5 “As Seen On TV” Beauty Products Put to the Test
THE WIZZIT, $19.95
The Gimmick: The battery-operated hair remover gets rid of multiple hairs simultaneously by pulling them out at the root, like an electric tweezer at hyperspeed. The slogan: "Attracts hair like a magnet!"
The Verdict: The world's ouchiest magnet. We used it on our upper lip and bikini line, and it definitely worked, except on our tiniest hairs -- but we don't see it replacing the razor anytime soon. Devices like this have never been wildly popular for the simple reason that they combine the pleasure and fun of electrolysis, waxing, and tweezing.
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THE SPLIT-ENDER, $59.98
The Gimmick: It looks like a flatiron, but instead of straightening hair, it snips split ends.
The Verdict: Despite some weed-whacker-like sound effects, we didn't notice a change. We reread the directions, which noted it wasn't ideal for curly hair. So we strong-armed our straight-haired officemate into trying it. "This would be great if you needed a time-consuming hobby," she said as she inserted the recommended tiny clump of hair. She didn't see much of a change, either. On the upside, the Split-Ender will make you appreciate the beauty and simplicity of scissors.
THE NECKLINE SLIMMER SYSTEM, $19.99
The Gimmick: Exercise for your neck! Balance the Genie, a little pogo stick, between your chin and chest and press down rhythmically. (The system also comes with a bonus Firming Accelerator Cream, which must work, since it's "European.")
The Verdict: We always think that if an exercise causes soreness, it must be doing something -- and after a few weeks of ten reps, thrice daily, we did feel a little ache. Of course, we looked pretty much the same, and we can't imagine sticking with a routine that turned us into a human bobblehead.
INSTYLER: THE ROTATING IRON, $99.99
The Gimmick: A combination hairbrush and flatiron, this device has four rows of bristles and a heating rod that twirls around furiously to give you straight, shiny hair.
The Verdict: No question, this gadget was effective, even on our unruly curls. On the other hand, you need both patience and care: Mistakenly smoothing one section for the fourth time resulted in singed hair and an alarmed cry of "What's that smell?" from our husband. Still, if even a beauty klutz can do it, this just might be worth the hefty price.
BUMPITS HAIR VOLUMIZING LEAVE-IN INSERTS, $9.95
The Gimmick: Attach these little plastic crescents to your head like combs, then brush your hair over and around them to create a Mad Men-inspired chignon or even Lady Gaga-ish scare hair. Simply put, it's scaffolding for your hair!
The Verdict: Shockingly, we found that these actually work. They stayed hidden and stayed put (we shook our head like Tommy Lee in a Mötley Crüe video and still didn't manage to dislodge them), and then miraculously came out of our hair without a struggle. It's no wonder Sarah Palin is rumored to wear them. They are, indeed, maverick-y!
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