Is this really the greatest product design of all time?

There are some gems of product design that just tick all the boxes. They look sharp and iconic, they do what they were designed to do, and do it well, and they make life easier. And sometimes those qualities are found in the most mundane of objects. Like an ice cream scoop.

The Zeroll Ice Cream Dipper was invented and patented in 1933, and descendants of the product still exist today. Someone's posted it to Reddit's r/DesignPorn community, and people are gushing with praise (see our guide to how to sell design online if you have a perfect product of your own to promote).

According to the Zeroll website, Sherman L. Kelly designed the original Ice Cream Dipper in 1933 after noticing that a woman dipping ice cream has blisters on her hand. "He thought to himself, there must be a better way to serve ice cream," says The Legacy Companies, which now owns the Zeroll brand.

Kelly's solution is a cast aluminium scoop with fluid inside the handle. It was designed to transfer heat from the user’s hand, warming the fluid and thus defrosting the dipper. Apparently, one of its big selling points during the Great Depression was that as well as being practical, it could get more servings per gallon than other scoops because it rolls the ice cream into a ball instead of squeezing it.

Today, the brand has a range of scoops, but many retain the look of the original, which is listed in the permanent inventory of New York's Museum of Modern Art. "It's so beautiful. I can see the peels of ice cream curling off the lip of the scoop in my mind's eye, Panda_Mon commented. "I can taste those ice cream peels in my mind's eye's tongue," MemeExpert responded. "If you ever wonder if aliens exist, this is proof a benevolent species came down and gave us 'one perfect thing'," someone else suggests.

This combination of sharp aesthetics, function and usability just go to show, that get a design right and people can appreciate it for generations. The opposite can be said of the many product design fails that frustrate us all.

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Joseph Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news and features, updates buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment for creatives, from monitors to accessories and office supplies. A writer and translator, he also works as a project manager at London and Buenos Aires-based design, production and branding agency Hermana Creatives, where he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing photography, video content, graphic design and collaterals for the hospitality sector. He enjoys photography, particularly nature photography, wellness and he dances Argentine tango.