I Just Learned Why Lemons Look So Juicy On TV, And Frankly I Feel Betrayed

Everything I thought I knew was a lie.
Senko Nelly via Getty Images

We’ve written before at HuffPost UK about how forecasters know where to point on green screens when announcing the weather.

We’ve even shared how actors manage to look so, well, dead while playing corpses; so you’d think we’d be pretty familiar with Hollywood magic by now.

But it never even occurred to me ― until now, at least ― to ask how lemons on TV look so darn juicy.

It took a TikTok from director and filmmaker David Ma, who shoots commercials and movies alike, to realise that what I’d been seeing on-screen had been a scam all along.


He started his video with a syringe, injecting water into a plump slice of lemon.

“This is the trick to getting the perfect squeeze,” he captioned his video, revealing a slow-mo shot of the artificially juiced-up citrus splashing its droplets of lies over some broccoli.

I knew stars tended to use more injectables than we think, but I wasn’t aware the procedure extended to their dinner.

Other sneaky food-filming tricks include placing a water-soaked, microwaved tampon behind a bowl of food to create the illusion of a steaming meal and using acrylic ice cubes (which don’t melt) for cold drink campaigns.

Meanwhile, most on-screen “ice cream” is basically a form of buttercream made from vegetable shortening, corn syrup, and icing sugar.

Oh, and that “frost” on the glass of beer in adverts? Yeah, that’s more than likely aerosol deodorant sprayed onto the container to give the illusion of cold condensation.

Don’t even get me started on poultry in adverts, which is usually so raw it’s bloody on the inside (!!) and brushed with dish soap to get that perfect glisten.

People had *thoughts* in the comments

“Here I’ve been thinking I had all dry lemons for the last 10 years,” one commenter wrote.

“Not lemon filler...” another commented.

“I thought those gains were natural,” yet another TikTok user joked about the falsely turgid segment.

Looks like Hollywood’s not above setting unrealistic beauty standards for fruit, too...


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