20 Secrets About Widely Used Products

How many of these did you already know?


1. Stapler Settings

Stapler Settings

Normally staplers have two different settings. One to keep your papers more or less permanently bound together and one to keep them loosely attached if they need to be separated again. To activate the “loose” setting, push and rotate the little metal plate on the bottom of the stapler. – Source


2. Frozen Desserts are not Ice-Creams

Frozen dessert

Majority of so called brand ice cream you buy at the grocery store is not ice cream but rather frozen dessert. The term is often used on products which are similar in taste and texture to ice cream, but which do not meet the legal definition of that term (often being made primarily with vegetable oils, i.e. mellorine, as opposed to milk or cream). – Source


3. Gorilla Glass is Old Tech

Gorilla glass

Gorilla Glass is the registered trademark of a specialized toughened glass developed and manufactured by a company called Corning. Corning experimented with chemically strengthened glass in 1960, as part of a “Project Muscle” initiative. Within a few years they had developed a “muscled glass” marketed as Chemcor. The product was used until the early 1990s in commercial and industrial applications. Experimentation was revived in 2005, investigating whether the glass could be made thin enough for use in consumer electronics. It was brought into commercial use when Apple asked Corning for a thin, toughened glass to use in the new iPhone. It is now being sold as a cutting edge product, but really it is 50 years old.


4. Lego Bricks are Ripoff

Kiddicraft

Lego bricks were based in part on the Kiddicraft Self-Locking Bricks, which were patented in the United Kingdom in 1939 and then there released in 1947. Lego modified the design of the Kiddicraft brick after examining a sample given to it by the British supplier of an injection-molding machine that the company had purchased and started making Lego Bricks. The Kiddicraft founder Harry Page died in 1957 without ever knowing about it. In 1981, Lego acquired Kiddicraft so that they can successfully sue Tyco, another brick maker in the late 1980s citing copyright infringement. They had bought Kiddicraft earlier to make their claim stronger. The court however decided against Lego saying bricks are not patentable.


5. Budweiser Beechwood Aging

Budweiser beechwood

Budweiser is brewed using barley malt, rice, water, hops and yeast. It is lagered with beechwood chips in the ageing vessel which, according to Anheuser-Busch, creates a smoother taste. While beechwood chips are used in the maturation tank, there is little to no flavor contribution from the wood, mainly because they are boiled in sodium bicarbonate [baking soda] for seven hours for the very purpose of removing any flavor from the wood. It is added to their lagering tanks to increase the surface area on which the yeast lands as it separates from the beer after primary fermentation is complete and aging begins.

During aging, beer yeast absorbs the esters (flavor compounds) released by the yeast during primary fermentation as it converts, removing flavors from the beer.

Everyone else who wood-ages a beer, does so to impart flavor. Budweiser does it to remove flavor.


6. Pet Food Labels

Pet food labelling

If the product’s label statement is a single listed, unmodified ingredient (Turkey, Pork, Chicken, etc.) it has to contain at least 70% of that ingredient.

If it uses a modifying word (Chicken entree, Salmon dinner, Beef stew, etc.) that percentage declines to 10% for wet food and 25% for dry food.

If the modifying word used is “with” (with beef, with chicken, etc.) it declines to 3%. – Source


7. Pepto-Bismol Ingredients

Pepto-Bismol

The key ingredient in Pepto-Bismol is bismuth, a metal that is 86% as dense as lead, hence the weight of the bottle. Bismuth is used because it is toxic to some microorganisms that cause diarrhea. The mechanism of action of this substance is still not well documented, but it is believed that the weight of the bismuth allows it to displace stomach contents very effectively and reach the source of your problems.

The reason why taking Pepto Bismol can cause your tongue and poop to turn black is because Bismuth, reacts with the trace amounts of sulfur found in saliva and the gastrointestinal tract. – Source


8. Graham Bell Never Invented Telephone

Telephone

The telephone was actually invented by an Italian inventor named Antonio Meucci, not Alexander Graham Bell. Meucci started work on the device in 1849, and had a working prototype well before he could afford to patent it.

He filed a caveat, an intention to patent and then took his prototype to a lab to get help with it. When his caveat expired, his prototype went missing, and Bell applied for a patent on an almost identical design. It just so happened that Bell worked at that lab.

To make matters even more interesting Elisha Gray, a professor at Oberlin College, applied for a caveat of the telephone on the same day Bell applied for his patent of the telephone, but he arrived just a little bit later than Bell. Therefore Bell is credited as the inventor of the telephone. – Source


9. Mountain Dew’s Ingredients

Mountain Dew

The ingredient composition of Mountain Dew is listed as: “carbonated water, high-fructose corn syrup (in much of the U.S.), concentrated orange juice, citric acid, natural flavors,” among other things. People still wonder what flavor Mountain Dew is. It was also invented in East Tennessee as an ideal mixer for moonshine and Jack Daniels. Hence the name, Mountain Dew which is the Southern and/or Scots/Irish slang for moonshine.


10. Ivory’s Floating Soap

Floating Soap

Perhaps Ivory’s most famous feature – its ability to float – was the result of an accident. An employee failed to shut off the soap-making machine when he went to lunch. When he returned, he found the soap mixture puffed-up and frothy. After consulting with his supervisor, the decision was made to finish and ship the soap since the ingredients had not been changed in any way by the longer mixing time.

About a month later, P&G received orders for more of “the floating soap.” The people in the other departments were perplexed. Only after some detective work was the mystery solved. The long forgotten lunch-time accident had produced a floating soap.


11. Palm Oil is in Everything

Palm oil

Palm oil is in nearly every grocery store item. Look on the ingredient list of anything in your home (like food, cleaning supplies, etc.) and you probably see a form of palm oil (look for anything with the word palm, such as palmitate). Most people will say, “So? Who cares?”

Palm oil is awfully unsustainable. Many palm oil companies employ the slash and burn method. They cut down and burn rainforest, plant palm oil palms in its place. Lots of rainforest has been destroyed for your palm oil. Worse yet, there are even rumors of black market bounties from those companies on endangered wildlife such as orangutans. Kill and remove the endangered species, so that the governments will let you slash and burn. – Source

In 2012, a ‘Nutella Tax’ was proposed by France partly because Palm oil’s production has led to displacing and killing endangered Orangutans. It raised taxes on palm oil by 300 percent. – Source

But things are looking up. More people are learning about palm oil issues and pressure is being put on the companies. More and more manufacturers are starting to turn to sustainable palm oil practices.


12. You only need one Alka-Seltzer.

Alka-seltzer

In the 1960’s a marketing director told the company producing Alka-Seltzer that he could double their sales. He did this with the now iconic phrase plop plop fizz fizz in a jingle. Until that time they had only recommended a dose of one, and this jingle was about rebranding it as a pack of two. They did in fact nearly double in market size very shortly after releasing this jingle, mostly attributable to people now taking two at a time. It marks the beginning of larger serving sizes to increase sales. – Source


13. Oreos are Knock-offs

Hydrox

Oreos are actually a knock-off of a cookie brand called Hydrox that was created 4 years before the Oreo. People soon assumed Hydrox was the knock-off as Oreos became immensely popular. This is one of the few cases where the knockoff was more popular than the original. – Source


14. Control the Duck

Duck Hunt

The Nintendo Game “Duck Hunt” is a two player game, in which the second player controls the ducks. – Source


15. Mr. Clean Magic Erasers

Melamine sponges

Mr. Clean Magic Erasers are just melamine sponges. Melamine is as hard as glass and actually just scrapes away stains. You can order about a hundred melamine sponges for about 8 dollars on e-bay.



16. Dove and Axe are owned by Unilever.

Axe and Dove

Dove and Axe are owned by the same company, Unilever.

One promotes female self-confidence by re-defining beauty while the other advertises itself using highly sexualized images of females. They tell both men and women what they want to hear. It’s kind of brilliant really, they get to appear empowering on the surface when in reality they’re perpetuating the same kind of insecurities as the rest of the beauty industry that keep women buying their products.


17. Lysol’s Original Use

Lysol

Lysol was originally marketed as a contraceptive. It was corrosive to sperm, but also damaged tissue inside the woman. Its ads said using it as a douche would lead to “marital bliss.” Hundreds of people died from Lysol exposure. – Source


18. HeadOn is a Homeopathic Remedy

HeadOn

HeadOn is a homeopathic remedy. As of September 2000, there were two versions of HeadOn available in makets/stores: “ExtraStrength and Migraine.” Chemical analysis of the Migraine formulation has shown that the product consists almost entirely of wax. The three “active ingredients” are iris versicolor 12× (a toxic flower), white bryony 12× (a type of toxic vine), and potassium dichromate 6× (a known carcinogen). The “×” notation indicates that the three chemicals have been diluted to 1 part per trillion, 1 part per trillion, and 1 part per million respectively. This amount of dilution is so great that the product has been described as a placebo; with skeptic James Randi calling it a “major medical swindle.” – Source


19. Fake Fruit Juices

Fruit Juices

Most of the time when you buy juices like peach, pear, strawberry, raspberry, cherry, kiwi, passion fruit, dragon fruit, banana, mango, guava, it is almost always just apple juice with flavor added. Sometimes it is a blend of apple, pear, and (white) grape juice from concentrate with added other fruit juices from concentrate or natural/artificial flavors. Most of the time cranberry juice falls under this category too. You are buying “cranberry juice cocktail.” Read the labels before you buy these fruit juices and make sure they are real fruits juices.


20. Baby Carrots

Baby carrots

Most baby carrots that you buy in the grocery store are not actually baby carrots, and should be labeled as baby-cut carrots. These carrots start out as regular sized carrots that may have some cosmetic issues. They are cut into pieces and then put through a peeler. Though it may be misleading marketing, it is actually a pretty green thing to do, because otherwise the unsightly carrots probably just get thrown away. – Source


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