This tissue is straight out of a trash can.
A new startup is selling $80 tissues infected with the common cold virus — and claims they’ll help you stay healthy.
Vaev Tissue, an LA-based startup, aims to get its customers sick in order to build up their immune system. Instead of being bombarded with the cold when you least expect it, Vaev says this allows you to schedule when you get sick, so you can get it out of the way. The company’s website brags that these boogery tissues are “safer than needles or pills.”
Founder Oliver Niessen tells Time that choosing when you’ll get sick is a “luxury … I mean, we customize everything in our lives and we have everything the way that we want it, so why not approach sickness that way as well?”
The germ-infused wipes are infected by an arsenal of sneezers, Niessen adds, and the brand’s online info page hypes: “We’re not about chemicals or prescription drugs here at Væv.”
They’re not about science either — doctors say these tissues are trash. Charles Gerba, professor of microbiology and environmental sciences at the University of Arizona, explains to Time that there are more than 200 varieties of rhinoviruses, which is why there has never been a vaccine for the common cold. You’ll be protected from whatever version of it is on this tissue, but that still leaves you susceptible to the other 199.
Gerba also warns that infecting yourself could be dangerous because there’s no way to know how a body will react to a virus. “Say you have an elderly person, you give it to them — they could die from it,” he says.
This snotty scheme has sold about 1,000 tissues so far, Time reports. They’re currently sold out online.
“People think it is fake,” Niessen says. “It’s not.”
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