I'm sure you have as many memories of it as I do. Going to the pool every summer, and swimming or playing until your eyes hurt from the chlorine. Or in the winter, being in the warm bathtub until Mom kicked you out because... well, you got "prune hands".

It always felt so strange, but I admit that I kinda liked it.  But then I was also one of those kids that put Elmer's Glue on my hands, let it dry, and then peeled it off like a layer of skin.

I was a weird kid, I know.

So anyway, science has FINALLY figured out why our hands shrivel up like prunes when we spend too long in the bathtub or a pool. I never realized there wasn't a good scientific explanation, but there wasn't.

The theory was always that the pruning came from water absorption. Which is boring. So a team of scientists at Newcastle University in England studied the shriveling, and came up with the REAL reason it happens.  They proved that when our fingers are pruned, they're actually much better at grabbing things that are wet..... kind of like the tread on a tire.

Ancient humans actually evolved that way because they needed to grab wet food after it rained, or food that was growing in a stream. And our toes shrivel up for a similar reason - so we can walk better when it's wet.

So simple, and yet... it makes sense.  It almost, ALMOST I tell ya, makes me want to fill up my old claw bathtub tonight.  But I think I'll just stick with the shower.

Wrinklingly yours,


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