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Seelix's avatar

Is it just me, or are Puffs tissue boxes poorly designed?

Asked by Seelix (14947points) March 9th, 2011

I’ve been sick for the past few days, so tissue has been on my mind (and under my nose). I bought some Puffs tissue – the kind with lotion, because I’m blowing my nose constantly and don’t want to look like a certain reindeer.

These tissue boxes are stupid. They’re open at the top and almost all the way down the side, whereas most tissue boxes have that little bit of plastic covering the tissues in the box.

I had actually had an open box of Puffs left over from the last time I had a cold (I only use the expensive stuff when I need to), and all the tissues were dusty. Why do they do this?

Can anyone explain why the Puffs design would be superior to the design that everyone else uses?

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25 Answers

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I think it’s just you, but why have I been stuck on your question for so long?

WasCy's avatar

It must be the Puffs tissue boxes, because I think that you are very well designed, @Seelix.

Seelix's avatar

@WasCy – Thanks – that was the chuckle I needed on my way to class. :)

WasCy's avatar

If you think about it, though, I think the answer is in your question. If you use the product and like them, but make the economic decision that you made to “only use that brand when I need to”, then you’d end up with a half-box left over for your next cold or other “need” event. The manufacturer, recognizing that their product is non-competitively priced, knows that other consumers will make the same buying decisions. So they won’t sell so much product.

But now that you know that the stuff has a real “shelf life” once opened (the lotion attracts and holds dust after the box is opened), you’ll be more likely to use up the box once you have opened it… and then buy another box to have on hand for the next “need event” (so you don’t have to leave the house with a cold, after all), and they may expect a near-doubling of their current sales. In theory, anyway.

But let’s talk some more about your design.

Austinlad's avatar

I agree—I think Puff boxes are poorly designed. I’m sure they had to do something very different from Kleenex, which probably has their design patented.

janbb's avatar

Does Puffs make a toploader model ( upright squarish boxes)? That might be a better solution – or maybe it snot.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@janbb That’s pretty bad. :)

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I like the kind with the slot on the top where you insert your nose and blow. ;)

picante's avatar

Puffs, the magic tissues lived in a box
And languished in the drip-less void with mucous hard as rocks
Little Jelly Seelix loved those gentle wipes
But when exposure drew the dust, dear Seelix got the gripes

I guess they’re not all they’re puffed up to be!

deni's avatar

Maybe so they’re easier to grab? Like for example if you were reaching for them behind you or something, there is a larger area open for you to snag a tissue….that’s the only reason I can think of.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille I’m just trying to figure out when you know it’s time for a new box?

janbb's avatar

@picante Sounds like you wrote a puff piece!

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe When it’s stuck to your face

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Gross! (This one’s out of control) :)

thorninmud's avatar

Just a guess, but those tissues that feed through the slot in the top are interleaved so that the next tissue is pulled up through the slot as its predecessor gets called to duty. That seems to be a problematic system at best, with tissues toward the bottom of the box often not feeding as they should, so that you have to go fishing. It must be an engineering pain in the ass that involves tweaking many subtle variables to get it just right most of the time.

There may be something about the greater bulk of these tissues that would prevent them from feeding reliably in such a system. Maybe the lotion would cause them to cling together too much if they were interleaved, and not separate cleanly as they leave the box. The cutout design allows the tissues to just lie on top of each other instead of being interleaved.

janbb's avatar

@thorninmud I bow in wonder at the powers of your analytical mind!

Jude's avatar

I was just turned on by @thorninmud‘s answer.

janbb's avatar

@Jude Do you have fantasies of being a lotioned tissue softly layered into a tissue box?

Jude's avatar

Hee hee! I just like his or her smarts!

LuckyGuy's avatar

I like @thorninmud answer. I’ll think there might be a little more to it.

The lotion impregnated in the tissues would smear on the plastic making an icky mess (technical term) after a few wipes. Try wiping one on a piece of glass. To get the most lotion on the user and not on the box they want the tissue to come out of the box with the least amount of force.
I have a problem with the box not being clearly labeled once it is opened. From a distance, you can’t readily tell if you got the kind with Aloe, Vitamins, lotion, plain or peanut. ;-)

MyNewtBoobs's avatar

I actually prefer Puffs design, because you never have a tissue get lost and have to reach down in and get the flow going again. Plus, you can put more tissues in a Puffs box than in the other design, so it’s more efficient. However, everyone else uses the other design so you can put your own tissue box cover on it.

Seelix's avatar

I’m so glad you all talked about this while I was gone :)

Good thinking, @WasCy. I hadn’t thought that it might be a sneaky thing like that, but you never know!

@janbb – They do have a smaller, square box – I’m not sure if it has the plastic covering, though. Good idea; I’ll have to buy that kind next time :)

@lucillelucillelucille – You’re a goof and I lurve you :)

@picante – LOVE IT.

@thorninmud – Very profound. I think your idea and/or @worriedguy‘s is probably the reason. On the subject of the greasiness of the tissues, I know all about it after the past few days – I’ve had to clean my glasses a lot more often! Also, @worriedguy – plain or peanut :) Tee hee!

ericinLA's avatar

Amazing, not one actual correct answer here. The only reason that there is a box design as you described (and good luck finding them in markets these days, Puffs and Scotties seem to have wised up) is for people who have a cold and need to TAKE TISSUES WITH THEM.

The pull-out box is great for grabbing one at home when you need it, but the half-fold design is terrible for putting a dozen in your pocket. Why? Because you will be a total mess by the time you can separate one from the bunch and use it. Conversely, the tri-fold tissues can be folded up and taken with you, and it’s simple to grab a flap and separate a tissue quickly when you’re out and about.

So, buy tissues with the open side (if you can find any) when you know you’ll be away from your trusty box for a few hours, and keep the pop-ups at home where they’re one quick grab away from a good blow.

Seelix's avatar

@ericinLA – I just buy the individual packs at the dollar store. Ten pocket-sized packs of ten tissues for a buck.

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