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10 Completely Useless Items People Should Stop Buying

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Joanne Poh

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If you’re going to spend all your hard-earned cash on something, at least make sure it’s not completely useless. Don’t get suckered by clever marketing and surrender all your money for ridiculously priced items that just aren’t practical.

Here are 10 items that have either outlived their function or have none. One wonders why they even exist.

 

1. Compact digital cameras

Once upon a time, these little devices were an amateur photographer’s favourite way to take a few holiday snaps. These days, however, many smartphone cameras take even better photos than your typical consumer-grade compact camera. It would make more sense spending that $200 or $300 upgrading your smartphone than buying one of these dinosaurs.

Smartphone cameras today boast rear cameras that are 12 to 24 megapixels and front cameras that are 7 to 8 megapixels. One of the more impressive smartphone cameras out there in the market is the Huawei P20, which boasts Leica Triple Camera technology. It can even shoot 4K video at 30 frames per second, and also has a night mode for low light shooting.

Popular digicam models often pale in comparison with such specs, cost almost as much, and you can’t even make a call with them.

 

2. Cat bed

In case you haven't realised by now, the WORLD is a cat's bed. (Source)
In case you haven’t realised by now, the WORLD is a cat’s bed. (Source)

Not once have I seen a cat actually using their bed. Sure, it might look cute and all, and give your home the appearance of one of those cat cafes. But if you spend anywhere between $30 and $250 purchasing one of these, know full well that you’re still going to wake up with the cat sitting on your face.

 

3. Baby toys

Like cat beds, baby toys (especially soft toys) constitute another category of useless things. If you are a parent, don’t go out and buy toys because you will likely receive tons from well-meaning relatives and friends. Also, babies are almost always more interested in everyday normal things than colourful unimaginative toys.

If you’re not a parent, there are better things to buy than toys for your cute newborn niece/nephew/friend’s baby. Books and clothes are much more practical. But don’t take it from us. Read this mummy’s account of how she doesn’t want people to spoil her kids with toys.

 

4. Non-universal adaptors

Unless you plan to only go to one region of the world on all your holidays for the rest of your life, buying a non-universal adaptor is like buying a toothbrush that can only brush molars. Unless you plan to only ever travel to Australia, New Zealand, China and Argentina, get a universal adaptor that you can use elsewhere instead of a Type 1 adaptor that limits you to these places.

 

5. GPS

Halp. (Source)
Halp. (Source)

There is really no need to buy a standalone GPS set unless you’re planning to drive your car to Malaysia and beyond or are a taxi driver. Heck, even our regular Grab and taxi drivers use their smartphones as GPS. If apps like Google Maps and Waze are good enough for people who use them as tools of their trade, it should suffice for those isolated incidents when you lose your way on Singapore roads.

The only benefit to GPS is that they can work without data, so if you find that you are someone who’s constantly busting your data limits, you might want to get a GPS a better data plan.

 

6. Bag hooks

Once all the rage, these hooks perch on the edge of tables at restaurants and cafes for the sole purpose of letting women hang their handbags on them. So much for simply placing the bag on a chair or on one’s lap. Thanks to these hooks, the handbags get to dangle silently from the edge of the table.

7. Egg cooker

(Source)
(Source)

These little contraptions are often seen at hotel buffets. Arrange your eggs in a neat little circle, press the button, close the lid and before you know it, they’re boiled to perfection. Except that it takes just a few seconds to dump a couple of eggs into a pot and put them on the stove, and even those with the most rudimentary cooking skills can boil eggs successfully.

 

8. Juice detox packs

We’re not sure if juice detoxing is still a fad, but they’re still selling overpriced juice detox packs in Singapore – for as much as $68 for 8 teeny weeny bottles (that’s $8.5 for one!). Granted, these expensive-as-hell juices are made by chi-chi cold press technologies, but instead of drinking some hideously overpriced kale, lettuce and banana combination, go to the supermarket and load up your cart with fruit and vegetables. Same thing minus the price tag and stupidity, right?


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9. Toilet seat cover

True story: I once went to the home of a friend, only to discover in horror that the toilet seat was covered in a rather bouncy toilet seat cover draped in floral fabric. That can’t be hygienic, right? I don’t know about you, but I’d rather let not let any part of my body touch fabric that’s been sitting there soaking up all the droplets and backsplash of the last 50 people who were there.

 

10. Travel souvenirs

Yes, souvenirs always seem like a good idea when you have spent that money and travelled all that distance. There could be a case for buying practical souvenirs like T-shirts if you know you will wear them. But please don’t bring back any more of those key rings, mini koalas that no one knows where to display and whatever else is currently on-trend in the souvenir industry. They just get tossed or end up as clutter.

Besides, these days, people travel so often that it’s no longer rare; so, save your effort and take more pictures and videos instead. They’re keepsakes that actually matter and last.


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Do you own any of the above items? Tell us in the comments!

 

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Header Image Credits: Ted Eytan via Flickr

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Joanne Poh

In my previous life, I was a property lawyer who spent most of my time struggling to get out of bed or stuck in peak hour traffic. These days, as a freelance commercial writer, I work in bed, on the beach, in parks and at cafes, all while being really frugal. I like helping other people save money so they can stop living lives they don't like.

  • Bernard

    My oh my….U think a smart phone camera can replace a compact camera? It may be true in the near future but to make this bold statement at this point in time shows your lack of knowledge and maybe laziness in even asking an avid amateur or a pro photog(which Singapore has plenty). I could name u many features or functions a smartphone could NEVER do right now over a decent compact camera! Bulb mode, manual mode, decent low light abilities, decent lenses for sharpness, decent zoom with details, decent flash… just to give u a few. Do a little research please!

  • Benny

    This article is quite a waste of bandwidth and time.