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The 10 Most Embarrassing Products A Man Can Buy

Updated on August 21, 2015

Shopper Shame - Not A New Afflication...

Shopper’s Shame seems to be a hang-up unique to men. Women don’t feel embarrassed buying say, underwear for their husbands, but guys don’t even like to be spotted in the women’s underwear section alone.

With that in mind, here are ten of the most humiliating, embarrassing, and shameful products that men will conveniently “forget to pick up” when sent shopping...

No 10 - Tampax

This is an obvious one, and probably the most common, so we’ll get it out of the way here. It’s also, probably, the most absurd item on the list. Having a girlfriend or wife who menstruates once a month is hardly a “skeleton in the closet”, so what’s the big deal? The only conceivable use that men could have for feminine hygiene products is that some outdoorsmen have been known to use pads as a sort of super-bandaid in their first aid kit, so the only possible misunderstanding that can arise is that the man buying the product is going camping. (Well plus some urban legends about the gay community we won't go into). For shame!

This may seem like a low ranking for tampax which, for many men, would probably rank number one. Honestly though, the embarrassment about tampax is just so absurd. The rest of the list will focus on things that make a little more sense to be bashful about.

9 - Women's Underwear

Men in lingerie stores will try to make it AS CLEAR AS POSSIBLE that they are shopping for their wives or girlfriends. The second a man walks into a lingerie store, he’s dead certain someone in the office is calling the police to report a crazy pervert. Then there’s some relief when the purchase is made and “Phew! Now they know I’m not crazy, they just think I’m a fabulous transvestite!” Rest assured, the staff at Victoria’s Secret know that most of their male customers are there for completely girlfriend-and-wife-related reasons, even if your special lady happens to have the exact same measurements as you do!

8 - Romantic Reading

“Chick lit” for the missus, teeny bopper magazines for the daughter, guys don’t want to look like they’re fans of Zack Ephron, celeb gossip magazines or Bridget Jones’s Diary. The same goes for renting a movie like Steel Magnolias or Sex and the City. Make sure to put on a sour face, and the clerk is sure to know you’re renting against your will.

7 - Pregnancy Tests

Buying a pregnancy test isn’t always embarrassing. If you’re confident in the knowledge that you do practice safe sex, or if you’re trying to have a baby, you can walk in and out with your head held high. When you know that you made a mistake, though, buying a pregnancy test can feel a little bit like going to face the firing squad.

6 - Adult XXX Videos

This would be a little bit higher up on the list, but then there’s the old trick of renting a couple of normal movies and sandwiching the dirty one in between. The clerk won’t even notice Lust in Space sitting between Star Wars and Blade Runner!

Besides, it’s returning the movie after you’ve watched it that’s really embarrassing.

5 - One Roll of Toilet Paper

This can happen to men and women alike, but come on, who’s more likely to run out of toilet paper at the absolute worst moment possible? When you’re only buying one roll, you’re sending out a clear message “I need this right now!” A close runner up would have to be buying a toilet plunger while dancing from foot to foot.

4 - “Don’t Get The Wrong Idea” Combinations

We won’t go into too much detail here, but as a general rule, unlike fast food, certain combos are not good. So, men try to avoid buying combos like Kleenex and hand lotion , or baby oil and cucumbers at the same time.

3 - Extra Large Condoms

There’s nothing shameful at all about practicing safe sex, but buying extra large condoms and announcing your unique anatomy to the cashier, especially if you have to ask an attractive young lady if they stock “something a little bigger” can cause quite a bit of blushing and uncomfortable silence.

2 - Extra Small Condoms

Bet you were wondering how large condoms only ranked number three, weren’t you?

Bonus points for number 3 and number 2 if you walk right back into the same store an hour later for a pack of cigarettes.

DOUBLE bonus points if you walk into the same store for cigarettes less than an hour after buying the condoms.

1 - Embarrassing Medication

This one has got to be the worst. We don’t feel too embarrassed when we’re buying dandruff medication or athlete’s foot powder, but lice medication, haemarrhoid cream, jock itch powder, and in fact, just about anything applied below the waist and above the knees, men are likely to drive to the next town over to pick it up, just to make sure that they never, ever see the pharmacy clerk ever, ever again.

Or wear an elaborate disguide. Why are those sales assistants always female?

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by Julie-Ann Amos, professional writer, and owner of international writing agency

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    • profile image

      5 years ago

      I work in a store and I'd like to reassure everyone that after seeing hundreds of items nine hours a day five hours a week it has to be pretty extravagant to draw any attention at all. Except this one guy who bought prunes, prune juice and toilet paper. I noticed that.

    • ChilliWilly profile image

      ChilliWilly 7 years ago from Kaunas, Lithuania

      Haha, hilarious hub!

    • tasksgirl profile image

      tasksgirl 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      LOL these are so funny..

    • tasksgirl profile image

      tasksgirl 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      LOL these are so funny..

    • dawnM profile image

      Dawn Michael 7 years ago from THOUSAND OAKS

      great article and it gave me a good laugh! I loved the combination one that is so darn funny, I never would of though of that. the tampax can happen the other way around too, when buying it from a male check out at the drug store especially if they are young and it is the only product that you are purchasing, I have had several young men turn red so funny!!!

    • Maryanne Maguire profile image

      Maryanne Maguire 7 years ago from Santa Monica, CA

      TOo funny! And, my hubby will go to the women's isle for fem prods. He's a good dude :)

    • thehands profile image

      Jorge Vamos 7 years ago

      "A close runner up would have to be buying a toilet plunger while dancing from foot to foot."

      Hahaha. Just use the bushes outside!

    • gg.zaino profile image

      greg g zaino 7 years ago from L'America- Big Pine Key, Florida

      haha, Julie' no different in the US...we've got something in common - your hub and the character in a recent hub i published. i'll admit that i'm an unenlightened man who is tampon, kotex, condom and toilet paper retentive. posted just such a hub a couple days ago on this very subject. funny and oh so true. it is something that does set us apart as men and women...the dividing line! if you get the chance, go to my hub and read- 'feminine hygiene products and toilet paper' thanx for the hard facts n a laff. ggz peace

    • camlo profile image

      Camlo De Ville 8 years ago from Cologne, Germany

      I do buy ChickLit, but don't really feel embarrassed about it. As for tampons, or extra-small condoms, it would be a categorical 'No!' from me to anybody who asked me to buy them.

      Actually, it's not the cashier that worries me when I might buy something embarrassing, but people behind me in the queue.

      Enjoyed your Hub!

      All the best, Camlo

    • Model_Mom profile image

      Model_Mom 8 years ago

      haha! I remember one time I went to the grocery store with my ex and I told him to go get the few things I had left on my list. He comes walking back and I laughed my bum off!! He was carrying a huge pack of toilet paper in one arm and holding two air freshners in the other hand as if when he got home he would be stuck in "the office" all day. He had to walk from one end of the store to the other and then as I explained the humor in it then became clear to him why everyone was staring at him.

    • sixfourone profile image

      sixfourone 8 years ago

      Too funny... and true!

    • sunforged profile image

      sunforged 8 years ago from

      You nailed it! Although when you lay it all out logically there should be no embarassment with any of the items...except maybe the combo's. I was writing a hub specifically about #3 and teh nifty similar hubs option brought me here, well done!

    • Pete Maida profile image

      Pete Maida 8 years ago

      This was an enjoyable article. I do agree with most of the items on the list. However, I never had a problem buy things like tampons for my wife. If some one looked at the product I would just say, “Hey, at least I’m not pregnant.”

    • jimmythejock profile image

      James Paterson 9 years ago from Scotland

      I must be in a minority, apart from the xxx materials, I would have no problems at all buying anything on your list and I have done so in the past, except for the condoms which you already know from a hub I wrote a few days ago, about how I won a competition and got a box full of them as my prize.

      I wouldn't buy xxx magazines for one simple reason, why look at pictures or video's of such content when I can get the real thing at home.

      I enjoyed reading this though it gave me a smile today, thankyou for sharing.....jimmy

    • Moon Daisy profile image

      Moon Daisy 9 years ago from London

      That's so funny! I would have thought though that for many men, product number 3 wouldn't be so embarrassing! I wonder how many foolish young men have requested these just for the ego boost..