115 Times Product Designers Failed To Consider The Practicality Of Cleaning (New Pics)

Everyone has that one chore they dread doing. Whether it’s exhausting, disgusting, or just downright tedious, we’ll often procrastinate until the cows come home. Even beautiful items can turn infuriating, nooks and crannies will fill with dust, unreachable without exertion. 

The “‘Things designed by people who don’t have to clean them” Facebook group gathers designs that perhaps look intricate on the surface until you take a moment to think about living with them. Then the sinking realization sets in, that a thousand twists equals just as many crevices for dust to hide in, 

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#1 This Is The Worktop In A Kitchen. Dirt Just Gets Accumulated In All The Dimples

Image credits: Lex Sampson

#2 Fur Walls, Ceiling And Bedding

Image credits: Alice Elizabeth Baker

#3 Break Out The Sand Blaster To Clean The Shower, Easy!

Image credits: Sara Mayfield

This Facebook group isn’t the first (and presumably won’t be the last) collection of people who have started to notice designs that, while visually appealing, are impractical to their main users, that is, us, humans. Cleaning is just one part of use and maintenance, but you may have already noticed that doors, tables, showers, and all sorts of other appliances have more and more obtuse and unintuitive features. 

Among sociologists and designers, there is a movement that, in response perhaps to many of the things seen here, champions user-centered design. Its adherents believed that things should be designed with the user put first, and foremost when considering features and functionality. As obvious as that seems, a simple glance down this list will reveal just how often this tenant is broken in the name of novelty. 

#4 I Finally Have One That Fits Here. This Mouse In The Manager’s Office. I Want To Vomit

Image credits: Casey Case

#5 “Sofa”

Image credits: Peter Park

#6 Well…

Image credits: Frits Mali – Vos

The term came about in the late 70s, with a paper by Rob Kling arguing for a user-centered design in software. Software, as in the 70s, as today, is a pretty niche topic, so the term only became truly popular with Donald A. Norman’s book “User-Centered System Design: New Perspectives on Human-Computer Interaction” in 1986. Even if you have not read it, it’s very possible that you have at least encountered the term “a Norman Door.” 

#7 Found On Marketplace 1965 Chevrolet G10 Van

Image credits: Sara Roca

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#8 Okay What In The Actual-

Image credits: Maria Gammelgaard Brøgger

#9 Spotted You Walmart… And For Kids’ Messy Little Hands Too

Image credits: anon

The term “Norman door” is actually somewhat ironic, as it refers to a door that explicitly does not follow Don Norman’s ideals. You have probably encountered a door that needs to be either pushed or pulled, but does not have any contextual indicators to allow you to understand which. So you pull, the door doesn’t budge, then, red-faced, you finally push it. This works in reverse as well. 

#10 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Joo Leah

#11 Found In The Wild (I Think It’s Beautiful, But Still)

Image credits: Lisha Perez

#12 Save $8k On This Couch Obviously Designed By Someone Who Doesn’t Have To Clean It, Now Yours For The Bargain Price Of $6000! All I Can Imagine Is The Crumbs That Would Get Caught In The Deep Pile

Image credits: Amanda Beard

Don Norman used this sort of item as a clear example of designers not putting human use first. Perhaps the door was an afterthought, or there was a very limited budget, or the builders really, really liked this one, specific door. Ultimately, while it might look nice, in a busy area, a bad door probably causes hundreds of hours of delays every year, as people need to figure out how to get in or out. 

#13 No No No No

Image credits: Ruth Zschoche

#14 Why ?

Image credits: Marie Latteur-p

#15 This Feature Wall In A Pub In Ireland.. I Didn’t Get Too Close, It Looked Pretty Good Considering, But I Hate To Imagine The Upkeep

Image credits: Mel Issa

In many of the images here, it’s pretty obvious that someone, a designer, home or business owner had a vision for something unique. Many of these designs are interesting at first glance. But they generally have made two mistakes. First, they have not actually sat down and worked out who is going to be interacting with the item on a daily basis. Second, they have not considered maintenance as part of the design’s normal use case. That’s all fine and dandy if you are just an innovative architect, but if you are a homeowner, it’s going to quickly become a problem. 

#16 This Cup, Which I Photographed Before Finally Getting Over My Guilt And Just Throwing Away. Those Arms Are Hollow. Even If It’s Only Used For Water, It’ll Get Damp In There And Full Of Unreachable Mold. Farewell, Cute But Useless Cactus Cup. I Wanted To Give You A Chance, But You’re Just Too Poorly Designed

Image credits: Michael Strzalka-Steil

#17 I Needed To Use The Ladies’ Room At The Restaurant Before Having Lunch. This Is What I Found. Yes, We Still Ate There. No Idea If The Men’s Room Was Similar

Image credits: Elizabeth Lear

#18 Found In Another Group, I Am Wondering How They Are Able To Clean This Set Up? Seems Like A Cool Concept, But How Are You Able To Dust And Vacuum When You Have Huge Rocks Around Your Living Room?

Image credits: Lisa M Neubauer

User-centered designers not only recommend but downright insist that before anything is made, the team sits down and works out a hypothetical persona. This represents the average user interacting with something as intended. In extreme cases, this might involve a literal focus group, but for the amateur home decorator, it can be a good little mental exercise. 

#19 My First Post!!

Image credits: Clare Kelly

#20 Unfortunately, I Am The Cleaner

Image credits: Jordyn Beeson

#21 The Upper Section Of The Wall In The Dining Area At My Local IKEA Warehouse

Image credits: Linda Marie

If you really want to get into the weeds, you can also consider an anti-persona, the user that this item or design is explicitly not intended for. Perhaps useful for tools and software, but not as applicable when considering a bathroom door. All in all, it is important to push back against designs that ultimately make our lives harder and more complicated, particularly in the 21st century when we really have better options. If you want to see more designs like this, check out our other articles here, here, here, and here

#22 The Wall In This Testaurant Is Beautiful But —

Image credits: Poppy Sealy

#23 Bathroom Sink In Indonesia

Image credits: Teya Elisabeth

#24 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Richard Dinsmore

#25 Yes, These Are Earphones

Image credits: Dwight Russell Cosca

#26 This Fabric Chandelier/Lightshade Is Hanging In A F*cking Toilet. Can See The Spiderwebs & Dust From My Seat

Image credits: Connor Rose

#27 Beautiful Spoon, But Come On

Image credits: Cesar D'Armas

#28 This High Priced Coffee Table Sans Glass Top

Image credits: Sigrid Kúsi

#29 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Brian Scharp

#30 This Chair Is For Sale In A Shop Across From My Office. I Looked At It Out My Window Thinking It Looked Like A Huge Nest Then Pulled It Up On Their Website. For That Price You Know They Have No Kids Or Pets And Do Have Someone Else To Clean It. Now To Go Over And Touch It

Image credits: Cendra Lemon

#31 This Was In Another Group I’m In. They Said It’s A Carpet And They Change It Out Once A Year But I Still Think It’s Gross. ? Sorry If You’re In Here

Image credits: anon

#32 This Sherpa Recliner I Found On Marketplace.… I’m Not Sure You Can Clean This Lol

Image credits: Anthony Crawford

#33 Just Installed The Mirror Wall Tiles ? Good Luck Cleaners

Image credits: Donovan Struwig

#34 Found One In The Wild Of One Of My Local Yard Sale Groups. If Ur Not Familiar With The Central Valley It’s Dusty Af. I Can Only Imagine This Thing In A Years Time

Image credits: Justin Falcon

#35 Kids Bath Toys ? One Looked A Bit Weird So I Cut It Open And It Was Full Of Mould! Thrown Out All Of Her Bath Toys That Can Fill Themselves With Water

Image credits: Danielle Scattergood

#36 Above The Bar At Emeril’s Table Restaurant At The Fairly New New Orleans Airport. So Fuzzy

Image credits: Bridey Murphy

#37 This Looks Like Gravel Stuck In Old Gum, With Lime Scale And Soap Scum Accents

Image credits: Suzanne Carlson

#38 Imagine All The Dust Particles Etc In All Those Crevices

Image credits: Aaron Drawbridge

#39 Bathroom Sink At My Local Coffee Shop

Image credits: Brooke Paulsen

#40 Grooming Shop And Fans. Fun Times

Image credits: Brenda Campbell

#41 Just Finnished Wiping Down This Bad Boy

Image credits: Enoc A Torres

#42 My Sister Just Bought A New House. Why Tf Would Someone Do This

Image credits: Michael Johnson

#43 The Ceiling In The 1000 Seat Auditorium At My Job. I’m Not Sure When It Was Last Renovated (If Ever) But It Was Certainly In The 20th Century

Image credits: Kathy Beach Parsons

#44 This Chair From Cb2

Image credits: Sarah Popov

#45 Odysseas Ladopoulos

Image credits: Odysseas Ladopoulos

#46 This Is Cute As Hell But Oh My God The H A I R

Image credits: Milena LeFebvre

#47 Found On Pinterest. Wooden Backsplash

Image credits: Shae AK

#48 Found On A Realtor Website

Image credits: Linda Randolph

#49 I’m Almost 30, All My Friends Are Buying Houses. This Is In A Friends Basement

Image credits: Shell Bee

#50 This Water Bottle I Saw At A Department Store ?‍♂️ . . . I Feel Like There’s Going To Be A Lot Of Other Groups Tagged In This One

Image credits: Nafis Alam

#51 The Bottom Inside Part Of My Clear Glasses Frames

Image credits: Joy Lane Gelb

#52 It’s So Dusty! I Just Want To Get In There With A Rag And A Squeegee

Image credits: Jennifer Shepler

#53 Found In The Wild At Homegoods. That Is A Market Umbrella. For Outside. Covered In Random Unhemmed Cut Fabric

Image credits: Val Starkgraf

#54 This Hanging Light In My Doctor’s Waiting Room

Image credits: Andrea Frayser

#55 An Indoor Playground, With Wood Chips. Adjacent A Food Court

Image credits: Arlo Marzipan

#56 First Time Poster. The Dust

Image credits: Anna Lunar

#57 I’m A Professional Window Cleaner, I’ve Been At It For 6 Years Now. This Grate Is Purely Aesthetic. Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time, I Suppose

Image credits: Stephen Rommel

#58 Spotted In A Local Cafe. Like How It Looks, Wouldn’t Want To Clean It

Image credits: Allen Shakir

#59 Found This Cast Iron Grill Pan On R/Castiron. Cast-Iron Needs Specific Cleaning Practices. Grill Lines Are A Pain To Clean And Add All These Holes And I’d Never Use It

Image credits: Timothy Wenger

#60 I Love The Concept But Practically, A Nightmare

Image credits: Sarah Fitzpatrick

#61 Who Tf At American Standard Thought This Was A Good Design For The Underside Of A Toilet Seat? I Seriously Wonder If They’ve Ever Cleaned A Toilet. I’m Seriously Considering [probably] Spending My Own Money To Get A Seat Sans Crevasse’s Even Though This Place Is A Rental. To Somehow Make The Design Worse, It’s A Slow-Close Yet It Doesn’t Have The Quick Releases To Clean Under The Hinge

Image credits: Dan Thacker

#62 You Asked For It. You Demanded It. Here It Is. Hooever Thought It Was A Good Idea To Put Those Raised Things There To Make It Xxtra Cleanable… *ah.. It’s A Soup Spoon

Image credits: Aaron Loy

#63 Someone Shared These Artificial Flowers On Kitchen Ceiling In A Craft Shaming Group And All I Could Think Of Was The Grease And Moisture And Dust That Would Accumulate On That…. Maybe It Would Be Cute In Like A Bedroom, Nut Definitely Not A Great Idea For A Kitchen Imo

Image credits: Helena Martens

#64 Ceiling At Local Restaurant

Image credits: Peeranut Pompim

#65 How About A Glass Of Wine From This Cool Decanter? (Image Nicked From Another Group.)

Image credits: Rosén Fredrik Claes-Edward

#66 (This Is A Cry For Help) I Would Like To Have Words With Whoever Conceptualized Baseboards, And Specifically These Ones. You Mean To Tell Me The Best Cleaning Solution We Have For These Is To Get On Our Hands And Knees To Scrub Them?!

Image credits: Jacee Mower

#67 If You Know, You Know. Enfit Feeding Tube. You Can’t See It In The Photo, But The Head Has A Zillion Little Places Inside For Crud To Get Stuck And There Is No Way To Get It Out. This Item That Goes Straight Through An Open Wound Into The User’s Intestines. I Just Want To Stick It In The Dishwasher ?? Water Flushes Help But Don’t Get Everything I Hate It

Image credits: Kelly Kay

#68 Escalators

Image credits: Panchita Villa

#69 These Sinks At My Job. Bonus: Peep My Big A*s Forehead In The Reflection

Image credits: Trevor Scott Chaumont

#70 Former Owner Of My House Put Trim Allllll The Way Around My Kitchen Counters And I’m So Grossed Out By It ? Tried To Pull It Off But It’s Taking Pieces Of The Counter Tops With It ?

Image credits: Becky Mercer

#71 Water Flows Into This Pitcher’s Handle, And The Top Of That Is Not Detatchable. What Were They Thinking Really?

Image credits: Bodóné Hofecker Zsuzsanna

#72 This Is A Big Design Trend Right Now & I Can’t Understand Why. I Usually See It As Bare Wood Too, So Imagine The Slivers. Not A Hard Thing To Keep Clean I Suppose, But Definitely Time Consuming And A Huge Dust Collector. Where I Live, Spiders Would Be All Over This

Image credits: Helena Killinger

#73 Whatever This Is

Image credits: Leo Herranen

#74 This Fountain Thingy At A Mall In The City Where I Live. There’s Literally Someone Mopping The Whole Time Because The Part Where The Water Falls Is Too Shallow, And The Water Splashes All Over The Place

Image credits: Fernanda Lucila Garza

#75 Sink At Target

Image credits: Caroline Mary

#76 Local Ramen/Sushi Spot. They’re Glueing Bamboo On The Ceiling Edit (Additional Info): Yes, They Glued It One By One. We Don’t Have Many Venomous Spiders/Insects In General In Here So That’s That I Guess? They Also Have Paper Cranes Hanging From The Ceiling In The Other Part Of The Restaurant. Their Food Is Amazing But This Decor

Image credits: Magdalena Prochownik

#77 Seen On Redfin: Outdoor Shingles On An Indoor Bathroom. A Brown Toilet. How Would You Know If It’s Clean?

Image credits: Keira Cam

#78 So I Thought I Made This Memory Up,,, So I Googled It

Image credits: Ty Bonafede

#79 Fuzzy Texture Combined With Oily Skin, Ear Wax And Whatever Dirt You Like Every Day

Image credits: Cassie Montgomery

#80 Chain Curtain At A Local Restaurant ? You Pass This Going Into Or ?out Of? The Bathrooms

Image credits: Aubrey Llewellyn

#81 Microwave At A Newly Built Cabin That Just Got Added To The Roster At My Job

Image credits: anon

#82 In A UK Nandos, A Sink That Is Made Of A Porous Material And Hence The Basin Has Become Mouldy!!

Image credits: Samuel Spencer

#83 This Couch On A Local Market Place

Image credits: Kierstyn Bieler

#84 The Ceiling Of Nando’s In Corby, UK… ? (I’m Guessing It’s To Do With The Acoustics Of The Place..)

Image credits: Rai Cajon Cluedo

#85 This Wall On The Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady Is Driving Me Nuts

Image credits: Randall Lee

#86 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Samuel Gustum

#87 Lol Gross. I Don’t Care What Type Of Door These Knobs Are Used For. Absolutely Not

Image credits: Natalie Cox

#88 This Group Was The First Place I Thought Of

Image credits: Sarah Bergey

#89 This. I’ve Seen People Trying To Use Those Glasses As Rails, And Is Just Fingerprint Everywhere

Image credits: Brune Bonassi

#90 And It Doesn’t Fit In The Dishwasher

Image credits: Megan Lynn Hicks

#91 I’m At The Club Right Now, Thoughts?

Image credits: Ben Royale

#92 These Plastic Pieces Used In The Sink At A Sushi Restaurant. Ew

Image credits: Kyle Fischer

#93 The Hair, The Hollow Legs…the Joints?!

Image credits: Sarah Penner

#94 Nononono

Image credits: Moritz Msr

#95 This Sink At Chicago O‘Hare International Airport. How Does It Fully Drain?

Image credits: Justin McDaniel Chapman

#96 An Airplane Seat Bolted To The Plane. You Know They’re Not Using The Hose On A Vacuum To Get This. They Probably Don’t Even Vacuum Until They Absolutely Have To

Image credits: Anastazia Nichole

#97 Front-Loading Washers. There, I Said It. When We Moved Into Our House It Came With A Front-Loader And Was Fillies With Mold Both In The Seal And In The Detergent Tray ? It Was So Much That We Just Had To Replace It

Image credits: Moira Jamieson-Brooks

#98 These Lick Mats For Dog (And For Everyone Sayigg Bc “Isn’t The Dog Supposed To Clean It Yes But My Dog Has Doggy Adhd And Gets Distracted Easily Before It’s Finished)

Image credits: Skyler Henderson

#99 This Two-Metre Tall Wooden Ornament/Fake Plant Holder Next To A Toilet In A Bar’s Bathroom (No Varnish)

Image credits: Blake Kö

#100 Restaurant Bathroom In Lahaina, Maui

Image credits: Laura Michelle

#101 The Shower In Our Hotel In Spain!

Image credits: Marianne Isaksen

#102 On My Suggested… I’m Blaming This Group For This

Image credits: Baruqui Sana

#103 Fake Flowers On The Ceiling/Walls Of Bathrooms/Restaurants. Ew

Image credits: Danika Stochosky

#104 A Knife Block

Image credits: Rhian Goodwin

#105 Yikes

Image credits: Diane Proffitt Smith

#106 From My Buy Nothing Group. The Family Is Lovely And Very Clean, But The Potential ‘Ick’ Factor Is Huge! Especially Second Hand!

Image credits: Larissa Gerow

#107 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Lauren Gensey

#108 This Is The Ceiling In The Public Hallway Of My New Apartment Building, I Wonder How Long It Will Take Before Its Full Of Bugs… According To The Contractor, It Must Represent A Cloud Field… And Yes, It’s Already Falling Apart

Image credits: Frits Mali – Vos

#109 A Donut Shop Sells Mugs With A Hole Through The Middle

Image credits: Drei DG

#110 Y’all I Hate This Razor It’s Got Silicone Grips But It’s Impossible To Clean And I Really Don’t Want To Buy Another One Because They Are Expensive

Image credits: Brittany Duncan

#111 A Restaurant, From Their Own Promo Materials. Those Are All Logs Of Course

Image credits: Ishila Bhattacharya

#112 This Fan! It Less Than A Year Old And Already Has A Huge Buildup Of Dust Inside. And I Can’t Figure Out How To Take It Apart

Image credits: Julia Richason Lewis

#113 Not Cleanable Things

Image credits: Amanda Norris

#114 This Samsung Stove. A One-Way Trap For Crumbs And Cooking Oil

Image credits: Vladimir Boskovic Serrudo

#115 They Are Glued Down…

Image credits: Bonnie Lawton

Source: boredpanda.com

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