Strapped for cash? It happens to the best of us from time to time. We see that one of a kind autographed misprint of Spider-Man where Spider-Man says "fuck" twice and has sex with a jar of peanut butter, and we bid way more than we can afford on eBay, and before we know it we have no money for rent. How can we make ends meet in a hurry? Turn to your body's massive stockpile of natural resources. Turns out we're all walking cash cows, and the more you can live without, the more money you can make. And technically the more you can't live without, you stand to make yet more money. But you'd be dead. So maybe ease up on that.
For those of us that produce sperm, generally being males and other betesticled types, you have a tiny, wrinkly satchel of gold stuck to your sweaty inner thigh as we speak. Your swimmers can earn a tidy sum assuming you meet sperm bank standards and have it in you to continually jack off into cups for the benefit of strangers. To start making cash you need to be super heathy, don't do drugs, be in good shape, probably be taller than average, have the ability to wank into a cup and fill it more than the average man could, be educated, and ideally you'll want to not be anonymous, since you'll make more money if you're willing to include your bio for potential new parents. But if you're Dr. Bradley Cooper, PhD, you're set. Each cup can earn you up to $200, depending on where you live. Stay hydrated!
In an attempt to ameliorate the sexist pay gap, women have won the reproductive lottery when it comes to street value. While man jizz flows like so much pearlescent water down gutters, sometimes literally if you live in a bad neighborhood, a woman's eggs are like precious jewels. This is due in no small part to their relative rarity when compared to sperm and the fact the little shits are so hard to get out. Do you know where ladies keep these things? In falcon tubes or some such, way up in their tender flower. So to remove them, some kind of surgical melon baller is required, and that brings with it a bigger payday. Plus women make fewer eggs than men make sperm, which also gives them premium pay of at least $5,000.
Hair is, relatively speaking, gross. If you don't agree, go pull some from a stranger's shower drain. However, to the right person under the right circumstances (which is to say not from a shower drain) your hair can be worth a pretty penny. Many pennies, even. If you have a foot of hair to spare and it's in good health it can be worth over $500 to wigmakers.
Several years back, hair was at a premium and could fetch thousands of dollars. Now, however, the market is oddly more saturated than you'd think, and if you Google it you'll happen upon no less than a dozen sites willing to buy your hair right now. So the golden age of hair selling may be past, but $500 isn't anything to sneeze at, and, at the rate of normal human hair growth, you could maybe get that much to sell again in 18 months or so. It's not a retirement plan, but it could sure buy a lot of chicken wings.
There's a figure you'll see a lot if you start searching for this info that says your blood is worth about $337 a pint. That's not true, at least not in terms of what it's worth to you. Is that what the Red Cross makes from the average pint? Maybe. They sell to hospitals and other places that need blood. Most people, you'll notice, donate blood for free. But there are plasma centers across America that pay you for your blood plasma. Thing is, it's a lot less than $337 a pint. More like $30 a pint, but this depends on where you go and whatever demand they have, of course. Some places may pay as high as $50. Some let you donate several times a week, some only two times. But at twice a week for $30, that's $3,120 a year. Not bad for stuff that just oozes out of you when someone pokes you with rusty springs.
Hey, back to you ladies and that one dude I met on a Greyhound. As luck would have it, people love milk and aren't super picky about what teat it dribbles from. Some people want it for their babies because they can't produce it on their own, but then some people just want it. You know, for decorative reasons or to masturbate. I don't know; I didn't ask. I just know there are sites you can sign up for to turn your boobs into a low output cash factory right now! Convince yourself it's noble and you're feeding starving babies the nutrients they need to grow strong or just shrug and accept some bodybuilder is drinking it because he thinks it'll make him more ripped than steroids will.
This seems unfair to breast milk, but it looks like a clean 4-ounce shot of pee will net you upwards of $100 online. How does that work? Thank your junkie friends who want to save their jobs for creating a pretty stable market for clean urine. Your junkie friend goes online with his rheumy eyes and shaky hands and looks up a site that sells pee, then steals a credit card from his parents to order a fresh batch of yellow gold! Then your clean, illustrious pee is rush delivered on dry ice or some such to the tweaker's hovel, where he will remove the bag and probably fill some kind of realistic rubber cock with it that he can flop out in front of a company drug screener and use to piss in a cup. His job is saved for another year as he wastes his pay on meth and you just scored yourself a fun night out!
Of all the things you thought you could make a buck off of, realistically you probably had your own shit really far down the list along with Avon and Florida timeshares. But the fact is, the right poop is worth a good amount of money to the right person.
Odds are your poop is worthless as ... well, shit. But a few blessed among us have magical, medical poop that's like a handful of brown gold for those who need fecal transplants. Promise I'll stop using the gold metaphor soon. Basically your super healthy premium bacteria ass mulch can help out someone who's got a ghetto crap factory producing the kind of shit even the guy who cleans Taco Bell toilets would scowl at. Or they have Crohn's or C. difficile or whatever; we're not here to judge the state of anyone's colon.
Blausen.com staff/Wikiversity Journal of Medicine
To be a poop farmer you need to have a crazy mix of good health, proper bacteria levels, and various other attributes. The odds are against most of us as only 4 percent of donors qualify, but if you do you can make $40 per deposit (you have to do it on site, no mailing that thing in an old takeout container) and you can do it five days a week. You may never poop in a toilet again. The downside, though, is: Just think of the stress you'd face if you were out on a date somewhere and had to poop, realizing how much money you're literally flushing away.
Now that all the stuff that comes out of you and can be stored in the fridge in Tupperware has been handled, let's flay your ass. Skin has its own value in the medical and black markets, because look at it. Everyone has it, but not everyone takes good care of it. People are losing it left and right and need suitable replacements pretty frequently. Then there's you, just a meat bag full of nearly useless skin you could probably live without, right?
Generally, skin is harvested from corpses because they tend to be cooler with giving away more of it than living people. However, if you have a skin condition like psoriasis there are clinics that will take sample sections of your infected hide and pay you $50 or so for the swatch they abscond with. Otherwise the rest of your body is worth about $10 a square inch, and you have a good deal of square inches of skin on you.
When it comes to human organs, the whole field gets a little sticky. First and foremost, its kind of illegal to sell your organs in America, so if you want to do that, you're probably hitting up a black-market dealer. Now, Google it and you'll see all kinds of awesome stuff about kidneys selling for like $262,000. Oh man, let's sell both! But not so fast. That's almost guaranteed to be what the guy selling your kidney to the person who needs it makes, not what you make.
This is basic commerce.
Your kidney is worth much less to you than it is to a guy who's dying for one, so the intermediary, we'll call him Kidney Pete, is the guy with the contacts and the ability to safely (hopefully) remove your kidney and put it in some other dude. He's the one who pockets the difference. And depending on where you are in the world, it's a hell of a difference.
The Christian Science Monitor published a story in the early 2000s of some poor schmuck who was promised a mere $6,000 for his kidney. Of course, that fellow was from an extremely poor place and $6,000 was six years' salary for him. According to Havoscope, your global expert in black market shenanigans, the average kidney seller is only going to get $5,000.
Good news for art lovers: Even if your lungs are gross and black as night, they still have a market. Or they used to. The Body Worlds exhibit, which you may have seen at a museum or at least pictures of it online, features corpses in a variety of positions and engaging in activities. The bodies have been plasticized and are generally creepy as fuck. But when he was starting the exhibit, Professor Gunther von Hagens apparently paid $3,600 just for some scuzzy ol' smoker's lungs. Now who's the idiot who stopped smoking?
Admittedly, the museum's need for lungs is pretty small, but don't forget that black market. One man in Greece was offering his lungs for a stunning $312,000. That's some sweet scratch until you consider he used the plural, which means he was not going to be around to reap the rewards. Maybe it was a nice going-away present for family.
This one's a letdown for all of us who went to college and were hoping to one day really show up our idiot cousin who dropped out of high school. Turns out that big brain of yours is a useless paperweight when it comes to organ selling. It's literally the only useless part of your entire body simply because no one actually needs it. Sure it could be studied in med school or, again, used in some art installation, but beyond that, who gives a fig? Brain transplants don't exist, so your brain is a tepid slab of shrug once you stop using it.
In 2013, some dude in Indiana stole a bunch of brains and tried to sell them on eBay, because that's what master criminals do. Six jars went for a total of $600, meaning the black market value of your brain is a paltry $100. Worse yet, once you sell it, you'll be too dumb to know how to collect your $100.
At this point you don't have much of a body left -- yeah you could sell your heart or your eyes or whatever, but the magic has gone from the whole scenario.
Learn what might happen to your body parts when you sell them in Did You Donate Your Body To Science? Maybe Don't Read This, and learn why it might be difficult to donate your sperm if you're a minority in 6 Terrifying Things Nobody Tells You About Donating Sperm.
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How did these hyper-specific tropes spread so quickly?
The Hollywood rumor mill has been playing games with celebrity deaths for at least a century.