The Most Pointless Items Money Can Buy, From Pool Noodle Knives to Banana Slicers


Oct. 30 2023, Published 4:26 p.m. ET

pool noodle knife, garlic press, dryer sheets
Source: Lava_girllll/Reddit, Amazon, Amazon

Plenty of items are sold that people don't really need.

Step inside some brick-and-mortar retailers or simply open up your web browser and you'll be inundated with the millions of products that promise to make your life easier or more fulfilling. It's truly shocking how many pointless household items have made their way into the marketplace.

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We've got a collection of some of the silliest kitchen gadgets and other products for sale. Let's hope this inspires us all to make do with old items that we already have instead of shopping.

Salad spinner

red and white salad spinner
Source: Getty Images

A salad spinner is meant to spin your salad greens dry, but how necessary is an entire extra bowl, colander, and lid for this? You can also use a regular bowl and a clean kitchen towel for the same effect.

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Banana slicer

One of the household items that absolutely no one should ever require is the banana slicer. Bananas are already pretty easy to peel and a knife isn't necessary. Although the manufacturer markets this as multi-functional (slicing other foods like ham or tofu), it seems like a big waste unless you're slicing bananas in bulk each day.

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Pool noodle knife

Someone took to Reddit to wonder why someone might need a knife intended just for cutting a pool noodle. People commented that the plastic serrated knives are good for teaching kids knife skills safely, but it's odd to sell just for cutting pool noodles.

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Label maker

Unless you're really into labeling every little thing around your house, you can probably forget about a label maker.

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Mops with disposable mop pads

purple Swiffer mop
Source: Getty Images

Of course, mops like the Swiffer aren't technically "pointless" if you need to mop the floor, but there are mops with reusable and/or washable mop pads. Try to avoid the excess waste of mops that require constant throwaway mop pads.

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Garlic press

While a garlic press may sound useful, you can use the flat side of a good chef's knife to crush a clove of garlic for more flavorful dishes. That garlic press is one more gadget that takes up valuable kitchen drawer space.

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Air fresheners

Air Wick air freshener in wall socket
Source: Getty Images

You can achieve fresh air without harmful chemicals infiltrating your home. Set out open containers of baking soda, open windows, or use non-toxic room spray.

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Dryer sheets

Not only are dryer sheets expensive to purchase, but they also are terrible for the environment due to the chemicals added and the way most are made with petroleum. Use zero-waste alternatives like dryer balls to soften your clothes instead.

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Ab rollers

You can work your abdominals with a ton of exercises using just your own body weight, rather than buying an expensive ab roller machine that takes up space.

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Electric egg cooker

These kitchen gadgets promise hard-boiled eggs without boiling them in a pan. But, really, is the saucepan method that difficult? Come on, folks.

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Bread machine

Some people love their bread machine, but it can also be an annoying extra gadget for your kitchen or closet. If you don't bake homemade bread, this won't magically change that. You can just make the dough by hand, and bake the bread in your oven, especially if kitchen space is limited.

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Electronic bug zapper

Bug zappers may work to capture some insects, but they are ineffective against mosquitoes, per the Wall Street Journal. Plus, there are many simple DIY insect repellents you can try around the house.

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