The world is full of cons, scams and just plain crappy products. Many of these products are designed to prey on the vulnerable and uneducated, touted by websites filled with fantastic claims and promises that don’t quite add up. Some of these products, however, are so outlandish (and often hilarious) that perhaps the most unbelievable thing about them is that anybody is stupid enough to buy them in the first place.
10. Premium Bottled Water
The website “Fine Waters”, which presents itself as some kind of bizarre water-tasting authority, begins with the sentence “Water Is Not Water”, and somehow manages to go downhill from there. For the obscenely wealthy with far too much time and far too little common sense, “gourmet” bottled water can be purchased from all sorts of exotic locations all around the world, from the glaciers of Iceland to rainwater from Tasmania, Australia. You too can purchase the luxury item known as “water”, transported from ridiculously remote locations in unnecessarily extravagant packaging, for the very reasonable price of up to $40 a bottle, plus your basic human dignity.
Hey, at people aren’t paying for something as stupid as air, right?
9. Canned Oxygen
Never before has it been so easy to prove to the world just how easily parted from your money you really are. The “creators” claim that, by breathing in the oxygen, better sporting performance can be obtained thanks to the increase in alertness and overall virility granted by the unique formula of…well, oxygen.
8. Balance Bands
$40 plastic wrist bands with inset holograms, which claim to improve your balance. Along with your intelligence and mental clarity. They also offer “improved healing”, a stronger immune system, better circulation and a sounder, quicker sleep. Oh, and it promises to delay your aging. We couldn’t make this stuff up.
Just for the sake of our continuing sanity, we like to believe they were actually designed as brilliant and convenient visual aids, to help distinguish morons from the general population.
7. Crystal Music Healing
This is specially-composed music, purportedly containing “encoded harmonic templates that activate and heal the deep and subtle levels of the human bio-energy matrix packaged in the form of beautiful classical music.” We guess the lesson here is, if you throw enough scientific and technical jargon into a single sentence, somebody is bound to go ahead and buy the hell out of your product. Even at $15 a CD.
Bonus scam-points for the following bold assertion: “Science has demonstrated that all matter is held together at the sub-atomic level by strings of energy. This is known as the ‘string theory’. It is not a theory, however. It is a universal truth.” Move over quantum physicists, because the guys at Crystal Music Healing know this “theory” is the truth. And they have magic crystal music to prove it.
6. Xtreme Fuel Treatment
Fuel which “lowers ignition point of fuel by… about 400 degrees”. Perfect for (hopefully) reinforcing the laws of natural selection: were this claim true, it would result in an ignition point of treated petrol at around room temperature (not desirable when you’re standing right next to it at room temperature, pouring dubious “fuel treatment” into your tank of combustible liquid).
Editor’s Note: Believe it or not, after this top 10 list was published, the manufacturers of Xtreme Fuel Treatment wrote TopTenz to defend their product. In an effort to give fair time, here is their response to our commentary on their product.
Please note that the reference the author uses from Syntek Global’s website is regarding diesel fuel, not gasoline as the author mistakenly assumes. Further, we would like to provide an explanation of the science behind our fuel additive, Xtreme Fuel Treatment, for those that may be interested.
By modifying the burn rate of an existing fuel, many ancillary improvements can and will manifest themselves as a result of unintended consequences. For example, the active ingredient component contained in the XFT fuel catalyst is used as anti-knock agent, safer than tetraethyl lead, which was previously used as an anti-knock agent in lighter aromatic fuels (gasoline). Scientific studies show that the active ingredient, in the XFT fuel catalyst, reduces combustion ignition delay, which in turn reduces engine combustion temperature and knock in lower octane/cetane higher BTU fuels. Further, by reducing ignition delay, soot production, high delay reactant combustion temperatures and harmful emissions levels are significantly reduced with a corresponding increase in engine and fuel usage performance. Finally, as a burn rate modifier, the XFT fuel catalyst helps to remove existing carbon formation on internal and ancillary combustion related components, which in turn helps to further improve engine and related fuel consumption performance.
5. HD Vision Wrap-Around Sunglasses
This is the perfect product for when reality just isn’t realistic enough. These sunglasses supposedly offer up better clarity and color in your everyday life, just like an HD TV. To be specific, they promise to “make the world come alive in brilliant, defined colour like never before! Crystal clear images so rich and vivid, you won’t believe your eyes!”
Wait one second, a product which “enhances colours” and makes us question what we see with our very eyes? This whole pitch is starting to sound suspiciously like a drug deal. We think we’ll just wait for the Blu-ray glasses.
Introducing the BioDisc, a glass disk which, at $560, had better produce some astonishing claims. Don’t worry though, it delivers: this device supposedly generates a “catalytic conversion of energy” which extends shelf life of meat and vegetables, improves taste, maximises body energy, enhances the immune system, calms and balances, assists in pain relief, rejuvenates cells, cures autism and increases the “drinking water energy level” (your guess is as good as ours) of any liquid poured over the disc. Man, who needs stinky ol’ medicine when you have a solid glass disc?
3. Water Activation Filter
This website claims that, “as we age, our body’s ability to convert water into the necessary single-file alignment dramatically decreases. Our body’s hydration becomes increasingly compromised.”
The website helps clarify what they mean with a useful diagram, and fortunately for this list it is exactly as ridiculous as it sounds: according to the makers, water molecules need to be lined up in a damned conga line in order to properly hydrate our bodies. Perhaps making the molecules dance helps with that whole “drinking water energy level” thing?
2. Wattgate 381 Audio Grade Duplex Receptacle Outlet
A receptacle outlet which supposedly improves the quality of sound of devices powered by it. To be clear, the receptacle outlet is the thing electrical cords plug into. Boasting 24k gold plating and “cryogenic heat-treated hardened contacts”, this device is perfect for facilitating the unhindered flow of electrons, thus achieving…better sound? More constant electricity? Happier electrons? Damned if we know.
1. Magnet Slimming Patch
This tiny magnetic patch sits in the user’s bellybutton (apparently the location of the body’s thinnest “belly-wall”) and “produces magnetic waves, which can pass through the skin 8-12cm in depth and do the meridian massage“. What precisely a meridian message consists of remains a rather ominous mystery to us, but supposedly the product is “applicable to simple obesity, puffiness or caused obesity by obesity and other irregular people.” Never mind the god-awful grammar there for a second; what the Hell are other irregular people?
We’d be lying if we said we weren’t intrigued.
Written By Hamish MacDonald