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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 June, 2004, 09:06 GMT 10:06 UK
Girls beat Glasto toilet nightmare
Last week we told you about The Whiz and the Go Bag - two new options for a gal in need of relief at this year's music festivals. Two intrepid volunteers took the gadgets to Glastonbury and put them to the test for BBC News Online. Did they live up to their promises?

Women peeing into a female urinal
Happy campers: The launch of Glasto's women-only urinals
Even the most seasoned festival-goer is likely to baulk at the sight and stench of a brimming Glastonbury toilet.

And women have always had the rough end of the stick, having to brave the cubicles of doom every time nature calls.

This year, the festival's organisers sought to redress the balance with the introduction of female urinals - or She-pees - guarded by concierges to keep the boys at bay.

And two other products were also launched, promising differing solutions to how a girl can get a swift comfortable pee and still keep her dignity.

Go Bag
The Go Bag was a big hit

The Whiz is a funnel which allows a woman to go standing up - in the She-pee for instance. Taking a different tack, the Go Bag is a pouch of crystals which turn liquid into a solid gel for easy disposal.

Sam Stephenson, from Manchester, is a regular festival-goer and could not praise the Go Bag highly enough.

"It was fabulous, it saved our lives, it was brilliant," she says.

"It meant we didn't miss any of the football games on the big screen or any bands we wanted to see, as it's a nightmare getting to the loos when it's muddy."

Sam said she and her female friends used the Go Bag mainly at night to be more discreet.

The Whiz
The Whiz plays the boys at their own game

"But we used them anywhere - it was so crowded, everyone was doing their own thing, so they weren't interested in what we were up to," she says.

Each Go-Bag is supposed to be used up to three times but Sam says they only used them once each: "They were too full to use more than that."

Her one reservation is the expense, at 8.95 for three.

"If we'd had to buy them ourselves, they probably would have been more of a back-up choice if we were desperate."

But the Go Bag gets a general big thumbs-up - Sam even ended up giving one to a male friend who was equally impressed!

A toilet at Glastonbury 2000
Women were able to avoid scenes like this

Her friend Robyn Bryant also waxed lyrical about the Whiz, which she tested out.

"You just use it in the same way that a man would go to the loo - but we only used it in the She-pees to avoid polluting the water," she says.

"The She-pees were cleaner, with no queues really and you didn't have to touch anything, so it was more hygienic," she added.

"I thought it was great - you can keep the Whiz and wash it, it lasts for a year. I would definitely use it again."

THE WHIZ

How it works: It's a reusable funnel which fits snugly against the body, meaning the woman can pee standing up, anywhere that a man could.

The Whiz is made from flexible anti-bacterial plastic meaning you can "pee, shake and stuff it in your pocket," says Marketing Manager Kate Pierrepont.

"When we launched it at the Isle of Wight festival [2004] there were women rushing up to us who were desperate for the loo. This device makes it easier and more dignified than squatting because you can't bear the queue."

Pierrepont recommends using the Whiz in a urinal or toilet if possible, to prevent pollution of local water courses.

Price 5.00

GO BAG

How it works: The double plastic bag contains a pouch of dry crystals which swell to form a solid gel when liquid is added.

The top of the bag then seals over the lip and the bag can simply be thrown away.

"We are aiming it at festival goers because they have to encounter unsanitary situations," says Go Bag's Carl Rees.

"It's small, compact and easily disposed of - and you can use it in a tent which is better than stumbling around the campsite in the dark."

The Go Bag is currently in use by the US Army and in theory each bag can be used up to three times before disposal.

Price 8.95 for three




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