Tuesday, January 20, 2009

As seen on TV

I'm really not a sucker for infomercials. But every now and again a product--and its accompanying dazzling endorsement--comes along that piques my curiosity enough to lead me to purchase it. Usually the ones that are this good eventually end up being sold in stores, which makes me feel less weird about buying them. There is something oddly unnerving about calling an 800-number from the television screen to order. It goes against my belief that I hold against most door-to-door salespeople and telemarketers: if I needed what you are trying to sell, I would have been seeking it out myself.

But those commercials play with your sense of value until you feel it would be wrong not to call in and buy a dozen Sham-WOW's. Or whatever.

An ab-shaper of this quality costs over $149 in stores. {blinking red X flashes over that ridiculous price} Our Sculpt 'n Burn can be yours for only $29.95! But that's not all! Call now and we'll also include our exclusive Belly Firming Cream and Fat Blasting Drink Mix, a $19.99 value, ABSOLUTELY FREE! But wait, that's not all. Mention this ad when you call and we'll send you TWO of everything! That's TWO Sculpt 'n Burns, TWO bottles of Belly Firming Cream, and TWO Cartons of Fat Blasting Drink Mix, all for the low, low price of $29.95. You can't afford to miss out on this incredible offer. Supplies won't last, so CALL NOW!

See, even I can write a commercial that would send a person toward an aneurysm by the third unbelievably insane offer.

As in my facetious (and entirely made-up) example (so stop Googling the Sculpt 'n Burn!), the best TV products are the ones which boast multiple purposes. This is most efficiently communicated by using the letter 'n' with an apostrophe between the two functions as a title. I actually did purchase the Grip n' Flip directly from a TV ad a long time ago. The commercial sucked me in with so many amazing features and bonus offers that an attempt to resist dialing would have been futile. Check out what we received with this glorious package (and TWO of everything, I might add!):
  • The Grip 'n Flip, which both grips and flips. I thought it would be great for flipping grilled sandwiches and quesadillas, only it isn't quite sturdy enough to support the weight of my hefty, stuffed-full-of-deliciousness entrees.
  • The Scoop 'n Strain, which--you got it--both scoops and strains. This one is a great concept too: scoop soup and control the amount of broth vs. chunks you want. But the handle of the holey ladle is ridiculously flimsy, so you'd better hope you want mostly broth.
  • And don't forget the 6 in 1 Utensil. This one um, stirs, and picks things up (if they aren't too heavy, it could probably handle a few leaves of lettuce)...and the other 4 uses I have yet to figure out. Dang, I wish I had paid better attention to the commercial.
So sometimes these amazing products hawked on late night television aren't as stupendous as they might seem. A shocking revelation, I'm sure. Yet, I am still mesmerized every now and again by one that seems too good to be true, and I just can't bring myself to accept that as the most likely reality.

I have been curious about the Ped Egg for a while. Now, let's get real here: if I ever tried to audition my feet for a "before" photo, my face would be thoroughly laughed in. My feet wouldn't initiate a gag reflex or anything, they just get a little dry, which makes my heels itch. The skin isn't as soft as a baby's you-know-what, either. My favorite part of any pedicure is the fleeting seconds when they scrub my feet with a file. That never lasts long enough for my preference.
I just didn't get the Ped Egg. It looks kind of like a cheese grater for your feet--which doesn't bother me because I could sense the satisfaction it would wreak on an itchy heel. But then they assert with emphasis that the Ped Egg is "so gentle, it won't burst this balloon." Well, that kind of blows it for me! If their special "micro-blades" can't burst a fragile balloon, then how in the heckarooney is it going to shave any tough, dead skin off of my callouses?

I guess my curiosity got the best of me one day, because I found myself perusing customer reviews of the one and only Ped Egg online. To my surprise, nearly every one of them gushed in utter disbelief that the product actually performed the job it claimed to do, and with better-than-expected results. The biggest complaint I read was that it didn't always catch all of the skin powder in the little egg portion.

Okay, so this contraption is now sold in every grocery and drugstore for less than 10 bucks. What's to lose? I made polite at the cash register while I tried not to look embarrassed that I was buying an infomercial merchandise, then stuffed it into the opaque bag to hurry home and give it a whirl.

By gum, it really does work. My not-very-nasty feet each produce about a bottlecap-full of nasty white powder each time I use it (and if you maintain it in the correct position, none of the powder leaks out). It feels really good too.

So if you have been secretly wondering about the Ped Egg as I was (maybe I'm the only nerd), go ahead and wager your Hamilton. But don't let anyone fool you into thinking it replaces a good, old-fashioned pedicure. I ain't getting a hot soak, aromatherapy, massage, and toenail polish with this doodad. But at least I can make my favorite part last as long as I want!


M and Em said...

OOOOHHHH I'm so glad someone else tried it out before me - I have nasty nasty dry feet, always have, but living in CO makes them way worse. Now I know what I want for my birthday :)

Jennifer said...

I was very excited to hear that someone had actually tried this--and that it worked! Based on your recommendation I bought one the next day when we happened to be near Bed, Bath, and Beyond where I figured they would be sold. As soon as we got home, I spent an hour on my feet. AMAZING!! I've always had nasty, dry, prone-to-crack heels and now they are all soft. Thanks for the good review!


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