Maria Sharapova, the number two-ranked World Tennis Association player and former Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, just launched a line of boutique candies -- including little lemon-lime tennis balls. This seems a little weird, considering Sharapova's athleticism and the nation's current examination of sugary sweets -- but then, this country has a long and proud history of celebrity-pushed products that range from somewhat useful to completely inane.
Here's our list of the five dumbest celebrity products ever pushed on the public. Paul Newman gets a free pass, because those salad dressings really are delicious.
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5. Jessica Simpson's edible beauty products Our favorite purtiest-girl-in-the-whole-trailer-park, Jessica Simpson came out with a line of edible beauty products, Dessert Treats, including lotions, perfumes and lipglosses, back in 2005, which had her proving to the world yet again -- or still -- that she's dumber than a box of press-on nails in more than one category. While I wholeheartedly support the idea that beauty products should smell nice and should make the people who buy them smell nice as well, and agree that lipgloss is much better when it tastes like something edible (chocolate frosting, onion rings or maybe pears) and that other good-tasting stuff you smear on body parts (that aren't face-lips) shouldn't be exclusive to the exotic adult products industry, still, who could take Jessica Simpson seriously?
As soon as she opens her mouth, she spoils her own hotness. And anyway, beauty products should not be used for nutritive purposes: We have food for that.
4. Slippers by Snooki Everyone's favorite pickle-munching oompa loompa, Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi got really famous really fast for a score of reasons, including being drunk, horny, irritating and orange. In 2010 the Jersey Shore star decided to channel her pan-flash popularity into creating her own line of slippers, Happy Feet, designed to look like over-stuffed tennis shoes. The inevitable leopard-print ones are half a step down from trailer-park chic, and wearing them will almost surely get you photographed for that "People of Wal-Mart" website.
3. Dan Aykroyd's vodka Most people love Dan Aykroyd. Most people love vodka. So when he introduced his line of Crystal Head vodka in 2007, it seemed like a good match. And the vodka bottles are actually really cool: glass human skulls with wood stoppers. The selling point is that the bottles are an homage to the archaeological mystery of the thirteen ancient crystal heads found around the world, from the American Southwest to Tibet; they've been dated between 5,000 and 35,000 years BC, and are hewn from solid quartz chunks, smooth-polished but with no tool marks. What all this has to do with vodka is....nothing, but when you are as rich and famous as Aykroyd, you can pretty much do whatever you want and attach whatever meaning to it that you want.
The vodka is filtered through quartz crystals, which in theory may add some spiritual quality to the clear booze, but in reality the stuff tastes like vodka -- decent vodka, but still. The only real payoff is the bottle, particularly during the holidays, when you can get a gift pack with little matching glass skull shotglasses. Dan really should have just gone into the decanter business and skipped all the crazy.
Continue reading for the stupidest shills.
2. Lady Gaga's blood and semen perfume It's hard not to like Lady Gaga -- what with the strait-jackets, meat dresses and the nutty shit that comes out of her mouth (she usually offends the Catholic Church, but that's not hard to do) -- so when she announced in 2011 that she was launching a new perfume that she wanted to contain the essences of semen and blood, it didn't seem shocking so much as wonky and faddish. The actual perfume, "Fame," is a strange, dark liquid in a weird, egg-shaped bottle/ Gaga claims it has her DNA from a blood sample and semen from an unnamed donor -- hopefully both were thoroughly checked for STIs -- and says it smells like an expensive hooker. That's a relief, because Juicy Couture perfume already has the cheap-hooker scent covered. But what Lady Gaga probably didn't consider is that if getting a whiff of blood and semen is what people want, a Greyhound restroom provides that for free.
1. Lindsay Lohan's self-tanner LiLo was such a cute kid, a promising young actress and a redhead with a memorable face. Unfortunately, today it's used mostly for mug shots. Lindsay looks like a wreck, and bounces in and out of legal trouble so often that Rip Torn probably wouldn't party with her. So it would make more sense for her to come out with a signature line of bail bonds than a beauty product. She launched the self-tanning mist Sevin Nyne in 2009 -- lawyers aren't cheap -- purposely misspelled the name for reasons only she knows, and no one else cares about. She created the product with a "tanning expert," meaning the lady who was at the time her personal tan-sprayer, and it's chemical-free, has a sugar-and-coconut base and also contains caramel, Chardonnay extracts and gogi berry. The color is advertised to last less than a week, so you'd only need a few buckets of this crap to keep that sunny, orange glow.
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This celeb-endorsed product doesn't sound terrible, if you are the sort of person who uses fake tanner. But trusting anything with Lindsay Lohan's name on it doesn't seem like the best idea -- unless it's booze.