Special Report

25 Things You Should Never Buy and What to Buy Instead

16. Baby shoes

Parents of a newborn want to keep their baby warm. They may feel they need to get shoes for their child, but the reality is that if a baby is too young to walk then they are too young to need shoes.

By the time a child is old enough to start walking, they will be much larger and the baby shoes wouldn’t fit. To keep babies warm just put socks on their feet or keep them dressed in footy pajamas since you will be carrying them everywhere anyways.

Source: dageldog / E+ via Getty Images

17. Purebred dogs

People who want to get a dog likely have specific qualities they are looking for in a dog — cute, obedient, hypoallergenic, or small enough to fit comfortably in an apartment. To find a dog that meets these criteria, prospective owners may seek out a breeder. Purebred, high-end dogs can cost thousands of dollars, depending on the breed.

However, these designer dogs come with several issues. Many are bred and raised in unethical and inhumane conditions. Some breeds are also very prone to certain health issues. Those who want a dog should consider a mutt from the shelter — they tend to be even-tempered, much less expensive, housebroken, and you may be saving the dog from being euthanized.

Source: Let pictures tell the Story / iStock via Getty Images

18. Salt lamps

There is nothing wrong with buying a Himalayan pink salt lamp, per se. The issue is that many outlets who sell these lamps make a litany of unfounded claims about their supposed health benefits that do not hold up to scrutiny.

Some sellers claim these salt lamps can improve air quality by filling the room with negative ions, but there is little evidence that the lamps actually release negative ions. Others say the salt lamps can boost the mood of someone in the same room, but the evidence for this is scant as well. Really, the only reason to get one of these lamps is if you think they would look good in your home. Otherwise, save the expense.

Source: Michael Burrell / iStock via Getty Images

19. Lottery tickets

The average American spends over $200 per year on lottery tickets, yet players lose an average of 47 cents for every dollar they spend. Even winning isn’t all it’s cracked up to be — winners are more likely to go broke or commit suiсide than regular people. The windfall can cause jealousy and resentment and strain existing relationships, not to mention the fact that a huge percentage of winnings must go to taxes. Winners are also more likely to be targeted by robbers, scammers, and other people.

Instead of playing the lottery, people will generally be much better off if they simply invested that money. There may not be the shock and joy of seeing your numbers win, but you will probably make a few thousand dollars over the course of several years.

Source: fcafotodigital / E+ via Getty Images

20. Cleanse kits

Some people have taken to using colonics or colon cleansing kits in an attempt to keep themselves healthy or supposedly free of toxins. But doctors say that these kits and pills are not rooted in medical science.

The human body can mostly take care of itself, and the idea that people need to artificially flush out their internal/digestive system is just not accurate, according to the Mayo Clinic. In fact, these cleanses can actually end up making you dehydrated. If you think you are having a medical issue, you should talk to your doctor before trying any at-home procedures.

Sponsored: Tips for Investing

A financial advisor can help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of investment properties. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.

Investing in real estate can diversify your portfolio. But expanding your horizons may add additional costs. If you’re an investor looking to minimize expenses, consider checking out online brokerages. They often offer low investment fees, helping you maximize your profit.