April Fools' products: These wacky goods aren't jokes, believe it or not

Dog dryer? Poop-emoji plunger? Headless robo-cat pillow? These products may sound like April Fools' Day pranks, but they're real.

Amanda Kooser
1 of 19 Tim Stevens/CNET

Headless robo-cat pillow: $149

Every year, April Fools' Day throws down a minefield of made-up products, but you don't have to resort to pranks to find some truly bizarre items that are totally real. Some of these products are now left to the history books, and some are available to buy online. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of products featured in this gallery.   

Let me just throw out an idea here: It's a pillow, but it's also a cat. And it has no head or legs. But the tail wags. Sounds like a recipe for weirdness, right? It is. The Qoobo from Yukai Engineering is a plush, cuddly headless cat pillow that doesn't have to be fed, entertained or taken to the vet. Despite the description, it's surprisingly charming.

See at Amazon

Originally published March 30, 2018.
Update, March 28, 2019: Adds more products. 

2 of 19 Poo-Plunger

Poop Emoji Plunger: $19.99

It's a poop emoji. It's a plunger. It's a Poop Emoji Plunger. This plunger started off as a Kickstarter project, but got snapped up by the Squatty Potty folks. It may be the world's happiest plunger, but you might want to hide it away so it doesn't stare at you while you do your business.

See at Amazon

3 of 19 Nuni

Tortilla toaster: $69

You have some tortillas. They're room temperature, which is a tragedy. So you pop them into your Nuni Tortilla Toaster. Ah, warm tortillas. The Nuni Tortilla Toaster does exactly what it promises: It toasts up to six tortillas at a time. 

It will appeal to people who love single-purpose kitchen gadgets, and people who live for hot tortillas. Others might want to stick with using a pan on the stove top. 

See it at Nuni

4 of 19 Spartan

Radiation-shield underwear: $45

Men worried about how their phones might impact their sperm count can take comfort in these silver-lined underwear briefs from Faraday Basics. Faraday, which was originally called Spartan, says its undies can block 99 percent of cellphone and Wi-Fi radiation with pure silver fibers woven into the cotton fabric. Even better, it refers to them as a Faraday Cage for private parts. Buyers can choose between boxer briefs or trunks.

See at Faraday Basics

Ostrich Pillow in use
5 of 19 Kawamura-Ganjavian

Ostrich Pillow: $99.99

Hiding away from the world is as simple and weird as stuffing your head and hands into the Ostrich Pillow. It's a puffy creation that seems totally bizarre, but was actually the subject of a very popular Kickstarter project. The original Ostrich Pillow even spawned a smaller sibling, the Ostrich Pillow Light.

See at Amazon

6 of 19 Bo's Fine Foods

Sliced ketchup: $5.99 for an eight-pack

At its worst, ketchup is messy and watery. So food startup Bo's Fine Foods developed a fruit-leather-like version of the condiment called Slice of Sauce. No mess. No fuss. Just a flexible slab of ketchup. The 2018 Kickstarter project handily surpassed its funding goal and the slices shipped out to backers later that year. 

See at Slice of Sauce

7 of 19 Amazon

Hairy dad-bod fanny pack: $13.99

The Dadbag straps on to give you a hairy beer gut -- and a place to store your keys and change. Fanny packs haven't been fashionable since the days of 1990s flannel shirts and overalls. But this one wears its uncool appearance as a badge of pride.  

8 of 19 Amazon

Grass flip-flops: $19.99

You love the feeling of grass against your bare feet. With GFF Grass Flip Flops, you can enjoy that sensation anytime, minus the dirt, insects and allergies. These sandals come with a footbed full of fake grass. GFF says they feel like a "plush slice of paradise."

See at Amazon.

Pooch Selfie
9 of 19 Pooch Selfie

Pooch Selfie: $9.99

Humans are pretty good at taking selfies of themselves, but their photogenic pets don't always cooperate. That's where the Pooch Selfie comes in. The smartphone attachment holds a tennis ball to the top of your phone, because the one thing your dog loves more than you is a tennis ball. 

The idea is your pooch will stare longingly at the ball, giving you time to snap the perfect pet selfie. Here's hoping Spot doesn't lunge for your phone in the process. 

See at Pooch Selfie.

10 of 19 Cell-Mate

Cell-Mate: $16.99

Bluetooth headsets aren't for everybody. But what do you do if you still need to talk on your phone and keep your hands free? You could strap a Cell-Mate over your head. This goofy accessory is worn like a headband, but holds your phone up against your ear. You have to really not care what other people think of you if you plan to use this in public. 

The Cell-Mate popped up on the show floor at CTIA in 2010. It still has an active website and can be found for sale from a few retailers online, like Amazon

Cat armor
11 of 19 Print That Thing

DIY cat battle armor

Unleash the wild side of your domesticated house cat with this 3D-printable suit of feline battle armor from Print That Thing. The spikey armor is sure to strike terror into the hearts of the local mice. You just need to download the design and print it off yourself. And then try to convince your cat to cosplay as The Hound from Game of Thrones.

See at Thingiverse

12 of 19 FoldiMate

Automatic clothes folder: Estimated price of $980

You have to really hate folding your laundry to invest in a machine that does it for you. The FoldiMate promises an almost Jetsons-like future where you just feed your clothes into the large gadget and it folds them up all nice and neat for you to put away. The company hopes to start shipping the product in late 2019, so you will just have to fold your own clothes like an animal until then.

See at FoldiMate

13 of 19 ThinkGeek

Digital wizard hoodie: $24.97

Sometimes an April Fools' joke product is so compelling, it needs to be made in real life. That's what happened with nerdy retailer ThinkGeek's Technomancer 2.0 Digital Wizard Hoodie. It was part of the company's annual lineup of fake April Fools' products, but customer demand spurred it to become a real offering.

The garment with light and sound effects promises to let you cast spells. Hopefully it also keeps you warm. 

See at ThinkGeek

14 of 19 The Boring Company

Boring Company flamethrower

It can be hard to tell when Elon Musk is joking, but the SpaceX and Tesla entrepreneur delivered with the release of Boring Company flamethrowers. The flamethrowers are a reference to the sci-fi parody movie "Spaceballs" and quickly sold out when they went up for preorder in early 2018. The gadgets were real, but limited in availability. They do pop up on eBay.

15 of 19 Dock Street Brewing Co.

Brainy beer

Smart beer drinkers choose brainy beer. This zombie-inspired, limited-edition brew called Walker came from Dock Street Brewing in 2014. And, yes, it was made with real brains. At least the brains weren't human. They came from goats. Cheers!

16 of 19 CNET

Airbags for your hips

Admittedly, the Helite Hip'Air safety device looks pretty strange when it's inflated. The wearable is designed to deploy when a person falls, with the airbags meant to protect the person's hip bones. The Hip'Air,which is available in Europe, is geared for people in nursing homes, since they're typically of an age when a fall can be devastating. 

17 of 19 Thanko


If you hate washing dishes, but love robots, then you might be intrigued by this waterproof dish-bot sold by Japanese retailer Thanko. It looks like a neon-green mechanical Alien facehugger. It may not be the most practical way to wash your dishes, but it's probably slightly more fun than doing it all by hand.

18 of 19 Monit

Monit smart diaper sensor

CES 2019 delivered some odd items, including the Monit smart diaper sensor, which attaches to the outside of a baby's diaper to detect poop or pee. The sensor is designed to alert a parent when it's time for a change, but it's also meant to track a baby's potty patterns. Because why not.

Monit partnered with Kimberly-Clark to bring the technology to Huggies diapers. The monitor is already available in Korea and Japan.

19 of 19 Patrick Holland/CNET

Pepe pet dryer

Korean company Pepe showed off this pet dryer at CES 2019. While it looks a bit like a clothes dryer, it's mean to take your pet from wet to dry in about 25 minutes. You can't fit a Great Dane in there, though. While it looks potentially traumatic, Pepe says most pooches just snooze through the process.

The dryer is available in Korea, China and Singapore, but has yet to go on the market in the US.

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