A Guide to Getting it Done: Campus Bathroom Ratings

By Amy Y. Li

Between one-ply toilet paper and unscented soap, it’s not easy to find a luxurious public bathroom here on campus. After some investigation, however, it turns out Harvard actually has a few places that make the cut. Behold: the information that everyone needs, but few are brave enough to collect.

Science Center

Location-wise, the Science Center seems like the ideal place for a midday bathroom break — as long as you aren’t going in the basement. Steer clear of these bathrooms. The broken locks, long lines, and wider than average gaps between stalls are everybody’s middle school nightmare.

While the basement might not be the ideal option, venture to the second floor of the Cabot Science Library for a real modern upgrade. Don’t count on being able to go right away, though. With only three single-stall (and gender-neutral!) bathrooms available for use, you’ll get your privacy, but you might have to wait your turn.

Northwest Labs:

These are pretty much the average public restroom. Multiple stalls, gray square tiles, and an occasional shortage of toilet paper give you a pretty unmemorable experience. They’re totally not worth going out of your way for, but if you’re there and you have to go? Hey, why not.

Smith Campus Center:

The best part about these bathrooms is undeniably the tilework (great for that #bathroomselfie), not to mention the fancy sinks, big mirrors, and toilet seat covers that make for a pretty nice rest stop. The only downside is getting past the “hover your HUID over the keypad to unlock” system that never seems to work when you really need it to.


It’s a shame that no one knows about these bathrooms (or even where they are), but maybe that’s why they’re the best. The huge mirrors, high ceilings, and the neon yellow stalls make these the actual bathroom jackpot. Someone put a lot of work into designing them, so they’re definitely worth venturing out past Sever to check out.


Although the marble walls might claim otherwise, the bathrooms in Lamont Library aren’t all that special. Among the busiest bathrooms on campus, about half the stalls scream “clean me” on any given Sunday night. Fortunately, they do have toilet-seat covers to address your hygiene woes. Just remember that men's and women’s rooms are on alternate floors.

When you’re running late to class and you really have to go, it’s nice to have so many public spaces to choose from. Some are great and some are just not, but at least they’re all equipped with toilets, paper, and most importantly, soap.

Flyby BlogFlyby CampusFlyby FrontHow to Harvard

Harvard Today

The latest in your inbox.

Sign Up

Follow Flyby online.