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Don't believe everything you see

Don't believe everything you see
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We’ve all been there! After watching a clever hack online, you’ve likely thought to yourself, “That’s brilliant! I have to try it!” In an ideal world, everything goes exactly as shown in the video and you end up learning something new. Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world, and many of those ‘hacks’ are staged to get clicks. But how can you sort out the good from the bad? Well, we found some of the most popular hacks out there – related to home, beauty, health, and even a few legal issues – and asked the experts to ID the ones that don’t work in the real world. The truth may be slightly disappointing, but it will save you a lot of time, energy and frustration in the long run.

Keeping an avocado pit in guacamole will prevent it from turning brown

Keeping an avocado pit in guacamole will prevent it from turning brown
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Brown avocado is fine to eat, but it’s definitely less appetising. Unfortunately, two of the most popular hacks to avoid browning – storing it with the pit in it or using a squirt of lime – don’t work, says Mexican food chef Silvia Martinez. “The guacamole will turn brown regardless because it’s exposure to air that causes the oxidation,” she says. “The solution is to put a barrier between the guacamole and the air. For me, a layer of plastic wrap pressed against the entire surface of the guacamole is what works every single time.”

The healthiest part of an avocado is usually found in the bin, read on to learn more..

Putting a Magic Cleaning Eraser in your toilet will remove stains

Putting a Magic Cleaning Eraser in your toilet will remove stains
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Magic erasers can be almost, well, magical in their ability to remove stains from all kinds of surfaces. So, you might be tempted to try this cleaning hack. We’re sorry to be the bearers of bad news, but cleaning stained toilets isn’t that easy, says professional cleaner, Leanne Stapf. “Many people assume that Magic Cleaning Erasers will dissolve and the chemicals inside will eat away any toilet bowl stains,” she says. “This doesn’t work because the key to the Magic Eraser is its melamine foam. The foam acts like a fine sandpaper on stains, but you must scrub to see any results. The Magic Eraser doesn’t work on its own!”

Rubbing lemon on marble countertops will make them shiny

Rubbing lemon on marble countertops will make them shiny
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Is there anything lemons can’t do, according to the Internet? The tart yellow fruit is a staple of all kinds of hacks, but this is one you should definitely skip. Not only does it not work, but it can also cause irreversible damage to your counters, Stapf says. “Marble countertops are composed of calcium carbonate, which reacts with acids, and lemons contain a high amount of citric acid. So when lemon juice touches marble, it quickly starts to eat away at the surface, ‘etching’ your countertops and leaving dull spots on the once smooth marble surface,” she explains, adding that you shouldn’t use all-natural or homemade cleaning solutions that include lemon on your marble, either.

Check out these nearly forgotten house cleaning tips from the past.

Burning a candle in your ear will clean out earwax

Burning a candle in your ear will clean out earwax
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Earwax serves an important purpose in our ears, but too much of it, especially when it becomes impacted, can lead to discomfort, tinnitus, vertigo, and hearing loss. So, it makes sense that people are looking for an easy way to clean out the gunk. But is ‘ear candling’ – the process of sticking a hollow cotton or paper cone dipped in wax and then lighting it on fire in order to create suction to draw out the wax – the answer? Absolutely not, says ear, nose and throat educator, nurse Courtney Johnson. “You risk getting hot wax inside your ear or burns on your face, and the worst part is that it doesn’t even work,” she says. “Just come in to see your doctor. We have much safer, quicker, and more comfortable ways of getting earwax out.

Touching pressure points will drain your sinuses

Touching pressure points will drain your sinuses
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Got a bad head cold? One popular online hack says to put your tongue on the roof of your mouth and press one finger on your forehead, between your eyebrows, to clean out clogged sinuses. The theory is that touching those two pressure points for 30 seconds can ‘release’ mucus build up. “Feel free to try it – it can’t hurt,” Johnson says. “But it won’t clear your sinuses. There isn’t any medical backing for this hack.”

Suffer from headaches? Here’s how to tell what kind of headache you have.

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Putting VapoRub on your feet will cure a cough

Putting VapoRub on your feet will cure a cough
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The Internet loves to tell people to put weird things on their feet when they are sick – sliced potatoes, onions, mayonnaise, and, in this case, a menthol rub. Unfortunately, none of these things provide any medical relief beyond a placebo effect, Johnson says. “Putting VaporRub on your feet, under your socks, is the least effective place to put it for cough relief,” she explains. “Just use it as instructed. It does help, especially when combined with a warm, steamy shower.”

Putting ice cubes in your garbage disposal will sharpen the blades

Putting ice cubes in your garbage disposal will sharpen the blades
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Garbage disposals are black holes where food goes in and gets mulched, never to be seen again (hopefully). Understandably, if yours isn’t doing its job well, you don’t want to stick your hand down there to figure out the problem, which is probably why this Internet hack is so popular. Toss in a handful of ice cubes, run the disposal, and all better! There’s one big problem, though: garbage disposals don’t have blades, says  president of Mr Rooter Plumbing, Doyle James. “Garbage disposals have two teeth-like impellers that work to grind solids into liquid, and they don’t need to be sharpened,” he says. (And even if they did, ice wouldn’t do the trick.)

Check out these food hacks and dig these foods Out of the garbage right now.

Storing Christmas ornaments in egg cartons will keep them safe

Storing Christmas ornaments in egg cartons will keep them safe
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Figuring out what to do with fragile holiday ornaments is always tough, but the Internet has a clever hack: store ornaments inside plastic egg cartons or apple clamshell cartons. Have these people never seen an actual Christmas ornament? Ornaments are very rarely smaller than an egg, and many aren’t smaller than an apple. Storing them this way risks breaking precious heirlooms, says professional organiser, Kathy Stanton. A better option would be a storage box made specifically for the job.

Wearing a waist trainer will get you a tiny waist

Wearing a waist trainer will get you a tiny waist
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Waist trainers are a super popular weight loss hack on Instagram and are even touted by many celebrities. “Wearing a waist trainer may have some benefits in improving posture and back support, but it can’t shrink your waist or burn belly fat,” Clarke says. “The only proven way to reduce belly fat is by eating a proper diet, exercising, getting plenty of rest, and reducing alcohol consumption and stress levels.”

Here are the things you need to know about losing weight.

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Please be advised that due to the current lockdown in the Philippines, Reader’s Digest magazine May issue will not be available at its regular on-sale date to our subscribers or through our retail channels in that region. We hope to have the issues available in early June, but this is dependent on when the lockdown restrictions are lifted. We sincerely apologise for this inconvenience. Thank you and stay safe!
– The Reader’s Digest team