Why does foil have a shiny side and a dull side?

It’s nice that I learned something new today, and had a couple myths busted also. Now, can anyone tell me why one side of the loo roll is slightly fluffier than the other?


This seem more likely. Those final rolls are very, very shiny.

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Came here for Weird Al Yankovic.
Leaving satisfied.

Also, TIL something I always wondered about when using foil.


while i’m not sure it applies to aluminum foil, when multiple cultures worth of people have similar folk tales there’s usually a good reason


science isn’t complete, and we aren’t really that far along in understanding human bodies and all their strange idiosyncrasies



unfortunately, i have no idea who. :cat2:


The reason is that charlesj two posts below is right, the shiny surface is the one in contact with the rollers


Cooking? No, of course not.

Mind-control ray blocking? Obviously: shiny side out, sheeple. :roll_eyes:

(/s, because these days…)


Usually not, honestly. That’s the antiquity fallacy, with perhaps a little noble savage fallacy thrown in for good measure.

The myth I was referring to was that cold weather makes you sick, not that we get more colds in winter. Of course we do. That’s long established. We have a flu season and COVID gets worse in winter too. People used to (and often still do) think that cold weather is the cause of illness which is a myth that pre-dates germ theory.

I never said it was. Nobody should ever say that. The whole point of science is that it will never be complete. That would be religion.


Which is why the illness is called a cold. :wink:


your previous post had a sense of absolutism which the facts don’t support.

and my point really was when people say things like, “bundle up, or you’ll get sick” - there’s a why behind it

so while folk wisdom isn’t infallibly right, it’s not infallibly wrong either. im still holding out for future foil science i guess. and i’m basically okay with people deciding their foil side needs to be a certain way

i think the moral of the story though is, don’t bundle up with aluminum foil. unless you do

This is wrong. The words are different, not just pronunciation:

Aluminium (aluminum in North American English) Aluminium - Wikipedia

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Because the inner layers would slip, then bunch up?

You‘ve got it slightly wrong.

The shiny side was exposed to the rollers.
And the dull side was pressed against the other layer.


This reminds me of recently finding a usable roll of foil. It was all stuck together, we were able to peel off small scraps of foil but no large sheets. It was almost fused together. I don’t know if it was exposed to high heat – I would think before being put in the box – or a problem with manufacturing.

Sounds unusable to me

My guess is the roll got crushed at some point.

Making aluminum balls is a thing people do. If you hammer the ball on an anvil over and over as you add layers, it almost fuse-welds itself into a solid block. It isn’t actually solid aluminum, but it starts to act like it. The outer layers behave just as you describe- you can pick off little pieces, but the sheets have lost all separation. So maybe if the roll got crushed under a pallet or something before being put in the box, it would do that.


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Me: I wonder what I’ll get up to this afternoon? Consult the list of repairs and refurbishments the house needs, or …

Well then!


I had no idea this was a big mystery. As one of The Old™, I know we had this explained out in books (I think I read it in one of the ‘How Does Aspirin Find a Headache’ or similar books) long ago.


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