If You’re Excited About These Purchases, Congratulations – You’re Old!


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The definition of an “exciting purchase” varies according to the age of the person making it. For example, a tech gadget would work for younger adults, while an older teenager making a first car purchase would also characterize it that way, even if it’s a lemon with 100,000 miles on the odometer.


As one ages, the definition of “exciting purchases” changes, especially after one turns 50 and the AARP mailers start appearing at the doorstep. At that point, a whole new category of stuff begins to fall under the header of “exciting purchase,” and one finds oneself thrilled at the prospect of buying something that’s utterly baffling to younger people. Here’s our list of purchases that you might deeply resent making at 30, yet be thrilled at the prospect when you’re 50 and up.

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1. Memory Foam Mattress

When you’re young, you can sleep on a futon, a pile of coats, a flight of stairs, you name it. Yet, as the aging process marches on, those aches in your back, neck, and shoulders will make you ask if there isn’t a better way to sleep. This is why the purchase of a memory foam mattress is so appealing to people in their autumn years – after your first night sleeping on one, it will begin to remember the contours of your spine, neck, and other areas that cry out in pain when you wake up after sleeping on the couch in middle age.

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2. Velcro Shoes

Tying shoes can be a hassle for people approaching retirement age, what with their bad backs, aching hands, and fingers in the early stages of arthritis. To those folks, we recommend eschewing shoelaces and buying footwear equipped with Velcro strips instead. Sure, you spent all that time early in childhood mastering the bunny ears involved in shoe-tying, but as time passes, we must change as the years demand new things from us.

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3. Non-Skid Bathmats

When you’re under 50 and slip on a loose bathmat as you exit the shower, it will cause you some pain for the next day or so. When you’re over 50, a fall like that could lead to a broken bone, and if you’re over 70, it could very well kill you. This makes the non-skid bathmat an exciting purchase for anyone who wants to take their morning shower without the threat of grievous bodily harm or needing to meet with an estate planner.

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4. Handheld Showerheads

The body of a young person of average weight is easy enough to wash thoroughly in a shower. Still, as the aging process progresses, some parts of the body begin to sag, making gravity an enemy of one’s attempt at cleanliness. Once you’re over 50, it is up to you, the consumer, to get up in there and wash those bits, a task that makes the handheld showerhead a godsend. Any part of your body will now become accessible, no matter how many rippling folds you must contend with.

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5. Long-Handled Reachers

You’ve likely seen grocery store workers using these gizmos to grab things off high shelves. Young people can stand on a chair to access items that are too high to reach, but for people over 50, doing so can be foolhardy, and the older you are, the more likely a fall from a chair can result in a trip to the emergency room. So make the exciting purchase of a long-handled reacher today and be grateful you’re not the person in the ambulance that just sped by.

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6. Orthopedic Shoes

Do we even need to explain this one? Your feet have been bearing the full weight of your entire body for as long as you’ve been able to walk, and once you’re north of 50, the wear and tear begins to make itself known in the form of fallen arches, hammertoes, and countless other podiatric complaints that don’t go away on their own. This makes the supportive features of orthopedic shoes so attractive to consumers 50 and up. Because at that age, not tolerating physical pain qualifies as “exciting.”

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7. Magnifying Glass

In your younger days, you may have visited a pharmacy and seen older customers availing themselves of a magnifying glass to read the fine print on medicine bottles. That fine print is tough to manage even for young people with 20/20 vision, but it becomes a real challenge as you age, and your vision inevitably begins to soften. This makes a magnifying glass one of the most exciting purchases imaginable, as it will allow you to read what’s on the bottle, pay for it, and leave. It’s also glorious to have when you’re trying to give your health insurance information to a telephone representative and have to read the obnoxiously tiny member ID number on your card.

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8. Walk-In Showers

People who watch home renovation shows love a nice clawfoot tub, which brings a sense of old-world beauty into any bathroom. However, as mentioned previously, modern bathrooms can be deathtraps for people with the issues that accompany aging, and stepping into a standard bathtub can quickly turn into a slip-and-fall event and lead to a trip to the hospital. So, while many people might not like the look of a walk-in shower, it’s a very exciting thing to be able to enter and exit easily without having to hang onto multiple steel bars.

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9. Fiber Supplements

Another fun thing that happens to you as you age is the wonder of irregularity. As a young person, you may have been able to eat whatever you wanted and not worry about it later, but as you age, this becomes more of a challenge. This is why consumers over 50 are gaga for fiber supplements, which promise that all their trips to the throne will be brief and successful.

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10. Compression Socks


If you’re over 50, you may need to address circulatory issues and the swelling of your legs. Like every other solution mentioned on this list, compression socks may not be much to look at, but boy howdy, do they ever take care of those circulatory issues. And we promise you, once you’re past a certain age, choosing between looking fashionable and not having circulatory problems is easy.

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11. Bidet

Much like handheld showerheads, bidets are ideal for people who must wash one specific part of their bodies without gravity interfering. Again, as you get older, certain parts of the body become more challenging to manage, access, and clean, making a bidet an exciting purchase for anyone who may otherwise have difficulty reaching certain areas for vigorous cleaning.

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12. Pill Sorter

You’ll know you’re truly in your golden years once you spring for one of these. Chances are that as you’ve entered middle age and beyond, the number of medicines you have to take every day has increased to the point where using only your memory to keep it all straight simply isn’t going to cut it. Oh, the relief you will feel once you accept reality and buy a pill sorter to help you with this effort. Whatever you’ve got to take every day now, whether it’s blood thinners, cholesterol-lowering medication, or something to combat gout, leave the remembering to this inanimate plastic object that will transform your entire life overnight.

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