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Just over a year ago I had the unfortunate experience of my sink becoming blocked. The blockage was quite severe and resulted in some rather smelly backflow into my shower. The main culprit turned out to be hair that I had shed whilst washing it. Seriously, the amount that I pulled out of the drain whilst trying (unsuccessfully) to unblock it, I was surprised I had any left on my head! A dose of Mr Muscle drain unblocker soon sorted it out and resolving to never go through that experience again I went on the hunt for a sink strainer to cover the plughole and catch any hair that had been shed.
Browsing in Lakeland I spotted a sink strainer manufactured by Dossil called the Dossil Hexapus. All the strainers I'd seen in the past were made of metal with a little bowl shape that fits over the drain. This on the other hand was a little unusual as it was made of silicone and was flat. The back of the packaging stated that this will fit around virtually any plughole, which was great, as I was worried about what sized strainer I should get. It seemed just like what I was looking for and was reasonably priced at £3.29 so I popped it into my basket.
The Dossil Hexapus comes in a white colour. It has a flowery shape, almost resembling a starfish and has a diameter of 13cm. I guess the name Hexapus refers to its 6 "legs" or petals. In the centre there are a series of holes all following a circular pattern and of various sizes. Some are actually quite large and when I removed the packaging I did wonder whether they would really prevent hair from passing through. On the back of the strainer there are a six "suckers" which are used to hold the strainer in place.
I made sure the bath was dry before placing this over the plug hole. I found that it fit perfectly. I pressed down gently to ensure the suckers got to work. To test if this had stuck down firmly I gently pulled at it but it didn't give way as the suckers held it in place. What impressed me was that there was such a snug fit between the hole and the strainer - it had moulded itself to the surface and there did not appear to be any way for hair to pass below it.
When the shower is on the strainer is held firmly in place. I was surprised that this was still the case when the tub was half-filled with water, as I had expected it to loosen and float off. The strainer does an excellent job of catching any hairs that may have fallen. I also needn't have been concerned about the size of the holes as they do not let hair pass through.
The strainer is also very easy to clean as it is made of silicone. I usually run some water over it and scrub it with a small brush to remove any dried shampoo suds and any soapy gunk that may have gathered beneath it. Whenever I have removed it I have never found any stray hairs beneath it.
I have been using this daily for around 18 months now and cannot fault it. The suckers still work really well and the strainer is still going strong. In that time I have not had any problems with blocked sinks and doubt that I will in the future if I continue to use this. Highly recommended!
Anyone with long hair will know that wherever you wash your hair you end up with a plughole full of it. As we lose up to 100 hairs a day it make sense that some are going to come out during the washing process and for me the thought of cleaning out a plughole turns my stomach even though it is only my hair. Until a couple of months ago my partner used to be the one who cleaned out the plugholes so I didn't have to think much about it but as we split up back then it has now become my job. After one stomach churning plughole session I decided I needed to stop the hair building up in there in the first place and found there was such a thing as a Drain Sieve available, otherwise known as a Hair Trap. I scoured Amazon for one that would work that didn't cost much and found this Dossil Hexapus.
The Dossil Hexapus is a flexible Hair Trap that fits over the plughole. The word Dossil apparently comes from an old Scottish word meaning plug or spigot. The Dossil Drain Sieve can be used in the bathroom to catch hair, in the kitchen to catch peelings, crumbs etc from preparing food or washing up, it is dishwasher safe and resistant to bleach, it is made from heat resistant rubber and as it's flexible will fit even odd shaped plugholes. At £3.99 with free delivery from Amazon I decided to give it a go.
When it arrived the Drain Sieve came on a piece of cardboard and inside a clear plastic bag. Very no frills packaging which was fine. It is about 4 inches in diameter with 6 rubber suckers underneath. The outer edge is a bit like a flower shape and then about half an inch in the holes that catch hair begin. The holes are oval and slim and I have to admit I wondered if they would catch all the hair or if some hair would slip through. I had no intention of using this for anything other than hair so can't comment on peelings or kitchen waste.
The first thing I found was the bath needs to be dry to fit this, if it's wet the suckers just will not stick. The suckers on the other hand do better if slightly damp so just dribbling some water from the tap onto your fingers then touching each sucker is enough. Even with both those things done I still found only half of the suckers actually stuck this down so I didn't have high hopes for it staying put. I don't have a weird shaped bath but this is soft rubber so if I did it would still fit.
I wash my hair over the bath with the shower head rather than washing it in a shower so I planned to use the Drain Sieve during that time then remove it so I could put the plug in and fill the bath. With only 3 suckers stuck down I turned on the shower head and waited for the Drain Sieve to swim around the bath, however it didn't. It stayed in place and the water kind of forced it down flat so I tried to ignore it and washed and conditioned my hair. Once done I noticed quite a build up of water in the bottom of the bath, this Drain Sieve slows down the progress of the water which isn't a problem for me but if you use this in a shallow shower tray with a power shower throwing water down at speed it may well result in an overflowing shower tray so be warned!
The water had all gone by the time I'd wrapped my head in a towel and then I was left with the results. The Drain Sieve was still in place and on top of it was a small bundle of long hairs. I personally remove these by lifting them off with a piece of toilet paper and flushing them down the loo, just me and my aversion to the whole plughole/hair situation! Once the hair had been removed I lifted the Drain Sieve off and inspected the plughole, completely hairfree.
I've been using this for a few weeks now and my plughole is still completely clear and hairfree, by this time I've normally managed to build up a noticeable amount of hair in there so it's definitely working. It still only sticks down with about 3 suckers for some reason though but as the water presses it flat to the bath this doesn't allow any stray hairs to creep under it. After use I just leave it on the side of the bath tipped on its side to dry. The only issue I have is remembering to use it and that's just me being a bit forgetful and not the fault of the Drain Sieve.
Overall I'm very pleased with this and very relieved I don't have to think about cleaning the plughole anymore. I think for anyone with long hair this is a great item but just be careful if using it in a shower tray, keep your eye on the water level around your feet. A full 5 stars from me though for saving me the retchworthy task of plughole cleaning.