7 Weird Inventions that Made Tons of Money for National Inventor's Day (Feb. 11th)

Who hasn’t tried to come up with some kind of invention that could make them millions? The daily struggles that life seems to throw our way can really wear us down after a while, and the thought of making an easy stack of cash is a very enticing fantasy. Just think of all the silly, simple concepts that turned into a great money-making invention. It makes you wonder why more people aren’t cash in on this lucrative and ridiculous industry.

Let’s take a look at some of the weirder inventions that made millions:

The Pet Rock

The Pet Rock was invented by Gary Dahl. This rock was no ordinary rock. In fact, it was a rock that profited 15 million in the first six months. For just $3.95, you can purchase this companion, complete with a hay bed, pet carrier and a manual that explains how to take care of this fully house-broken pet. The idea was beyond simple. The cost to make this product is just about $.95, making the profit from each rock sold, a whopping $3.00. Pure genius.

The Snuggie

The Snuggie, invented by Scott Boilen of Allstar Products, was manufactured and sold as the ridiculous item it is. Even the infomercials created to promote the product poked at it’s absurd nature. It is basically a blanket with arms, allowing you the comfort of staying warm while you move about, unlike a blanket. The humorous nature of the product and the advertising tactic worked, and this wacky product has profited well over $200 million dollars.

Slap Bracelets

Invented by Stuart Andrews in 1990, the slap bracelet was said to have earned between $6 and $8 million dollars in that year alone. Coming up with such a simple and fun way for kids to put on a bracelet made this high school shop teacher a millionaire.

Wacky Wall Walker

Ken Hakuta, the inventor of the Wacky Wall Walker, was actually given a version of this item by his mother, who purchased it while visiting China. After receiving the silly item, he decided to buy the rights of the product for $100,000 dollars, making the product his to exclusively market in the United States. Hakuta has profited about $80 million from his $100,000 investment. Smart move.


Who doesn’t know the Slinky, and the song that goes with it? This product was invented by a naval engineer Richard James, known for his clumsiness. James invented this silly toy in 1945 after dropping a tension spring and watching how it made its way across the floor. This genius idea earned him a profit of over $250 million.

Hula Hoop

This crazy idea was an invention by Arthur K. Melin and Richard Knerr back in the 1950's. It was enjoyed by many children, as well as adults. Melin and Kerr did not stop after the hula hoop craze. They continued to invent many other products, including the Frisbee, the slip 'n' slide, and many more products. Some 30 years later in 1982, they sold their company for $12 million dollars.  

Beanie Babies

These cherished little cuties invented by H. Ty Warner, were released at a toy show in Atlanta. Over 30,000 were sold during their debut. Kids played with them, collected them, and went all out crazy for them. Some adults even began collecting, as Warner started to release special editions and retiring some older editions. These cuddly little babies earned profits estimated between $3 and $6 million dollars.

Some of these inventions seem pretty silly, especially for the insane profits they have earned. So, why is it so hard to come up with such a simple and weird idea like the gadgets mentioned above? The truth is, you never really know what will sell or not sell, and the craziest idea you’ve ever heard of could be the next one to makes a million. Maybe you are holding the next great idea? You will never know unless you give it a go. If you are strapped for cash, make the most of your vehicle and grab a title loan for the start-up money.