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Clorox Clarifies the "5 Second Rule"

9:39 PM


We've all heard it. Some of us even swear by it.. you know -- the 5 second rule. That's the amount of time you supposedly have to get something up off the floor (like food, for instance) before it gets too gross to eat. Not that any of us have ever let our kids do that *cough* but apparently.. it's all bunk!

I recently got the chance to sit on a cool blogger conference call with funny lady Samantha Bee (you may know her from "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart"). She shared hilarious parenting stories, sanity tips, and the surprising results of a study done by Clorox regarding that commonly-believed "5 Second Rule." Turns out, we don't have even 5 seconds, if a surface isn't properly cleaned!

You can read more about Samantha and the results of this study at Samantha's Blog post over at the Clorox website. It gives a little more info about how Clorox bleach can be used to make your floor clean enough to eat off of -- safely-- and literally. (You can also use it to disinfect those sippy cups after they've already hit the floor.) The tips I've learned are simple and surprising!


Wanna Win? We're giving away a Clorox product prize pack valued at $20 to one lucky winner! To be entered to win, just share your funniest "5 second rule" moment, story, photo, or video. We'll randomly pick one to get the goodies! You have until February 10th at 11:59 am CST to get your entries in, and you can enter every day! (Just comment as directed for your first entry, and for each entry after that, type "Today's Entry!")

Giveaways are subject to complete site rules. Open to persons 18+ U.S. only, please. (Be sure to give us a way to reach you if you win, and remember that we will never use your email or contact info for anything other than to send your prize.) Good luck, and be sure to check out all of our other giveaways!

*Clorox provided me with a gift card for my participation in this program and prizes for the winner. Thanks to Consumer Queen for this opportunity!

Additionally, you can win goodies strictly from Clorox by Tweeting @Clorox with the item you use the 5-second rule with most -- you will have the chance to win a $50 Visa gift card. Use #smpl&surprising in your tweet!


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110 comments

  1. What if we don't have any 5 second rule stories?

    I don't eat things that fall on the floor and have taught the kids not to.

    Christine
    dazed1821@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. cdziuba@aol.com My husband dropped a tuna melt onto our tile floor and......he believes in the 5 second rule so he ate it.

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  3. The 5 second rule applies mostly to cheese puffs in our house ;-). That and there is this pizza place we love but it takes an hour to get there and back. One time my husband dropped a piece on the floor and that qualified for the 5 second rule. In all fairness it's a great pizza :-).

    Rachel
    one2nvme@hotmail.com

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  4. my husband dropped a freshly baked oatmeal raisin cookie on the floor, while wasting time challenging me to the 5 second rule, the dog dove in & ate it
    pksanddancer(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  5. It's always about getting caught. I don't mind doing this if I can be sneaky but what do you do when one of the grandkids sees you doing what you forbid them to do?

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  6. One time I dropped my last serving of ice cream on the kitchen floor and briefly wondered if the 5 second rule might still apply. Since it took me longer than 5 seconds to ponder it I just let it go but now that I think about it I realize it should have been an immediate no!

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  7. I dropped some meatballs on the floor and picked it up and was just fine.
    honeybeez80@yahoo.com

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  8. A little girl we were babysitting for dropped her ice cream cone on the ground. Before she had a chance to cry, my husband snatched it up and put it back together. Don't think she was used to the 5 second rule, but wanted to an ice cream cone so kept eating it.

    chipdip2010(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  9. 5 second rule.....at my house with four pets-if you wait even half of a second the food is gone-
    Diane Baum
    esldiane@gmail.com

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  10. We used the 5 second rule during a dinner party... my hubby knocked the rolls out of my hand in the kitchen, and while no one watched, we used the 5 second rule!

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

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  11. Years ago I was in a fast-food burger chain. I heard an "Opps!" from the back. The manager said, "5 second rule" loud enough for everyone in the lobby to hear.

    We weren't the only group who left without ordering and I have never been back.

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  12. I don't really have a funny 5-second rule story. I'm just always being dumb and dropping my allergy pills in the floor. Then I have to go ahead and take it because those little suckers are expensive. I either need to take my pills somewhere else, or be more careful, or mop more often. :-)

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  13. I don't eat anything at our house with the 5 seceond rule because of our huge dog!!

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  14. cdziuba@aol.com todays entry Feb 6

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  15. My little sister was running around the kitchen when she suddenly stopped because she noticed an old yucky marshmellow on the ground. She quickly ate it and i saw, saying, "hey, that's not healthy." and She replies, "5 second rule."

    maayangordon@ymail.com

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  16. HORTON111@AOL.COM

    IF IT IS SOMETHING LIKE A DESSERT AND IT IS DROPPED AND NO ONE IS LOOKING I WILL PICK IT UP AND PUT IT ASIDE AND EAT IT MYSELF (IT HAS TO BE GOOD AND MOST DESSERTS ARE)

    ReplyDelete
  17. I studied food safety and sanitation so the only five second rule in our house is that if you can rinse it off and then cook it, you can use the five second rule. Otherwise, it's wild bird/bunny food, compost or trash. asthenight at gmail dot com

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  18. My 6 y/o niece was eating chips and dip one day. She dropped some dip out of the container on the carpet. Then she tried to dip her chip in it! Please enter me.

    brandon_ralston@hotmail.com

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  19. I was making those mini pizza things for my nieces and one fell on the floor...the 5 second rule applies so you should have seen those kids scrambling to pick it up before the dog got it.

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  20. I dont have a funny five second rule, but I love the mythbusters episode where they test out the five second rule!

    jennifer.lleras@gmail.com

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  21. I am only a believer in the 5 second rule if there is a sink around where I can rinse things off.

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  22. Forget the germs...5 seconds on my floor & it resembles a fur ball. If it's something the cats will eat, I'll let them, otherwise toss it.

    Thanks for the giveaway >^..^<

    bloggyig at gmail dot com

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  23. With a dog and 2 cats in the house-if it hits the floor it only last 2 seconds before they get to it

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  24. Today's entry!

    iluvvanillacoke6(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  25. oh boy! we can't even try to do the 5 second rule over here! Our dog is on anything that is even headng toward the floor!

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  26. todays entry

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

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  27. With three active boys, we follow the five second rule, after that the food belongs to the dog.

    eddingsfamily@prodigy.net

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  28. I was on the porch with my brother and we were eating Halloween candy. I dropped one and picked it up in my "5 seconds rule" rush, and happened to put a rock in my mouth. O_Leo_5@hotmail.com

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  29. Our Five second rule is if it hits the floor and the dogs get in 5 seconds they can have it. ( giggles )

    waitressdani (AT) hotmail (dot) com

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  30. cdziuba@aol.com todays entry Feb 7

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  31. Today's entry.Jenprincess88 at aol dot com

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  32. HORTON111@AOL.COM

    MY RULE IS ... IT DEPENDS ON WHAT FALLS ON THE FLOOR

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  33. today's entry

    Christine
    dazed1821@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  34. Today's entry!

    iluvvanillacoke6(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  35. I don't eat what falls on the floor when anybody is looking. Thanks!

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  36. I was draining the water off spaghetti and the whole pot fell into the sink. I scooped it up and no one ever knew! I normally wouldn't do this, but I had just scrubbed my sinks with Clorox and felt they were clean.

    sueellison@hcecwildblue.com

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  37. todays entry

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  38. I do remember my mom using the 5 second rule when I dropped a slice of cheese on the floor. I ate the cheese and I'm still alive.

    I'm sorry but I can't reconcile using it unless of course it's raw. Then I'll wash and cook it. But to eat off my floors, no, not for me.

    bgcchs(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  39. Today's entry

    Thanks for the giveaway >^..^<

    bloggyig at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  40. today's entry

    Christine
    dazed1821@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  41. cdziuba@aol.com Feb 8 todays entry

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  42. We don't eat things that fall on the floor, but I do know about the 5 second rule. A little boy at Church dropped a doughnut in the kitchen area (everyone walking around) and before I could stop him, he ate it. I told him he shouldn't eat things that fall on the floor and he said "5 second rule".

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  43. Sorry, no 5 second rule in my household.

    teenytig@sbcglobal.net

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  44. HORTON111@AOL.COM

    WHAT IF YOU DROP A WRAPPED CANDY BAR ON THE FLOOR...THAT IS FOOD AND I CONSIDER IT OK TO PICK IT UP AND UNWRAP AND EAT

    ReplyDelete
  45. There is no 5 second rule at our house. We never eat anything that falls to the floor.
    nanoarta1 at gmail dot com

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  46. My boyfriend tries to use the 5 second rule on me, i wont let him!

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  47. Today's entry!
    iluvvanillacoke6(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  48. my mother in law taught me the 5 second rule.i just used this on my son yesterday when he dropped something.thanks
    amy16323(at)gmail(dot)com

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  49. Today's entry-jenprincess88 at aol dot com

    ReplyDelete
  50. todays entry

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  51. Nope, if it hits the ground it aint any good! Thanks for the chance. mogrill@comcast.net

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  52. cdziuba@aol.com Feb 9 todays entry

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  53. When I was a kid, I was a lot more lenient about the 5 second rule. Especially if it was candy that had fallen. I turned out fine, yet for some reason these days I'm more cautious. Thanks for the chance @ your contest! codisweepstakes2 (@) gmail.com

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  54. No five second rules here - especially with dogs in the house. trinitygsd at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  55. HORTON111@AOL.COM

    IT DEPENDS ON WHAT FALLS ON THE FALL AND HOW HUNGRY I AM

    ReplyDelete
  56. Today's entry!
    iluvvanillacoke6(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  57. It's not too funny...but we watched a kid pick up a chicken tender off the mall floor and then eat it. Yikes!

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  58. My son when little, used to drop his veggies on the floor. The veggies weren't on the plate five seconds before they hit the floor.

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  59. Todays entry-Jenprincess88 at aol dot com

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  60. My dh is from the Philippines, and he tells our kids that there it's a "5 minute rule". They think we should adopt that rule in our house, lol!

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  61. My husband is a firm believer in it, but believes that it extends longer based on how tasty the food is. So, cookies might have a 15-second rule.

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  62. Well we don't have 5 second rule stories because we are firm believers in the 8 second rule

    droopydog63@hotmail.com

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  63. There is no 5 second rule in my house, because our 65 lb dog tends to catch anything tasty before it even hits the ground!

    cookiert at yahoo

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  64. My husband, a firm believer in the 5 second rule, informed me last year that there have been several of my food items that he dropped and gave to me to eat anyways. Bleh!

    macd82 at gmail dot com

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  65. My 5 second rule is bread. If it doesn't land butter side down it's fair game for the 5 second rule.

    ReplyDelete
  66. Registration used to be extremely busy, once upon a time before computer registration was so popular, so the college I worked for would provide lunch because we were working long hours. The dean dropped a cookie and said, "FIVE SECOND RULE" really loudly and picked it up. I have heard of it since, but had never heard of it unitl then, and I remember being so mortified because there were tons of us in that line with who knows what on our shoes that touched that floor where the cookie fell. ewwwwwww I love my old boss, but the story still mortifies me.

    msurosey@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  67. I grew up with the 5 second rule. The way I see it is "I never heard of anyone dying from eating something off the floor! Come to think of it, it probably strengthens your immune system."

    I have to laugh because my 4 yr old son is always grabbing stuff saying "5 second rule... and blows the item off" [as if that magically removes all germs.]
    ... I wonder what they think at school?


    lockwoodmerrie@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  68. today's entry.

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  69. Today's entry

    Thanks for the giveaway >^..^<

    bloggyig at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  70. A couple of weeks ago, my husband was grilling steaks and as he put one on, it fell to the ground. The look on his face was priceless. I was tempted to pick it up and eat it, but he wouldn't let me.

    luckycat1818(at)yahoo(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  71. Today's entry

    Christine
    dazed1821@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  72. At my house it wouldnt last 5 seconds on the floor! My two dogs are always waiting at your feet to snatch up whatever may fall!
    lil.blessing at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  73. With 3 cats and a dog in the house, the 5 second rule doesn't really apply!

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  74. With my 3 year old its off the floor within 2 sec she LOVES food

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  75. I am in the same boat as a couple of people that have posted. I don't have a 5 second rule. I have a few pets and anything that falls on the floor for even a second is too dirty to eat in my opinion. I hope I can still enter the contest anyhow.

    ReplyDelete
  76. I never did the 5 second rule, makes no sense to me, but as a kid, i remember that if something fell on the floor, once you blew on it, we thought it was as good as new again!

    ReplyDelete
  77. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  78. Thanks for the giveaway... With our first child, if it (i.e. food, bottle, etc.) touched the floor it was tossed in the trash; with our second child, well, a quick wipe on the sleeve or a rinse under the faucet was good enough !!!

    senorpiero [at] yahoo [dot] com

    ReplyDelete
  79. todays entry feb 10 cdziuba@aol.com

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  80. If I drop something in the floor, the dogs usually have it in less than 2 seconds... If it lasts longer than 5 seconds (about as long as it takes for me to bend down and pick it up), it usually goes in the trash can

    dispatcher_kristy@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  81. We have 2 cats and I really try keeping up with vacuuming and moping. My grandson came over one day and I try to really watch him close while he is eating. Well one day he was eating a sucker and he was doing his little happy dance since I gave him the sucker and he dropped it. His faced dropped as fast as the sucker I think LOL. But before I could grab it to wash it he grabbed and ran off with it. About a minute or 2 later he came back into the kitchen hacking like he had a hair ball LOL. And he was glad to give the sucker to me to wash for him. Now I dont have to watch him if it drops he says Mee Maw its got hair wash it.

    sallstun
    at
    hotmail
    dot
    com

    ReplyDelete
  82. if it falls on the floor it goes in the trash.

    ReplyDelete
  83. i tought my kids the 5 second rule my my mother in law.thanks
    amy16323(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  84. I don't believe in the 5 second rule.
    My mother is super-unsanitary - she licks off the knife between cutting pieces of cake and licks off the ice cream scoop in between scoops - so once I grew up, I went the opposite way. If it falls off the cooling rack 1" onto the counter, it goes out to the birds.

    ReplyDelete
  85. HORTON111@AOL.COM

    IT ALL DEPENDS ON WHAT IS DROPPED AND HOW HUNGRY I AM

    ReplyDelete
  86. The 5 second rule wouldn't work here as we have 4 dogs that get to the food before we would every have a chance.

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  87. My funniest 5 second rule moment was when I dropped some food and my cat ran to gobble it up.

    lilyk@mail2world.com

    ReplyDelete
  88. The other day, I was getting all my daughters pills together before breakfast. I dropped a omega 3 pill and scooped it up after half a second. She saw this happen, and refused to take either of those pills. I had to get new ones! lol

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  89. we support the 10 sec rule here :)

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  90. Thanks for the great contest!
    bahjeep@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  91. If you knew me you wouldn't believe I did this, but I did. I dropped a healthy chicken hotdog on the dogfood container and then it bounced onto the bags I save for stuff and I washed it off and ate it! I NEVER do this stuff but with the cost of stuff these days I am starting to!

    ReplyDelete
  92. no 5 second rule in my house if we wanted one i have 3 dogs running around and it would be gone in 2 seconds they are little scavengers..lol

    ReplyDelete
  93. I don't believe in the 5 second rule but our doggies believe in it, in fact they are trying to break it when anything hits the floor. It's not funny but the restaurant I used to work at had a very lomg 5 second rule about food hitting the floor. garrettsambo@aol.com

    ReplyDelete
  94. If I drop an aspirin or other pill, the 5 second rule applies, unless it drops in the sink and starts to dissolve. Yuck.
    ncschools at yahoo dot com

    ReplyDelete
  95. When my children were younger we had dogs and food never got to hit the floor. There was always a dog ready to grab it in mid air. The children and the dogs are no longer at home but my cat makes sure she investigates everything that hits the floor so there's no 5 second rule here.

    ReplyDelete
  96. We believe in the 5 second rule and even the 10 SECOND RULE if it's chocolate!!!! :)

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  97. Dropped a fresh baked cookie on the floor and promptly picked it up and ate it :)

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  98. thanks for this great contest count me in
    fancyfeet45@earthlink.net

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  99. This is more mortifying than funny......... The Thanksgiving turkey, it was many years ago and the guests were arriving.

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  100. I dropped a piece of chocolate on the floor 2 nights ago that qualified for the 5 second rule and went to grab it when my 16 month old beat me to it!

    ReplyDelete
  101. today's entry!

    jennifercausby at hotmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  102. If no one's around, I just pick it up and eat it.

    ReplyDelete