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24 Features On Everyday Products That You're Not Using Right

What are these strange black dots around my windshield?

1. Do you know why some suckers have hollow sticks with holes near the top?

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Here's the reason: The stick is hollow so that any child who accidentally swallows the stick won't choke to death. And as for the hole, it's there to hold your sucker in place. Without it, the ball-shaped candy on top would just fall right off the stick. During production, a bit of sugar paste is added into the hole, which helps keep the sucker attached to the stick.

2. Have you ever noticed the little metal plate on your stapler before?

Its purpose is simple: Nearly every stapler has two functions! The more common setting bends the staple back onto itself, ensuring that your papers will be held together tight. But if you rotate the base plate, the staple will bend outward, which is meant to be used for a looser hold that you can more easily remove later.

3. And do you know how to read these codes on your makeup?


Here's what they mean: On the back of your makeup products, you can often find numbers like: "6M", "12M" or "24M". They represent the life of the product on your shelf after opening. So in the above example, you have about 12 months to use this face cream before you should think about throwing it out and replacing it.

4. Have you noticed the hole in a pen cap before, and worried that it would dry out your pen?

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Its actual purpose is more straightforward: The small hole lowers the risk of suffocation if, for example, a small child accidentally swallowed the lid.

5. Have you ever noticed the strip of black dots that runs along the outside edge of your windshield?


It's purpose: That black strip is called a "frit" and it essentially has two purposes. It provides an etched surface for the adhesive to adhere to, which bonds the glass to the frame. And on the outside of the glass, it protects the adhesive from ultraviolet light and covers any unsightly adhesive. The dots are there just to make it look nice.

6. Did you know that the pointy bit on a cap of tubed medicine actually has a purpose?

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Yep! Here's what it's for: Unscrew lid, turn it around, and use the point to pierce the foil covering on most tubes of medicine.

7. What's that extra little pocket in your jeans for?

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Here's what it's for: When jeans were first invented, back in the days of the Wild West, the fifth pocket was utterly indispensable. Because it was the place where cowboys and gold diggers kept their pocket watches.

8. And what about the studs around the pockets?

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It's simple: They're there to strengthen the trousers at their weakest points, and help prevent wear and tear.

9. You've probably never noticed before, but a lot of tubed products have little blocks of color near the sealed ends:

Stepto Health / Via

The explanation: These are called eye marks. On the production line, they allow optical sensors to recognize where a package needs to be cut, folded, or pressed. The color of the eye mark is largely irrelevant, it just needs to be dark enough for the sensors to see it easily.

10. Have you ever wondered what the slotted patches on some backpacks are there for?


Here's the reason: It's called a lash tab, and it's there for you to attach whatever you'd like to your bag. For instance, a hiker could lash a sleeping roll to their bag using the lash tab. Originally, it was added to bags to carry tools like axes.

11. Maybe you already guessed at the need for the plastic disks in bottle caps...

The reason is obvious: These inconspicuous little disks act as seals. Without them, most bottles wouldn't just leak, they'd lose all their carbonation.

12. Why does Heinz insist on offsetting this decorative little "57" from the label and the center of the bottle?


The simple reason: According to Heinz, this is the "sweet spot" on glass Heinz bottles. If you tap with your palm on that spot, then the ketchup should come out more easily. So, stop banging on the bottom of the bottle.

13. Did you know the lid on your McDonald's cup has more than one use?

@DexthGrip / Twitter / Via Twitter: @DexthGrip, @cwithak / Twitter / Via Twitter: @cwithak

Try this: You can use the top as a coaster. Most cups fit perfectly into their lids. LIFE HACKED!

14. What's the little arrow next to the gas icon on a car's dashboard supposed to mean?

@jassy_in_pictures / Instagram / Via

Here's how to use it: The arrow points to the side of the car your gas cap can be found on. If your car is older, or doesn't have an arrow, the direction of the fuel hose sometimes indicates where the gas cap can be found.

15. Why is one side of a bobby pin bumpier than the other?

Coprid / Getty Images

Actually, the reason is quite simple: Many hairpins have a grooved and a smooth side. The grooved side is meant to face in towards to scalp to provide a little extra hold.

16. Take a close look at your car tires. Do you know what these little ridges are meant to indicate?

Far-Away / Via

Their purpose: These markings are the tread wear indicators. And as the name says, they tell you whether a tire worn out or not, depending on how close they are to the surface of the tire.

17. Did you know that both ends of a utility blade can be useful?

Onairjiw / Getty Images

Here's what the non-sharp side can do: Utility knife blades often have perforated blades that can be snapped off when the cutting edge gets too dull. They also have a little slot on the very back of the handle that you can slip the blade into to snap it off cleanly and easily.

18. Why do new clothes come with an extra little piece of fabric?

JERYKO / YouTube / Via

Here's the real reason: You probably thought the little swatch was meant for patching holes or something, right? Nope! (Well, possibly, but not primarily.) They're actually there so you can test how the fabric reacts to different detergents.

19. Why do rulers have holes?

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That's an easy one: It's for hanging up the ruler.

20. And these little raised bumps on every keyboard?

Getty Images

Here's an explanation: They're sometimes called orientation keys, and they're there for people who have mastered touch typing. Those keys are in the home row, and your index fingers rest on the F and J keys when they're not typing.

21. What are those two holes on chucks good for?

@dancinintheclouds /Instagram / Via

There's two possible explanations: First, they're there for ventilation, especially if you're not wearing socks. But some people also claim that they can be used to lace the shoes even tighter.

22. Why does a spaghetti ladle have a hole in it?

Ikea / Via ,

This one is pretty cool: It's there to let pasta water strain through, obviously. BUT ALSO, on many ladles the hole happens to be just the right size for one serving of uncooked spaghetti.

23. And the hole at the end of a pot handle?

fuckyeahlifehacks / Tumblr / Via

Again, it's multi-purpose: The original and most obvious use is for hanging your pots and pans when they're not in use. But you can also use the hole to hold onto a saucy spoon while you're cooking.

24. Last one. Did you know that you can use a box-end wrench to unscrew a screw?

thetortureneverstops / Reddit / Via

Huh? No bull! if you've got a screw that's too tough to reach, you can slip the box-end of a wrench over the handle of a screwdriver to give yourself a bit of an extension.

This post was translated from German.

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