We stand with Ukraine and our team members from Ukraine.

The Community Of Over 640,000

Home ›› Design ›› Oversoaped in Los Angeles #wtfUX

Oversoaped in Los Angeles #wtfUX

by Josh Tyson
1 min read
Share this post on


A confusing real-life interface at Los Angeles International Airport leaves an interaction designer with too much soap on his hands.

Bad design decisions don’t just effect our experiences with digital products. There are plenty of poorly conceived products in the world of flesh and blood and brick and mortar waiting to derail your flow.

A sink in the men’s restroom at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) recently reminded Kane Albarron of this. The Interaction Design Lead at Fjord in New York City got more soap than he anticipated thanks to a confusing real-life interface.

“At first glance, it appears as if you have two options for dispensing water: by sensor or by push button, as indicated on the labels,” Albarron says. “What is actually happening here is that the push dispenses soap, and the sensor dispenses water. To further complicate things, soap pumps are also available above the sink.

LAX bathroom wtfUX

“I thought this was interesting, seeing as how someone actually spent time and money making little plaques that indicate the action instead of the contents. It was a real WTF moment for me when I went to rinse off my soap with more soap.”


Keep these coming. Send them to us via Twitter or Facebook using the hastag #wtfUX or email them to: [email protected] with “#wtfUX” in the subject line. Include as much context as you can, so we get a full understanding of what the f%*k went wrong.

post authorJosh Tyson

Josh Tyson, Contributing Editor Josh Tyson is a Denver-based content specialist focused on UX, AI, and conversational design. He is the co-host of N9K, a podcast from the future, and stays balanced by drawing on the powers of family, skateboarding, yoga, and art.


Related Articles

Becoming good when you’re interested in everything

Mastery for Generalists
  • Generalists are people who love variety, connecting the dots, and curious. In contrast, specialists usually focus and go deeper on a certain practice.
  • In his article, the author identifies how to grow in your craft in a generalist role.
  • The author gives advice on how to become a better generalist:
    • Be an expert at learning
    • Understand every role
    • Build connective skills
Share:Mastery for Generalists
5 min read
To Keep a User, Sometimes You Have to Let Them Go
  • Assuming every problem is product-related drives a product-centric approach to fixing them but problems are more complex than simple fixes to content or features.
  • The author uncovers 2 ideas:
    • Not all cancels are created equal
    • Think: User-centered retention
Share:To Keep a User, Sometimes You Have to Let Them Go
6 min read
To Keep a User, Sometimes You Have to Let Them Go

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Check our privacy policy and