn’t that bad nowadays.

Of course, the distance between the restroom and the kitchen should also be considered. If both are very far apart, then you wouldn’t have to worry about this being a bad Feng Shui setup. Yes, the risk is there, but it’s a very low risk.

An easy fix is to install a door curtain or drapery on the restroom door as Feng Shui cure. This same cure can be applied to restroom doors facing the bedroom door.

Restroom Door Facing Bed

Imagine yourself living and sleeping inside a public restroom that’s rarely cleaned. How would that affect you? Would you feel nauseous and become sick over time?

This is the reason why restroom door facing bed is said to bring sickness and health problems. However, I’m sure the restroom at your home is much cleaner than public restrooms (I hope). Therefore, even if your restroom door is open and facing your bed, it shouldn’t be a huge Feng Shui problem that you should worry about.

Again, the distance between the restroom door and your bed should be considered. The restroom door shouldn’t be too close to the bed.

Restroom Door Facing Desk

The Feng Shui effects of this is that (1) kids who use that desk won’t like to study and (2) adults who use that desk can’t seem to sit still and can’t concentrate.

By now, you can probably see why. That’s because in ancient times, the stench of the restroom is unbearable. How can you concentrate when you’re feeling disgust?

Most people’s concentration is affected by outside stimuli. These stimuli are those that affect our five senses – smell, sight, touch, taste, and vision. For me, I can’t even concentrate when there’s the smell of food, not to mention the foul smell of ancient restrooms!

So if you keep your restrooms clean and pleasant, having the restroom door facing the desk wouldn’t be much of a problem.

So… Are Restrooms Really Bad Feng Shui?

No, today’s restroom is not bad Feng Shui. However, if you only flush your toilet twice a week (just like ancient times), then yes, your restroom will give you REALLY bad Feng Shui.

Thus, if you keep your restroom clean, then it won’t give you bad Feng Shui. Even if it sits on your wealth area or other areas like the Southeast, you shouldn’t worry. It just means you won’t be able to tap into the wealth area. It is NOT going to negatively affect your wealth.

Narrow bricks make natural stone bathroom without window - Do Restrooms and Bathrooms Really Bring Bad Feng Shui?
A clean restroom will NOT bring you bad Feng Shui.

Further, many other concepts of restroom Feng Shui still hold true, depending on what school of Feng Shui you practice.

For one, your restroom shouldn’t be located at the center of your house. That’s because the smell of human waste can easily spread to other living areas. Put simply, it affects the comfort of your home.

That is also why it’s important to have good ventilation in your restroom. Opening the restroom window will do the job. If that’s not possible, installing a wall or ceiling exhaust vent would definitely help. Its main purpose is to get rid the smell and humidity (if there’s any). Here are other tips to further minimize the bad Feng Shui (although minimal) of the restroom.


Feng Shui was developed a looooong time ago, and some of its concepts are outdated and not applicable to modern day living. This includes the idea that restrooms are bad Feng Shui by default, which is true before (in the lower to middle class) but not today.

Using what you’ve just learned, can you think of other restroom Feng Shui concepts that seem ridiculous or outdated? If so, comment below and share it with us!

Leave a Reply

  1. Careen Perepeczko

    I agree with your overall summary, but there is still a lot of advice talking about toilet lids being closed, dripping taps and just generally the bathroom door being shut. So more specific to current day and age issues. Based on those concepts, should we still be considering the Feng Shui of the bathroom itself?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Careen,
      As seen in the embedded video in this article, it’s certainly a great idea to keep the toilet lid closed when flushing. As for dripping taps, it’s always a great idea to fix it because it saves water and lowers your water bill. As for money flowing away because dripping tabs, it just means that you’ll have a higher water bill.
      As for the Feng Shui of the overall bathroom, it depends on which school you practice. 🙂

  2. Julie

    I thought buying a house where the toilet was not by the front door was good, now I am worried because we have an ensuit and the bed is on the same wall as the sink and loo. Also we have a small slope in the bedroom ceiling to the right of the bed.and we cannot move the bed. We love our house, but we have lost my parents whilst living here not lng after we moved in. I also read that you should not have the bedroom door on the same wall as the ensuit. Or have a front door under or opposite a toilet. Nearly all of the houses on our estate have these features. Our house which is number 1 always feels like it protects us and is our safe place, but reading some of the feung shui it is a bit scary. Reading your nlog has brought me peace of mind again. Thank you.

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Julie,
      Yes, after reading this article I hope you know that many of the ancient concepts no longer apply to us today! Glad that it has brought you a peace of mind. 🙂

  3. Emily

    Hi Victor,

    Is it still considered bad Feng Shui if the bed headboard in bedroom is against the wall where there are two bathrooms on the other side of the wall?
    Thank you


    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Emily,
      It depends on where the toilet is located on the other side. If this concerns you, a more solid headboard would do.

  4. Var


    The bathroom in the apartment I will be living in is in the center of the house, but it is well ventilated (it has a big window that can be opened, exactly near the place where the shower is) and also the door will always be closed. Now there aren’t any sanitary items installed, so all of them will be freshly installed and of new technology and I will always keep the bathroom clean. I will have a few air purifying and decorating plants there, as they can easily grow having access to natural light. I want to make the bathroom a cozy and relaxing place, where you flush all dirt and stressful thoughts away. Do you believe that the place still needs some cure for the fact that the bathroom is in the center of the house?
    How is it possible for window to exist in a bathroom in the center of the house? That is because I have a missing palace in the South-West corner and a bit of the West one (there is the terrace actually.. the window opening is in the lateral side at one of the ends of the terrace). The terrace is outside, it is not closed, it only has a low fence for privacy and delimitation.
    It is possible that my bathroom will have a higher floor (with like 0.5 centimeters (5 millimeters)). Is that a bad thing? I read in some place that the bathroom shouldn’t be higher than the rest of the house. The difference in elevation is small, but still.. What do you think?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Var,
      You are fine in your case. Bathroom in ancient times don’t have the ventilation and tech we have today to keep it clean, that’s why it’s considered bad Feng Shui. And because Qi flows from top to bttom, having the bathroom in higher elevation prompts the bad Qi to flow to other areas of the house. But if you read this article, you’ll know that restrooms in ancient times differ than what we have today.

  5. Sam

    Hi Victor:

    Interesting article for sure and a different perspective.
    In our older house, the toilet in our ensuite bathroom faces the bathroom door and also the bedroom door. I have been told this is very bad and can cause abdominal issues for women. It is a small bathroom, and so shifting the toilet and bathtub around would be very expensive. Is there something simple we can do to remedy this problem?
    Thanks in advance.

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Sam,
      Simply try to keep the restroom door closed most of the time. If that still worries you, a door curtain covering the restroom door would also help.

  6. Laure

    Hi Victor,

    If front entrance is directly across facing the bathroom door, is that bad? The bathroom is newly renovated and everything is clean and new. We thought about either changing the bathroom door to face dining room and kitchen instead but then read that’s bad too. So the other option is to add a wall to the hallway but not sure if it’ll help as the the doors are still facing each other so it’s just something in between them, not sure if that will do. Which one is the better option and if you have any recommendations. Appreciate it.

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Laure,
      So if you’ve read this article, you should know the answer. If you plan on renovating, please consider the distance the bathroom is from the door/kitchen. Today’s bathroom is not like before, and distance can mitigate its effects.

  7. Mia

    We just remodeled our bathroom. It’s all black. Flooring is black with floor to ceiling black tile and black grout surrounding the entire room. Tub, toilet, and vanity top are white, the vanity base is gray. Now I read that black and dark colors are bad feng shui for this area?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Mia,
      Black is not necessarily bad, but it does absorb light and make the space look dull and low energy.

  8. Erin

    Hi Victor,

    This is a great article that helps laymen understand Fengshui and how to better perceive it. I am moving into a master bedroom that has a walk-in bathroom without a door. Would you recommend installing a door or would a curtain suffice? I didn’t think much about it when I bought the house since it’s a studio and I enjoyed the open concept of having no door between the bedroom and the living room.

    I am also thinking of installing a big piece of mirror on the bathroom wall that facing the entrance of the bathroom; as I don’t have a full body mirror in the house. But I read an article that says no mirror should face the bathroom door. However, technically I have no door in the bathroom.

    I would really appreciate your opinion.

    1. Free Lancer Admin

      Hi Erin,
      A curtain would suffice – it’s also the more economical option. For the mirror, you’d also have to check where the toilet is. If the mirror is far away, then go for it!