Thursday Throwback: Handheld Kissing Screen

Today we’re going way back to 1920 for a gadget that will make you go, “Huh?,” but I assure you that this thing really existed. I have no idea why the inventor thought that it would actually catch on, or how long he was allowed to use it before his wife slapped some sense into him, but regardless, someone somewhere was using it at one point in time.

The 1920s was a period for roaring, as they say, and with roaring comes lots and lots of kissing. Kissing? Yuck. So many germs being passed back and forth, and heaven forbid if you should touch tongues. That’s like a death sentence right there, man. You’re just asking for trouble. You know what you need? Some antiseptic and a screen.

The handheld kissing screen was a device that you were supposed to put to the lips of your lover, girlfriend, or escort, before you kissed her. The thought was that because the human mouth contained so many germs, this thing would prevent them from spreading. The little guy had a small screen that was dipped in some germ-killing slosh, preventing you from worrying about where those lips had been before. How romantic.

I’m not sure how long it lasted for, or even how many people used it, but thank Cthulhu the handheld kissing screen never evolved into something we still use today. I can see the commercial for it now:

GUY #1: You kiss your mother with that mouth?

GUY #2: Holding up kissing screen, “You betcha!”