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The LMNOP Grammar Challenge

It all started when I was taking a shower a couple of weeks back and noticed something unsettling on the front of my bottle of Finesse.

"Ew," I thought, looking at the bottom of the bottle.  "Does that say 'for softer, MORE SHINY hair?  Abominable."  I looked a little further.

"Come to think of it, the wording at the top is really awkward, too.  Why would you say 'New! Fragrance and Formula' instead of 'New Fragrance and Formula?'  You don't say, 'I'm! Using Finesse right now.'"

After a couple more seconds of tsk-tsking at some anonymous Unilever employee's horrendo copywriting skills, I turned the bottle over and had. a. heart. attack.  The writing on the back reads only slightly better than a booklet of  Japanese-to-English VCR-setup instructions.

Have a look for yourself (click for bigger image), and see if you can come up with explanations for all 11 (ELEVEN!) grammar, usage and style errors on the back of this one poor bottle.  I will post the answers tomorrow. 

Bonus points for anyone who picks up on any new errors that I missed.

So, without further ado, here is the first-ever LMNOP Grammar Challenge for you to ruminate over:


Commence cringing.


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Who! Gives a shit?


What's wrong with "more soft" or "more evident"? You could have "softer" instead of "more soft" but "more evident" is grammatical. In fact all of this seems like completely normal idiomatic English.


Jesus. I thought I was a grammar Nazi.


"More soft" is completely ungrammatical. "More evident" is the right form of the comparative, but in this case the superlative is called for--it should say "most evident."

More answers here:


I'm! Convinced that in most cases, two-syllable adjectives are allowed to take either the morphological ("-er") *or* the syntactic ("more") path to comparativeness: "more quiet" vs. "quieter", "more greasy" vs. "greasier", "more stable" vs. "stabler". Not always true ("gianter" sounds wrong, as does "foolisher", to pick a couple words I thought of randomly), but it often is. I'd say it's true in the case of "shiny".

I just stumbled upon this, and I have to say - that is a pretty darn horrible bit of English, there. But don't go adding valid, nonawkward constructions to the list, when there are so many truly bad phrases already there.


Thanks for the comment, Neminem. That's an interesting argument. I don't necessarily agree with you, but I do think it's good to debate the rules of the language and question why things are deemed correct or incorrect. However, in this case I think "shinier" is better even if you think "more shiny" is a valid construction, because saying "for softer, more shiny hair" is basically going out of your way to avoid parallel structure. "For softer, shinier hair" sounds a lot better.


"Evident" does not take a comparative or a superlative. Something is ether evident or it's hidden. Theree's no such ting as something being MORE evident; it's either evident, or it's not.


I don't see what's wrong with saying that something is more evident than something else. We can have degrees of obviousness.

There's nothing wrong with "more soft" or "more evident". This is how we make the comparative forms of adjectives.


Dave is righter than the previous commenter.

(See how somethings DON'T take comparative, dave?)


No. I can be more right than you, or I can be less right than you.



I'm surprised the misuse of "everyday" was left unmarked!


FYI, there are only 10 mistakes listed. You skipped from number 5 to number 7.
Other than that, I love it!


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It's promotional methods, fancy wording and stuff like that attract regular customers. It's not supposed to be grammatically correct genius. Shinier looks weirder than more shiny as well..


It's the 'regular' people we can do without. I saw someone spell throwing, throughing. How stupid are people these days?

And people who use the word init -instead of isn't it- don't even use it properly. I overheard some inbreed saying
"We're coming upto Bexhill, init"


God, it pisses me off.

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