This Website Answers All Your Burning ‘Can I Microwave This?’ Questions

AndreyPopov/iStock via Getty Images
AndreyPopov/iStock via Getty Images

Microwaves are modern-day magical beasts that indulge our expectations of instant gratification and rescue children who forgot to take the chicken out of the freezer from the wrath of the parents who told them to do so. However, if you try to nuke the wrong thing, your microwave just might breathe fire.

To answer all your definitely not dumb questions about what the “wrong thing” to microwave actually is, there’s a website called Can You Microwave?. It covers everything from clothes (surprisingly, yes, with a few caveats) to cookie dough (sadly, no), and each entry contains an explanation of why it does or doesn’t belong in a microwave. If the item is safe, the site also provides directions on how best to microwave it.

As Lifehacker reports, the site is organized by category—“Cheese N Stuff,” “Materials,” “Breakfast,” and “Meat,” among others—if you’re interested in exploring, but you can also search for your item in the search bar if you have something specific in mind. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Submit your question on the contact page and wait for an email response.

By including such thorough answers, the site debunks some common myths that may be impacting how you usually use your microwave. For example, though plastic Ziploc containers seem like they should be kept far away from your microwave, they’re actually fine in there. As Can You Microwave? explains, people often think plastic shouldn’t be heated because it contains toxic chemicals called dioxins—but Ziploc doesn’t even manufacture any products with dioxins.

And questions that may sound a little off-the-wall to begin with, like “Can I microwave wine?” often turn out to make perfect sense. The person had refrigerated red wine to preserve it and then had forgotten to let it warm to room temperature before a dinner party. Interestingly enough, the answer was “Yes,” and even pointed to an old New York Times article claiming that sommeliers often use the microwave trick (though they might not admit it).

To learn even more about your microwave, here are 25 things you didn’t know it could do.

[h/t Lifehacker]

10 Simple Tricks for Charging Your Smartphone Faster

Makidotvn, iStock via Getty Images
Makidotvn, iStock via Getty Images

Smartphones always seem to reach low power at the least convenient moments possible. If you've ever urged your device to charge faster in the minutes before a phone interview or when you're about to board a plane, you can relate. While the easiest way to avoid this scenario is to plug in your device before the battery dips into the danger zone, if you've already reached this point, there are simple ways to speed up the charging process.

Some hacks for charging a phone faster involve steps you can take in anticipation of the next time you're surviving on minimum energy. Certain gadgets, like special chargers and battery packs, will power-up your device more efficiently than others. For moments when your phone is dying and all you have is your regular charging cable, adjusting your phone's settings to minimize the power it consumes also works in a pinch.

You can find some specific ways to charge your phone quickly below: 

  1. Plug it into a wall outlet instead of a USB port.
  1. Use a portable battery pack.
  1. Buy a special "fast" phone charger.
  1. Switch to low power mode.
  1. Switch to airplane mode.
  1. Let your phone drain completely on its own once a month to the extend the battery life.
  1. Close any background apps.
  1. Stop automatic app updates.
  1. Don't check your phone while it's charging
  1. Keep your phone out of the heat.

For more tricks for making your phone usage more efficient, check out these tips for typing faster.

The 20 Best States for Singles

monkeybusinessimages, iStock via Getty Images
monkeybusinessimages, iStock via Getty Images

Being single on Valentine's Day means you don't have to worry about cards, gifts, or date ideas. But if you'd like to do something romantic on February 14, your chances of snagging a date in time may depend on where you live. WalletHub crunched the numbers to create a definitive list of the best states to be single and looking for love in America.

To come up with its rankings, the personal finance site analyzed numerous data points for each state, including the proportion of single adults, nightlife and entertainment opportunities, and economic factors like cost of living. Combined, these qualities paint of picture of where you're most likely to find, afford, and enjoy a date.

Florida secured the number one position with a total score of 69.21 out of 100. Though it comes in 33rd out of the 50 states for economics, it places third for dating opportunities and fourth for romance and fun, earning it the top slot. It's followed by California with a score of 67.41 and Texas with 66.77. You can check out the top 20 states below, and see how all 50 states ranked at WalletHub.

  1. Florida // 69.21
  1. California // 67.41
  1. Texas // 66.77
  1. New York // 65.29
  1. Pennsylvania // 64.61
  1. Ohio // 63.10
  1. Illinois // 62.61
  1. Wisconsin // 61.13
  1. Massachusetts // 59.11
  1. Michigan // 58.56
  1. Arizona // 57.22
  1. New Jersey // 56.71
  1. Georgia // 56.11
  1. Colorado // 56.01
  1. North Carolina // 55.58
  1. Minnesota // 55.42
  1. Virginia // 54.98
  1. Washington // 54.76
  1. Missouri // 54.29
  1. Nevada // 53.64

The world uses Valentine's Day to celebrate romance, but you can take it as an opportunity to embrace singledom in 2020. If that's your plan, here are some vintage tips for living alone to keep in mind.