Sunday, June 13, 2010
“We all love scoring great deals on Craigslist and EBay, but many second-hand purchases are actually terrible deals. Stay clear of these 20 used items that will end up costing you money -- or even endanger your health.”
[Included on the list: swimsuits, undergarments, make-up.]
“… a good thing to remember about used makeup is that it's a breeding ground for bacteria and a number of contagious diseases.”
-- US News.com
The more you know, right? And I was just about to put a down payment on a sack of old gym socks and eye shadow (sold as a set). Whew. How did we survive before respected journals saw fit to share lifestyle tips on the internet?
Though generally a compendium of vital, daily information, U.S. News failed to mention a few used items I consider suspect. You may think I'm overly suspicious, but I once lived with a used-car salesman, and can parse some lingo and read between the lines. I’m not saying don’t buy the following items, just don't rush out all fresh-faced, thinking it's Christmas:
Dental floss: Sure, it may look fine; there may appear to be a lot of play left on that string. But if the floss is still good, why isn’t the owner taking it for a second trip around the choppers? A new coat of wax makes anything shiny and bright. Be especially wary if sold in conjunction with q-tips.
Kleenex: Here’s the quandary: The ad on Craig’s List claims “double plie,” but you’re just taking their word for that, aren’t you. At least ask how many prior blows, and get it in writing. Don’t settle for something vague like, “lightly used.”
Contraceptive devices. Remember, “Previously owned” probably means previously tested. I’d ask for a head count on that household.
Band-Aids: A little white-out and superglue. Oldest trick in the book.
I have at least twenty more, but I’ll stop here because the rest might be considered in questionable taste