Products are usually well thought-out. After all, companies are investing time, money, and other resources into developing them. But even though they are created to satisfy a specific need, things happen and products can evolve into something else entirely, taking on new forms and applications.

To learn more about these examples, Reddit user u/EpicEllis2004 submitted a question to the platform, asking what are some of the products that have drifted away from their main purpose. Turns out, it's a topic that really interests people. In just a week, the post has received over 34K upvotes and 14K comments, providing quite a few interesting insights into consumerism. Here are some of the answers.

#1

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread History Channel... as far as I am concerned the secret relationships between aliens and the illuminati do not qualify as "history"

Ezequiel-052 , history Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
3 months ago

I really miss what it should be

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#2

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Remember when MTV was a music television?

galactic-frog , Blude Report

Alexia
Community Member
3 months ago

I grew up with MTV. Oh, those were the days...

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#3

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread The toilet lid of a toilet. Seen too many not even know you're supposed to put the lid down before flushing. Microscopic fecal matter flies everywhere otherwise. Apparently this isn't common knowledge.

ShroomyKat , Curology Report

Kari Panda
Community Member
3 months ago (edited)

This. So many arguements about putting the toilet seat up/down when honestly, everyone should just close the lid once they’re done. The particles spread up to 6 m (19 ft) otherwise.

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#4

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Slinky, the toy. It was originally designed during WW2 to help sensitive instruments remain steady on ships... to counter the effects of pitch, roll, and yaw. The engineer working on them knocked one off his desk accidentally, saw the way it moved from the table to the chair, to the floor, and a new purpose was born.

On a side note... during the Vietnam War, when the Slinkys were metal, radio operators would carry them through the deep jungles. If they couldn't get a good signal in the jungle mountains, they'd sling a Slinky high into the tree limbs while holding onto one end. It created an instant antenna extension that they would attach to the radio.

Single_Performance25 , Will Report

Lauren Caswell
Community Member
3 months ago

Ace Ventura is all I can think of! "Everyone loves a slinky!"

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#5

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Q-tips. The only thing they are used for is the one thing you are explicitly told not to use them for.

bloblehead , Olivier Bergeron Report

Little Phoenix
Community Member
3 months ago

Cleaning your keyboard?

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#6

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread The warming drawer on the bottom of all our ovens, which is used as pan storage for exactly %100 of oven owners.

Newtracks1 , Grant.C Report

MacDudu
Community Member
3 months ago

Most new oven models don't have this

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#7

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Super glue was meant to be a temporary method of stitching a wound. It was used that way during the Vietnam War. Tell people today to super clue their cuts shut, however, and most will think you're crazy

BigBobby2016 , endolith Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
3 months ago

Isn't this in a lot of first aid kits and such for this exact reason?

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#8

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Apparently paintball guns were invented for foresters/loggers/park rangers to mark trees (for cutting etc.) without having to approach each tree.

galactic-frog , Pengyi zhang Report

Jyri Hakola
Community Member
3 months ago

Wonder how many minutes it took after the initial product release that 1st forester thought that it would be funny to shoot Mike on back.. Maybe hours but definetly not days..

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#9

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread The eggplant emoji.

Mio69uwu Report

troufaki13
Community Member
3 months ago

Cherries and peaches as well...

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#10

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Snuggy was originally designed for wheelchair users. Outerwear designed for walkers is cumbersome to take on and off for wheelchair users so snuggies were designed to help with this.

TooMuchHotSauce5 , lynn Dombrowski Report

denzoren
Community Member
3 months ago

Now this makes a lot of sense.

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#11

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Ketamine is for horses and not for Saturday night.

jibbletmonger , Steven Cornfield Report

Otter
Community Member
3 months ago

It's been approved for use as a human sedative, it's used in operating rooms and ICUs. And remember those Thai kids that were trapped in the flooded cave? Each kid got a shot of Ketamine before the final rescue, it kept them quiet as heroic spent hours dragging them to safety through a dangerous flooded cave.

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#12

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Bubble wrap was invented as fancy wallpaper.

galactic-frog , David Maier Report

Lyone Fein
Community Member
3 months ago

. . . In mental health institutions.

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#13

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread WD-40 was developed as a rust preventative (it’s even in the initials: “WD” means “Water Displacement”). Nowadays people use it to lubricate mechanical parts.

bluebirdgm , FHKE Report

ThatGuv
Community Member
3 months ago

Great for removing stubborn, leftover glue after pulling the label off a jar.

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#14

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Pipe cleaners,

Use them for all sorts of arts and crafts as kids. It wasn't till I owned a tobacco pipe and went to buy them that it actually clicked

TouchedbyJebus , Cannabox Report

F-Dup
Community Member
3 months ago

Oh my Jesus Christ. I haven’t thought about these since I was in primary school. Back then, I assumed the ‘pipe’ in pipe cleaner referred the things that ran along the walls of my house and I didn’t question it. It’s only now, reading this as a fully grown adult, that I realise it’s not that kind of pipe at all. That update has been pending for decades!

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#15

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread I think people already know this but the neck on the beer bottle is actually supposed to be held so you don’t warm your drink too fast.

bigbenis21 , Story Ninety-Four Report

Michelle M
Community Member
3 months ago

No thank you. I don't trust my clumsy hands to hold it steady at the neck.

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#16

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Iirc Play-Doh was invented to clean wallpaper

spacelordmthrfkr , Betsy Weber Report

T Simmons
Community Member
3 months ago

Then they named it really badly!

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#17

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Gloveboxes were originally meant to store gloves because people used to drive with gloves on for some reason.

Yah-ThnPat-Thn , Mark Doliner Report

Otter
Community Member
3 months ago

People used to drive with at the very least - gloves, dust coats, goggles, and hats on, if not full face masks. Because cars didn't have roofs or windows and the roads weren't paved, anyone who drove the first cars was going to get all the dust, mud, or weather in the world in the face.

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#18

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Minoxidil was originally developed to treat high blood pressure and people reported unusual hair growth all around the body, since it promotes blood flow to the skin pores. They came up with a topical version and voila, millions of people smear that sh*t on their scalps and beards everyday and its the one of the only clinically proven ways to cure baldness.

LeagueOfLucian , amazon Report

Chrissie Mörbe
Community Member
3 months ago

Nice try, Minoxidil salesperson!

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#19

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Viagra. It’s a heart medicine originally.

VegetableWishbone , Syed Ikhwan Report

Otter
Community Member
3 months ago

It's still used for some heart problems, and I have no idea if anyone who's sick enough to need it for medical reasons can still enjoy the side effects.

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#20

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Botox was created to treat migraines

lovejetblack , Sam Moqadam Report

Some Cool Guy
Community Member
3 months ago

I'm no expert but isn't that lip filler not botox?

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#21

21 Products That Somehow Lost Their Original Purpose, As Shared In This Online Thread Microsoft Excel/Google Sheets used as informal databases instead of as a data analysis tool

rwilldred27 , Joe Anderson Report

Suraj A R
Community Member
3 months ago

I think MS Excel was always used as a data analysis tool, where as MS Access was used as an informal database since 1992

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