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life hacks

Have you heard the new toilet paper hack?

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, people took toilet paper—especially its availability—for granted. Everyone who experienced those hectic days probably has a new appreciation when they roll down the aisle of their local supermarket and see fully stocked shelves of TP.

A new trend shows that people aren’t only appreciating their toilet paper but finding new ways to use it that go beyond its traditional use: keeping toilet paper in their refrigerators. The most common reason is that it is an effective and affordable way to keep them smelling fresh and clean. It seems that TP’s absorbent qualities go far beyond the bathroom.

The new practice has been popularized on TikTok, where most new life hack trends seem to be springing up these days.


In late September, TikTok user @Ezenwanyibackup shared a toilet-paper-in-the-fridge hack, and it received over 1400 views. The hack involves creating a paste out of baking soda and applying it to the top of the roll. "Now, just stick it in your fridge," the TikTokker said. "This simple hack is going to neutralize all the smell and moisture that messes up your fridge, keeping your food fresh and tasty for way longer."

@ezenwanyibackup

Just put a roll of toilet paper in your fridge, and you won't have that problem anymore! #ezenwanyibackup #foryoupage #homemaderemedies #healthy #homemaderecipes #foryou #diy #naturalrecipes #recipe #fypシ゚viral @ezenwanyibackup @ezenwanyibackup @ezenwanyibackup @This Recipe @Queen ezenwanyi1

Smartfoxlifehacks has also helped promote the new trend in kitchen cleanliness with his video, where he shares how he keeps toilet paper in his fridge. He recommends that people change their rolls every 3 to 4 weeks. He claims the "trick" comes from the hotel industry because the toilet paper “absorbs odors."

@smartfoxlifehacks

This is a secret Trick from Hotels… 😱🦊 #lifehack #tipsandtricks #cleaningtricks #cleaninghacks

Another TikTokker, @Drewfrom63rd1, has a unique use for the toilet paper in his fridge. He chills it and then uses it as an ice pack to keep his food cold. “You can use this as an ice pack,” he says, putting a roll out of his fridge. “It does really work. It lasts about 8 hours.”

@drewfrom63rd1

Replying to @wgez

House Digest explains why toilet paper is so effective at keeping your fridge smelling fresh.

“For obvious reasons, toilet paper is designed to be extremely absorbent,” Brooke Younger writes at House Digest. “However, it doesn't just absorb liquids on contact; it can also pull them from the surrounding air. If you've ever touched your bathroom's toilet paper roll after a steamy shower, you might notice that it feels a bit damp. Placing a clean toilet paper roll in your fridge will absorb some of the internal humidity and, with it, those stinky particles.”

The site adds that toilet paper can also help keep dark, damp parts of your house, such as a closet or basement, stay fresh, too.

The toilet paper hack is effective, and it’s also a great way to save money. The average roll of TP costs about $1, which is much cheaper than a refrigerator deodorizer that can set you back about $10.

Now, for the sake of all the people who love this hack, let’s hope that word spreads so that no one gets any side-eye for having stacks of TP in their fridge. But we should also hope it doesn’t become so popular that people start hoarding toilet paper again. That wasn’t fun the first time.


This article originally appeared on 11.20.23

Our minds are overstimulated, leading us to crave distractions.

If you have a hard time staying focused on a task, you're not alone. In a Crucial Learning poll of 1,600 people, two out of three responded that they have a hard time staying focused on one task or one person. And this difficulty focusing happens in both of the major areas of life, with 68% responding that they have a hard time focusing at work and 62% said they struggle to focus at home.

It's not surprising that most people have attention deficit issues, considering what the vast majority of us are carrying around with us all day long. It's no longer just other people who occasionally interrupt what we're doing, but rather our daily barrage of message, emails, app notifications, news headlines, social media check-ins, advertisements and other distractions our phones or other handheld devices offer us.

However, according to productivity expert Chris Bailey, it's not so much the distractions that are keeping us from focusing, but rather the overstimulation of our brains that cause us to seek out distractions in the first place.


In a 2019 TEDx Talk, Bailey, author of "Hyperfocus" and "The Productivity Project," shared that the key to focusing better isn't to try to try harder to focus, but rather almost the opposite: Rediscover boredom and let your brain wander where it will, or what he refers to as "scatterfocus."

The first step in combating the overstimulation of our brains is to consciously lower the level of stimulus. Bailey himself began trying this out with an experiment. He noticed that most of his day was spent going from screen to screen, from the moment he woke up in the morning to when he went to sleep at night. The biggest culprit was his phone, so he spent an entire month only using his phone for 30 minutes a day.

"It took about a week to adjust downward into a new, lower level of stimulation," he shared, "but once I did, I noticed that three curious things began to happen. First, my attention span grew. It was like I could focus on things, not effortlessly, but with much more ease than I could before this experiment started. In addition to this, though, as I was going about the world and especially when my mind wandered a bit, I had more ideas that my mind arrived at, and on top of this, I had more plans and thoughts about the future. Getting rid of one simple device led to these three effects."

The experiment was so successful that he decided to try to lower his level of stimulation even further. He asked his followers to share the most boring things they could think of for him to do, and he would choose one a day to do for an hour. After a month of doing things like reading the iTunes terms and conditions and watching a clock tick for an hour, he noticed the same kinds of effects as he did with his phone experiment. He was able to focus even more effortlessly, not because he had fewer distractions, but because he was less stimulated and therefore didn't seek the distractions in the first place.

Bailey makes a strong case for creating more empty space and less stimulation in our lives so that our brains are better able to focus.

Watch him explain:

Family

Man lists 8 not fun, but very important things you need to start doing as an adult.

"Welcome to being an adult. Maybe you weren't told this by your parents, but this is through my trial and error."

@johnfluenzer/TikTok

8 things you should be doing as an adult. Spoiler alert—none of them are fun.

Who among us hasn’t come into full adulthood wishing they had known certain things that could have made life so so so much easier in the long run? Choices that, if made, ultimately would have been much better for our well-being…not to mention our wallets.

But then again that is all part of growing older and (hopefully) wiser. However there is something to be said about getting advice from those who’ve been there, rather than learning the hard way every single time.

Thankfully, a man who goes by @johnfluenzer on TikTok has a great list of things young people should start doing once they become adults. Are any of his suggestions fun, cool or trendy? Not at all. But they are most definitely accurate. Just ask any 30+-year-olds who wished they had done at least four of these things.

John started off by saying, “welcome to being an adult. Maybe you weren't told this by your parents, but this is through my trial and error."

Listed below are the eight vital things to maintaining a healthy adulthood, that most of us have no idea about until well into adulthood.

1. Getting an annual doctor visit.

annual checkup

young woman visiting her doctor

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This is the bare minimum amount of visits one should be making, according to John. He recommended more if you “have more medical concerns.”

2. Dental visits. For a yearly cleaning at the very least.

dentist near me

Woman at the dentist

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"Keep in mind that a $300 cavity can turn into a $1,500 root canal, which can then turn into a $2,000 crown on top of the $1,500 you just paid, so it's better to just pay the $300 or whatever it is for a cavity, and just get it sorted,” he explained.

As someone with this exact experience (ignored a cavity because she didn't want to pay $300, only to pay $1500 years later, even with insurance) I can ruefully confirm.

…as can others, judging by the comments sections to John’s video.

“I didn’t go to the dentist for 8 years and now I need a root canal. Learn from my mistakes people,” one person wrote.

Seriously, no amount of flossing and avoiding sugar can make up for a professional cleaning and checkup, folks.

Last note on this subject—John mentioned that if you couldn’t afford to go to a dentist, to check for nearby dental schools that can often perform necessary procedures at a fraction of the cost.

Though he specifically mentioned dental schools in Canada, that is also an option in America. Things I wish I had known as a 20-year-old…

3. Next up, John suggested that if you are sexually active, to get checked for STDs/STIs.

std check, std clinic

an image of STD tests

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“If you're uncomfortable with your GP, or you don't have a GP, go to a sexual health clinic…. Just go get tested — it's better to know,” he said.

4. Get vaccines. “Be up on your vaccines, not just your flu shot."

vaccine near me

A man having just got a vaccine.

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"We're talking Hep A/Hep B, and also if you're under 25, get your Gardasil 9. It's three shots. It prevents the cancer-causing HPV,” he explained.

And while he mostly discussed the free health care options found in Canada, HPV vaccines are covered by most insurances in the US. Plus there are other potentially free/low cost resources, such as the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program for those under 19.

5. Then get a PEP, aka Post-exposure prophylaxis, if you had a “risky sexual encounter” and are worried about having contracted HIV.

pep near me

Image of pills

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For this one, time really is of the essence. The sooner a PEP is taken, the more effective it is at preventing HIV, and must be taken within 72 hours of possible exposure to HIV.

Gotta say…list time 3-5 seem particularly important, as many young people are not given thorough sex education.

6. Rent. Everyone’s favorite.

rent prices, apartment near me

Image of a piggy back with a reminder to pay rent.

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John explains that especially in a housing crisis, “your rent should be the first thing you take care of every month."

"It comes before everything. Now maybe if you have kids and they need to eat, of course, that's important," he added. "But a roof over their head is way more important and you do not want to give landlords any excuse to have you evicted. Pay your rent and pay it on time."

7. Hold onto that cellphone as long as possible.

cheap cellphone, lowering cellphone bill

Woman holding a cellphone

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“I know we all want the new cell phones.Keep your phone as long as possible, OK?" he said. "I don't care if it's any iPhone 10, iPhone 8, keep it for as long as possible. Especially if you're under no contract—you have so much freedom.”

Instead of getting a new phone, John suggested switching providers every month to get special deals and save “$40–50 bucks a month,” which, as we all know, really adds up.

8. Only have one streaming subscription a month.

netflix, hbo, showtime, hulu

There's not need to have more than one streaming service at a time.

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This one was admittedly “controversial,” John shared, but in his point of view, it’s a no brainer.

“You don't need Netflix, Disney, Hulu, whatever... you don't need them all the same month. January do Netflix, cancel. February do Hulu... All of these different apps, they let you save watchlists, right, like 'My List.' And if you cancel your subscription and you restart it two months later, your list is still there. So just save stuff, only pay for it once a month, and try to save some money,” he suggested.

What a wake up call, right? But other hardened adults couldn’t help but agree with John.

“This is very good advice, can confirm (unfortunately) as a fellow adult lol,” one person wrote.

Others appreciated how he took the time to share this list to help younger people avoid some pretty disheartening setbacks.

“I love people like you so much, just her to help others in life. People like you are so important because you didn’t have to make this video but you did.”

You can’t always trust what you hear on TikTok, but John’s advice is sound. What most life hacks seem to have in common, other than a healthy blend of common sense and 20/20 hindsight, is that it puts some form of security at the forefront—not necessarily instant gratification. Fun is so important, but as anyone with experience will tell you, peace of mind is priceless.

Watch the full video below:

@johnfluenzer #greenscreen Here is my list if things you jeed to start doing once you’re an adult! I know its not fun bit I wish someone had told me when I was younger. #genz #genalpha #adultingishard ♬ original sound - John

This article originally appeared on 12.10.23

Turns out we've been threading needles all wrong

If you've ever taken a sewing class then you've probably had the pleasure of some older woman telling you to stick the loose end of the thread in your mouth as an easy way to thread it through the eye of a needle. Even with the soggy thread mending together the fibers at the end, you hands still shake and your eyes go crossed while you try to get it through the tiny hole.

But it turns out that there's a much easier way to thread a needle and it doesn't involve licking it. In fact there's more than one way to thread a needle that will save you a headache from trying to see where the thread is going. There's one particular technique that has people thinking there may be witchcraft involved, but it's just science.


In the method blowing everyone's minds, you simply lay the thread across your palm and rub the eye of the needle back and forth until a loop pops through the eye of the needle.

Then there's there's the toothbrush method. Yeah, that sounds weird and it probably wouldn't be advisable to use your daily toothbrush for this. This method appears to be super easy and you can visibly see how this works. To get this to work, get a clean toothbrush and lay it flat on its back with the bristles up, lay the strand of thread on top and then push the eye of the needle down over the thread. The tiny bristles simply push the thread through the eye.

@metdaan.official

The easiest way to thread a needle! 💯 #thread #needle #hack #fyp #learnontiktok

Apparently, you can also use a paper airplane to get the thread into the needle. It seems a little more time consuming than the other methods but also gets the job done. But there's also the tried and true method of simply using a needle threader which can be found near the thread and needles in craft and fabric stores.