Innovation

38 cheap, clever products people are obsessed with

We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team.

Online reviews are notorious for being brutally honest, if not downright scathing. So when you come across a product with thousands of glowing reviews, you know you've found something special. With that in mind, I've rounded up several of such products, which on top of being some of the most popular finds on Amazon, they're also pretty cheap.

Another thing these much-hyped items have in common is how clever they are — they're all problem solvers. Which is probably why people are so pumped about them. Crappy Wi-Fi single? This plugin Wi-Fi extender is less than $20. Tired of watered down cocktails? These ice spheres can keep your drink cool while minimizing melt. Cutting your own hair at home? I've got what you need to keep your hairline looking sharp.

Nothing here is over $30 and yet, according to fans, these products are the ones that are truly game-changers.

1. This rocker that helps relieve foot pain with a simple stretch

Foot pain often gets in the way, which explains why so many people put their feet in this rocker a few times a day. After placing one foot at a time in here (and then rocking it back and forth), you'll get a gentle stretch at just the right angle to help ease various pains. It can help relieve aches caused by plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendonitis, and more. And thanks to the non-slip bottom grip, it should stay in place while you move.

2. A meat press that you can make stuffed burgers with

I love burgers with bacon and jalapeños. I'm also a huge fan of burgers stuffed with blue cheese. This little press is the key to easily making stuffed burgers like those. Scoop some meat into the bottom piece. Drop on jalapeños, cheese, bacon, or whatever. Then, top it off with more meat. Use the top handle to squish it all into the shape of a burger. After that, drop it on the grill. It's so easy that you can make them on a regular basis. Oh, also, you can flip the burger as many times as you want since the toppings are all inside.

3. These webcam covers for guaranteed privacy

This simple, inexpensive webcam cover is hack-proof, and it works by blocking your camera for added security and privacy after video calls or photo sessions. Just stick it to the camera of your laptop or tablet so that when you slide it closed, the camera is covered. Then, you're in charge of when that camera gets used. Five covers come in one pack, so all of your electronics will be set.

4. This in-shower foot scrubber that massages your feet

When you're standing in the shower, how do the bottoms of your feet get clean? That — and the pleasure of an intense foot scrub — is why this in-shower foot scrubber is so popular. It sticks to the bottom of your tub with built-in suction cups and uses soft bristles to massage your feet as you move on top of it. You can add body wash for a deep cleanse as you scrub, and you can even add some tea tree oil to help clear up unwanted odor.

5. These acupressure sandals that help ease pain throughout your body

These acupressure sandals may be painful at first, but they'll help ease pain throughout your body as you get used to wearing them from time to time. The protruding nodes give your feet an intense acupressure massage, and the straps are adjustable so you can tighten or loosen them around your feet as much as you'd like. It's recommended to start wearing them with socks for a short amount of time each day — but when you get used to them, you can wear them for 15 to 30 minutes daily.

6. This duster that cleans under your appliances in one swipe

Sometimes, my cat stares under the stove so intensely that I'm sure there's a mouse. There never is, though. She's just shocked at how much dust and random debris is under there because getting it out requires a special tool. This tool, actually. It sweeps underneath, grabbing dust and debris while pulling it all out in one quick movement. Amazon reviewers have written that this duster is the best because it gets under anything — no matter how small the clearance — and grabs so much. Just rinse it clean, let it dry, and it'll be good to go again. Some people even use it damp.

7. An anti-fog mirror so you can shave in a hot shower

Shaving can be easier to do in the shower — but mirrors fog up in hot water, and it's hard to see yourself when that happens. The solution? This mirror that doesn't fog. And such a simple solution it is. The mirror hangs on the wall from an included hook. Just hold it in your water stream to equalize the temperature to your shower. Then, it shouldn't fog. You can hold it or hang it back on the hook while you shave.

8. The Wi-Fi extender for better signal throughout your house

If your internet signal is weak when you try to connect from the yard, basement, or upstairs in your house, the solution is super easy. Just plug this Wi-Fi range extender in between the router and where you want to connect and follow the simple setup directions. It'll grab your weak signal, amplify it, and deliver a strong signal right where you want it. There are a lot of range extenders out there, but people love this one because it works. It's also inexpensive and it's super easy to set up.

9. These sphere ice molds that make slow-melting cubes

Sipping whiskey is always a pleasure. But when you pour that whiskey over a solid ball of ice that was made in one of these BPA- free ice molds, it gets even better. When ice is this big and solid, it chills the whiskey or cocktail and melts slowly. That's why so many people on Amazon love these. They're each 2.5 inches in diameter, and two come in every pack.

10. A portable chair rest to support the arm you're mousing with

Mousing can be painful over time if your arm isn't getting enough support while you work. Amazon reviewers love this arm support system for situations like that when your chair isn't properly holding your arm up. You can attach it to your desk or chair with the solid clamp, and then use it right underneath your arm that's controlling the computer mouse.

11. A pocket microscope that magnifies up to 120 times

Able to magnify objects up to 120 times, this microscope is so compact that it can even fit into your pockets. The bright LED light is powered using just one AA battery (which isn't included), and the precision-molded aspheric lenses provide a clear picture as you take a closer look.

12. This dermatologist-recommended moisturizer that's fragrance-free

On Amazon, it seems as if everyone — including dermatologists — loves this hypoallergenic moisturizer. People with dry, itchy, and breakout-prone skin as well as those who simply wash their hands a lot swear this stuff hydrates. Its both oil- and fragrance-free, and it isn't greasy. Many people use it as a facial moisturizer, body butter, and hand cream.

13. The mushroom-shaped drain protector with over 16,900 positive reviews

If you're fighting with your housemates over hair clogs in the shower, it's not worth it. Just order this $13 mushroom-shaped drain protector and install it into your tub. It doesn't go over the drain; it goes in it. And once it's there, it catches all the hair that washes down the drain before it causes a clog. Just pull the TubShroom out, pull the hair off, put it back in, and keep showering. It's so simple to clean, too.

14. These silicone food savers to replace your plastic wrap with

These silicone covers can fit right over the top of a glass, jar, or cup. They can also fit over the sliced side of tomato or another vegetable. They make great covers for cat or dog food cans, too — and they take up very little space when stored. Plus, these toppers are great alternatives to plastic wrap. Four come in a pack, and they're each sized differently.

15. This activated charcoal-infused whitening toothpaste

This whitening toothpaste is infused with activated charcoal and coconut oil, and it can help whiten your teeth while you brush. The formula is also fluoride-free and uses fresh mint for added flavor. Amazon customers have written that this activated charcoal toothpaste is much more effective than other brands out there and that it whitens teeth fast (like, in one brushing).

16. An aluminum-free deodorant that's made with matcha

This natural deodorant is made without aluminum, and it's both paraben- and phthalate-free. The scent is light and citrusy — and yet it works. It's also infused with natural ingredients such as arrowroot powder and matcha. It's advertised to work all day long, and one reviewer said, "This product is amazing. I have been looking for a natural deodorant for my husband and myself that actually works. This deodorant smells amazing and lasts about 9+ hours!"

17. These kitchen cloths that last longer than your dish sponges

These nets are sanitary replacements for kitchen sponges that can easily grow bacteria over time. They lather like a sponge, but they're quick-drying so bacteria doesn't get the chance to grow (which also helps prevent unwanted odor). They also offer a gentle abrasive that cleans dishes without scraping them. These cloths can also be cleaned in the dishwasher, which makes it easier to use them over and over again. In fact, they can remain intact longer than seven dish sponges can, per the brand.

18. The tool kit that's basically the size of your credit card

If you don't want to have a bunch of tools clipped onto your belt, but you do want to have convenient tools on hand, this Wallet Ninja can help. It's everything from a bottle opener to a hex wrench kit to an emergency phone stand. It measures. It fixes eyeglasses. It has six screwdrivers. And it's a box opener. Also, it fits in your wallet.

19. The biodegradable window cleaner that's fun to squeegee

This soap makes it easier than ever to clean windows — and it does a really good job. Mix it with water (it's concentrated). Spray it on the windows with a bottle. Then, squeegee it off. Those windows are probably cleaner than you've never seen. It's actually fun to do, and the formula is biodegradable.

20. These reusable silicone straws that are flexible and portable

Yes, you can use a straw. No, you don't have to use paper, metal, or glass. These bendy silicone straws are easy on your teeth and super portable. So when restaurants fail to offer you a usable straw, you can pull your own out. They come in three sizes, so there's something for every container and beverage you like. One pack even includes a cleaning tool and compact carrying case that clips to your keychain.

21. This towel that'll keep you chilly when you want to cool down

Soak one of these towels in water, wring it out, and snap it. It'll cool down. Wrap it around your neck, head, or face to stay chilly and protected for hours. It lowers your temperature through evaporation and offers UPF 50 sun protection. In other words, it'll keep you cool and protect you from the sun's rays. It comes in a waterproof carrying case that you can clip to your pack, and it's available 10 colors.

22. A tool that touches germ-covered door handles for your

When you go out into public, there's a good chance that every surface you touch has also been touched by an unknown number of other people who might've left germs behind. Clip this tool to your keys or belt and use it to push buttons, type on kiosk keypads, open doors, turn on faucets, and flush toilets. You can spray it with Lysol all you want. Unlike your hands, it won't get chapped and dried out. There are two in the pack.

23. This strap that helps you stretch, even if you think you can't

This strap with loops is a stretching aid that's often recommended by physical therapists. Seems simple, right? But reviewers who've used it swear by it, writing that it has made it possible for them to gradually increase mobility and improve their range of motion. That's a lot of benefit from a $16 non-stretchy strap with an instruction booklet.

24. A running belt that carries your phone and water

Long distance runners swear by this belt. It carries the essentials — snacks, water, your ID, your phone, and more — and does't add bulk or bounce around. The belt even comes with the bottles, which are a perfect fit. It's also a great tool for anyone else who's walking, biking, fishing, or just taking the dog outside. In fact, it's a great place to stash dog snacks and cleanup bags.

25. The timer that takes the guesswork out of cooking eggs

Stop guessing whether you're eggs or hard-, medium-, or soft-boiled — just use this timer. The color on the outside changes as it heats up alongside each egg to let you know how cooked they are, and it'll even adjust depending on how many eggs are in your pot. Just be sure to cover it with at least an inch or two of water, and it'll be ready to go.

26. The template that makes it easy to cut your hair at home

Giving yourself a hair cut can save a lot of money. But sometimes, it's difficult to do on your own — especially in the back where it's hard to see what you're doing. Wear this template when you shave back there, and you probably won't mess up. It creates a straight line that helps guide you as you trim. Once you get the hang of it, you'll get a barber-shop-level straight line every time.

27. A mini folding stool that you can take pretty much anywhere

Standing for hours can get old fast — especially when you're hiking, camping, traveling, or fishing. However, sitting on the ground can be uncomfortable and messy. Thankfully, this strong chair fits in a day pack, folds down small, and weighs only 1.3 pounds. It's like an umbrella, except it's a chair. You want to have one with you.

28. The stand that holds your half-empty bottles upside down to empty them

I hate to throw away the inch of ketchup at the bottom of a bottle. But I'm not going to wait around for it to drip out, either. This stand inverts the bottle so I can walk away and still get all the goods from the bottoms of condiments, honey, shampoo, lotion, and most other containers. Just replace the cap with one of the four tripods that help it stand upside down. Brilliant. I wish I'd invented it.

29. A pair of towel hooks that don't require any mounting

Since each one is backed with super-sticky adhesive, you don't have to mount these towel hooks into your walls; just stick them up and they're ready to go. Each order also comes with mounting hardware if you'd prefer a sturdier installation, and the chrome plated exterior gives them a modern feel that upgrades any kitchen or bathroom.

30. This flexible silicone mold that turns into glue

Frayed electronic wires? Cracked shoe soles? DIY projects? This putty is what you need to fix all of that. Sugru is the moldable silicone fix to so many problems. You take it out of the package and form it into the shape you want. Maybe that's a patch for a shoe, a wrap for those frayed cords, or little feet for the bottom of an appliance. Then, wait for it dry. Once it's hardened, it'll be solid and strong.

31. A kit that transforms your avocado seed into an avocado tree

Everyone says you can grow a tree from your avocado seed. But how often does it work? A lot more often if you use this kit. It's so easy to use: You just eat an avocado, put the seed in this little boat, and sit the boat in a bowl of water to set sail. The design keeps the pit in just the right amount of moisture to make your seed turn into a tree over time.

32. This door draft stopper that keeps your space warm and quiet

Can you feel a draft when you walk past your door? That's costing you money on heat or AC (and maybe even letting bugs in). Here's an easy fix. Just stick these door draft stoppers on the bottom of the door to prevent the airflow underneath it. They can even prevent external noises from entering your space. Since they're adhesive, they're easy to install. One Amazon reviewer wrote, "It was simple to install, just follow the instructions which were legible and easy to understand, clean the area well (important), cut to length and stick."

33. This toy that brushes your cats as they rub against it

In the case of this toy, it's the cats that are obsessed — not the people. Still, the cats need people to order this groomer brush for them (and to mount it to a wall corner or table leg with the included sticky tape). But once that's done, they want you to get out of the way and leave them alone with it. Cats rub themselves against it and become very happy. As a side effect, they also end up brushing their fur and leaving the shed on the brush instead of your couch.

33. A car cup holder for your largest on-the-go beverages

The enthusiasm on Amazon for something as simple as this in-car cup holder is, honestly, so over-the-top that you'll probably be tempted to get one (even if you already have cup holders in your car). To work, it grips your car door or armrest while holding huge beverages at a reachable distance. It's a cup holder, yes. But it's an excellent cup holder — and that's apparently a hard thing to find in this world.

34. A DEET-free insect repellent made with lemon eucalyptus

So many Amazon customers — over 4,600 of them — approve of this plant-based insect repellent. It's a DEET-free formula that can turn mosquitoes away for up to six hours. It's made from the oil of lemon eucalyptus and smells fresh. One customer reviewed the spray and wrote, "This is the best bug repellent I have ever used." Another claimed, "It has a definitely lemon smell but not like furniture polish lemon smell. No bites and I was out for about 3 hours."

35. This USB hub with four ports for your extra electronics

If you work on a laptop or computer with limited USB ports, you can solve that problem right now. Just plug this four-port hub into one USB port and set it down somewhere convenient. Then, plug your tech accessories in. You can turn them on and off individually with the dedicated power switches, and you won't have to unplug one thing to plug in another (or dig around in the back of the computer to find a plug you can hardly see).

36. A portable phone stand that folds down when you're not using it

This phone and tablet stand is simple, functional, and portable. The hinges allow you to adjust the angle, and it's sturdy to prevent your phone from falling while it's being held up. It allows room for the charging cord, and it's light. Plus, it folds so you can take it with you. It's even strong enough to hold a phone or tablet. Well done, Nulaxy.

37. The stainless steel tool kit for your teeth

Sometimes, a toothbrush is not enough. Maybe you want to safely remove some plaque or see what's happening with a tooth in the back of your mouth. These inexpensive tools will help you complete some simple dental care steps right at home (or in between dentist appointments). The pack comes with four stainless steel pieces: a dental mirror, a tartar scraper, a dental scaler, and a dental tooth pick.

38. This footrest is the missing piece of your home office rig

If sitting at a computer all day makes your back, hips, and legs hurt, take a moment to consider your feet. Do they need to be elevated in order to reduce stress on those areas? If so, this memory foam cushion is a great place to put them for comfort and ergonomics. It's just the right elevation to take some stress away, and it feels great on your feet. Once in a while, flip it over and rock it back and forth to get some movement into your routine. It's terrific for your circulation and feels good.

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