The weirdest products to come out of lockdown.

During lockdown, the algorithms got to know us better than a COVID-19 test.

We were bored, delirious, vulnerable, and most likely developing carpal tunnel: aka a particularly easy target (market) for some pretty outlandish companies. 

Whether it was inventions, incidental rebranding or a lottery-winning viral hit, some weird products have slipped through our phone cracks, rising to fame through our feeds. 

These were some of them.

'I need it'.


  1. Sticky Balls 

You read that correctly, and yes, you’re still in the right place.

The product is pretty self explanatory, actually. They’re a set of sticky balls that grip to the ceiling for a few seconds. Before dropping back to the floor. The aim: throw, catch, repeat until you destress and decompress. 

Sticky Balls’ visibility remained high, not because of their glow-in-the-dark feature, but due to their incessant paid advertising on TikTok. 

By creating a LO-FI ad that blended seamlessly with the rest of TikTok’s ‘For You’ page – the result was clear. You can hit a home run in sales, if you’re consistent enough. And your audience is anxious enough. 

  1. Melatonin Inhaler

It’s not the first time an e-cigarette has been positioned as ‘the better alternative’ to smoking. However, Inhale Health went in a slightly different direction. Instead of positioning themselves as the lesser of two evils, they created a category of their own. 

How? They took out nicotine and added in nutrients. 

We shit you not, these guys made an actual smoking device containing B12, melatonin, lavender and caffeine, ready to inhale from something smaller than your thumb, sleeker than your 7-day old ponytail. 

With a modern visual identity and a scientific tone of voice, we think the ‘Inhalable’ embodies a cigarette on a juice cleanse: unappealing, but kind of tempting. 

  1. Cranberry Juice.

One minute, you’re just a dude drinking cran-juice through the neighbourhood, the next you’re a household name, shuffling Spotify’s top 10 trending hits and single handedly giving UTI-treatment a brand deal they can’t resist. 

This is the power of going viral. 

A brand collaboration like no other- Fleetwood Mac and Ocean Spray cranberry juice- we’re almost gutted that we didn’t think of it.

  1. Slime Kits.

Once we all burnt out from the banana bread making and puzzle playing, we needed something new, something tactile, and we needed it, stat.

The rise in Slime Kits were not just from 6-10 year olds with too much time on their hands. Similar to following a recipe, Slime Kits because a mindfulness practise – and a visual representation of how we all felt during 2020’s lockdown.

Note: For many millennials, this product either mitigated or caused an existential crisis. One had to buy to find out which one. We love those odds.

  1. Roller Skates

After a few months in lockdown, the ‘daily walk’ just lost its sparkle. It was at that point that we all faced a difficult question. Do we sink or do we swim? 

The answer was: neither.

We skate.

Roller skate sales increased twofold in 2020, with many brands struggling to keep up with demand. Their rise in popularity was most likely fuelled by nostalgia for the good old days, and some viral TikTok videos too. Roller skates gave us some pseudo-momentum in an otherwise stagnant year, and let us roll with the punches just a tad easier.

Love them or loathe them, these products show the power in creativity, PR, paid advertising, pivoting, and that pretty much anything is possible: if you’re bored enough.