Sure, social media has spurred some unique shopping trends — but if you want to know what weird items people find to be wildly useful, you should check out Amazon. There, customers discover never-thought-of-before items — and once they hop into the reviews section to share their wisdom, those items become popular. The online store is a fantastic place to discover trending life hacks, surprising cures, and clever tools that you probably never knew you needed. Seriously, I challenge you to pour through these weird things that are getting wildly popular on Amazon and not discover at least one cool trinket you haven't thought of before.
Here's the thing, though: When stuff starts trending on Amazon, it's usually not because an influencer took a gorgeous photo that was designed to make everyone else jealous. It's because customers — oftentimes after a long search — have finally found the things they needed. Sometimes, those things solve different problems or cure for a common ailments — and other times, they just make daily tasks a little bit easier (like making tea, shaving, or tying your shoes).
Believe it or not, some of the most useful and popular products on the web are also the weirdest. That includes the following items — so start scrolling and adding them to your cart.
1. These webcam covers for in-between Zoom calls
There's probably a tiny camera on your laptop that's facing toward you. If you're seeking more security between video calls, these simple webcam covers could be useful. They let you pull the blinds over that tiny window into your private world so you know you're not accidentally making any calls when you don't have to be. Peel off the back, line it up with your webcam, and slide it closed.
2. This hot pot that cooks while you keep working
Want a quick hot meal? Put noodles, eggs, leftovers, or dumplings into this hot pot and turn it on. It’s recommended for noodles, but it can be used for communal hot pot meals or other types of food. It turns itself off if there's no water left in the pot. And since it's on the smaller side, you can even travel with it.
3. A loose-leaf tea strainer that's made with stainless steel
It appears that this tea infuser is so much better than tea bags, because tons of people are switching to it. The basket allows the leaves to unfurl as they steep, making it a simple and delicious method for a great-tasting cup. Just spoon the leaves into it, set it over container of hot water, and wait. It's beautifully engineered.
4. The eco-friendly stain remover to make your shower shine
Getting a hard-water stain off of a tub, shower, or sink is something of a nightmare. Many Amazon reviewers with this problem are ecstatic to have discovered this hard water stain remover. Not only does it clean all manner of stains off of glass, porcelain, tile, and more — but it does it without harsh chemicals. (It even smells good.)
5. A sleek, waterproof kitchen scale to measure your ingredients with
A kitchen scale seems like a luxury until you own one. Once you do, you won't remember how you managed without it. It speeds up baking, brings precision to ingredient amounts, and even helps you decide how much postage to put on a package when used outside the kitchen. This scale is sleek and switches easily from grams to ounces and other measurements. It has a tare function so you can zero out the plate and only measure the ingredients, and it's rechargeable via USB. Not to mention, it washes easily when it's not being used.
6. The touch-sensor light that's rechargeable via USB
Do you have a dark closet, hallway, or stairwell? Or, do you just want better lighting under your kitchen cabinets? Amazon shoppers are using these touch-sensor lights for all sorts of clever solutions: creating a lighted mirror, brightening a dark entryway, illuminating dim corners, and more. They stick right on and are rechargeable via USB — and you just have to tap them to turn them on and off. The brightness is adjustable, too.
7. An electric can opener that does all the work for you
If your hands are already working too hard at a computer all day, this little can opener can be a huge help while preparing meals. (Even if your hands are fine but your current can opener irritates you, it'll still be a huge help.) Just stick it onto a can, hit a button, and let it to the work. It'll leave the container with a clean, not-sharp edge before prying the lid out for you. It runs on four AAA batteries.
8. These "zombie" face masks that are infused with egg extract
Tons of Amazon customers are raving about this face mask Zombie Pack. Each wash-off mask in the package hydrates your complexion, balances your pH, and exfoliates. The smell? That's caused by albumin, which is extracted from egg whites. That particular ingredient can help moisturize your skin. Other ingredients these masks are made with include aloe vera, lavender oil, and more.
9. A flexible arm that holds your phone exactly where you want it
You know that numb feeling you get from holding your phone or tablet in your arms for too long? This flexible arm doesn't get that, and neither will you if you let it hold your phone in place. It positions the screen right in your face so you can do video calls, read, watch videos, or whatever you want, all while leaving your hands free. People are using it in bed while playing video games, on the treadmill, and in the kitchen. It has a strong clamp to help keep it in place.
10. These elastic shoe laces you never have to tie
I love shoes that slip on, so I completely get why people are crazy about these laces that transform any pair of running shoes, sneakers, or lace-up dress shoes into slip-on shoes.The elastic laces have firm stretch and a lock that secures each shoe and makes them snug. Amazon reviewers are loving them for everything from sneakers to work boots.
11. This UV sanitizer box that helps clean the germs off your phone
You can't wash your phone with soap and water for two minutes the way you wash your hands — but you can drop it into this UV light phone cleaner for five minutes and remove viruses, bacteria, and mold that might've accumulated on it. You can also clean your keys, pens, glasses, and other items that are hard to wash. It lights up to indicate progress and announces when it's done.
12. This goop that fixes your old, worn-out pair of boots
This clear glue adheres brilliantly to all the leather, rubber, and fabrics shoes are made of — so if you have a pair of shoes with a sole that's separating, you can fix it easily and get another year out of that pair. Once it comes out of the tube, this glue is workable for a few minutes, giving you time to perfect your repairs. It remains flexible and is waterproof when it dries.
13. The bottle-emptying kit that creates less product waste
Have you ever thrown away a bottle of ketchup that still has some left? How about a lotion container that you can't seem to get the last drop out of? If so, this bottle-emptying kit could come in handy. The tripod-like lid pops onto a container of your choice and holds the bottle upside down so the product (or condiment) drips to the bottle for easy dispensing.
14. This toolset that gives you dentist-level access to your teeth
A lot of people get started on this dental tool kit for the tiny mirror that lets them see into places within their own mouths that are otherwise completely hidden. But once they see the tartar and plaque, they are glad they have the other tools in the kit so they can get to work on cleaning that up. This is a compact and affordable dental kit that lets you see what your dentist is talking about and really get at problem areas. It has three basic tools made with stainless steel, along with a magnified mirror and a case to hold it all.
15. A fleece blanket that makes you look like a burrito
It's hilarious how much humans enjoy napping while pretending to be a burrito, all thanks to this burrito blanket. It's amusing and cozy, so what's not to like? This throw blanket is round like a tortilla, but big enough to wrap around an adult or two. It comes in four sizes — and even the packaging is loaded with food-inspired fun.
16. An insect trap that uses a UV light to capture bugs
This device is a bug trap because the bugs can walk in but they can't walk out. That's because they get stuck to the sticky surface inside. How, you ask? They're drawn to the subtle UV light that this thing emanates — and once they get close, they're pulled in by a fan. So when you hear the buzz of a mosquito or gnat, turn the trap on. Unlike those sticky fly strips, it looks nice — even in the kitchen.
17. The long magnetic tool for retrieving items dropped small spaces
Ever dropped your keys or jewelry down the drain or a small crevice? You need a long magnet and a light to get it out, right? Well, this tool is perfect. It's a powerful LED light with an integrated magnet that telescopes and has a goose neck at the end. It has a magnet on the light side and on the handle end so you can stick it onto things (like the grill) while it casts light. It's also helpful for home repairs.
18. These compression sleeves that help ease pain & reduce swelling
These compression sleeves fit snug around your knees and help reduce both pain and inflammation caused by strenuous activities or pressure. They can also help increase blood circulation while you work out — and thanks to the anti-slip silicone, they'll stay in place while you move. They're available in 10 colors.
19. The 10-in-1 multitool that fits in your pocket
This multitool is not only a handy bottle opener, box opener, letter opener, ruler, cord cutter, and several sizes of wrenches and screwdrivers, but it's also sized perfectly to keep on your key chain. It's even TSA safe, so you won't have to remember to leave it home when you fly.
20. The wrist wraps that help ease pain during workouts
Weak, painful, overused wrists can get in the way of weightlifting, yoga, and many other workouts. But these stiff and super supportive wrist wraps help support your wrists without too much compression. They also have thumb loops for a comfortable fit, and they're available in various colors.
21. This 'Star Wars'-themed cutting board utensils for your cheese
This Star Wars-themed cutting board will look great in your kitchen and on a coffee table — especially if you're a fan of the series. Open it up, though, and discover that it's filled with an awesome collection of cheese knives. Serve the cheese and meats on the carved cutting board side, and store the implements within.
22. This elongated back shaver that 10,000 people are talking about
Shaving your back is one of life's challenges; you can't reach it and you can't see it. How do you maintain your mystery that way? The baKblade 2.0 is how. It's a wet-or-dry razor with a long handle and gentle blades that let you reach your entire back from every angle so you can get all the spots.
23. This magnetic curtain that doubles as a screen door
Traditional screen doors are a hassle to install and maintain — especially if you rent. This magnetic screen curtain, though? It's easy to install and simple to remove. And even better than that? It opens easily so that pets and humans can easily walk through it. Plus, it closes automatically behind you using the combined forces of gravity and magnetism. (There are magnets in the seam.)
24. The rechargeable handheld vacuum that's bagless
In my opinion, the best use for a compact, handheld vacuum is so you can quickly clean up crumbs, pet fur, or other debris without getting the bigger vacuum out. This affordable option is great to have nearby, and it's completely bagless. It's also rechargeable on its wall mount, so you don't have to worry about replacing any batteries.
25. This memory foam pillow that side sleepers love
This orthopedic pillow seems weird — but many reviewers think it's awesome. It's designed to support your neck while decompressing your shoulders. Side sleepers are particularly thrilled, writing they get amazing neck and back support, their shoulders don't hurt in the morning, and they sleep like a baby. One person wrote, "This cradles my head in any position. Side lying is especially comfortable now."
26. A clean key so you don't have to touch doors & buttons
Attach one of these tools to the included retractable carabiner and hook it to your belt loop. Now, when you go out into the world, you won't have to touch anything with your own fingers. It hooks around door handles. It hits buttons. And it pulls levers. This helps keep your hands germ-free. It will also go on your key chain. People love it because it's just the right shape and size.
27. The storage spot for your off-season wardrobe
If you keep your off-season clothes in storage or up in the attic, these sealed closets will keep them clean and accessible. They seal completely to keep bugs and dust out. You aren't crammed into boxes or bag, they are hanging where you can get them and see them. You just zip the bags around the clothes as they hang on a rod.
28. This wall mount that sterilizes toothbrushes & dispenses toothpaste
This wall rack sorts your toothbrushes while shielding and sanitizing the bristles. It even lifts them off the counter and into a sealed compartment that sanitizes them. The toothpaste dispenser on the right side also gets your tube out of the way and into a spot that'll give you just the right amount every time.
29. A milk frother to give your morning brew a foamy upgrade
Going out for a frothy cappuccino is lovely — but it's also expensive. Thankfully, there's no need to go out if that frothy beverage can be made in your kitchen. It's possible if you own this milk frother. Just pour it in the milk of your choice and push a button on the side. Then, enjoy your latte. It also makes awesome salad dressing and runs on two batteries.
30. The veggie chopper that catches pieces as you go
Onions are the base to so many dishes that it's easy to grow weary of chopping them. This vegetable chopper never gets tired, though – and it chops much more than onions. It also dispenses the chopped produce into the glass bowl beneath. Chop all the ingredients to potato or egg salad right into the catch bowl, add mayo and salt, and then stir. It comes with eight interchangeable slicing blades for variety.
31. This vacuum sealer that's small & compact
Vacuum sealing foods is a brilliant way to keep your leftovers from getting freezer burn, but a vacuum sealing machine is often so bulky people tend to put them away and never get them out again. This one, though, is small enough to fit in a kitchen drawer — and it'll always be there when you need it. It comes with 10 BPA-free bags to get you started.
32. This touch-sensor lamp that shines in different colors
Want a bit of a green glow inside your room, or even a subtle yellow hue to help you relax? Just tap this LED light until you get the color you want. Amazon reviewers adore this thing, and it's so simple to use. Just tap anywhere along the base to turn the LED bulb on. It comes in four different wood finishes.
33. A light switch you can control with your voice
Ready to take your lights into voice-controlled territory? This is much easier than you think. Just replace your wall switch with this smart one to include voice control settings alongside your smart home systems. Or, use the app to set schedules and fade the lights down at bedtime.
34. These stretchy covers that fit over your food containers
Dinner is over. Instead of transferring leftovers to a storage container, stretch one of these silicone covers right over your bowl, half-empty can, or avocado half before putting it in the fridge. It works for jars, cans, fruits, cups, and lots of other things. These will store easily in a drawer instead of eating up an entire cupboard, and there's a range of sizes here that fit cat food cans, mixing bowls, and more.
35. The durable leather pocket organizer for your pens
So many Amazon customers are loving these leathery pocket pouches because they hold pens, pencils, tactical pens, and whatever else you need without fraying the fabric of clothing or leaking ink into your good suit. Items stay in — even if you're climbing around under machinery. Plus, they look nice.
36. This high-tech dog brush with a self-cleaning button
All the fur you can't see on your fluffy, shedding dog will eventually be on your floor and furniture — but if you get in there and brush that fur with this shedding brush, you can bag that mess before it gets everywhere (and save yourself some cleanup). The teeth of this brush pull loose fur out from under the top coat — without damaging the guard hairs on top — with ease. Push the button to clear the fur from the teeth when it fills up.
37. The computer screen protectors that filter out blue light
Many tech screens give off blue light which can affect your sleeping habits. However, you can easily filter it out with these computer screen protectors. There are two in this pack, both of which fit over 15.6-inch screens. However, there are multiple other sizes to choose from.
38. This indoor grill that turns every sandwich into a panini
Making a grilled cheese sandwich in this grill and panini press is a matter of assembling bread onto cheese and closing the sandwich into the grill. It's delicious every time — but you can also throw burgers or chicken on here for a quick meal. The grill plates come off for easy clean up, and it's available in platinum or black.
39. The hand blender you'll use for everything
Make blended soups right in the pan you cooked in. Switch to the whisk and whip eggs or cream. Put fruit into the cup and blend it into a beverage. A hand blender is always useful in the kitchen. But this one — with the whisk attachment, chopping cup, and beverage cup — is even more useful than that. It has eight speeds, a 225-watt motor, and steel blades.
40. A shaker for delicious homemade salad dressing
Salad dressing is easy to make — but it's so much easier to buy pre-made, right? Nope, not if you own this dressing shaker. The BPA-free plastic jar is exactly the right size, measurements are printed on the side, and the lid seals so you can shake your dressing ingredients. But when you want to dress your salad, that same lid opens into a pour spout. Make and store your dressing right inside of it and you'll always have tasty dressing on hand.
41. The cereal bowl that separates the milk to prevent sogginess
If you like your cereal crunchy, this Obol bowl will transform breakfast or snacking from a timed event to one that you can savor and enjoy. The milk goes in one side. The cereal goes in the other. Mix them together on your spoon. It can sit while you chat, read, or otherwise procrastinate and still be crunchy when it gets to your mouth.
42. This kitchen tool that makes homemade pasta
Fresh pasta is usually a very simple recipe that requires flour, oil, egg, and salt. The art is in turning the dough into pasta shapes. The easiest way to achieve that is with a pasta machine like this one. Put your handmade dough into the top and turn the crank, and it'll press it into angel hair, linguine, or sheets you can turn into ravioli or lasagna. This machine is a terrific entry level option that's simple to use and affordable.
43. These rocks that chill your whiskey without diluting it
Like your whiskey neat? How about neat and cold? Drop these beverage chilling rocks straight from the freezer into your cocktail to chill it without introducing water. They're perfect for whiskey, but they're also terrific for chilling a white wine in the glass. These are made of soft soapstone and give your drink a slight chill — not an ice-cold freeze — which is perfect for bringing out the flavor of fine wines and whiskey.
44. The strong bug repellent lotion for mosquito magnets
If you're the one person in every crowd whose covered in mosquito bites, milder insect repellents might not be enough for you. This Ultrathon is strong because it's made with 34% DEET. This stuff goes on like lotion and stays on if you sweat or get wet — and you have to wash it off to get it off. If you're serious about repelling bugs, this might be a good choice.
45. This beard-shaping tool for precise trims
Trimming the perfect edge on your beard is a challenge. It requires math, angles, and skill (or a trip to the barber). However, this shaping tool can help. Just hold it like a template where you want a tidy, curved, or straight edge — and then, shave around it. It works with a razor or electric shaver, and it's also a comb because that's always handy.
46. This tiny shaver that helps get rid of unwanted facial hair
You can skip the tweezers, waxing, and threading; this little facial shaver is much easier. It's tiny, portable, and precise. Plus, it'll help you clean up unwanted hair or peach fuzz within seconds. Put one in your bag or keep one on your vanity. It runs on a single AA battery and can be used every day (if that's what you want). It also comes in six colors.
This article was originally published on