Turning Into Chewbacca
This myth is more of an illusion than anything else. Because shaved hair has a dark tip, and the shaved spot will eventually grow stubble, the hair in that spot is more noticeable. It’s not actually thicker or darker, though — you’re just paying more attention to it.
So, while your hair may appear different while it’s growing back, don’t bother shaving everything in the hopes that it’ll grow faster and look more luscious in the end.
Fists of Mass Destruction
We’re not really sure how this myth started but it’s entirely untrue. If laws were to go down that road, people would have to register all sorts of things! Do lawyers need to give people a disclaimer that they may be persuaded by them?
Do writers need to warn those around them that they may inspire one of their characters? Does Nick Cannon need to register his nether regions as likely to impregnate you? See? It’s a completely illogical way of thinking!
This myth was so widespread that even local news stations were warning people not to do this! One theory is that the myth was started by police because people would flash their lights at other cars to warn them that cops were up ahead.
To be clear, we don’t know for a fact that this is the myth’s origin, but some people do believe it. Either way, feel free to flash your lights at other cars if you choose to. Hopefully, they’ll recognize it as a friendly gesture.
Adding Some Flavor
First of all, the idea that MSG is a Chinese product is completely inaccurate, as the flavoring is used in many cultures around the world. In terms of being unhealthy, MSG is like any other artificial flavoring in that if you use too much of it, it’s an issue.
However, as long as you’re cooking with reasonable amounts of this product, you’ll be perfectly fine. Like with any other food, it’s all about moderation.
Trick or Treat
Isn’t it interesting how we teach kids not to take candy from strangers but then we have an entire holiday activity devoted to just that? Hypocrisy aside, you really don’t have anything to worry about when taking your kid trick or treating.
Illegal substances are expensive and hard to come by — people aren’t going to just randomly give them to your child for no reason. Of course, you still need to use common sense and be responsible as a parent, but there’s no need to skip out on Halloween fun.
It’s Not a Flower
Whether or not a woman has anything to “de-flower” isn’t an indicator that you’re the first to be with her. Putting the disgusting gamification of intimacy with women aside, there are a lot of ways a woman can lose her flower that isn’t related to acts of romance.
So, if you want to know whether or not you’re someone’s first — just ask her! She’ll likely appreciate that a lot more than you trying to play detective and conquerer of her privates.
People seem to believe that blood is blue because veins appear blue and we know that blood courses through our veins. However, it really isn’t that simple. Wonderopolis.com explains, “Blue light does not penetrate human tissue as deeply as red light does.”
It continues, “As a result, veins that are close to the surface of the skin will be more likely to reflect blue light back to the eye.” Don’t believe us? Just take a look when you get your blood drawn!
Not Just for Women
Yes, men can absolutely have soy too and it won’t affect their masculinity. As with every food, men and women alike should just make sure that they’re not having excessive amounts of it. To clarify, drinking soy milk isn’t going to make you look feminine or mess with your libido.
In all likelihood, swapping your dairy milk for soy will just get rid of that lower belly that cow’s milk can cause in some people. You’re welcome!
We can’t really blame anyone for thinking narwhales are mythical creatures because, well, look at them! They are in fact, though, very real. Although these mammals may look like unicorn whales, that’s not actually a horn on their head, but a tusk/canine tooth.
They’re found in the Arctic Ocean, can live up to 50 years, and are extremely social creatures. You probably woke up today thinking that unicorns don’t exist. Well, they do — just in the sea.
Not only can lightning strike the same place twice, but it often does if the object in question is tall and isolated. For example, the Empire State Building gets struck by lightning roughly 25 times per year.
Like some other myths, this one can be dangerous if you think you’ll be safe by going where lightning has already hit. Another thing to keep in mind for your safety is that if you can hear thunder, lightning can strike — even if there isn’t yet rain.
Still Eat Carrots, Though
We still recommend eating carrots since they’re extremely healthy, but unfortunately, they won’t help with your night vision. Unlike some other myths, this misinformation was intentionally spread.
During a conflict between several countries, one of the sides had radar but didn’t want their opponents to know about the technology. So, they started a rumor that they were able to see in the dark because their pilots ate a lot of carrots. It seems to have worked, because the myth is still going strong today.
While the TV show Friends can’t be blamed for starting this myth, it did popularize it. Although the storyline was hilarious, many fans found themselves engaging in this icky practice for no reason at all. In reality, if you find yourself stung, your first step should be to remove any tentacles or barbs.
Then, you can relieve the pain by applying vinegar or glycerol; hot water may also help. Finish off with an ice pack to reduce swelling. Although that’s less entertaining than what Monica did, it’s certainly more effective.
Don’t Flatter Yourself
Let’s put this in terms that are easy to understand — If you open your mouth super wide so you can take a bite of a large burger, does your mouth get stuck that way? What if you eat a lot of large burgers in a short amount of time?
You may be a bit sore for a moment, but your mouth will always go back to its original shape. That’s how women’s bodies work, too.
Dory Was an Exception
While it’s true that fish aren’t as intelligent as mammals, they’re a bit smarter than we give them credit for. In reality, fish’s memories last for about five months and they do have the ability to learn new skills, recognize other fish, and even work their way through mazes.
So, don’t worry — your pet goldfish does remember you! On that note, it seems that Dory from Finding Nemo needs to see a doctor.
To Cleanse or Not to Cleanse
Those fancy detox cleanses technically work, but not because of the expensive juices. You don’t need a costly drink to clean toxins from your body, your kidneys naturally do that anyway. The drinks themselves aren’t doing much other than being a healthy alternative to what you may consume otherwise.
Of course, having a green juice instead of an ice cream sundae will have a positive effect on your body. There’s no need to splurge on a cleanse program, though — healthy lifestyle changes will bring the same results.
You’re Not Hoarding Gum
No, you haven’t been collecting wads of gum in your stomach over the years. Gum, just like everything else, passes through your body roughly 30 to 120 minutes after consumption.
Duke gastroenterologist Nancy McGreal, MD, has clarified, “In all the upper endoscopies I have done in both children and adults, I have yet to see a wad of gum lying around in the stomach.” If only we could go back in time and tell that to our middle school selves!
Throw Out Your Hair Dryer
We’re not advocating going out in cold weather with wet hair, as it’ll make you feel cold and could be quite unpleasant. That being said, leaving your house with wet hair will not cause you to catch a cold.
The common cold, the flu — and anything else of that nature you may be worried about catching — are all viruses and can only be caught by coming in contact with said virus.
Okay, so it’s technically possible for a spider to crawl into your mouth while you’re sleeping, but it’s highly improbable. Given that spiders don’t want to be swallowed, crushed, or anything else that can happen by being too close to a sleeping human, they’re likely to keep their distance.
Furthermore, unless you’re an exceptionally deep sleeper, you’d probably feel a spider crawling onto your face and into your mouth, and you’d wake up. That visual may give you nightmares, but at least you know you won’t be swallowing any spiders tonight!
Every Body Is Different
Every human body is different, so what works for one person may not work for another. As much as various diet programs want you to think that their methods are one-size-fits-all, the truth is that you can follow the exactly same meal program as someone else and see vastly different results.
Of course, certain foods are healthy or unhealthy for everyone, but detailed diet plans that are effective vary from person to person. Basically, allow a bit of trial and error to see what works for your body.
The Movies Have Lied
It seems that every cop movie ever has lied to us. An arrest is still valid, whether you’re read your rights or not. If you haven’t been read your rights, your words can’t be used against you in court, but the arrest stands all the same.
Another common myth is that exercising your right to remain silent makes you look guilty. Really, it just makes you look smart. You may be as blameless as Tom Hanks, but it’s still best to wait for a lawyer to argue your innocence.
Make it Rain Money
By this logic, wouldn’t rainfall be incredibly painful? Just in case common sense isn’t convincing, this question was tackled on an episode of Myth Busters in which they modeled dropping a penny off the Empire State Building onto a gel skull.
The penny did break the first layer of the fake skull (the layer that represents skin) but didn’t penetrate the skeletal layer. In short? Don’t worry if you drop a coin off a tall building, you didn’t kill anyone — you just made them slightly richer.
It’s Not That Dramatic
It seems that, once again, Hollywood has lied. And here we were thinking that, one day, we’d all gather around for the reading of a will. Someone would be dressed in a dramatic black veil, of course.
The lawyer would read the will and we’d all gasp in shock to find out that all the money has gone to a person none of us knows. And that’s how we’ll discover that the deceased had a secret family all along! Well, apparently, we’ll just find that out via email.
Dangerous in a Different Way
Although cracking your knuckles won’t cause arthritis, it’s still a dangerous activity to do in public, as people will think you’re incredibly annoying. That being said, you’ll be safe arthritis-wise. Loyola Medicine orthopedic surgeon, Alexander Soneru, MD, explains the cracking sounds, “As long as they’re not causing pain, there’s no need for concern.”
However, cracking your knuckles can actually reduce grip strength and there are cases of people being injured while knuckle cracking. Whether or not those injuries were inflicted by those around them is unclear.
”I See You!”
Well, so much for the old saying ‘blind as a bat!’ This myth began because bats tend to fly very close to things, so people thought these creatures couldn’t see the objects right in front of them.
In reality, bats are just extremely curious and like to look at things up close. No, seriously. Bats don’t see as vibrantly as humans do, but they’re certainly not blind and they see great in the dark.
A Mother’s Love
This particular myth was actually started intentionally, to prevent people from messing with wildlife. However, it succeeded a little too well, as people are now afraid to help injured animals in need.
Miyoko Chu, a biologist at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology has clarified, “Birds don’t have a very strong sense of smell so you won’t leave a scent that will alarm the parent. Usually, birds are quite devoted to their young and not easily deterred from taking care of them.”
Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend?
To be clear, all gems are rare. However, diamonds are one of the most common precious stones. And now, with diamonds made in labs becoming almost indistinguishable from the real thing, they’re seemingly even less rare.
The reason they’re a sign of opulence, and the gem of choice for most engagement rings, is because they’re far more durable than most other stones. In fact, diamond is the hardest natural material in the world — that’s not a bad symbol to start a marriage with!
So Much for Our Childhoods
There’s actually nothing illegal about having the overhead light on while driving, yet we’ve all been told this throughout our childhoods. Perhaps some parents chose to fib about this law so their kids wouldn’t get too rowdy in the car, messing things around and whatnot.
This begs the question — were our parents in on the lie? Or did they hear this myth growing up and truly believe it when repeating it back to us? There’s a topic for your next family dinner!
Sorry, Andrew Tate
Yes, wolves have pack leaders but it’s not like they’re competing to see who’s the alpha and who’s the beta — the pack is a family and the leaders are the parents. Barbara Zimmermann, a professor at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, explains, “The adults are simply in charge because they are the parents of the rest of the pack members.”
She continued, “We don’t talk about the alpha male, the alpha female, and the beta child in a human family.” Sorry, Andrew Tate — it seems you’ve been misinformed… about many things.
Technically, you don’t have to do this but it is highly recommended. It’s never a good idea to burn a bridge and you may want to use that employer as a reference in the future.
While it’s true that your boss wouldn’t need to give you notice before firing you, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t give courtesy notice before quitting. As unfair as it is, the employer is in the power position, and being on their good side will most likely benefit you in the long run.
Wear a Coat Anyway
Similar to the issue of going out with your hair wet, leaving the house without a jacket on a cold day will be an unpleasant experience but it won’t make you catch a cold.
Immunologist/functional medicine doctor, Heather Moday, explains, “There is no proof that being in the cold can increase your risk for catching a cold. We catch them via airborne respiratory droplets, as well as by touching contaminated surfaces or people who are sick.”
Never Getting That Time Back
Here’s another myth that affected our abilities to do what we wanted as kids. However, it seems that this one wasn’t spread on purpose, and our parents were actually misinformed. This inaccurate statement was published in a Boy Scouts handbook in 1908 and has persisted since then.
Parents were so concerned that the American Red Cross did a study and concluded that “currently available information suggests that eating before swimming is not a contributing risk for drowning and can be dismissed as a myth.”
50 Shades of Gray
Dogs can see more colors than just black and white, however, they can’t see all the vibrant colors that humans can. Dogs are color-blind and tend to see reds and blues most accurately.
Perhaps dogs seeing colors less distinctively than humans is how this myth became commonplace. An example is that what we see as bright orange may appear tan to a pup. But no, your fur baby doesn’t view life as an old-timey movie.
Water Bottles Come Separately
While it’s true that camels can go a long time without water, they store said water in their bloodstreams rather than their humps. So, what’s in those mysterious humps? As it turns out… fat!
Camels can utilize the fat in their humps if there isn’t any food around, which will result in their humps looking somewhat deflated. After they’ve re-fueled with proper food and rested a bit, their humps perk back up again.
Your Leftovers Aren’t Dangerous
While it’s true that microwaves give off radiation, that radiation is confined to the insides of the device. Just standing in front of a working microwave won’t do anything to you, as there are protective layers built around it.
That being said, as with all devices, it’s possible for a microwave to malfunction and you may not know it. For that reason, it’s still advised not to stand directly in front of one, or lean on one, while it’s on — just in case.
One Size Doesn’t Fit All
Just like with diets, it doesn’t make sense to have one water intake recommendation for everyone, because every body is different. As it turns out, eight isn’t always the magic number. Robert Weiss, MD, has provided the formula for figuring out the right amount of water for you.
According to him, “It depends on your size and weight, and also on your activity level and where you live. In general, you should try to drink between half an ounce and an ounce of water for each pound you weigh, every day.”
Running Up the Walls
As it turns out, eating sugar doesn’t cause kids to be hyper. Children are hyper because… they’re children!
It may seem like sugar is the culprit, because eating treats often makes kids happy, and happiness and hyperactivity go hand-in-hand. But, it’s not the substances in the sweets that are having that effect. So the next time your child goes ballistic over an ice cream cone, don’t blame the treat, blame your kid’s youth.
Rig the Game
The next time you have something being determined by a coin toss, choose the side that’s facing up if you want to win. Stanford researcher, Persi Diaconis, has discovered that a coin will land the same way it was facing before being tossed — 51 out of 100 times.
That’s pretty close to 50/50, but it’s just far away enough to make this tidbit a myth. In case you’re worried, Diaconis himself has admitted that “coin tossing is pretty close to fair.” Let’s just all agree that it’s close enough.
A New Contraceptive
This claim is partly myth and partly fact. Laptops don’t really have an effect on female fertility, but they can impact men’s swimmers. Ladies, enjoy this one because it’s one of the very few things in life that men have to be more careful about.
The reason is that women’s ovaries are far further in the body than men’s reproductive bits, so external heat such as that from a laptop can’t reach that far in. Don’t worry too much, though, the effect laptops have on male fertility is minor.
Maybe We’re Lying
Ironically, lie detectors are a lie. This myth was intentionally put in place to make people believe that they can’t hide their secrets from law enforcement. The truth is that different people have varied reactions to certain situations.
You may get nervous easily, making it seem like you’re hiding something. Maybe you know how to keep your heart rate regulated, even when under pressure. Then, there are people who are neurodivergent, and a polygraph most certainly wouldn’t have the expected results for them.
While Napoleon Complex has become the term for men who are on the shorter side and feel they need to overcompensate for it, Napoleon himself wasn’t below average height. In fact, he was even a touch taller than the average French man from the 19th century.
Inches were defined differently back then, so people think Napoleon was short because it’s documented that he was 5’2″, but that’s actually closer to what would be 5’7″ today. Back then, the average male height was 5’2″ to 5’6″. So either way, Napoleon’s complex wasn’t stature-related.
Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
This myth is largely believed because it’s true when it comes to children. Kids tend to feel guilty when they lie, causing them to look away. However, as they get older and become better liars, they learn that eye contact is necessary for fibbing.
So if you’re dealing with an adult, checking for eye contact won’t answer any questions. If you’re being told a lie by a child, you’ll probably know they’re being untruthful anyway. Or did you really think the dog ate their homework?
Don’t Tell the Flat-Earthers
Historian Jeffrey Burton Russell debunked this myth by saying, “No educated person in the history of Western Civilization from the third century B.C. onward believed that the Earth was flat.” Um, don’t tell that to flat-earthers.
Anyways, this myth began with a man named Washington Irving who wrote a biography about Columbus but added some embellishments. It’s not often that disinformation can be pinpointed to one person, yet, here we are. So, the next time you set out to do something, try not to Irving it up!
Not only does this myth negate pretty much every action movie we’ve ever seen, but it’s actually really dangerous. That’s because the longer someone waits to report a missing person to the authorities, the more difficulty they’ll have finding them.
Amy Dobbs, an investigator with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, has pointed out, “The first 12 to 24 hours are the most critical in an active missing persons investigation.” Sorry, Liam Neeson movies — but you’re going to need to come up with better plot points!
You Get What You Get
Couples try all sorts of crazy things to get their baby to be a certain gender. Whether it’s the position they choose, the vitamins they eat, or the time of the month they try, nothing will make the baby turn out custom designed.
As Jeffrey Steinberg, M.D. explains, “There’s really not much you can do at home to choose your baby’s gender.” Now, science does have the answer and there are ways to mess with embryos, but of course, that’s morally questionable at best.
Using Every Last Drop
It shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that movies like Limitless and Lucy have been lying to us. Neurologist Barry Gordon has clarified, “We use virtually every part of the brain, and that (most of) the brain is active almost all the time.”
While certain activities will stimulate some parts of the brain more than others, the only scenario in which a portion of a person’s brain is completely inactive would be a situation of legitimate brain damage.