Apr 27, 2024

Of All the Cheap Home Upgrades on Amazon, These Are the Most Impressive

Everyone will be asking where you got them.

Over the past several months, I’ve spent just about every free minute I have making upgrades to my home. Sure, some projects were expensive and challenging, but believe it or not, when people come over, those aren’t the first things they notice. Instead, they say things like, “Everything’s so organized,” and “It’s so bright and airy in here,” and “Did you replace this bathtub?” (I didn’t.)

In other words, sometimes the easiest, cheapest home improvement projects make the biggest difference. Some clutter-reducing organizers, upgraded bedding, cleaning products that actually work, and a few new light fixtures go a really long way. And since Amazon has tons of brilliant products that improve the aesthetic and functionality of your home, you never even have to leave the house.

Highlight a piece of art, add accent lights above your bed, illuminate a closet, or light up a reading nook — all without having to call an electrician. These wall-mounted, wireless LED sconces have a self-adhesive base and a rechargeable battery that lasts for up to 15 hours. When it dies, just disconnect the lamp from its magnetic mount and charge it again. You can also choose the warmth, brightness level, and rotation angle.

Clear clutter off of your side tables and ensure that you always know where to find your remotes. These magnetic mounts have two parts: one that adheres to your remotes, and another that sticks to your walls, furniture, or the back of your TV screen. The magnetic, slip-in design then offers a sleek, stable way to secure your remotes out of sight or exactly where you need them. Since they come in a pack of five, you can also use them to secure remotes to their accompanying electronics, including humidifiers, fans, and AC units.

This five-port charging station provides three things simultaneously: five USB ports, a reduction in cord clutter, and adjustable, file-like organization for all of your devices. Each order includes short cables (Apple, Micro USB, and USB-C) and the built-in chip intelligently identifies the plugged-in device to provide the appropriate current. “My counter now looks so organized,” one reviewer wrote. “No more wires running all over. This solved a lot of problems for us.”

Since these cable clips have a peel-and-stick adhesive backing, you can mount them to your computer desk, media console table, or even your car’s dashboard. The silicone slots then keep your wires tangle-free, easily identifiable, and exactly where you need them — and if you need to move your charger, you just pull it free from the tabs. “Keeps the cords from slipping down [behind furniture,]” one reviewer wrote, while another one said, “The area looks much less cluttered and messy.”

“I was going to throw my large older couch out even though it looked great fabric wise [because] the springs broke, [so] you would sink in and struggle to get [up],” one reviewer wrote. “These extra strong hardwood slates fixed and saved my comfortable couch.” Using hardwood slats wrapped in fabric, this product sits between your cushions and your couch frames, boosting the support without slipping or discomfort. It comes in four size options to fit various furniture pieces.

These tieback clips serve two functions: First, they allow you to adjust your curtains as needed in mere seconds thanks to their magnetic design. Second, they function as decor, granted their woven style (in nine color options) looks way more expensive than it actually is. “These are GORGEOUS and I love that they are magnetic,” one reviewer wrote. “Makes it all so much easier.”

Sleeping on a mulberry silk pillowcase is a popular tip among skin and hair care enthusiasts, as the natural material is much gentler than other fabrics. That said, silk is also extremely smooth and cooling — so even if you’re not concerned about frizz-free hair and a clear complexion, it’s a worthy upgrade. One reviewer bought three and called them “one of the best Amazon purchases to date,” because they’re “so soft and luxurious feeling.”

The BedShelfie is a genius solution for those in crowded dorm rooms, people who sleep on top bunks, or reviewers who don’t have the space or desire for a bedside table. The clamp design easily attaches to most bed frames without the need for tools, after which the tray holds up to 35 pounds of electronics, remote controls, reading materials, or anything else you need within reach. It even has built-in slits for cord management.

These bamboo dividers help you organize any drawer, whether it holds utensils, office supplies, clothes, linens, or odds and ends. Its spring-loaded design adjusts to the drawer’s dimensions, but won’t slip or scratch thanks to the rubber pads on either end. “Bought these drawer dividers to avoid custom drawer prices,” one reviewer wrote. “Even the cabinet maker asked me for the source. They allow for me to set up each drawer as I want and not commit to a style.”

Dozens of reviewers have called this Turbo microfiber mop “a must” for hard floors in any home, but it’s especially effective if you have pets that shed: “I was absolutely amazed at how much hair it picked up on the first try,” one wrote. The 360-degree rotating head allows you to get under furniture and in tight corners, a telescoping handle reaches up to 60 inches for windows and high-up cleaning, and the machine-washable pads pick up dirt, dust, and fur on any hard surface from wood to tile.

These silicone ice cube trays are “such an upgrade” from the traditional plastic ones, according to reviewers. For one, the silicone is BPA-free and flexible so you can easily get the cubes out. For another, the slim, stackable design (with included lids) gives you 42 cubes at once without spills or taking up too much room in your freezer.

This isn’t your average refrigerator deodorizer. Yes, it absorbs odors and aims to keep food fresher for longer, but unlike most other options on the market, it doesn’t require any recharging, refill packets, or messy baking soda. The stainless steel shell contains catalysts that break down organic gases inside your fridge, and each unit works for up to 10 years without maintenance. “I cannot believe how fresh my fridge smells,” wrote one reviewer.

Leg pain, snoring, acid reflux, heart burn, finding a comfortable position while reading or watching TV — reviewers have used this wedge pillow for so many purposes, and one even called it the “best investment” they ever made. Its triangular memory foam design creates a 10-inch-tall incline that raises your torso while you sleep. Its cover is also removable, washable, and infused with cooling gel.

Under-cabinet lighting elevates any kitchen, and thanks to these wireless LED fixtures, you don’t need an electrician in order to get them. They mount using either heavy-duty adhesive tape or screws, both of which are included, and they run on batteries for cordless use. They also have automatic timers to save power, touch settings that turn them into tap lights, adjustable brightness options, and an included remote control.

Maybe your rug is constantly slipping and sliding due to pets, kids, and heavy traffic — or maybe the corners curl up entirely on their own. Either way, these rug grippers tackle the problem without damaging your floors. The adhesive backing sticks to the underside of your rug, while the rubber coating keeps the corners firmly planted without leaving marks. The materials are also fully weatherproof for use indoors and out.

Motorized scrubber tools are effective, but pricy. Fortunately, if you have a handheld drill, these scrubber attachments turn it into a heavy-duty cleaning tool in no time. Each order includes four attachments for various surfaces, and combined, you’ll be able to clean grout, tiles, fixtures, tubs, glass, and even your car. Just be sure to choose your color carefully, as each set has bristles of varying intensities, which are designed for specific jobs.

Rather than reaching for single-use plastic bags, wrap, or foil, these Food Huggers are an easy, eco-friendly way to preserve your half-eaten ingredients. The stretchy silicone wraps around the cut edges of fruit and vegetables, but can also be used lids for jars, glasses, and cans. They’re also dishwasher-safe and come in a range of sizes to suit different functions.

“I had heard about these before, but I thought it couldn’t make that much of a difference,” one reviewer wrote. After trying this meat masher first-hand, however, they are “immediately hooked.” Its beveled pinwheel design efficiently breaks up meat for tacos and sauce without scratching cookware, but it also tackles eggs, potatoes, squash, and avocados for efficient food-prep. Since it’s heat-resistant and dishwasher-safe, it’s durable for long-term use.

Dull edges aren’t just annoying, they can also be dangerous. To fix that, give this affordable sharpener a shot. Its tungsten carbide and angled design work to sharpen any and all knives, including those with serrated blades, in just a few light-pressure passes. The base also has a built-in suction cup for safety and stability. “I can't believe how sharp it made my dull cutting knives,” one reviewer wrote.

“I have [eight] ceiling fans in my house, and have always put off cleaning them because it is such a pain,” one reviewer wrote — but this extendable duster works “like a dream.” The included pole reaches up to 47 inches, while the large microfiber head has countless fluffy fibers that trap dust. When you’re done, the head slips off and goes in the washing machine, so you don’t have to purchase any expensive refills. This tool also works well for trim, mouldings, and electronics.

Most reviewers use the Wise Owl Outfitters pillow for camping and backpacking, since it offers supportive, comfortable memory foam in a lightweight design that condenses into its included stuff pack. That said, it’s so comfortable, some reviewers use it at home to sleep on, sit on, or lounge with — especially in small houses or RVs. The micro-suede cover is machine-washable and available in a few color options, too.

This drying rack is a life-saver for small kitchens or those who like to minimize countertop clutter as much as possible. Its sturdy steel rods and non-slip silicone edges stretch over your sink and provide a self-draining surface for glasses, plates, produce, or heavy cookware. When everything’s dry, it then rolls up for easy storage in a cabinet or drawer.

Install this shower filter behind your showerhead (without the need for tools), and its multi-stage system will reduce chlorine, sediment, and harsh deposits while balancing the pH and infusing your water with nourishing minerals. The result, according to reviewers? “My hair feels softer, looks shinier, and is much easier to manage,” one wrote. “As for my skin, it feels smoother and more hydrated after each shower. I no longer experience that tight, dry feeling, and my skin looks more radiant.”

“So plush and luxurious,” wrote one reviewer who has “daily foot pain but not when standing on these.” These padded bath mats are filled with memory foam for cushioning and support, but they’re also non-slip for security and machine-washable for upkeep. Since they’re also absorbent and quick-drying, some reviewers use them in the kitchen to cushion their feet while cooking or washing dishes.

In most bathrooms, the toilet tank is wasted space due to its unsteady surface and (in some cases) top-facing buttons. This over-the-toilet organizer overcomes both obstacles with its adhesive clips and raised design. You can also mount it to the wall above the toilet and use the legs as towel hangers, but either way, it doesn’t require drilling and its metal basket securely holds your toiletries and decor. You can also get it in two- and three-tier designs.

“Of the hundreds of items that I have purchased on Amazon, this is the one item that I wouldn't trade for anything,” wrote one reviewer who called this Greenco bidet attachment the “best impulse purchase” they’ve “ever made.” Since it’s non-electric, it installs on most toilets in minutes, according to reviewers. It then uses an adjustable sprayer to boost hygiene and cut down on toilet paper usage. No wonder it’s racked up over 13,000 five-star ratings.

Most reviewers have used this pumice stone cleaner on their toilets to get rid of hard water marks and help the porcelain to look “like new.” That said, I used it alongside this Iron Out spray to tackle rust stains in my tub when nothing else would work, and it looks like I got the whole thing replaced. The pumice scrapes away mineral deposits, limescale, and stains without scratching, while the handle allows for comfortable leverage while cleaning.

Reviewers have called this smart scale “sleek,” “accurate,” and an “an invaluable tool” in their “health and fitness journey.” In addition to displaying weight in easy-to-read, digital numbers, it also measures 12 other metrics. It then sends all of that info to your Apple or Android phone, where you can sync it with popular apps like Apple Health, Fitbit, or Google Fit. The tempered glass top is shatter-resistant while the feet are non-slip.

Most under-sink organizers have multiple tiers of shelves to maximize your storage space. That said, this under-sink organizer has a sliding basket that functions as a drawer, so you can reach the stuff in the very back without upsetting everything else. It also has four hooks and a moveable side basket to store odds and ends, which explains why reviewers have called it “the best purchase ever” when it comes to organizing their bathrooms and kitchens.

If you’re out of drawer space, this hanging organizer helps you store your pants, skirts, hats, accessories, and shoes neatly in your closet. Its non-woven construction is split up into separate compartments, which you can use with or without the drawer inserts. It also has pockets on the sides for smaller items, and the stainless steel hangers are “well constructed” and “sturdy,” according to one reviewer.

Whether you’re low on closet space or you need a storage solution for your seasonal footwear, these under-the-bed organizers can help. They come in a pack of two: one that can fit four pairs of boots and one that holds up to 16 pairs of sneakers, flats, heels, or sandals. The non-woven fabric protects your shoes while the built-in handles and strong zippers allow for easy retrieval — plus the tops are made from transparent vinyl so you can find what you’re looking for at a glance.

Made from New Zealand wool, these dryer balls are a cost-effective way to dry your laundry. They reduce wrinkles, minimize static, soften fabrics without chemicals, and effectively break up your clothes in the machine to shorten drying time. Since each one lasts for up to three years or for over 1,000 loads, you’ll not only save money on your energy bills, but on single-use dryer sheets and liquid softeners, too.

Yes, these LED backlights add a cool, aesthetic touch to your computer monitor or TV — but they’re surprisingly practical, too. The contrast between the LED strips and your monitor actually reduces eyestrain, prevents headaches, and makes the on-screen image look so much more vivid. The wireless remote lets you choose between 15 color options and 10 levels of brightness.

I’ve been on a recent mission to clear off any possible countertop clutter in my home — but some things are a necessity. Fortunately, this adhesive paper towel holder ensures that your paper towels are within reach and out of the way simultaneously. Made from rust-resistant stainless steel with a self-adhesive backing, it sticks to most smooth surfaces like cabinets and tiles (though it also has screw holes for drywall).

Adding a doorbell to your home doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult. These wireless doorbells cost as little as $14, and they come with everything you need for a quick DIY installation: an outdoor remote transmitter with a button, a plug-in receiver with a flashing LED light, double-sided tape as well as anchors and screws for mounting, and a battery that lasts up to three years. “This is an elegant no-wire doorbell,” one reviewer wrote. “Great color and ring choices.”

Wrap-It storage straps have a near-perfect 4.8-star rating from over 12,000 reviewers on Amazon. Made from weather-proof polypropylene with a Velcro closure, they can support up to 50 pounds each, so you can wrap, hang, and organize your extension cords and hoses. You can also wrap them around the handles of your garden tools and machinery, so you can hang them from hooks in your shed or garage.

Use this handheld frother to make coffee-house-quality lattes, cappuccinos, and matcha at home — or use it to whisk eggs, whip cream, or mix up protein shakes without the need for a hand mixer or blender. The simple on/off button controls the titanium motor, which causes the stainless steel whisk to vibrate at high speeds. It works on any type of milk or milk substitute and since it runs on batteries, you don’t have to worry about cords.

Upgrading your kitchen isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s also about functionality. The cult-favorite Dash rapid egg cooker has helped reviewers expand their cooking repertoire and impress their guests with culinary-level breakfasts, salads, and appetizers. Its compact, lightweight design is surprisingly versatile, helping you to make omelets, hard-boiled, soft-boiled, poached, and scrambled eggs in minutes and at the press of a single button.

A best-seller on Amazon, the YouCopia StoraLid makes it so much easier to store food container lids and reusable silicone bags in a compact, organized way. Its adjustable dividers create a file system that holds your flat accessories upright. That way, you can see your entire collection at once and grab the one you need without causing an avalanche of other items. It even has a built-in handle so you can move it around.

Maybe your blender is heavy, cumbersome, and annoying to get out of the cabinet, or maybe you don’t own a blender at all. Either way, this Hamilton Beach personal blender makes your life so much easier when it comes to mixing shakes, making smoothies, or pureeing ingredients. Its stainless steel blades work at the press of a button, while its dishwasher-safe jar doubles as a to-go cup with a travel lid, so you can just blend and go.

The StoveShelf creates more storage space in your kitchen by utilizing an unexpected spot: the tiny ledge above your stove. Because it’s magnetic and comes in three sizes to fit most standard models, it installs without tools or damage. It then elongates and flattens the area and adds a back edge for security, so you can store your spices, condiments, and decor there.

Filled with down-alternative microfiber and covered in breathable cotton, this mattress topper has earned almost 100,000 reviews on Amazon. “Feels like I upgraded my mattress,” one reviewer wrote, while another raved, “This is the best mattress pad I’ve ever slept on, hands down. So incredibly plush.” It comes in tons of colors and size options, and especially compared to replacing your entire mattress, it’s a great way to improve your bed on a budget.

It only costs $15, but reviewers have called this portable fan their “savior” in hot environments. Some bring it to work, while others clip it to their camping tents, scooters, strollers, or bed frames. Either way, the rechargeable battery delivers several hours of strong, quiet airflow — without the need for an outlet.

Plug this indoor bug trap into any outlet, and it’ll start working within minutes to trap flies, fruit flies, gnats, and moths. Instead of chemicals, it lures bugs onto its glue card using a UV light. The glue cards are replaceable while the trap is discreet, odor-free, and safe for pets and children. “These flying insect traps are very well designed, effective, and work exceptionally well,” one reviewer raved.

Whether used indoors or out, this wooden planter box gives your succulents, herbs, or perennials a rustic touch. Since it’s made from lightweight acacia wood, you can move it around much more easily than a heavy pot — and some reviewers even mounted a few of them to their houses for use as window boxes. Finally, they assemble in minutes and come with pre-drilled drainage holes to prevent root rot.

Reviewers “no longer need to hire someone” to trim their hedges after purchasing this handheld shrubber tool. Since it comes with a rechargeable battery, you don’t have to worry about gas or limiting cords, and it weighs only 2.5 pounds with an ergonomic handle for easy control. The blade length even adjusts for use as a grass shear in addition to a hedger.

“I have been microwaving my water for hot tea for years, knowing full well I am running the risk of severely burning myself,” one reviewer wrote — but this Amazon Basics electric kettle “heats water up almost twice as fast as the microwave” and is much safer. It’s also safer than the stove granted it automatically turns off when the water is done or the glass carafe runs dry, and the compact, modern design fits easily in a cabinet or looks great left out on your countertop. Best of all, reviewers wrote that their tea or coffee comes out “delicious.”

I got one of these mop and broom holders to help me organize my new utility closet and it was a total game-changer. The spring-loaded clamps and grippy rubber automatically adjust to the size of your tool’s handle, so it can hold mops, brooms, dusters, and even baseball bats — but the quick-release design allows for easy retrieval. This one holds up to 11 tools on the six hooks and in the five slots. Altogether, it can support up to 38 pounds, so you can keep your supplies off of the floor but within reach.

Q-tips, cotton rounds, floss sticks, bath salts, hair ties, makeup sponges — apothecary jars can transform just about any small bathroom items from clutter into decor. These ones look like glass due to their transparent construction and decorative lids, but they’re actually durable, affordable plastic. They hold 10 ounces each and come with both pre-printed labels and blank ones. You can also use them for office supplies or crafting materials.

“Bought these to keep track of the humidity in a couple of rooms where we're running dehumidifiers,” wrote one reviewer who called these indoor humidity meters “cheap and accurate.” Others use them to track the temperatures and moisture levels in their babies’ rooms, greenhouses, basements, and terrariums. They come in a pack of two, each with included button batteries that last over a year.

Maria Cassano