If there's one product category that we love covering at ConsumerSearch, it's As Seen On TV products. Here at the International Home and Housewares Show, we've found plenty of new and existing ASOTV products, some that seem legitimate and promising, others that probably are better left on the drawing board. We'll be posting new single-product reviews of some of these As Seen On TV goods in the coming months, but in the meantime, here is a rundown of just a few of the crazy gadgets and gizmos we've seen in Chicago.
The big As Seen On TV marketers, like Ronco and Telebrands, have a big presence here at the housewares convention, but most consumers are already familiar with products by these giants, like the Ped Egg and the Showtime Rotisserie Oven. As we walked the miles of aisles, we kept our eyes peeled for lesser-known and new ASOTV items, including some of the following:
Green Rest Easy bed bug spray. This is a pump spray containing cinnamon, lemongrass, clove and peppermint oils that promises to kill and repel bed bugs. Living in New York City, the bed bug capital of the U.S., this caught our eye, but after reading reviews in the Los Angeles Times and at Amazon.com, we're skeptical. Exterminators say that bed bug are VERY hard to kill; the can survive the months in the freezer or even in an airtight bag. So we're not sure a spritz of essential oils will do the trick. It might make our bed smell nice, though.
Elegant Shaper. A push-up bra (of sorts) designed to be worn over a regular bra, the Elegant Shaper promises to lift your bust and improve your posture. And if you feel your backside needs a little boost, too, the same company also makes the Butt Wonder.
Robomop. We blogged earlier about the Roomba and Mint hard-floor cleaners. Same basic concept. Looks a little like a plastic fedora with a ball in the middle that scoots across your floor and picks up dust and debris using O-shaped proprietary electrostatic pads. Users at HSN.com seem impressed, but if nothing else, it's kind of fun to watch it scoot across the floor.
Halo Oven. The Halo promises energy-efficient, speedier, healthier cooking than appliances like a conventional oven. Like the NuWave Oven, another As Seen On TV product, it uses direct heat and convection to cook foods; unlike the NuWave, which uses an infrared light, the Halo uses a halogen bulb.
Magic Hands. Vaguely reminiscent of Michael Jackson's silver "Thriller" glove, these textured, waterproof polyester gloves promise to make sponges, scrubbers and scouring pads obsolete. Moonwalking optional.
EZ Jet Water Cannon. A gussied-up, adjustable nozzle for your garden hose, the EZ Jet promises "the power of a pressure washer and the convenience of a hose" with eight different spray settings from fine mist to powerful jet.
Those are just a few of the seemingly endless number of As Seen On TV products we've encounter walking the aisles of the McCormick Place convention center. For reviews of similar products, be sure to check out our As Seen On TV section.