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Truly Baffling Product Designs That Left Customers Feeling Cheated

Truly Baffling Product Designs That Left Customers Feeling Cheated March 31, 2021Leave a comment

If you've ever bought a "sharing size" bag of chips or a "new and improved" product, you might have fallen for some of the packaging tricks that are used to trick customers out of their hard earned cash. Some food items even advertise their products as "homemade" or "natural" while the fine print explains that these words shouldn't be used to describe the products at all!

Product designs are about as deceptive as the ads that get you to buy them. They offer you the illusion that they are bigger than they seem or that they offer exactly what is represented on the image of the box. But these customers discovered that looks can be so deceiving and these products left them feeling scammed.

These Taro Cakes Are Missing Filling

Reddit / 901koala

These mini-cakes are supposed to have Taro-flavored filling in the middle like the box shows. But this customer was so disappointed when he took a bite and realized that the filling looked more grey than the vibrant purple filling pictured on the package. He was also disappointed in just how little filling there was compared to what he was expecting!

The Ball Pit Without Enough Balls

Reddit / aditisar

The packaging on this ball pit product indicates that there are a lot of multi-colored balls to fill the play pen. But when they set the ball pit up, they learned that there are simply not enough balls to cover a corner of the pit, let alone the entire thing.

A Full-Sized Pizza With Only a Quarter of the Meatballs

Reddit / joeChump

A packaged stuffed crust pizza sounds like a dream come true. But this customer had to deal with a total nightmare when she removed the pizza from the package and discovered that only 25 percent of the pizza was covered with meatballs.

This Mostly Empty Beef Jerky Box

Reddit / boot1994

One would assume that a box of beef jerky would be completely filled entirely. But when this customer opened the box, they found that the beef jerky was only lined against the border of the box to make it seem like the box was full. In reality, the interior was completely empty.

Non Dairy Creamer With Milk

Reddit / thatcadiegirl

Non dairy creamer that contains milk? Yup! It happened! It looks like the manufacturers of this creamer need to go back to school and learn the true meaning of the words non dairy before using it on their product.

Two Mini Wraps for the Price of One

Reddit / geoxan69

This packaging trick was actually pretty crafty. The manufacturers placed the label in the middle to convince customers that they were buying one large wrap. But when the customer removed the label, they discovered that it was actually two small wraps with a significant gap between them.

Cheerios Box That’s Taller, But Contains Less Cereal

Reddit / tacitta

Marketers trick us into buying pricier products by making them bigger, but looks can be deceiving. Take these two boxes of Cheerios. The bigger box actually has 1.6 percent less cereal than the smaller box. The only thing the bigger box has more of is cardboard.

These Cashews’ Deceptively Packaged Bottom

Reddit / DiggyKalborn

This packaging is totally nuts because it looks like customers are getting a package full of raw cashews. But when one customer flipped the package over, they discovered that there’s a massive indentation in the bottom of the container. So, when they stuck their hand inside to grab some cashews, they touched the bottom almost instantly.

Cadbury Milk Chocolate is a Big Sized Liar

Reddit / ctp_obvious

The only thing that’s big about one of these bars of Cadbury Dairy Milk Chocolate is the lie they’re telling customers. The bar in the bottom claims it’s bigger than the original. But it’s the exact same size as the regular bar.

Half-Sized Colored Pencils

Reddit / eva_white

They come in bright and bold colors and are non-toxic, but the one thing they don’t tell you about these colored pencils is that they’re only half the size of a regular full-size colored pencil.

This Box of Matches Has Plain Sticks

Reddit / ampma

This box of Redbird matches claims to have 250 matches. But as it turns out, most of the items inside are just regular sticks. Either this was a major flaw in the production process or the company has a disgruntled employee sabotaging them.

Bigger Packaging, But Same Amount

Reddit / tuf-tuf

Size really doesn’t matter unless customers are being tricked out of their hard earned money. The customer buying the bigger packaged Blue Lily skincare product might think they’re getting more for their bucks. But read how many grams the new package has versus the smaller one and you’ll realize that they have the same quantity.

Picard’s Snack Box is Deceptively Empty

Reddit / Draiman402

This Picard’s snack packaging may be one of the worst. The manufacturers placed a triangle shaped cardboard in the middle with an empty center. So essentially, the only areas that contain any snacks are on the edge of the box.

8 "Frozen II" Stickers Rolls and a Cardboard Box Full of Lies

Reddit / MrsPlague33

According to the package, there should be 9 stickers roles from the Disney film “Frozen II.” But when this customer’s 7-year-old took a closer look, they discovered that one of the rolls was nothing more than a cardboard roll with images printed on it but no actual stickers.

Colored Pens All Have the Same Colored Ink

Reddit / desperate_ly

This customer assumed that they were buying pens with different colored ink based on the color of the casing. But when they got home and tried the pens, they discovered that they all had blue ink.

"Flushable" Toilet Wipes That Kill More Than Bacteria

Reddit / HarryMedawarl

Tesco sells flushable toilet wipes that are bleach-free and will leave toilets nice and sparkly. But it doesn’t say that the wipes are harmful to aquatic life. That terrifying tidbit is printed on the back of the package which most customers rarely even bother to look at.

The Single Candy Topped Brownie

Reddit / hyrte0010

Delicious Deals at a Delicious Price! That’s what’s written on this package of fudge brownies. But what they don’t say is that they’re ripping customers off by only putting one candy topping as opposed to four or five as is shown on the box. Maybe this was just a production error, but it's still pretty cruel!

Only the Doritos Bag is Bigger

Reddit / AApickleAA

Most customers assume that the words “Bigger Bag More To Share” indicates that there are more chips inside the bigger Doritos bag than the normal sized one. But according to the grams listed, the number of chips in the bigger bag is the same as the ones in the regular sized bag. The only thing that is bigger is literally the bag itself.

The Small Print on the Greatest Songs Purchase

Reddit / Owlette

Sometimes, marketing tricks aren’t so easy to spot, but other times they’re right in front of you. At first glance, it looks like this book contains the piano sheet music for all of the Rolling Stone's list of the 500 greatest songs of all time, but in smaller print right above the 500, it says that the book contains only 39 selections of the 500 greatest songs.

Not-So-Natural Brown Sugar

Reddit / 93arkhanov93

If you thought that Amrit was the brand name or trademark, guess again. It turns out that the Natural Brown Sugar wording on the label is also part of the brand name but there is no actual natural brown sugar in the product.

Printed All Over Plaid Pattern

Reddit / sorden96

The label on this plastic table cover stated that it had the red plaid-like pattern printed all over it. But when the customer got home and unfolded the table cover, they discovered that the patterned edges were deliberately folded so that they would appear on the outside of the package, but the rest of the cover was actually all white.

Bread Roll With Virtually No Filling

Reddit / vicesam

Do you like bread rolls with poppy seed filling? Well then, don’t buy this product or you’ll be disappointed like this customer was. It turns out that the inside has about 2 percent filling and a whole lot of bread.

This Protein Powder is “Whey” Too Little

Reddit / Furious_Flames

Looking to bulk up with a little help from some Whey Protein Powder? Then you might want to buy two containers instead of one. That’s because this particular container was only filled half way. The other half had no whey whatsoever. This is why its always important to read the actual amount listed on the product and not rely on packaging size to tell you how much product you'll get.

The Not-So-Microwave Safe Dish

Reddit / Doophie

The sticker on the bottom of this dish claims it is microwave safe and dishwasher safe. But when the customer got home and peeled the sticker off, they discovered that the original instructions stated “Hand Wash Only. Do Not Microwave.”

There Weren’t 1000 Plastic Blocks, Not Even Close

Reddit / Mrm854

A customer bought this box of building blocks under the assumption that it had 1000 pieces as advertised on the front of the box. Unfortunately, after counting it, she discovered that there were only 523 pieces, which is just half of what she assumed there would be.

Make Your Own Bracelet Kit Was a Total Rip Off

Reddit / GatorMaster2112

Sometimes, what you see is what you get. But some customers would argue that this make your own bracelet kit is a rip off after one customer realized that the kit inside only came with a handful of beads and accessories.

The "New" in This Shampoo Refers to the Packaging

Reddit / raghu972

This L’Oreal Paris shampoo has the word New above the words “Rich In Care,” but on the back of the bottle, it states that New refers only to the new packaging design. But some customers might misunderstand this as the shampoo formula inside the bottle is new.

These Sticky Notes Are Not So Golden

Reddit / KarmasDoll

This person bought these sticky notes because they were convinced that every note had the same gold border as the one on top. But when they got home, they discovered that with the exception of the first note, all of the other sticky notes had a plain white border.

This Eye Makeup Isn’t Safe for Eyes

Reddit / PmMeYourFea

This customer assumed that eye makeup would be, you know, safe to use around the eyes. But written in white letters on a light green background was a warning that states that one of the eyeshadows is not safe to use in the immediate eye area.

This Balancing Cream Will Have You Hulking

Reddit / sevenhops

Customers undoubtedly got very angry and Hulked out like the Incredible Hulk when they held their Innisfree Balancing Cream with Green Tea to the light and discovered that it only contained a small tub of cream inside the container.

This Watermelon Juice Has No Watermelon

Reddit / spamtarget

This Watermelon and Beet juice has two problems. One of them is that it doesn’t really taste like watermelon. The other is that the ingredients list on the back of the label shows that there is no actual watermelon in this product at all.

Moisturizing Cream is Not as Tall on the Inside

Reddit / Bail-Me-Out

One might assume that this transformative moisturizing cream was as tall as the packaging it came in. But when the customer opened the box, they discovered that the container was tiny and the rest of the box was empty. Hopefully air will work wonders on your pores!

Lego Blocks Box Full of Air and Disappointment

Reddit / robstraightedge

When this customer’s son opened this box full of Lego-type blocks, they were beyond disappointed. That’s because most of the box seemed empty for a product that claimed to have 800 pieces. Upon further inspection, the parent realized that the manufacturer added 550 tiny dot pieces and only 250 pieces were actually regular size.

This Disney Princess Sticker Book is Mostly Useless

Reddit / Mishi_Moshi

The cover of this Disney Princess sticker book claims to contain 1001 stickers, but this customer was disheartened when they discovered that 768 of the stickers were nothing more than a bunch of different colored squares.

Not-So-Large Box of Colored Pencils

Reddit / tandol

Customers are easily fooled by colorful packaging and cardboard filling. In this situation, someone bought what they thought was an entire box full of colored pencils. It turns out that there were only five colored pencils in the set.

Not Enough Popcorn

Reddit / katielh98

At first glance, one would assume that this plastic popcorn container is full of popcorn, just like the ones people get in the movie theater. But not only was this package filled just 25% of the capacity of the container, but the popcorn was really stale, too.

It’s Not Handmade Pizza

Reddit / SIRasdf23

The image advertised on the front of this Freschetta frozen pizza suggests that the dough was handmade. But the product itself clearly states that it is not handmade. And while this is not the worst of offense on this list, it certainly has a ring of false advertisement to it.

The Total Play Time Deception

Reddit / Taylor-Cox-TLC

These wireless headphones promised to offer a total play time of 12.5 hours on the front of the package. But when the customer read the back of the box, they discovered that the total play time is only 3.5 hours. The 12.5 hours of play time only applies when using the charging case.

XTreme Liars

Reddit / MigueeRL

The larger packaging of this XTREME Professional hairstyling product fooled this customer into thinking they were buying more. But as it turns out, the bottom of the bigger packaging is mostly empty and both products contain the same amount, 60 grams.

One of the Blocks Is Missing

Reddit / golden-potato

This soft blocks set might appear to have 9 blocks, but it doesn’t. When the customer opened the packaging, they discovered that one of the blocks was nothing more than green cardboard packaging. But kudos for playing people so well.

This Candy Left a Sour Taste

Reddit / KevroniCoal

This candy left a sour taste in the customer’s mouth, but not because it was called Sour Punch Bats & Pumpkin. It was because there was only one bat candy inside the bag. And for a candy intended for Halloween, it felt more like an April Fool’s joke.

The Size of the Cheese

Reddit / eszleny

This triangular shaped cheese product came in a package that was the same shape. But when the customer took the cheese out of the box, they realized that the cheese was so much smaller than they had originally imagined.

This Razor Packaging Scam

Reddit / tenebralupo

Given how much they charged for the package which came with the razor and the blades, the customer assumed that it would come with eight blades. But what they discovered inside was three empty slots where they assumed the blades should have been.

Coloring Book With Just Four Crayons

Reddit / PhotosByDrew

This coloring book came as quite a shock for the parent who bought it. But it wasn’t because of the content of the book. They simply couldn’t believe that their purchase came with only four crayons, three of which are primary colors.

The Mostly Empty Coloring Kit

Reddit / MchZ

This coloring kit was intended to have 100 pieces, but what the buyer found was a large cardboard frame within the box and a completely empty center. In fairness, it did come with crayons and markers as well as 100 pieces of paper, but the size of the container itself lead to some broken dreams.

Larger than Life WiFi Adapter

Reddit / relishmypicklesReport

This Linksys WiFi adapter looked like a USB drive. So, the buyer assumed that it was about the same size as the package suggested. But when they took the adapter out of the box, they discovered that the device was so big, it might not even fit the USB port on their PC.

Mint Chocolate With a Side of Air

Reddit / niamsme

This customer wasn’t pleased when they opened their box of Mint Nights Mint Chocolate Thins and discovered that there were spaces in the container where more chocolate things should have been. What's even sadder is that they chose this box instead of an alternative brand that most likely had more mint thins inside.

The Teeny Tiny Acrylic Paint Set

Reddit / LeeKellyLK

For anyone wondering what the big deal is about this purchase, it’s not that it doesn’t come with 20 different tubes of acrylic paint. The issue is that they filled the bottom with Styrofoam so it would seem that each tube was larger than it looked.

This Water Hose Gun Has a Different Origin Story


The front of this water hose gun’s casing reads “MADE IN U.S.A.” But when the customer opened the casing, they discovered that it was actually “MADE IN CHINA.” So, technically, the only thing made in the U.S.A. was the casing alone.

This Dodgy Premium Beer

Reddit / CucumberWizard

This may be India’s No. 1 premium beer but customers would have to drink a lot of this product to feel its effects. That’s because it only has 8 percent of alcohol. Oh wait! Actually, the can says “Less Than” in faded letters that are almost impossible to read, which means that the claim of 8% alcohol means basically nothing.