If you read comic books back in the 70s, or read comic books that were published in the 70s at any point since, you’ve probably seen one of the ads for the official Vincent Price Shrunken Heads kit from Milton Bradley. Like the ads for Sea Monkeys, they were ubiquitous. If you purchased one of these kits, you could make your very own shrunken heads. As Milton Bradley didn’t want to encourage Monsterkidz to commit murder, however, apples were suggested as a practicable substitute.
The way it worked, you dropped an apple (apples not included) into the “Shrinker” that attached to a common table lamp (lamps not included) to dry out and “shrink” the apple. Then you used the beads and locks of hair (which WERE included!) and your own sculptural talents to transform the apples into shrunken heads. Like the model kits of the same era, how much the final product ended up resembling what was depicted on the box and in the advertisements depended to a large degree on the aptitude of the kid putting the thing together.
I never owned one of these kits and I never tried creating a shrunken head. My finished product probably wouldn’t have looked all that spiffy, as I was not an artistically gifted child. Even so, it would have been a blast trying. It would be a blast NOW. I wish they still made these things. Maybe, just maybe, I could jerry-rig a homemade version. After all, we have microwaves these days.