In Amazon Unbound, Brad Stone’s essential reading on the continued rise of the e-commerce behemoth, there is a particular line that stuck out to me. Before Amazon opened the floodgates by allowing Chinese sellers to join the platform en masse, the company did a survey to see what was more important to its consumers: quality or price. The results: “And it turned out that plenty of people will buy dirt cheap sneakers on the internet, even if they suspect the shoes are not going to last that long.”
This was my thinking when I purchased this pair of loafers from a brand called Jousen. I recently moved into the top floor of an apartment building, and I wanted a pair of slip-ons I could quickly don if I needed to go down to collect a package from the mailroom or something. Since I did not plan to be walking in them more than, I don’t know, 100 feet at a time, I did not want anything expensive. Jousen obviously spends a lot of money on Amazon ads, because as I dug through the results it showed up on every page. And at under $40 it was easily the cheapest.
For $40, I was not expecting a lot. I figured with how sparingly I intended to wear them, I could hopefully get a few month’s worth of use. Then when they inevitably fell apart, I’d spend another $40 on a new pair.
That is not what happened. Admittedly, I have owned these loafers for nearly two months and they have yet to fall apart. And I do not suspect they ever will. Because I do not foresee a world in which I put them on my feet ever again. These are by far the most uncomfortable shoes I have ever worn—I can only equate it to wearing a hairshirt on your feet. Every step I took in them felt like punishment for some crime I didn’t even know I’d committed.
While I shouldn’t have been surprised that a cheap product from a no-name Chinese brand was shoddy quality, I will admit that I was. I know there is a culture gap between what the Chinese make for an American audience and what Americans actually use, but here I thought wearing shoes was a universal experience. Silly me.
The Jousen slip-on loafer has over 1,800 customer reviews. Reading through them, I can only assume the vast majority are fake. Anything with the word “comfortable” in it is easy to disregard out of hand. There is at least one review, however, which I have no doubt is genuine:
Nice and lightweight, but the interior cushioning is lacking, feels like walking of a cement floor, barefooted. Poor arch support, and heel is higher than toe area so you feel if you are walking downhill.
I could not have said it better myself. That is exactly what it feels like—walking downhill on a cement floor in bare feet. If you believe that sensation is worth $40, then by all means purchase your very own pair of this modern torture device. If not, just spend the extra $30 and get Rockports.
Find These TikTok Must-Haves On Amazon
We know that there are plenty of products to buy on Amazon, but TikTok is making it even more fun to find them. We’ve created a complete “TikTok Must-Haves” list, full of our favorite items from Amazon.
Almost anywhere you look, the Birkenstock clogs are sold out. If you want to jump on the trend, but are not ready for the price tag, these clogs are a great affordable alternative.
With pillowy soft cushioning, these are the perfect slip-on sandals to wear after a workout, to the beach, or simply with your favorite comfortable weekend outfit.
An incredible cleaning paste that has taken the internet by storm. Made of all natural, vegan ingredients, this product has over 100,000 reviews claiming that this is one of the best cleaning products on the market and can remove any stain in record speed.
Light affects your body’s natural circadian rhythm. During winter, when there is less natural light, we often feel sluggish, depressed, and uninspired. This simple mood lamp sits on your desk and provides gentle light to help you fight those winter blues.
Stojo Collapsible Travel Cup With Straw – Aquamarine, 16oz / 470ml – Reusable To-Go Pocket Size Silicone Cup for Hot and Cold Drinks – Perfect for Camping and Hiking – Microwave & Dishwasher Safe — $19.95
This genius silicone cup collapses down into a small, easy to carry, convenient package whenever you need to stow it in your purse or travel. It is virtually indestructible and comes with a straw!
Another TikTok find for your car, we love this portable humidifier to help prevent dry air and chapped lips in the winter.
Make the perfect cold brew with this one-quart container. The fine mesh coffee filter helps keep out unwanted grounds and allows you to use your favorite blends!
Feeke Fabric Shaver – Lint Shaver Electric Sweater Shaver Lint Remover, Battery Operated – Fuzz, Pill, Lint Remover for Clothes, Legging, Sofa, Curtain, Socks – with 2 Extra Blades, Light Blue — $12.99
Remove fabric fluff, pilling, or lint from any piece of clothing quickly and easily with a rotating blade that has three different sized holes for all fabrics.
Quickly print photos directly from your smartphone with this portable printer. By using Bluetooth and the Sprocket app, you can customize photos or text before printing.
This putty is ideal for getting into common hard to reach spots in your car, including air vents, consoles, and door handles. Just press the gel anywhere you want to clean and watch as it pulls all dirt and junk out! You can use this indoors on keyboards, remotes, or console controls.
Leave yourself sticky notes without wasting paper with these easy-to-use dry-erase note pads. Attach to most shiny surfaces, simply rinse to clean and reuse.
Check Out These 5 Fall Must-Haves From Amazon
Cooler weather, changing leaves, and all the classic fall activities. I found some Amazon must-haves for the season so you don’t have to.
Rust-Colored Velvet Throw Pillows
Two luxurious-looking velvet pillow covers for under $15. Comfy and cozy for your living room, bedroom, kitchen or office.
Because what’s fall decor without pumpkins? These are a staple and will actually last you all season, unlike the real pumpkins that you’ll toss before Halloween.
Cast Iron Dutch Oven
A flawless pairing of form and function that doesn’t quit, the Lodge Dutch Oven is an enameled cast iron classic that’s great for preparing and serving memorable meals.
Rustic Farmhouse Throw
A cozy throw blanket to warm up by the bonfire. Perfect for hanging over the couch for your fall decor.
This farmhouse-inspired tray is a stylish way to enjoy cheese and appetizers with your friends. Makes an incredible housewarming gift with an option to get it personalized.
This Rubber Beach Bag Gives You The Space You Need
School is out, the tide is in, and summer 2022 is a-go. Though the beach was one of those places you could still travel to even at the height of COVID restrictions, the repeal of mask mandates and negative testing requirements sure make the whole experience much more appealing.
Of course, going to the beach for the first time in years likely means you are in need of supplies. If that is the case, you came to the right place. In recent weeks, We Know Products has written about a variety of beach gear, including a beach table, vacuum-insulated margarita tumblers, and an American flag beach umbrella. Here is another one to add to the list: rubber tote bags.
Now, longtime WKP readers know we are partial to the clear tote bags with U.S. flag patches. But we have also heard from fans who say they like the Expersion totes for going to games and concerts, but that they also want something a little more spacious for beach trips. This rubber tote fits the bill.
As you can see from the item’s title, this bag is literally “oversized,” so you will have zero problem fitting in everything you need to haul down from your hotel room to the shore.