36 easy-to-use products that immediately make a big impact

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by Christina X. Wood
Originally Published: 

Lately, I've been trying to navigate through all the small hassles in my daily path that cause irritation. It's pleasant to move through my home, car, and the world in general without constantly trying to recover from tiny dilemmas and friction points. These may be small things — an itch, a badly lit room, or an undesirable smell — but they add up. Thankfully, there is a solution for each of them. Often, the answer is an inexpensive product that makes a huge difference. I've actually tracked down 40 easy-to-use Amazon products that immediately make a big impact, solving problems with ease.

These products are wildly different, except for one thing: They make it easier to get through a day without friction. From getting dressed out of a closet that's too small and vanquishing a bad hair day to making it through the workday without a headache and meeting friends for a drink (without the hangover), these solutions do the hard work so you can focus on staying chill.

Since they're all easy to use and fairly affordable, you'll be glad you added them to your Amazon cart. Go ahead and pick your favorites — you can thank me later.

1. These vertical clothes hangers that save major closet space

If you've ever had to move all of your clothes around your closet just so you can find something to wear, check out these brilliant solutions first. These hangers let you hang six garments vertically, making it easier to find your favorite shirts. They also help you save space. Hang all your tops and pants from one of these, and you'll have a clear view of your wardrobe. And if you'd rather display them horizontally, you can also do that.

2. The motion-activated lights that you can stick basically anywhere

Stick these motion-triggered lights onto the walls of that dark flight of stairs and they'll illuminate your path as you approach. Stick one in the closet so you can find your sweater without a flashlight. Put one in the bathroom for when you get up at night. With these stick-on bulbs, there's no need to turn a bright light on to get up in the dark. Stick them on with adhesives or magnets. It's like living in a space ship. They even turn off after a couple of minutes so the AAA batteries last a long time.

3. An anti-glare screen protector that also helps prevent scratches

To reduce the glare coming off your computer screen, stick one of these anti-glare screen protectors on to give your eyes a calmer look. They're easy to install onto 16-inch MacBook Pros, and they also minimize fingerprints while helping prevent scratches. You get two screen protectors in this pack, and reviewers have written that they're easy to install while creating an easy-to-look-at matte finish instantly.

4. The door draft stopper that also makes the room quieter

Your energy bill will thank you if you stick this draft stopper to the bottom of your door. A gap — even one that's less than an inch tall — can let a lot of cold air into your space, causing you to turn the heat up. So you want to fix it, right? Thankfully, closing the gap is easy. Stick one of these insulated draft stoppers to the bottom of the door, and you're done. It even opens with the door, so you don't have to remember to put anything back. Plus, the stopper creates sound insulation so your house, room, or apartment is quieter.

5. These durable hooks for hanging your bikes on the wall

Instead of balancing everyone's bike in front of your entryway, go ahead and mount them to the wall with these hooks. They can be screwed into place and hold 50 pounds each. Plus, thanks to the rubber linings, the hangers shouldn't scratch your bikes while they're on display.

6. A phone mount that connects to the handlebars of your bike

You use Google Maps while you drive, right? Why not when you ride a bike, too? (Um, because where are you going to put the phone?) This simple-but-clever phone mount attaches to your handlebars so you can stay connected while you ride — and it's easy to disconnect when you dismount. The phone stays snug within the silicone holder. When you want to attach it to the handlebars, slide it into the strap-on base. It rotates 360 degrees, so you can see your phone from any angle. This is also great for shopping carts, strollers, and motorcycles or scooters.

7. This clip-on light for brighter zoom calls & selfies

Is the lighting in your room not good enough for Zoom call or Houseparty hangout? Well, you can improve your shots drastically with this simple light that attaches right to your phone. When my device works hard to see in dim settings, it creates grainy, washed-out photos — and in video calls, it keeps adjusting to the brightness. This clip-on light ring gives your phone the light it needs to focus on you. It has three brightness levels, so you can dial it up or down (depending on your environment). It also charges via USB, so you don't need batteries.

8. An ultrasonic bath that cleans your glasses, jewelry, coins, & more

Drop your jewelry, watchband, eyeglasses, or coin collection into this ultrasonic bath — and it'll vibrate your goods clean within minutes. You don't even have to add cleaning solution — but you certainly can (it'll get things even cleaner). It's super simple to use, too. Just fill it with water, drop whatever you're trying to clean into the bath, put the lid on, and hit a button. It's quiet but effective, cleaning all the tiny crevices. It also shuts off when it's done, about five minutes later.

9. The adjustable sharpener for your kitchen knives

It's hard to tell what this contraption is from looking at it but — once you run your dull knives through it, you'll know. It's a cleverly designed kitchen knife sharpener that takes on any kind of blade because it's completely adjustable. But the cool thing is that you don't have to adjust it; the spring arms respond to the edge you put into them. Just slide the knife through it at a 35-degree angle, and it'll sharpen the edge without damaging the blade.

10. The fast-working electric kettle made with borosilicate glass

A great cup of coffee or tea starts with the water — but the way you heat that water can make a difference. This gorgeously engineered electric kettle is easy to use and mesmerizing to watch. It's made with stainless steel and durable borosilicate glass that shouldn't scratch. The kettle itself will heat your water in three to seven minutes, and you'll know when it's working when the blue light shines. It's wireless and has an auto-shutoff feature, along with an anti-slip grip for easy pouring.

11. These mounts that'll help you organize your shoes

When it comes to shoes, nothing ever really gets them organized, right? That's what I thought until I encountered these slot things. To use one of them, you put one shoe on top where you can see it, and the other tucked underneath. Then, you set the pair on your shoe shelf or the floor of your closet. You can see the shoes you're looking for — and when you pick an organizer up, they're both there. These take up half the space of a pair of shoes, and they're easy to find. They also have non-slip surfaces, and the angles adjust for the height of your particular shoes.

12. The LED backlights that turn your living room into a movie theater

Television sets aren't the prettiest — but you can transform that big box into a slick piece of backlit decor by using these color-changing LED lights. Mount them to the back of your TV, and they'll illuminate the wall around it. Not only will it look cool, but it'll also be easier on your eyes because it'll reduce the contrast between the light of the TV and the surrounding, non-illuminated surfaces. You can change the lights to suit your mood or sync the lights with your music for a dance-club atmosphere.

13. This moldable silicone glue that you can fix things with

Sugru looks and feels like clay, but you can use it to fix everything from headphone wires to watch bands to shoes — and it will amaze you. It's squishy and moldable when it first comes out of the package. Squish it around the thing that's broken and let it cure. It'll soon harden into a solid, strong, heat-resistant silicone mold that'll hold that thing together. It works on glass, ceramics, wood, metal, plaster, plastics, and fabric — so you can use it to fix everything from dishes to electronics to shoes. It's not messy like some adhesives, either.

14. The fabric shaver that'll make your sweaters look like new

That new sweater, jacket, or hoodie looked great... until that laundry mishap. Now, it looks like it needs to be freshened up. This device shaves all those pills off the surface of your clothes to restore the "brand-new" feel. It's much less tiresome than trying to pull all those lumps off with your fingers. But more to the point, it shouldn't do any damage to your garments like actually pulling each thread does. This tool is rechargeable, and it stores the lint as you go.

15. The filter that infuses your shower water with vitamin c

If you have itchy, dry skin, have you considered that the problem is the water that you're bathing in? This shower head filter can be the cure. It filters out chlorine, sediment, pesticides, and more right at the shower head. Then, it boosts that water with negative ions, minerals, vitamin C, and oxygen to soften your hair and skin while you clean it.

16. The rolling kitchen cutter that helps chop your herbs

If the hassle of chopping leafy herbs is the irritation factor that prevents you from including fresh herbs in your cooking creations, you simply don't have the right tool. These rolling blades do the job quickly and easily, cutting leaves into tiny bits. It's small enough to store in a drawer and cleans up easily. Plus, the blades are retractable for added protection.

17. These genius drops that help prevent wine headaches

In my opinion, wine is one of life's great pleasures. But if you're sensitive to sulfites or tannins, then your experience might be more pain than pleasure. There's a solution, though. Apparently, these drops help reduce the amount of sulfates and tannins in your glass, resulting in no headache. Here's what one reviewer wrote about them: "This stuff is awesome. A group of friends and I all tried these drops this weekend. One friend has an extreme sensitivity to sulfites and has had some success with another product. She said this worked even better. It worked great for me, and I am thrilled to not feel heavy-headed after a glass of wine."

18. A device that lets you close the garage door when you're not home

Getting out the door for this road trip involved a lot of packing. But you are off now. The music is loud. The scenery is starting to look like a vacation. You are starting to relax. Then someone says, "Did you close the garage?" Of course, no one can remember. If you have this door controller installed, this is no big deal. Open the app, see if the door is open, and close it if it is. This is easy to install in most garages with an automatic opener that's newer than 1993. And it's a must-have.

19. A self-watering planter that'll come in handy when you're on vacation

You'll never have to hassle friends to water your plants when you go away — or get mad when they accidentally neglect all your ferns. This self-watering pot lets your plants sip exactly the amount of moisture they want when you're out of the house. The reservoir underneath is translucent, so you can see how much water is in it. The risers lift the soil above the water line so the roots pull in water without rotting. It's so smart that you'll probably rely on it when you are home, too.

20. A smart plug that helps you control your outdoor lights

Got patio lights, Christmas lights, or outdoor water features? Plug them into this smart outdoor extension cord. Now, you can put them on a timer, control them from your phone, or get Alexa or Google Assistant to turn them on and off. In other words, you'll never have to go outside in the dark again to control your exterior features. When everyone is heading out to the patio with their drinks, you can just ask Alexa to turn your lights on. This plug can control three devices at once.

21. These little adhesive clips that maintain the wires on your desk

Stick one of these wire clips where you want one of your scattered desktop cords to be, and then snap the wire into place to keep it out of your way. Or, use multiple clips to guide wires out of site so they don't drape all over your workspace. There are 24 of them in this pack: ten singles, ten doubles, two that hold five wires, and two that hold three wires.

22. These glasses that block blue light from your tech screens

According to science, the blue light emitted from tech devices can trigger wakefulness and interrupt your sleep schedule. If you're experiencing this regularly, you might want to use a pair of blue-light glasses while you work on the computer or scroll through your phone. This two-pack is only $17, and the plastic frames come in tons of different colors. The lenses are non-polarized and they help reduce glare.

23. This vegetable chopper that catches pieces as you go

Love a chopped salad, but hate all the chopping? This slick little chopper will take you from start to finish with very little effort. Put onion in it, close the lid, and let the onion pieces fall into the container below. Turn those beets into thin ribbons within seconds and spiralize some zucchini. Drop a potato into the chopping zone and turn it into something you can drop in the fryer. You can use the catch container to store your chopped vegetables, too. Reviewers love this thing, writing that it speeds up food prep time by miles.

24. This personal fridge that you can write messages on

Want a cold water bottle at night? Like to keep chilled soda at your desk? Trying to keep road trip snacks cool? This portable mini fridge will do the trick, and it can be plugged into an outlet or your car's cigarette lighter. It's also small enough to keep cosmetics cold at your vanity or lunch chilled at your desk, all without taking up too much space. But here's the nifty part: It can also keep food and drinks warm with the heat setting. Plus, it comes with three erasable markers, so you can leave notes on the door.

25. The magnetic kitchen knife bar that's made with stainless steel

When you put kitchen knives in a drawer, they become harder to find. When you put them in a knife block, they chew up your counter space. This magnetic wall rack that's made with stainless steel solves both of those problems by displaying them above your counter. It also looks sleek and keeps your knives right where you can reach them. Wash a knife and stick it right back onto the wall to dry. Plus, if you've invested in beautiful food knives, you'll absolutely want to put those out on display, right?

26. An essential oil diffuser that's so smart you can talk to it

When you're stressed and want the diffuser to emit some calming scents, this high-tech diffuser will come in handy. It connects to Wi-Fi and works with Alexa and Google Home so you can control it with your voice. You can also use an app on your phone to control it. The diffuser uses ultrasonic frequencies to diffuse your favorite scents into the air, and it comes with a built-in light that you can change the color of.

27. This popular shoe cleaning kit that makes your sneakers look like new

After a bit of wear, shoes can start to look shoddy. They get dusty, muddy, or just lackluster from being out in the world. A few drops of this shoe-cleaning concentrate — applied with the included brush — can fix that surprisingly well. Even if you wore your favorite dress sneakers for a run through mud, you can still wear them on a date tonight. This stuff has been around since the '80s, and people have been raving about it since then (and searching high and low for more).

28. A flexible reading light with 6 brightness levels

Keeping the light on while reading in bed isn't always ideal, but you won't have to do that if you're wearing this reading light. It fits like an open necklace and each side features bright-but-adjustable lights that you can angle wherever needed (since it's also flexible). The bulbs can shine in three colors and are adjustable to six different brightnesses.

29. The gap fillers to catch crumbs between your stove and counters

That gap between your countertop and stove doesn't look like that big of a deal until you drop something down there and spend the rest of the afternoon trying to get it out. Moving the stove without the help of a professional isn't a great option, either. Prevention is the best route here, and that's why this silicone counter gap cover is so brilliant. It's so easy to install; just slide it above your gap and that's it. You can cut it to fit your situation, too, and it comes in a few colors: black and semi-clear.

30. The wireless doorbell that you can choose the sound of

Wouldn't it be great to have a working doorbell that you can hear from every part of the house and one that lets you choose your own ring? Yes! This one's a great choice. In fact, this wireless doorbell lets you set each bell with its own sound and volume. You get one bell with two receivers that'll ring 1,000 feet away from the doorbell. You can even listen to the chimes before you buy it. It's super easy to install, too. Just stick them to the wall.

31. These containers that are built to keep your fruit & veggies good

It's such a drag to finally get around to eating salad only to find that the lettuce is sad, the tomatoes are bad, and the cucumbers are dried out. The problem probably isn't the produce you bought — it's likely the way you stored it. Your greens will last much longer if you create a dry environment with good air circulation. That's what Rubbermaid did with these containers. These aren't just for food storage; they're atmospheric storage that keeps moisture from touching the produce and air circulating for the perfect balance of oxygen and carbon dioxide. They work best if you don't wash the goods before you put them inside — so these will streamline shopping day, too.

32. A fridge deodorizer that keeps everything smelling fresh

Stick one of the refrigerator deodorizers anywhere in your fridge, and you won't get a waft of undesirable odor right in the kisser when you open the door. It grabs and neutralizes unwanted smells while the door is closed. And, according to reviewers, it works even when a laborious deep clean didn't. Just open the package and put the deodorizer in. Move it around the fridge every day to completely freshen the environment. It also helps reduce mildew and mold that often causes produce to go south.

33. This monitor riser with a shelves to help organize your desk

Looking at a monitor that's too low for long hours isn't great for you. This monitor riser lifts your computer up to an ergonomic height that's more comfortable. It also brings a handy drawer right to your work space where you can stash your external keyboard and mouse (or other work items). Two shelves on either side keep small tools like your phone, note pads, or pens handy.

34. A kitchen scoop that doubles as a digital food scale

This tool is brilliant. It combines a digital kitchen scale with a scoop to save an entire step every time you prep food. Instead of scooping ingredients onto a scale to measure them, just scoop ingredients into this spoon and you'll see the weight right on the handle. It comes with three different scoop sizes, and they all snap into place. Just choose the size that's right for your needs, scoop, and check the weight before you commit the ingredient to your dish.

35. The drying rack that directs water right back into your sink

Where does the water go when you put glasses on your dish rack to dry? Probably onto the counter below where it creates unwanted odors and stains. Well, this clever drying rack is sloped and has ridges to direct that the water straight back into the sink, leaving nothing for you to clean up. It's made of flexible food-grade silicone, so it'll stay where you put it. You don't have to replace it, empty it, or anything else. This drying rack is completely self-sufficient, and it comes in three colors.

36. These silicone grips that hold your kitchen towels

Soggy kitchen towels are hard to clean with — but thanks to these hooks, yours will be dry and ready to use in an instant. They're backed with adhesives that you can use nearly anywhere in your kitchen where you need a towel, but you can also use screws to apply them. Once they're mounted, just push the fabric into the flexible silicone opening. It's so simple.

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