IT'S the classic children's toy parents either love (because it gets creative juices flowing) or hate (because the colours ALWAYS get mixed up!).

But as it turns out, Play-Doh wasn't originally meant for your child's enjoyment at all.

When it was first manufactured in the 1930s, the modelling compound was actually sold as a wallpaper cleaner.

This classic children’s toy was originally sold as a wallpaper cleaner. Picture: Supplied
This classic children’s toy was originally sold as a wallpaper cleaner. Picture: Supplied

The product, which was only available in white at the time, was pitched to Kroger grocery stores by brothers Cleo and Noah McVicker, after the store was on the hunt for a miracle product that would help people remove the soot from coal-burning furnaces off their walls.

TECHNOLOGY MOVED ON AND SO DID THEY

But as customers turned to soap and water to clean their dirty walls and more and more families relied on burning oil and gas instead of charcoal, sales decreased and the product was reinvented.

 

Play-Doh was first invented in the 1930s. Picture: Supplied
Play-Doh was first invented in the 1930s. Picture: Supplied

After discovering some teachers were turning to the product for children to play with, the founders realised it had potential in a very different way and it was reworked and marketed to schools in the 1950s.

To state the obvious, it was popular, and by 1965, the product was available in tubs of a variety of colours we find in toy stores today.

DON'T SCRUB THE WALLS WITH IT JUST YET

But before you start cleaning the house with leftover bits found in the bottom of the kids' toy box, sadly we can't use it as a cleaner anymore. The detergents were removed when the product was reinvented as a children's toy, meaning it will clean zip from your walls now.

Cleaning up pesky crumbs from the floor at home however … yep, we're happy to report that still works!

This article originally appeared on Kidspot and has been republished here with permission.



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