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The proper way to blow your nose

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I’ve had a head cold for the last 3 days (which is why some of you haven’t seen me online), and in that time I’ve gone through 5 rolls of toilet paper due to blowing my nose. I’ve tried various medicines, and although Sudafed was able to slow the drip, I’ve been blowing my nose almost constantly. For those who are concerned about efficiency in all things (as I am), I believe I’ve found the most efficient way to get the snot as far away from your sinuses as possible.

  1. Take the roll of toilet paper and wrap it around your hand 2 or 3 times. This is really all you need per blow.

  2. As you cover your nose with the toilet paper, plug one of your nostrils to ensure that maximum airflow is being forced through the other nostril, ensuring that the greatest amount of snot is removed.

  3. Do the same to the other nostril. Repeat as necessary.

  4. Once you’re through blowing, you still have bits of snot that cling to your nose hair. We’ll want to clean these out as well.

  5. Take one perforated square of the toilet paper and cram the whole thing into your nostril. Make sure that there is enough sticking out for you to grab. Once it’s in there, twist the toilet paper in a circular fashion. Give it a minimum of 4–5 rotations before pulling it back out.

  6. Do the same to the other nostril. Repeat as necessary.

  7. You’re done!

In my experience, this is the most effective way to get all of your snot out. It’s also safe to use this method without following up with a mirror to make sure that there is no snot clinging to your nose hair because the follow-up twisting is nice and tidy.

Ryan Parman

is an engineering manager with over 20 years of experience across software development, site reliability engineering, and security. He is the creator of SimplePie and AWS SDK for PHP, patented multifactor-authentication-as-a-service at WePay, defined much of the CI/CD and SRE disciplines at McGraw-Hill Education, and came up with the idea of “serverless, event-driven, responsive functions in the cloud” while at Amazon Web Services in 2010. Ryan's aptly-named blog, , is where he writes about ideas longer than . Ambivert. Curious. Not a coffee drinker.