Let’s be honest, we all like to save money, which is why half the time we’ll settle for the cheapest option available, but it’s not always the smartest thing to do. Some items may carry such a huge price tag that it seems bonkers to buy them, but every now and then luxury products come along that really do deserve having a lot of money spent on them. After some extensive digging, I’ve found ten expensive things that are surprisingly good value, for a number of reasons – and no, I haven’t been paid by any of them to say this! If you agree or disagree with any, make sure to let me know in the comments down below. Get someone to hide your credit card for you, trust me you’re going to want to buy all of them!
10. Maumasi knives
According to most chefs, a good knife is the difference between effortless pleasure and utter blood-boiling frustration. Even if your cooking only gets as adventurous as a simple salad, spending some cash on a quality blade will have you slicing and dicing cucumbers and onions like a pro.
Mareko Maumasi is said to be one of the greatest living knife makers, and his handmade wares will set you back anywhere from a few hundred dollars to upwards of $3,000, depending on the model. Chefs are adamant they’ll last you a lifetime as there’s a lot of craftsmanship gone into each blade to justify the price tag.
Mareko was an apprentice of Bob Kramer, possibly the most distinguished bladesmith in the world. His knives have won multiple awards. Due to the high demands, he had to stop accepting orders. Currently, there is a 3-year waiting list to get one! The knives are made from Damascus steel, created via a long process of layering steel, leading to a strong and aesthetic pattern forming on the blade.
According to Maumasi, the best way to sharpen a high-quality knife like this is on both sides of the cutting edge with leather, rather than a metal honing rod.
Metal sharpening can cause the minute teeth on a blade to wear out and fall off. But leather is a much gentler way to keep your knife sharp for decades. And if you’re spending so much on a knife, you’re going to want to make it last for as long as possible!
9. Phantom high-speed cameras
Phantom’s cameras are the be-all and end-all of slow-motion video. They can do things like this.
The main users of these cameras are scientists, researchers, and professional film-makers. So, unless you’ve got major money to burn they might be a little extravagant for your slo-mo Instagram videos.
They’re that good, the Slo Mo Guys, otherwise known as the internet’s main authority on all things slow motion, use a Phantom camera to do their experiments. You had better stock up on hard drives though; the camera they use shoots 8 gigabytes of footage per second!
The v2640 is Phantom’s top-of-the-range ultra-high-speed model, and will cost you a cool $175,000 and is the fastest 4-megapixel camera available. It’s often used for ballistics and stress tests and delivers an insane amount of detail in slow motion.
If you’re on more of a budget, their Miro Midsize range has a less scary price tag while still being able to shoot footage like this.
You can pick a 320 model up on eBay for the bargain price of just under $30,000. It’s not cheap, but if you want those super-slow-mo shots, it’s really your only option.
8. Lab-grown chicken
Love meat but hate the fact that you have to kill for every mouthful? Rejoice! San Francisco based Memphis Meats has the solution. They’ve discovered the recipe for the world’s first meatless chicken that actually tastes just like chicken!
The process uses regenerative stem cells from the birds, and the meat offers the same taste, texture, and nutritional values as regular chicken.
Apparently, it’s delicious: served up as classic southern fried chicken, taste testers gave it their seal of approval. Memphis Meats has also created duck, so it won’t be long until you can enjoy your crispy pancakes guilt-free!
At $6,000 per pound, their chicken’s not exactly affordable right now. However, the price can drop in the future because of the ongoing research. Then, we’ll be able to eat meat ethically without feeling guilty about damaging our planet!
7. Mason Pearson hairbrush
My hair is my prized possession, and if you’re anything like me you’ll go to any extreme to protect every precious strand. And it seems, I’m not the only one who feels like this.
Mason Pearson’s hair brushes are hand-made in England and are designed to massage your scalp while turning your average head of hair into the silkiest of manes. The reviews on Amazon should be enough to convince you of its majesty, with one claiming that “this is not a hairbrush. It’s the fingertips of God.” Wow.
It retails for upwards of $200 and that might seem like a lot for a hairbrush. But, models and vloggers love it, and if it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for me.
If you prefer spending your hard-earned cash on your pets rather than yourself, check out this Litter Robot that Redditors are going crazy for.
The litter box is a specially designed sphere that rotates to separate any waste from the clean litter. Litter-Robot founder Brad Baxter says that this is a great thing if you have more than one cat as they don’t have to suffer the humiliation of padding around in another cat’s mess. It’s also great for you as you don’t have to deal with the gross job of emptying dirty litter.
There’s also a carbon filter that absorbs waste, so you’ll never have a guest asking you “what’s that smell” ever again.
There’s even a nightlight in case your kitties are afraid of the dark! What more could your feline friends want? This high tech litter box will set you back $499 for the top model, but your cats are worth that, right?
5. Lotuff leather bag
Leather accessories are often expensive, but Lotuff Leather’s bags are definitely worth every penny, because of just how much work and care go into each piece. Each one is made completely by hand for the highest quality finish, and their prices definitely reflect that.
Ladies’ handbags go up to $3,850 for one made of 100% American alligator skin, and briefcases cost around $1,200. Sure, they’re not cheap, but comparing to the cost of other high-end brands, like Hermes bags, makes them about a tenth cheaper.
Lotuff seems to be cheaper and even outmatches them in terms of quality and craftsmanship. Creative director Lindy McDonough says that Lotuff’s bags are worth their price tag because they’re designed to last you a lifetime. Granted, it’s not like the company’s creative director will say anything bad, but each bag does apparently take 4-6 weeks to make, as its passed from one skillful craftsperson to the next. Each hide is checked for imperfections like tick bites to ensure every piece is perfect, and up to 61 individual pieces of leather are laid out by hand and stitched together to ensure each panel matches perfectly.
I suggest you don’t let your significant other see this video until after Christmas: there’s no way he or she won’t want one of these beauties.
4. Grain surfboard
Wood might not immediately seem like the most obvious material choice for a surfboard. But, it’s actually been used since when people first started riding waves, and the folks at Grain know that wood’s where it’s at.
Mike LaVecchia founded Grain Surfboards through his love of classic wooden ships and of being on the water. The lovingly hand-crafted process of creating a wooden surfboard takes his team between 40 and 60 hours to complete, and each one is finished to the highest imaginable standard.
First, the crafters make a CAD model and create a skeleton out of the wood. Cedarwood and glue are the materials for creating panels. They then add other strips of wood individually to create the 3D shape. After sanding and shaping, they use fiberglass to cover the surfboard before adding the hardware.
Mid-length custom boards cost around $2,300, but if you’re a bonafide surfer dude or dudette you’ll think it’s worth every cent given the craftsmanship and feel of it in the water.
3. Falke socks
We all hate getting socks as gifts, right? Well, I’m willing to bet that you’d feel a little different if your granny sent you these $640 beauties.
When Falke launched their ten-pair run of limited edition socks the world collectively smirked, but they instantly sold out and with good reason. These cozy feet-warmers are made from the wool of vicunas, which are rare Peruvian animals found only in the rocky mountains of the Andes.
Said to be “the fiber of the gods” by the Incas, the wool can only legally be shorn once every two years which obviously puts it in high demand. Luxury London department store Selfridges stocked them and described the wool as “the lightest, warmest and softest fabric in the world”.
I don’t know about you, but I’m suddenly very aware of how terrible my cheap socks are.
2. Sennheiser Orpheus/HE 1 headphones
Ever thought about spending more than $50,000 on headphones? If so, I have the perfect pair for you. This particular pair of Sennheiser headphones are said to be the best ever and are packed with unique features and state-of-the-art technology that will have rich audiophiles desperate to hand over their cash.
Obviously, if you’re buying headphones at this price you want incredible sound, and you won’t be disappointed. The audio range of this naughty piece of tech ranges from 8 Hz to 100 kHz. Its distortion is the lowest in a sound reproduction system ever been made. The sound of every instrument and the tone of every vocal is incredibly accurate: close your eyes and it’s like you’re hearing the music live.
The external amplifier is a work of art. It sits atop a solid block of Carrara marble, which is the same material that sculptor Michelangelo used. A solid piece of chrome-coated brass goes into the making of its each dial.
Yes, $50,000 is ridiculous, but those who have tested it, agree the sound is so damn good, it’ll make you laugh. I would love to own a pair of these – donations welcome!
Before I reveal my number one expensive item worth every penny, I have a couple of honorable mentions that deserve your attention.
If you’ve ever fancied being more like James Bond, you can start with these Crockett and Jones shoes which were worn by Daniel Craig in Skyfall and Spectre. Each pair takes a special eight-stage process which goes some way to justify the $500 price tag.
Next up, a truly useful thing most of us can afford, and though it isn’t crazy-expensive anymore, SSD, or solid-state drive memory is absolutely worth the upgrade from hard disk drives if you’re in the market.
Just ask these Redditors here! On average, you’ll pay five times the price for SSD, but it’s a cost worth swallowing for all the time it’ll save you loading stuff.
My final honorable mention is La Mer’s Crème de la Mer skin cream. A burn victim developed this world-famous wonder-cream to heal his skin and it actually worked. And at $2,160 for a 16.5oz jar, I should hope so, too!
1. Sasuke bonsai scissors
On to number one in this list; these spectacular bonsai scissors from Sasuke. The world’s greatest bonsai tree artists use these spectacular scissors for their art, but if that’s not your jam they do a great job of slicing through food and paper, too.
Mastercraftsman Yasuhiro Hirakawa is a 5th-generation scissor-maker and learned blacksmithing from his father. He’s been honing his craft for over half a century and is now the only traditional scissor maker actively working in Japan.. His attention to detail is second to none and he uses only the best quality raw materials for his creations.
Mastercraftsman and blacksmith Yasuhiro, who hails from Osaka, Japan, says that handmade items possess a warmth that machine-made items lack. I’m not sure about that, but his incredible pieces take a week or longer to make, working 10 hours a day. For this reason, his most popular pairs cost around $1,100, whereas his most expensive pair goes for around $32,420.
Customers consult with the master scissor maker for around an hour to agree on the scissors they require, and you can understand why people are happy to fork out so much for an item they could buy inexpensively elsewhere. Good scissors don’t damage bonsai trees that much because the cut is very clean. When you’re working with bonsai’s worth thousands of dollars, the benefits of clean cuts would pay for themselves over time.
So, which item do you think is the best value for money? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section down below.