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21 Fascinating Images of Everyday Objects Under a Microscope

Even the simplest objects can be incredibly complex.

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We all most likely come into contact with these basic objects every day, but most of us have probably never seen them up close and personal. Under a microscope, even the plainest items prove to be unbelievably complicated. You have never seen these everyday objects quite like this before. See if you can identify everyday objects by these close up pictures.

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Rose Petal

Can you believe these tiny glands make such a beautiful flower? On the other end of the spectrum, see what famous landmarks look like zoomed out.

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Margarita salt

These minuscule pieces of salt look like massive boulders up close. Pay attention to those tiny crystals on the rim of your next margarita. See these other facts about salt that you never knew.

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Butterfly scales

These scales appear almost like feathers, or maybe even a woven basket. Think about the fragility of a butterfly’s wing and imagine this interlaced texture. Looks fake, right? Check out these other photos of nature that look fake but aren’t.

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Pencil tip

This intricate tip bleeds graphite onto paper for us to see. Can you look closely and tell what’s wrong with these pictures? 

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Human hair

Our fine hairs look like tree trunks when zoomed in. You probably never got to look at your own hair under a microscope in school, just like you probably never learned these fun science facts.

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Nothing like feeling the softness of cashmere on a chilly day. These fibers look similar to human hair close up. Take a look at these tips to spot a well-made piece of clothing.

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Tomato leaf

The leaf that is normally discarded when slicing a tomato is actually composed of a stunning and elaborate design. It seems like a mystery—see these other science mysteries no one has figured out.

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Ball point pen tip

The ink almost looks like a gentle watercolor painting, but if you’ve ever had a pen explode on you, you know that the ink is incredibly dense. Speaking of watercolor, take a look at these hidden messages in world-famous paintings.

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Pickled cucumber

This one truly just looks like a pickle.

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Dust bunny

Those pesky dust bunnies that we are quick to sweep up and throw away are truly beautiful like a modern art painting you may see on someone’s living room wall. They almost look like an optical illusion. Don’t miss these other optical illusions that will make your brain hurt.

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Torn paper

This is what gives you that annoying papercut.

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Brown sugar

Brown sugar appears similar to the photo of salt close up, except for the brownish tint of the cubes.

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Watch part

This tiny screw that is always a challenge to grab with fingers looks like a gear straight out of a large factory. It’s unbelievable how something so tiny can be so complicated. See these baffling unsolved mysteries of the universe.

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Toothbrush bristles

The tiny bristles of a toothbrush look pretty tall and mighty here.

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Needle and thread

It looks so easy to slip the thread through the hole in the needle up close, but anyone who has tried sewing knows that it’s the most challenging task.

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Dental floss

Dental floss up close looks surprisingly flat for something so fine. Check out these optical illusions that aren’t at all what they seem.

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Coloured SEM of computer chip
Gregory S. Paulson/Getty Images

Computer chip

This gadget looks as expected, but it still serves as a reminder of how many moving parts there are when it comes to technology.

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Jewelry chain

This perfectly linked chain makes for a stylish accessory.

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Grooves on a vinyl record

It’s amazing to think that something so simple can make music.

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Fish scale

Fish scales look like human fingerprints up close. It’s hard to explain just like these other ocean mysteries.

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These hard and crunchy snacks that seem as if they could break your teeth are made up of tiny bubbles and grooves. Next, zoom out instead of zooming in.

Emma Taubenfeld
Emma Taubenfeld is a former assistant editor for Reader’s Digest who writes about digital lifestyle topics such as memes, social media captions, pickup lines and cute pets. When she’s not working, you can find Emma reading corny young adult novels, creating carefully curated playlists and figuring out how to spice up boxed mac and cheese.