God is in the details, they say. But so is the devil. Especially when you’re hungry and drained after yet another bender day in this wild, wild world. And though jerk packaging designs do not apply solely to food, but come in many shapes and product categories, they are the solid reason why so many of us have some level of trust issues.

Like, putting three salami tranches on the side of a pizza so that it gets a “window view,” shining like a diamond out of the package, is borderline bearable. We bear this injustice only because we know it can get worse. Like a wrap packaged in such a way that it looks ⅓ bigger than it truly is.

So Bored Panda has compiled this list as a safe place to talk about shamelessly evil packaging designs that have been spotted all over the world. And even if the phenomenon is more or less universal, it doesn’t mean it’s okay. On the contrary, it serves as a reminder that it can always get worse than your chocolate box with 50% of the candy discreetly concealed from the packaging because it doesn’t exist.

Psst! More infuriating packages that boil even the most Zen blood of all can be found in our previous articles here and here.

#1

1001 Stickers And 768 Of Them Are Useless Squares. Thanks, Disney

1001 Stickers And 768 Of Them Are Useless Squares. Thanks, Disney

Mishi_Moshi Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

I don't think Disney had anything to do with this

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#2

Tricked By The Packaging Of My Moisturizing Cream

Tricked By The Packaging Of My Moisturizing Cream

Bail-Me-Out Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Happens all the time. Always read the amount/ oz's etc... I open the packages too

Nubis Knight
Community Member
1 month ago

There's a law against such in Germany: Difference between package and product may not be over 30%.

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Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

So stupid how companies are happy to waste packaging to rip people off in deception. This should be illegal and companies should be held more accountable for their role in unnecessary waste.

Sabse
Community Member
1 month ago

In some countries it is illegal :)

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RaroaRaroa
Community Member
1 month ago

And then inside the tiny tub is probably a big false bottom too.

Penny Martin
Community Member
1 month ago

Should be illegal.

Downunderdude
Community Member
1 month ago

I'm pleased to say this would be illegal in Australia: Businesses are not allowed to make statements that are incorrect or likely to create a false impression. This rule applies to their advertising, their product packaging, and any information provided to you by their staff or online shopping services. It also applies to any statements made by businesses in the media or online, such as testimonials on their websites or social media pages.

catherine todd
Community Member
1 month ago

Thanks, downunderdude... best response yet!

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Jon S.
Community Member
1 month ago

That is so clearly designed to deceive, I think it would fall foul of trading standards in most countries.

Mishka Katira
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

Are you kidding me? this is terrible packaging choice

Little Wonder
Community Member
1 month ago

This is partly about taking up shelf space. If you're looking for whatever this is, you might not see it if it's boxed to the jar size.

James016
Community Member
1 month ago

The box is that big for all the blurb on the back.

BluEyedSeoulite
Community Member
1 month ago

Just do a folded up strip of paper inside/on the box and a QR code on the box. Easy to fix.

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wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow.. the waste just to lie to people

Pascale Pierloot
Community Member
1 month ago

I once had one bar of soap delivered to me in a shoe-box size package. Once I opened the box, I found another box and another and another...everytime it said "Don't you just love opening your surprise?" I found the soap taped to the bottom of a plain box with duct-tape... I took a marker and put a big no on each six boxes and returned it...got refunded and 3 complimentary bars of soap in their original boxes wrapped in a paper gift-bag. Smelled great.

Antonio Gregovich
Community Member
1 month ago

What a rip off

Melissa Nunya
Community Member
1 month ago

When it comes to skin care I pretty much expect this always

Marlowe Fitzpatrik
Community Member
1 month ago

Sad but true

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Sasha Kuleshov
Community Member
1 month ago

Way to waste paper and shelf space :I

giku T
Community Member
1 month ago

nivea products has the picture of the actual size of the item on the side of the packaging.

Mary Hurst
Community Member
1 month ago

Such a waste...all that packaging going into trash.

Susan Reid Smith
Community Member
1 month ago

Larger packaging like that makes it more difficult to tuck in a purse or pocket and steal it.

Kim Lorton
Community Member
1 month ago

Yep. I now prefer to buy creams and such, in a tube, so I can gauge exactly how much is in the container! Bought an eye cream, and it was so lacking in the product, I took it back to Ulta, and got my money back. And yes, I took a flashlight to show them that it was a product deception and they were using it to charge more, for less product!

Brian Dunphy
Community Member
1 month ago

That's alot of wasted paper

Linda HS
Community Member
1 month ago

All the time

RavenClaw
Community Member
1 month ago

Who does that?!

JustABoredPanda
Community Member
1 month ago

This always happens to me with my makeup

Mae Mosse
Community Member
1 month ago

Waste of packaging. No wonder we have no much waste. Especially when people don’t recycle, or the packaging is foiled so some places won’t recycle them

CincyReds
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow!

Maria Persson
Community Member
1 month ago

Happens all the time at more exclusive brands.

Johanne Trudeau
Community Member
1 month ago

And how much did that cost? All in the packaging...

Elaine Mattingly
Community Member
1 month ago

Single serving ?

C.S. E.
Community Member
1 month ago

Did they not notice weight? Not just on the box, but, the size of the box vs the weight of the box in their hand vs the balance of the box. Clearly, the bottom would have been empty. Furthermore, I never purchase lotions in pots. All the beneficial ingredients will begin to break down quickly once exposed to air. By the time you're half way into the pot, it's just a basic, overpriced moisturizer.

Mumof1
Community Member
1 month ago

Yup - very common in cosmetics. As long as you get the quantity stated there's nothing you can do.

MikeMaxis
Community Member
1 month ago

They needed that box space for the 1000 ingredients. Unsafe anyhow.

Vicki Perizzolo
Community Member
1 month ago

they are all like that.

Ashley Wright
Community Member
1 month ago

Always pays to look at the ounces, then you’ll know.

Peter Kovak
Community Member
1 month ago

What a waste...Killing our trees for such a petty marketing trick...Sad!

Zella Haesche
Community Member
1 month ago

I’ve had this happen also😬

Sharon Madsen
Community Member
1 month ago

Shouldn't be legal.

Flavia Slag
Community Member
1 month ago

That's just evil!

June Galloway
Community Member
1 month ago

just think of how much money they waist using extra packaging. they could charge the same amount and save on excess packaging OR charge less (sell more) with savings made on not using excess packaging.

Liz-ard
Community Member
1 month ago

Wow! That is really ugly marketing!!!

Studio5301
Community Member
1 month ago

so sad.

Bunny Wood
Community Member
1 month ago

There is a fair few countries that would prosecute that firm

Ronnie Saunders
Community Member
1 month ago

They do this so they can put all their information on it that's really important for us to read... Because we can all read size 64 font! NOT!

Amazon QT
Community Member
1 month ago

Now this one, being a graphic designer myself, is mainly bc they have to add all of that writing on the outside of the packaging per FDA regulations.

Horizon
Community Member
1 month ago

Sometimes packaging like this is to deter theft. Sometimes. 🤷🏻‍♀️

Starlee87
Community Member
1 month ago

What a lie!!!!!!!

Lisa Tetlow
Community Member
1 month ago

Wasteful dishonesty.

Pam Harris
Community Member
1 month ago

😧

Jack Urquhart
Community Member
1 month ago

VERY VERY common trick for cosmetics.

Barbar Stewart
Community Member
1 month ago

This happened to me once with an E.L.F product.

Bonny Saxon
Community Member
1 month ago

If they didn't overpackage it, you'd never find it again.

catherine todd
Community Member
1 month ago

BEST RESPONSE BY Downunderdude: "I'm pleased to say this would be illegal in Australia: Businesses are not allowed to make statements that are incorrect or likely to create a false impression. This rule applies to their advertising, their product packaging, and any information provided to you by their staff or online shopping services. It also applies to any statements made by businesses in the media or online, such as testimonials on their websites or social media pages."

catherine todd
Community Member
1 month ago

Why hide the name of this product, so we can avoid it in the future? What an incredible RIP OFF; surely this should be illegal!

Doris Bennett
Community Member
1 month ago

WHAT???? That's Just plain robbery!

Luuta
Community Member
1 month ago

It must be vanishing cream

Paula Hannon
Community Member
1 month ago

That's gotta be illegal.

L Sawatzke
Community Member
1 month ago

It’s just maddening!

•LeXi•
Community Member
1 month ago

This one, it does tell you on the box how many ozs it is, so yeah, gotta check and read everything.

Gyro Pilot
Community Member
1 month ago

Lots of empty space, but a larger package also makes it harder for a thief to pocket the jar. One function of packaging is to thwart thieves.

Katinka Min
Community Member
1 month ago

But wouldn't you just feel that in your hand, that is not nearly heavy enough?

Marlowe Fitzpatrik
Community Member
1 month ago

Yeah. Because everyone knows how much a moisturizing cream weighs 😉 . Also, some products have extra-heavy glass-containers so you wouldn't be able to judge the weight of the product because the bottle/flask is so heavy. Yes, the amount should be stamped on the side. But people do mostly buy by sight and what looks pretty and like a lot. It's marketing and it works.

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mooo
Community Member
1 month ago

yikes!

BoredDragon
Community Member
1 month ago

Le gasp

glowworm2
Community Member
1 month ago

This feels like a weird magic trick/illusion.

Roland Gosselin
Community Member
1 month ago

Isn't that illegal??? Full on scam.

Nubmaeme
Community Member
1 month ago

Due to having to list the ingredients (all those chemicals have such long names) and sometimes list them in several different languages, as well as instructions for use in several languages, plus a myriad of warnings (for stupid people to not eat them or use in their eyes, etc), packages have had to become quite a bit larger than the product.

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Rose the Cook
Community Member
1 month ago

Feeling the weight of the package should be an indication of how much is just air.

Serial pacifist
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks like one of those kid magician kits. Now you see it, now you don't.

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

Damn

T.Milly
Community Member
1 month ago

If the person bothered to look at the weight of the product, they would know that it's a small amount.

Marlowe Fitzpatrik
Community Member
1 month ago

Still, why this huge box?

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#3

Is Anyone Else Bothered By Deceptive Packaging Like This?

Is Anyone Else Bothered By Deceptive Packaging Like This?

sevenhops Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

Grrrrr.

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Bored Panda reached out to Portugal-based graphic designer Laura Vanagaite who specializes in branding and illustration design. Laura said that deceptive packaging like the ones you see in this post is really a way to trick the human mind.

“Once we see unique photos of food and drinks, our mind creates the impression that the volume of the contents is greater than it actually is.” This anticipation is destroyed as soon as you open the package. “And once we find out that the reality is different, we feel the disappointment,” Laura explained.

When asked why there is still so much deceptive packaging sold in the shopping aisles, Laura said that this is a clever marketing technique. “Brands know that beautiful imagery sells and that catchy photos with great products create the illusion which will help to sell it fast.”

#4

Bought These Sticky Notes Cause I Thought The Gold Border Was Nice

Bought These Sticky Notes Cause I Thought The Gold Border Was Nice

KarmasDoll Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Thats horrible. Back they go

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#5

My Sister Got This For Her Birthday

My Sister Got This For Her Birthday

GatorMaster2112 Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

What a rip off.

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#6

The Sticker Was A Lie

The Sticker Was A Lie

Doophie Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

Take it back

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However, the alluring impression of the deceptive packaging is temporary. Laura says that in order to establish a bond with your loyal customers, brands should employ functional and trustworthy designs. It’s what allows them “to create a feeling of security between them and their customer.”

When it comes to the right kind of packaging design, Laura explained “that all areas of design have a purpose to solve a problem and provide trust to the user.” This means that user-friendly packaging should have features like safety and enhanced usability, be appealing and optimal, and fit the specific customer requirements.

“Every good design needs to be functional, practical, and represent the brand itself in a good way.” But that doesn’t mean it should be boring, on the contrary. In addition to all the features mentioned before, efficient packaging has to grab the consumer’s attention.

This is where the product and packaging designers come into play. “The designer has the ability to make the design stand out by using shapes, colors, orientations. These are key in making it clear to the consumer what the brand is about and what its purpose is."

#7

Ahh Yes, Reality Is Often Disappointing

Ahh Yes, Reality Is Often Disappointing

vicesam Report

Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago

Is the centre meant to be poppy seeds?

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#8

"Printed All Over" And Deliberately Leaves The Pattern On The Outside Of The Package

"Printed All Over" And Deliberately Leaves The Pattern On The Outside Of The Package

sorden96 Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

ThT is actually pretty ballsy.

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#9

Natural My Foot

Natural My Foot

93arkhanov93 Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

There should be laws against this one

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#10

Rolling Stone Presents (39 Of The) 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time

Rolling Stone Presents (39 Of The) 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time

-Owlette- Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

39 selections from...crikey.

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#11

Both Weigh 500g But The Green One Is In A 30% "Bigger Bag More To Share"

Both Weigh 500g But The Green One Is In A 30% "Bigger Bag More To Share"

AApickleAA Report

Adam C
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

The Bag is bigger. I see no lie. It's clever marketing.

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#12

So Thankful For My Singular Candy Topping

So Thankful For My Singular Candy Topping

hyrte0010 Report

troufaki13
Community Member
1 month ago

Well, it is candY topped, not candIES!

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#13

Thought I’d Buy Some Colored Pens. Turns Out Every Single One Of Them Has Blue Ink

Thought I’d Buy Some Colored Pens. Turns Out Every Single One Of Them Has Blue Ink

desperate_ly Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

Gaaaah!!!!

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#14

Bought A Ball Pit For My Baby

Bought A Ball Pit For My Baby

aditisar Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

Blatant false advertising... there is no baby in the actual package

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#15

This "Box" Of Beef Jerky

This "Box" Of Beef Jerky

boot1994 Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Yes, this is deceptive, but always remember to check the weight of the content.

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#16

How Can They Even Call This "Non-Dairy?"

How Can They Even Call This "Non-Dairy?"

thatcadiegirl Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

The casein is probably as close as you get

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#17

Sales Genius

Sales Genius

geoxan69 Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

I would!! Lol

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#18

This Cashew Packaging. I Was Wondering Why My Hand Instantly Hit The Bottom When I Opened It

This Cashew Packaging. I Was Wondering Why My Hand Instantly Hit The Bottom When I Opened It

DiggyKalborn Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Just wow

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#19

Bought A Coloring Book And Pencils To Keep Myself Busy While I’m Off Work. Thought These Were Full-Size Pencils

Bought A Coloring Book And Pencils To Keep Myself Busy While I’m Off Work. Thought These Were Full-Size Pencils

eva_white Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

Buy crayola brand

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#20

New Packaging (Right), Same Quantity

New Packaging (Right), Same Quantity

tuf-tuf Report

Bepina
Community Member
1 month ago

yay, more plastic waste!

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#21

800 Pieces. Yeah Right. The Box Is Half Blocked And 550 Pieces Are Tiny Dot Pieces. My Son Was Not Happy

800 Pieces. Yeah Right. The Box Is Half Blocked And 550 Pieces Are Tiny Dot Pieces. My Son Was Not Happy

robstraightedge Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

People need to regularly post this kind of thing to warn others and stop companies from doing things like this

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#22

I Was Wondering Why This Watermelon Juice Tasted So Weird

I Was Wondering Why This Watermelon Juice Tasted So Weird

spamtarget Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

Ffs!!

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#23

Bought Some Eye Makeup, Just Realized One Of The Eyeshadows Isn’t Safe For Eyes. Found Out Via White Print On A White Background

Bought Some Eye Makeup, Just Realized One Of The Eyeshadows Isn’t Safe For Eyes. Found Out Via White Print On A White Background

“Not intended for use in the immediate eye area”

PmMeYourFear Report

Anne
Community Member
1 month ago

Thats an FDA rule. One of them has a red colored ingredient that may stain. Always use a base if this is on your eye shadow.

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#24

New Means What's Inside Is Not New

New Means What's Inside Is Not New

raghu972 Report

Vic
Community Member
1 month ago

L'O-UNREAL

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#25

My Mother Ordered 1000 Plastic Blocks For Her Nephews. Ended Up Receiving 523

My Mother Ordered 1000 Plastic Blocks For Her Nephews. Ended Up Receiving 523

Mrm854 Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

I guess ppl need to pop for the leggos

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#26

Brand New Protein Powder, Not Even Filled Half Whey

Brand New Protein Powder, Not Even Filled Half Whey

Furious_Flames Report

80 Van
Community Member
1 month ago

I see what you did there.

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#27

I Guess The Meatballs All Just Wanted A Window Seat

I Guess The Meatballs All Just Wanted A Window Seat

joeChump Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Unfortunately, I've encountered a lot of food packaged this way.

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#28

8% Alcohol Or

8% Alcohol Or

CucumberWizard Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

Less than can mean 0.1%

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#29

Tesco Is Selling "Flushable" Wet Wipes Which Are "Harmful To Aquatic Life"

Tesco Is Selling "Flushable" Wet Wipes Which Are "Harmful To Aquatic Life"

HarryMedawar Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

We found the reason why the UK left the EU...

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#30

New Cereal Box Is 11% Taller With 1.6% Less Cereal

New Cereal Box Is 11% Taller With 1.6% Less Cereal

______--------- Report

RaroaRaroa
Community Member
1 month ago

More wasteful packaging. How do the people who come up with these ideas sleep at night. A lot of cereal boxes are half empty. Not only would it save on cardboard, the plastic for the bag inside and the ink, if it were more realistic for the contents, it would also be cheaper to freight because they'd fit more boxes in a truck.

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#31

No, It's Not Bigger. It's Of Same Size

No, It's Not Bigger. It's Of Same Size

ctp_obvious Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Bigger than what? Lies!!!

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#32

This Box Of Mostly Sticks With Some Matches In It

This Box Of Mostly Sticks With Some Matches In It

ampma Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Just wow. That may actually be a production problem

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#33

Disappointment

Disappointment

Draiman402 Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

These companies go to a lot of trouble and create a lot of waste in order to trick people

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#34

9 Sticker Rolls. One Mildly Infuriated 7-Year-Old

9 Sticker Rolls. One Mildly Infuriated 7-Year-Old

MrsPlague33 Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
1 month ago

You can smell the rip off

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#35

"Made In U.S.A"

"Made In U.S.A"

Report

wandile dludlu
Community Member
1 month ago

The case is made in the USA... we can't actually trust them to make the important stuff.

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#36

Some Acrylic Paints I Bought

Some Acrylic Paints I Bought

LeeKellyLK Report

Aahzmandus Pervect
Community Member
1 month ago

It says 20 pcs on the box.

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#37

Went To Poundland And Had The Choice Between These And After Eights, Got These Cause They We're Bigger, I Paid For Air

Went To Poundland And Had The Choice Between These And After Eights, Got These Cause They We're Bigger, I Paid For Air

niamsme Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Always check the comparative weights, not the size of the boxes.

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#38

Pain

Pain

901koala Report

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks like a molded piece of cake.

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#39

Actual Size Is Not The Actual Size

Actual Size Is Not The Actual Size

relishmypickles Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Well that's really blatantly false

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#40

Coloring Kit That Is 90% Empty And Counts Each Piece Of Paper As One Piece In 100 Pieces

Coloring Kit That Is 90% Empty And Counts Each Piece Of Paper As One Piece In 100 Pieces

MchZ Report

S. Tor Storm
Community Member
1 month ago

This should be illegal, but the light weight should tip people off tho.

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#41

Coloring Book For My Son

Coloring Book For My Son

PhotosByDrew Report

Kaisa
Community Member
1 month ago

Primary colors plus one free. What more could you want.

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#42

Sneaky Packaging Cheating Us

Sneaky Packaging Cheating Us

tenebralupo Report

James016
Community Member
1 month ago

That's just really sh**ty given how much they charge for blades

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#43

Package Of The Cheese vs. The Cheese Itself

Package Of The Cheese vs. The Cheese Itself

eszleny Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

All the time.

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#44

This Sour Batch Candy Bag Felt Oddly Light

This Sour Batch Candy Bag Felt Oddly Light

KevroniCoal Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

This is a complete waste of packaging.

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#45

One Of The Blocks Isn't One Of The Blocks

One Of The Blocks Isn't One Of The Blocks

golden-potato Report

Couldnt_Find_A_Good_Name
Community Member
1 month ago

But can we appreciate the amount of effort put into making that piece of cardboard into looking like a block?

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#46

Xtreme Jerks I'd Say

Xtreme Jerks I'd Say

MigueeRL Report

Mohsie Supposie
Community Member
1 month ago

They both say they are 60g.

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#47

These Were Locked In A Glass Case Facing Forward So You Couldn’t Just Read The Back Before Purchase

These Were Locked In A Glass Case Facing Forward So You Couldn’t Just Read The Back Before Purchase

Taylor-Cox-TLC Report

Foxxy (The Original)
Community Member
1 month ago

You can ask to read the box before purchasing.

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#48

This Pizza Tastes Like False Advertising

This Pizza Tastes Like False Advertising

SIRasdf23 Report

Catlady6000
Community Member
1 month ago

I'm picturing a sweat shop full of kids frantically rolling 1000s of pizza crusts

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#49

Even Worse - It's Stale

Even Worse - It's Stale

katielh98 Report

RaroaRaroa
Community Member
1 month ago

Why would anyone buy popcorn in a bag, in a box, in a box with a window anyway?

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#50

Thanks Jetstar For My Large Box Of Pencils

Thanks Jetstar For My Large Box Of Pencils

tandol Report

Hollysmom
Community Member
1 month ago

Was this from Wish?

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Note: this post originally had