55 clever solutions to the most annoying problems around your house

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by Caroline Goldstein and Laura Harper
Originally Published: 
The Holikme Twin Door Draft Stopper and Raytour Bed Sheet Holder Straps

Daily life is tough enough without the myriad little annoyances that can happen around your home. I mean, at the end of a long day, shouldn’t we all walk in the door to quiet comfort with everything in its place and simple solutions for getting dinner made or enjoying a glass of wine? That’s the dream, in my opinion, but so much can get in the way. What if there were clever solutions to the most annoying problems around your house? I’m here to tell you that there is with Amazon.

When I say clever, I really mean it. So many of these things take the time and trouble out of enjoying your abode. From a tablet mounting stand that can keep your dinner recipe in view on the counter or the wall to a simple magnetic strip that holds everything from knives to your most-used tools, the list of amazing answers to life’s little problems is practically endless.

The thing I love most about shopping on Amazon is that these products and ideas already come reviewed. You can simply scroll through the ratings and read the details from shoppers just like you. I admit it was hard to whittle down the list, but here’s 55 of my absolute favorite clever solutions to the most annoying problems around the house. Read on.

1. These elastic straps that keep fitted sheets from slipping or bunching

Keep your fitted sheet from slipping or bunching up with these bed sheet fasteners. These elastic straps are triangular and design and outfitted with super-strong clamps to hold your sheet securely in place — a little thing that’ll make a big difference in how soundly you sleep. This under-$10 comes with four straps (which are also adjustable), though you can also pick up a pack of eight for under $20.

2. An electric wine opener that smoothly uncorks bottles with the push of a button

If you haven’t used an electric wine opener yet, you’re missing out. This gadget makes quick, smooth work of uncorking bottles with just a push of a button, so you never need to worry about accidentally breaking or crumbling the cork. It’s also equipped with a foil cutter and a comfortable, ergonomic grip. This runs on four AAA batteries (which aren’t included), and it can operate on up to 100 bottles when fully powered up.

3. A portable mini fridge for instant access to snacks & drinks

Pop this mini fridge in your bedroom or office to save you trips to the kitchen when you want a cold beverage or snack; or, use it to keep skin care products like serums, eye creams, and gel masks fresh and cold. This lightweight and portable fridge is big enough to fit the equivalent of six cans, and comes with a shelf to maximize its storage space. Choose among five colors.

4. This stylish pour-over coffee maker that couldn’t be simpler to use

Save some cash by making your own rich, smooth coffee at home with this pour-over coffee maker. Reviewers confirm that it’s simple to use, even for coffee newbies — literally just add ground coffee, pour water over it, and let it sit — as is the upkeep, since both the decanter and filter are dishwasher-safe. With its solid wood wrap and architectural shape, it makes a stylish addition to your stovetop or bar cart, too.

5. A set of smart, color-changing lightbulbs that effortlessly set the mood

Create ambient lighting with the sound of your voice (or a few swipes with your thumb) with these smart lightbulbs, which are compatible with Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri Shortcut and SmartThings as well as an app. You can customize your light design, though they also come equipped with pre-set light modes, including a setting that syncs to the music you’re playing, and virtual sunset and sunrise modes to promote a restful evening and morning routine.

6. This electric can opener that does all the work for you

This electric can opener is a game-changer for those with limited mobility, avid cooks, or, on the flip side, those for whom “cooking” is synonymous with “cracking open a can of soup” (no shame there). Just position the can beneath the blade then activate the opener by pressing down on the lever — you don’t even need to hold the can in the process.

7. A wall-mounted bathroom organizer with a built-in toothpaste dispenser

This toothbrush holder is clever in a few ways: First, since it’s wall-mounted via a super-strong adhesive, it’ll save you precious counter space in the bathroom. Next, it comes with a toothpaste dispenser that doles out just the right amount of product to avoid product waste, and to save you money in the long run. Other intelligent design details include four slots for toothbrushes, a towel rack, a row of smaller hooks, a top shelf for storing essentials like skin care, and three included cups. At $26, it’s a cheap way to streamline your entire bathroom routine.

8. These toilet bowl night lights that turn on when you walk into the room

With a 4.4-star average out of over 22,000 ratings on Amazon, these toilet night lights are a cult-favorite on the site. These motion-sensor lights clip onto the side of the toilet bowl and turn on as soon as you walk into the room, so you don’t need to flip on the overheads when you get up in the middle of the night. Plus, they’re programmed with eight colors, so you can make your toilet bowl glow with the hue of your choosing.

9. A set of cool coasters in the shape of a cactus

These coasters slot together to create the shape of a cactus, and you can rearrange them into any design you want — so they’ll double as decor, and possibly as mild entertainment the next time you have guests over. You can use the planter pot to store odds and ends like pens and paperclips, too.

10. This $7 wallpaper that looks like real marble

If you’re toying with the idea of updating your interior but don’t want to commit the time, energy, or money quite yet, start small with this marble wallpaper. The paper mimics the look and glossy finish of expensive marble, and the self-adhesive backing makes for easy application. That $7 price tag is unbeatable, too. Stick it onto any surface you wish, like your kitchen island, desktop, tabletop, or walls.

11. A 4-pack of smart plugs you can control with your voice or an app

These Kasa Smart Plugs are compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, meaning you can remotely control any plugged-in device with your voice or using the Kasa app — so you can get your coffee going right from bed, turn on the lights before you get home at night, turn off the toaster oven you might have accidentally left on before you left the house, et cetera.

12. This professional-grade milk frother that takes your coffee to the next level

Investing in a good milk frother is a simple way to elevate your hot drinks to professional proportions — and with a 4.7-star average earned through close to 22,000 ratings, this is a foolproof option. It creates a rich froth in 15 to 30 seconds with a single, press-and-release button. In addition to lattes, matchas, and other frothy hot drinks, reviewers report that this can even make homemade whipped cream quickly.

13. This doorstopper that keeps doors from swinging open

If your doors are sensitive to even the slightest whiff of a draft, these door stoppers will make your life so much less annoying. The order comes with two sponge-like cylinders that you can cut to fit the length of your door; then slot them in the included cloth cover and slide it right under your door. The fabric covers are available in solid neutral tones, like gray and white, or a couple of patterns, including gridded or graphic trees.

14. This airtight container that keeps halved avocados from going bad

Even if you’re firmly of the belief that no meal is complete without avocado, it’s not always possible to finish a whole one before it browns — but this avocado keeper maintains the notoriously oxidation-prone fruit’s freshness longer than your typical container or plastic wrap. Plus, it’s dishwasher-safe.

15. These adhesive LED strip lights for professional lighting at home

These LED strip lights mimic the effects of professional lighting, albeit at a fraction of the cost. The adhesive backing makes them easy to stick onto any surface, and the lights are waterproof, so you don’t need to worry about splashing if you install them onto your bathroom mirror. You can also adjust the brightness and warmth with the touch of a button.

16. A handheld garment steamer that heats up in 90 seconds

Ironing is no longer a necessary evil. This garment steamer smooths wrinkles in just a few passes, but with its lightweight body, ergonomic handle, and 90-second heating time, it’s so much less fussy than an iron (you don’t need an ironing board or other flat surface to use it, either). It’s gentle on delicate fabrics, like silk and nylon, yet heavy-duty enough to tackle thicker materials like draperies.

17. This set of knives that prevent cheese from sticking and crumbling

Why use a normal butter knife for your cheese board when you can use these special cheese knives instead? Not only are they a sleeker option than regular flatware, but they’re designed precisely to slice, spear, and serve cheese without risk of sticking or crumbling. This set comes with four cheese knives, one cheese fork, and one cheese spreader, all constructed of sturdy stainless steel and tucked inside a sleek black box. This would make a great gift, too.

18. A cushy bath mat that’s totally slip-resistant

Slippery bath mats aren’t just annoying — they can be dangerous, too. This bath mat is made with a tough anti-slip bottom layer that’s guaranteed to stay put, without the use of unreliable suction cups. (It’ll also maintain the integrity of your floor’s finish.) The cushy PVC construction is supportive, quick-drying, and easy to clean with warm soap and water.

19. A genius shower head that filters & amps up water pressure

This shower head is all kinds of genius: It increases water pressure while using less water than a typical shower head, and its built-in filtration system ensures your water is free of impurities. It’s equipped with three modes (rainfall, massage, or jetting spray) for a spa-like experience every time you step into the shower — for less than $15.

20. An over-the-door organizer with transparent windows

Every home could use some more storage space, and this over-the-door organizer is guaranteed to work for even the smallest spaces. This fabric organizer has six pockets with transparent windows so you can see exactly what you’ve put in there, as well as two sturdy hooks for hanging over any door.

21. These strip lights that reduce eye strain when you’re watching TV

These LED strip lights create an instant ambiance while you’re watching TV or movies at home, though they also work to reduce eye strain by softening the contrast between the light from the screen and the darkness of the room. Sold in strips of 6.56 feet or 14.3 feet, these lights are self-adhesive and can adjust among several colors and brightness levels via an included remote control.

22. These motion-sensor strip lights that make it easier to get out of bed at night

There are few things more annoying than getting up in the middle of the night and turning on the overhead lights. These motion-sensor strip lights can be affixed either to your bed frame or on the floor beneath your bed, and they’ll automatically switch on when you climb out of bed, then off when you return. The light is soft, gentle, and non-disruptive (either to you, or your partner).

23. An LED desk lamp that doubles as a phone charger

Any multitasking product is inherently clever (and problem-solving), and this desk lamp is a great example of that: Its base has a built-in, wireless phone charger as well as a USB port, so you can charge two devices at the same time. Meanwhile, the lamp itself has three lighting modes and six brightness levels that you can adjust with a sensitive, touch-style button.

24. A customizable mandoline that can finely slice, grate, and shred fruit & veggies

This adjustable mandoline is the one tool you need to finely and uniformly slice, grate, and shred all kinds of vegetables, fruits, and cheese. It comes with five types of blades — a standard slicer, a wavy blade, a shredder, a coarse shredder, and a grater — that you can swap into the base, all of which can be adjusted for finer or coarser cuts. This order also comes with a safety cap to protect your fingers from the super-sharp blades.

25. These self-watering planters that keep your plants alive for you

These self-watering planters make it virtually impossible to kill your plants, even if you’re not blessed with a green thumb. The planter stores water at the bottom, thanks to its double-layer design; so even if you forget to water your plant, or if you head out of town for a few days, the plant has a backup supply. Importantly, it’s also made with drainage holes that allow the plant’s roots to grow so you don’t need to worry about re-potting it. Note that a plant isn’t included with this order.

26. A sleek humidifier that’s ideal for small spaces

Humidifiers are crucial for maintaining optimal moisture levels in the air. Clocking in at 3 pounds, this personal humidifier is an especially smart, sleek option for small spaces, though its 4.5-liter capacity can run continuously for an impressive 15 to 30 hours, depending on the mist level you set it on. It’s ultra-quiet (many reviewers use it for nurseries), has a 360-degree nozzle, and shuts off automatically when it runs out of water to save energy.

27. These misting bottles for olive oil, salad dressing, & other seasoning liquids

These misting bottles make it so much easier and less messy to dress salads and season veggies, fish, and meat with oil, dressing, or other liquid. It’s also a great way to mitigate accidental product waste. They’re made of sleek stainless steel and food-grade glass and deposit a smooth, ultra-fine mist. In addition to two misters, this order comes with a nozzle for decanting the liquid of your choice, a cleaning brush, and a silicone brush.

28. A roll-up dish rack that frees up counter space

Free up tons of counter space with this cult-favorite drying rack. It rolls up for easy storage when not in use; then, when you need it, you can set it over your sink to act as a drying rack. It’s also dishwasher-safe and heat-resistant, so it can double as a trivet for hot pans.

29. 8 essential kitchen tools nested into 1 bottle

This $12 kitchen gadget gets you almost every kitchen tool you need (and some you never knew you needed), like a juicer, grater, egg slicer, can opener, measuring cups, and decanter, to name a few. They nest together into a wine bottle shape, so you won’t risk losing all the loose parts in your cupboards.

30. A gadget that lets you chop any fruit or vegetable in a crinkle-cut

If you land on the crinkle-cut side of the potato chip debate, you’ll love this $5 chopping tool. The blade is designed into a wave-like shape, so you can easily crinkle-cut potatoes, zucchini, apples, eggs, and more. The handle has an ergonomic-like grip so it won’t slip out of your hand. The manufacturer doesn’t indicate whether this is dishwasher-safe, but several reviewers have reported success putting this on the top rack of their dishwashers.

31. A set of 2 anti-fatigue mats that make kitchen chores more pleasant

They’re pretty and they’re practical. Roll out these anti-fatigue mats on your kitchen floor for a little extra support at the stove or sink. A modern Moroccan pattern adds sophisticated style, and the water-resistant, anti-slip design is made for use in high-traffic areas. It’s available in six colors to match your interior.

32. These magnetic keyholders that look like little clouds on your door or wall

If you’re constantly hunting for your keys as you head for the door, why not hang them there? This set of two magnetic key holders sticks on any metal surface, including refrigerators and steel doors. The cute cloud shapes add a whimsical touch to your decor as you reclaim your time. They’re also great for holding nails and other small items.

33. This slim mug warmer that you can set beside your desk or on a counter

If I had a nickel for every cup of tea or coffee I’ve left to cool on my desk, I’d have more than enough for this clever mug warmer. The 17-watt warmer heats up quickly and keeps your cocoa cozy until you’re ready to enjoy. A long cord offers flexible placement on desks and tables, and the power indicator light lets you know when it’s on.

34. The original toilet stool that makes restroom visits more comfortable

Reviewers are sharing that this innovative toilet stool “really works” as it’s intended to. Bamboo construction doesn’t stand out in your restroom, for discreet use, and the flippable design supports users of every height. This simple stool supports a natural squatting position for effective use.

35. This magnetic knife bar that offers lots of amazing uses

Keep your knives safe and right at hand with this magnetic knife bar. The high-power fully magnetic bar can handle everything from steak knives to cleavers keeping them safely out of reach and clearing off your counters. Super versatile, this bar can be used for tools or crafting supplies. It comes with everything needed for a quick install.

36. A set of spice gripper strips that hold up to 30 jars

Spices really have a way of multiplying as you try new recipes. This simple set of strips let you get your shelves back while keeping spices ready for use. Six strips have five clips each to easily handle your collection, and they mount easily with strong adhesive to the back of cupboard doors or on pantry walls.

37. A pair of blackout curtains that turn day into restful night

This pair of blackout curtains keeps out the sun on your terms, letting you sleep in on Saturdays and maintain your privacy. The grommet style slides easily onto standard curtain rods for an instant room refresh. These panels are insulated to help conserve on energy costs, too. Choose from 19 colors.

38. This compact single-serving coffee maker that comes with its own travel mug

Grab a quick cup of coffee virtually anywhere with this compact coffee maker that makes a single serving. A removable filter holds your favorite grounds, while the included travel mug is sized to fit in most cupholders. Slim and small, this coffee maker is perfect for travel.

39. This simple soap dispenser that supports one-handed use

Scrubbing dishes has never been as simple as it is with this dish soap dispenser and sponge holder. It looks pretty cool sitting on your counter and dispenses soap onto your sponge with just a push (for way less waste). The ample capacity fits almost a whole bottle of dish soap, clearing up your counter space.

40. An automatic soap dispenser with a totally touchless design

Stopping the spread of germs is simple when no one is actually touching the soap dispenser. Built-in sensing lights on this dispenser drop the perfect (adjustable) amount right into your hands for a fuss-free way to wash up in the kitchen or bath. A rubber base keeps it from skidding, and the 9.5-ounce capacity eliminates frequent refills.

41. A slim storage cart that holds cleaning supplies, office items & more

Looking for a little extra store, but you don’t have a lot of space? Check out this super-slim storage cart that makes the most of what you do have. The 360-degree rotating wheels make it easy to move anywhere, and three sturdy bins offer room for keeping your cleaning supplies, laundry detergents, and more.

42. This compact air fryer that takes the time out of meal making

I’m impressed with this small air fryer that makes it so simple to get dinner on the table for one or two. It lets you fry healthier with little to no oil, so you can enjoy your favorites. A 60-minute timer and manual temp setting deliver perfection to your plate. This compact fryer boasts a 4.6-star rating and doesn’t take up counter space.

43. This travel-ready set of toilet-bowl sprays that freshen the experience

The 4.8-star rating says it all: This travel set of toilet sprays is a must-have for comfortable hotel room stays or public restroom use. Just one spray keeps things fresh, so you can go whenever you need in confidence. You get one each of Lavender Vanilla, Tropical Hibiscus, and Original Citrus scents.

44. A set of reusable zip-top storage bags for marinating, lunches & snacks

If you use a lot of zip-top bags and hate the waste they make, pick up this 12-pack of resusable storage bags. They zip closed just like disposables to keep your lunch, snacks, or marinating meat secure, but you can put them in the dishwasher for use over and over again. BPA-free construction helps ensure safe use in your kitchen.

45. A multifunction toilet paper roll holder that has room for your phone

Keep a roll at the ready and store even more with this toilet paper holder and stand. The clever construction features a standard holder and a space for up to three more rolls, so you’re never short. A tray on top is the perfect spot for keeping your smartphone close-by. A matte black finish adds a sophisticated touch.

46. This borosilicate glass electric kettle that boils water really quick

This electric kettle lets you boil water for tea or ramen without having to touch your stove. STRIX Thermostat technology delivers safe, boiling water in just 3-7 minutes, and the 1.7-liter capacity lets you make more than one serving at a time. The borosilicate glass construction is durable for years of use.

47. This super-simple magnetic accent upgrade for your garage door that looks amazing

You don’t have to order expensive hardware (or even a whole new door) to smarten up the look of your garage. This set of decorative garage door accents does the trick for so much cheaper. You get two handles and four hinges — all with strong magnets that hold them securely in place. Weather-resistant construction resists rust and other damage.

48. A cable management box that keeps bulky power strips out of sight

Clutter is no match for this cable management box. Its deceptively simple design can hide surge protectors up to 11 inches in length, keeping plugs and wires contained and out from under your feet. The sleek design helps it blend into your space. Choose from black or white.

49. A 3-in-1 stand that holds your tablet on countertops or walls

This 3-in-1 tablet stand is for those of us who like to multitask. It sets up simply in your kitchen — on the wall, on a counter, or even underneath a cabinet. The universal design holds tablets from 7 to 11 inches, keeping them secure so you can read recipes or follow your favorite streaming shows while you cook or clean up.

50. These magnetic tieback clips that click into place without needing a hook

Add an elegant touch to your curtain panels without having to drill a hole. These magnetic tieback clips snap into place keeping your drapes drawn back. The versatile cord length can be twisted into a range of sizes and shapes to meet curtain fabrics from thin to thick. Choose from nine colors.

51. This privacy film for windows that adds an instant retro accent to your home

You don’t need curtains to ensure your privacy with this clever window film. The pebbled design delivers a throwback ‘70s look and catches the sunlight to create a stained glass effect. It’s easy to apply — there’s no need for glue — and uses static to adhere to your window pane.

52. A 7-port surge protector that has a built-in shelf & a night light

Is it an outlet extender or a charging base? This surge protector actually combines the best of both worlds in one slim easy-to-plug-in piece. Four USB ports charge tablets and phones, while three standard outlets provide extra space for electronics. Best of all, there’s a shelf on top to place your devices as they charge.

53. A plug-in room deodorizer that handles pets, smoke & cooking odors

Candles and sprays have nothing on this plug-in sanitizer and deodorizer when it comes to freshening up your space. The 7-inch profile is ideal for smaller spaces and uses UV-C light to kill harmful germs that cause odor. Place it in your kitchen or next to a litter box for super convenient control.

54. This hideaway toilet plunger that blends in with your decor

It’s always handy to have a plunger nearby in case you need it, but they don’t always make the most fashionable bathroom accessories. This toilet plunger and caddy let you keep a plunger close-by without having it on display. The commercial-grade suction gets the job done, while the spring-enabled caddy opens and closes by simply moving the plunger handle.

55. This wood repair kit that makes scratches & scuffs disappear

Don’t toss heirloom furniture. Fix it, instead, with this furniture repair kit. Six wrapped wax sticks fill in gouges and scratches, while six markers feature a range of wood finishes (from light oak to black) to match desks, tables, or baseboards. This kit includes a sharpener for repeated use.

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