The Best $20 These Professional Organizers Have Ever Spent

updated Jul 25, 2023
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Like many of us, I enjoy using my extra time at home to declutter my space. For the first time in, well, who knows, I can walk through my basement storage area, see the floor in my kids’ closet, and easily find the pizza cutter in my kitchen without getting a headache.

My house feels amazing (for now), but I am embarrassed to admit that the process of creating a home environment that’s easier to navigate took me the better part of six months. Had I had the right organizational tools, I may have been able to enjoy my space even sooner.

Next time I organize, I think I’ll take a cue from the pros. Do you want some home organization intel, too? I asked a bunch of professional organizers to tell me the best $20 they’ve ever spent (because getting things under control shouldn’t cost a fortune!). Here’s what they had to say.

1 / 8

Jen Breitegan, founder of Organize Envy, is glad she forked over $13 for these reusable meal prep containers: “These babies work great not just for leftovers in the fridge — they also stack very well in a cabinet and can store items like napkins, plastic cutlery, corn holders, and takeout condiment packets,” she says. “I also use them to store over-the-counter meds that come in blister packs!”

2 / 8
was $15.99

Small home and organization expert Emma Healey, who founded Little House, Lovely Home, needs all the space she can find after downsizing to an 860-foot space with her husband and two kids. One tool that comes in handy in her tiny kitchen? An under-shelf basket.

“Under-shelf baskets make use of the awkward space above your crockery or pantry items, giving you a place to store items that might usually clutter up a drawer,” she says. “They’re perfect for things like food wrap, dish towels, and container lids — all of which can be stored away in space that would usually be wasted.”

3 / 8
The Container Store

Annie Draddy, professional organizer and co-founder of Henry & Higby, says these inexpensive, plastic shoe boxes are a great way to organize any room of your home. The best part? They’re clear, so you can easily and quickly spot what you need. In the kitchen, she uses hers to store smaller items, like cookie cutters, cookie-decorating items, or small tools she doesn’t often use.

4 / 8

When it comes to keeping her own kitchen tidy and functional, pro organizer Caroline Solomon can’t live without her trusted turntable, which is anything but lazy. “I like to keep mine on the countertop and line it with frequently used cooking oils, vinegars, and spices, but these work just as well in the pantry to keep food from being forgotten,” Solomon says. “I love that it contains my core products all in one spot, while keeping everything visible and at arm’s length.”

A pro tip for future lazy Susan owners: “Keep taller items in the center and shorter items like spices on the periphery so they’re easier to grab,” suggests Solomon.

5 / 8
The Container Store

If you’ve ever lost food items to the back of your fridge, look no further than this inexpensive organizer, suggested by pro organizer Stacey Agin Murray of Organized Artistry. “This bin easily slides in and out of the fridge, allowing you to see and reach what’s in the back,” she says. “It’s also great for grouping like foods together — I use one on the bottom shelf of my fridge so I don’t have to crouch down and reach all the way in the back for the yogurt containers I keep in it!”

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Kon Mari consultant Sole Buznego is a big fan of these shelf risers from IKEA. “These have proven to be super stable, cute, and a great investment to make all the vertical space in your cabinets work,” Buznego says. “I use them for dishes, mugs, glasses, spices, and even to add an extra layer in the pantry.”

7 / 8
was $7.00

Esther Konz of Uncluttered Simplicity makes the most of her cabinet space by using every inch — including the doors. “The best way to do this is by using Command hooks to hang baking utensils, pot lids, oven gloves, or your dish brush,” she says. “The best part is, this stylish hook is less than six dollars!”

8 / 8

Michele Vig, a master certified organizer in the Kondo method, is obsessed with these adorable storage jars to keep seeds, dried beans, and legumes fresh. “For less than five dollars a jar, they are an economical and oh-so-cute way to decant dry goods in the pantry,” she says.