Why the McDonald’s Logo Uses the Colors Yellow and Red

If you thought the McDonald’s logo was an abstract rendering of two massive, bendy French fries dipped into a pool of sweet, tangy ketchup, it's not a bad guess—but the logo colors actually have specific psychological reasons behind them, according to Reader’s Digest.

The website explains that the color red is stimulating and associated with activity. Indeed, some studies show that seeing the color red encourages us to take action more quickly and more forcefully than other colors do. In one study, Science Daily reports, students were instructed to read aloud their participant number, which was written in either red or gray crayon, and then pinch and hold open a metal clasp. A second group of participants had to squeeze a handgrip as hard as possible when the word squeeze appeared on the screen against a red, blue, or gray background. In both experiments, participants pinched or squeezed with more force when the color red was involved, and students in the handgrip experiment even had faster reaction times when squeeze was on a red background. In other words, you might be more inclined to veer off onto an unexpected exit for an impulse Big Mac when you see the red McDonald’s logo on the highway.

We associate yellow, on the other hand, with happiness, according to Reader's Digest. It’s also reportedly the most visible color in daylight, which helps it show up against other less psychologically optimized fast food road signs. Since your brain processes color before words or shapes, it’s already sending you signals to indulge in greasy goodness upon seeing the McDonald’s logo before you can even register any other information.

McDonald’s has been willing to compromise on its classic color scheme in the past. In 2009, the burger chain made a major push in Europe to replace its red background with a green one, hoping people would perceive it as a more environmentally friendly corporation. That particular public relations venture never made it to this side of the pond, however.

[h/t Reader’s Digest]

Celebrate the Holidays With the 2020 Harry Potter Funko Pop Advent Calendar

Funko
Funko

Though the main book series and movie franchise are long over, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter remains in the spotlight as one of the most popular properties in pop-culture. The folks at Funko definitely know this, and every year the company releases a new Advent calendar based on the popular series so fans can count down to the holidays with their favorite characters.

Right now, you can pre-order the 2020 edition of Funko's popular Harry Potter Advent calendar, and if you do it through Amazon, you'll even get it on sale for 33 percent off, bringing the price down from $60 to just $40.

Funko Pop!/Amazon

Over the course of the holiday season, the Advent calendar allows you to count down the days until Christmas, starting on December 1, by opening one of the tiny, numbered doors on the appropriate day. Each door is filled with a surprise Pocket Pop! figurine—but outside of the trio of Harry, Hermione, and Ron, the company isn't revealing who you'll be getting just yet.

Calendars will start shipping on October 15, but if you want a head start, go to Amazon to pre-order yours at a discount.

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Why Can’t You Smell Your Own Breath? There Are a Few Theories

Hands are built-in tools for detecting bad breath.
Hands are built-in tools for detecting bad breath.
SIphotography/iStock via Getty Images

The fact that we rarely catch a whiff of our own breath seems fishy. For one, our noses are only a philtrum’s length away from our mouths. We also don’t have any trouble inhaling other people’s stale carbon dioxide, even with a solid few feet between us.

Though we don’t yet have a decisive scientific explanation for this olfactory phenomenon, there’s no shortage of promising theories. According to BreathMD, it could be that we became so accustomed to smelling our own breath that we simply don’t notice its odor anymore—similar to the way we can’t detect our own "house smell." This kind of habituation doesn’t just inure us to unpleasant aromas, it also leaves our noses free to focus on unfamiliar odors in our environment that could alert us to danger.

As HowStuffWorks reports, another hypothesis suggests that we’re more conscious of other people’s halitosis because breath released when speaking is different than breath released when exhaling regularly. All the tongue movement that happens when someone talks could push odors from the back of their mouth out into the air.

But if that’s true, it seems like you’d be able to smell your own breath—at least when you’re the one doing the talking. Which brings us to the next and final theory: That your bad breath dissipates before you get a chance to inhale it. When someone else exhales, you’re inhaling their air almost simultaneously. When you exhale, on the other hand, you have to wait until you’ve reached the very end of your expiration before breathing back in again. By that time, the malodorous particles may have already dispersed.

Even if you’re blissfully unaware of how your own breath smells, it could be a little nose-wrinkling for others—here are some tips for getting rid of halitosis.