25 Small-Space Superheroes — From Furniture to Organizers — Our Editors Can’t Live Without

updated May 29, 2023
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If it seems like our editors have really good product picks for tiny apartments, it’s because they’re right there in the trenches with all you small-space dwellers. Most of us live the reality, whether we’re tiptoeing around a studio or splitting a one-bedroom with a roommate. The upside is that our recommendations are legit, meaning you can trust that a certain sofa or set of shelves will get the job done without taking up excess real estate. We realized, however, that although there are endless one-off product reviews floating around AT, it might be helpful to compile them and put all those great finds in one post. Thus, we present you with Small-Space Superheroes, our series that highlights editor-tested and -loved products that make our diminutive domains feel less cramped and more comfortable. We’re sure they’ll do the same for you, so check them out below, and maybe take a look at what needs replacing (or upgrading) in your own humble abode.

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1 / 25
was $42.99

Side tables are all well and good, but the wrong one will not only make your space feel cramped, but it might also conceal your power outlets. This compact little side table prevents both problems. Senior commerce editor Alicia says its built-in charging station is nothing short of game-changing. "The side table comes with two outlets and two USB chargers, which means that my boyfriend and I no longer jostle over the two available outlets," she wrote. "We now have a total of six — we more than doubled our charging space." You'll also be happy to learn that this table is a breeze to assemble, even for those who aren't normally skilled in that department.

2 / 25

It can be a hassle to find storage solutions that aren't a total eyesore, but style and shopping editor Blair managed to find these bins, which she describes as deceptively spacious and stylish, to boot. Each bin has a transparent window, so you can easily see what's inside without having to unzip it. "The 75-liter capacity can hold up to 35 pieces of apparel, according to the Amazon listing, as well as the equivalent of three king-sized comforters or six blankets," she wrote. "Oh, and rest assured that the (surprisingly durable-feeling) outer canvas — made from 90 percent cotton and 10 percent polyester — combined with the waterproof laminate interior help safely protect your blankets, extra towels, winter sweaters, and more."

3 / 25

It's only natural to accumulate an inordinate number of water bottles over the years, and it goes without saying that storing them is no easy feat. Because of that, commerce SEO editor Sarah recommends this horizontal organizer, which you can stow away neatly inside any cabinet. "With this organizer, I’m now able to see every bottle in my collection at once and reach it with ease," she wrote. "The best part? Because of its two-shelf design, I can actually take advantage of the open space at the top of my cabinet and stack bottles on top of each other. Yep — this organizer created even more storage space!" Use it for your water bottles, travel mugs, Stanley quenchers, and whatever else will fit.

4 / 25
Williams Sonoma

You can't not consider kitchen tools and appliances when buying items that'll fit into your space without making it feel cramped. As far as electric kettles go, this one is a splurge, but Alicia says it's worth every cent. "The Smeg heats up in less than three minutes, holds enough water for my boyfriend’s oatmeal and my morning cup of coffee, and is easy to maneuver," she wrote. "Our commerce managing editor, Tamara, owns the larger Smeg Kettle and says that she wishes she got the Mini because it’s too big. So if you’re debating between the two sizes and are heating up water for one or two people, we say go smaller." And, of course, you can't ignore the kettle's stunning design!

5 / 25

You can't go without cleaning supplies, but the sad truth is that many of them are needlessly bulky. That's not the case, however, with this collapsible mop kit, which Blair says remains compact even if you don't flatten the included bucket. What's more, it'll leave any room of the home spotless. "For just $41.98, you essentially get seven tools, an easily-transportable storage bucket, and an all-around cleaner space — win-win-win," she wrote. The mop is easily her most used product, and Blair added that it's now her go-to when deep-cleaning the bathroom.

6 / 25
was $35.99

If you're using regular hangers to hang pants, you're doing it wrong. Instead, you might consider these five-in-one tiered hangers, which come in a set of two. Alicia strongly recommends them for people who are short on shelf space and says they practically transformed her own closet. "With the two-pack, there are 10 hangers for pants or scarves," she wrote. "I personally doubled up some of my leggings, because they were so lightweight. I have a total of 14 pairs of pants and leggings hanging in my closet, which freed up an entire column of storage space on my shelf." Affordable and functional? Sounds downright enticing.

7 / 25
Le Creuset
was $32.00

Who doesn't love a good Dutch oven? The only issue with this cookware staple is that most Dutch ovens aren't exactly compact. To get the same effect while also saving on cabinet space, grab a mini cocotte or two from Le Creuset. Ian, our sister site's senior commerce editor, uses his for a wide variety of meals, noting that the adorable little pots come in handy on a daily basis. "For serving, these can function as mini soup bowls, containers for single-serving desserts, ice cream bowls, cereal bowls, and more," he wrote. "In the kitchen, you can use them to make mini pot pies, cook gratins; bake souffles; and whip up single brownies, cookies, crème brûlées, and more." You can even use the cocottes outside of the kitchen as makeshift trinket trays!

8 / 25
was $26.99

Unlike other cabinets in your home, the ones beneath your kitchen and bathroom sinks don't come with shelves — or any clear way to keep them organized. This two-level rack with bins that slide out for easy access is a quick way to get these areas situated and keep all your cleaning supplies and toiletries neat. Sarah especially liked that this storage piece fits around the plumbing. "I thought I’d never find a suitable option for my space, but with the SmartHom Under Sink Organizer, this cabinet finally went from chaotic to zen," she wrote.

9 / 25
The Container Store
was $24.99

As you can imagine, Best List Editor Britt has tested many laundry hampers, but she said this is the one she uses the most. This handy, portable basket is perfect for those who lack in-unit laundry; its long handles allow you to easily carry it to the nearest laundromat without a hitch. "It can hold SO much!" Britt wrote. "I once dumped the clothing from my almost-full 72-liter hamper into the basket, and nearly everything fit into the Lustroware basket without it spilling over." Clearly, the tote's small size doesn't impede its impressive storage capacity.

10 / 25
was $16.99

Perhaps you don't have space for a nightstand next to your bed, but this clip-on light will still let you get some late-night reading in regardless. Commerce SEO Writer Nic clamped his onto his bed frame and said it works seamlessly. "It has a slim design and plenty of adjustable features, so while I’m still dreaming of the day when I wake up next to a modest nightstand, this device makes the meantime so much more pleasant," he wrote. Nic also appreciates the light's gooseneck design, which allows you to angle it as far away or close to you as you want. And for $12, you're barely paying anything!

11 / 25

Shower storage is one of the trickiest things any apartment dweller has to deal with. You could definitely adhere some shelves inside your shower's walls to solve this problem, but Blair also highly suggests this hanging organizer that hooks right onto the rod. "Even completely filled up, mine still feels barely-there every time I step in the shower, and it’s positioned at the perfect height to easily access everything," she wrote. Blair also loves the organizer's individual compartments, which keep all her essentials separated and easy to grab. If you live with someone else, it might also be worth it to buy two for both of you.

12 / 25
was $59.99

Small spaces need small vacuums, and this handheld model from Black+Decker is a hardworking and affordable machine that makes keeping your home clean easy. It charges fully in four hours and lasts long enough to do a once-over of your entire place before needing to go back to the charging dock. Best List Editor Britt has been using this vacuum for years and swears by it, writing, "This vacuum literally lasts for years, and still works as well as it did when I first received it. Reliable is an understatement when it comes to this vacuum, it’s a dependable must-have."

13 / 25

If you live in a city with a rental market as crazy as NYC's, you have to be prepared to move around a lot. Because of this, Alicia only uses organizers that are collapsible. It was only natural, then, that she'd love these folding storage bins, which are similar to the CHICVIE bins. "What I love so much about these bins is that they have the zippable window," she wrote. "When it’s time to put away clean laundry, I can easily put my folded stacks of clothes into the bag and then zip it up." The window also lets you keep an eye on what's inside at all times, making these roomy but collapsible bins highly convenient regardless of whether you keep them in your closet or under the bed.

14 / 25
was $10.69

If you're in need of more storage space, one place to check is under your bed. This often-underutilized area is the perfect place to keep seasonal clothes, extra bedding, shoes, and other belongings that the rest of your bedroom (or home) simply doesn't have room for. Alicia has been using these Ziploc storage bags for 10 years and found them to be extremely durable, largely because they're flexible. She appreciates how versatile they are, writing, "The way I used these totes changed from apartment to apartment. In one apartment, I stored extra pillows and bedding and stacked two totes on top of each other on my closet shelf. In my current one, I filled them halfway and shoved them under the bed with my out-of-season clothes. They also fold nearly flat, so when they aren’t in use, they’re easy to hide out of sight."

15 / 25

Not only do apartments often lack in-unit dryers, but many also lack the square footage for a drying rack. With this over-the-door find, though, you don't need to make room on your floor. Simply hang it up, and place your damp garments on it. Sarah loves hers, writing, "If you’re tired of not having a dedicated space to dry your delicates but don’t want something big and bulky taking up room in your tiny space, this is the answer you’ve been looking for." And it's so inexpensive!

16 / 25
was $49.99

The bathroom is usually the smallest room of the house, so it's a good idea to double up where you can. Specifically, you might try this two-in-one trash can with a built-in toilet brush. It also helps that the can, itself, is slim and thus able to fit in the tight space next to the toilet. "With the Cq acrylic, you can say goodbye to that icky toilet brush that you (think you) are hiding behind the toilet," wrote AT contributor Amy of her own buy. "It’s all here in one little compact, discreet package that looks modern and stylish."

17 / 25

The right bedside lamp makes all the difference in the world when you're trying to unwind after a long day and need a gentle, easily-accessible light that also looks good in your space. Alicia found this stylish lamp, designed by the Novogratz family, to be perfect for reading in bed and likes how the pull chains let you easily adjust the brightness. "If you’re looking for an affordable way to change the vibe of your space, I think the Globe Electric x Novogratz 2-Light Table Lamp is the perfect way to do it," she wrote.

18 / 25

Yes, it's possible to fit a sectional into a modestly sized living room, just ask Ian, who got this Castlery sofa into his apartment without a hitch. "Setup was a breeze," he wrote, adding, "The thing I love most about the Owen is that it feels big... However, it’s actually pretty compact for a sectional, and it doesn’t take up our entire living room." What's more, the sofa looks incredibly stylish and even has room for storage underneath its raised legs.

19 / 25

Anytime you can avoid using floor space for storage units, you've won. One of the best ways to achieve that is by installing floating shelves, such as these adhesive ones from Amazon. Tamara, AT's managing commerce editor, put some up in her kitchen and was happy to find that she didn't need any power tools to do so. "Now that I’ve had them up for almost three months, I can report back that these floating shelves are made with some seriously magical adhesive, because they’ve totally stayed put," she wrote. With your purchase, you get three shelves for less than $30.

20 / 25
was $60.99

Although this slim 4-tiered unit is labeled as a dresser, writer Tierra loves hers for storing toiletries in the bathroom. "In the time I’ve had it, it’s done nothing but make life easier," she wrote. "I feel much more confident buying items now because they have a place to go, and there’s nothing stopping me from adding a few more candles or incense to my space." That's certainly impressive considering how compact the dresser is!

21 / 25
Yamazaki Home

If you've run out of cabinet and shelf space in your kitchen, it might be time to create some on your fridge. This magnetic basket from Yamazaki simplifies the process; all you have to do is stick it onto the side or the door of the fridge and pack it with spices, condiments, and whatever else needs a new home. "What I love about this organizer is that while my kitchen tends to look chaotic with various storage units and wall racks, this sleek white steel shelf doesn’t add to the noise," wrote contributor Erin after testing the basket. "Instead, it looks clean and simple attached to my fridge, no matter what it’s holding."

22 / 25

No central heating? No problem! This Dreo space heater works like a charm and isn't bulky by any means. When Alicia received hers, she was actually surprised by how well it worked considering its teeny size. "Eco mode is powerful enough to raise my living room temperature by two degrees, according to my thermostat," she noted. The heater is quiet, too, so you won't have to raise the volume on your TV.

23 / 25

We understand that some apartment renters might not have any extra space for a dining table, but if you do have a couple square feet to spare, this round table from Levity would make a great addition. Ian described his as the perfect size for when friends come over, but not too big to block his living room walkway. "The coolest part of the table, though, is that it comes with a Life-Proof coating that protects against heat, water, and ;game night messes,'" he added. Consider us sold!

24 / 25
was $875.00

Maybe you've already found your dream couch and would like some additional seating, but you have no room for a loveseat. Not to worry — try the Lovesac! Filled with shredded Durafoam that provides plenty of support, it's the elevated version of a beanbag. Best List editor Britt said hers is "infinitely more comfortable and less noisy," plus its washable cover is easy to slip on. The seat also comes in five different sizes.

25 / 25
was $59.99

This tiered bamboo shelf adds so much extra storage space — and looks chic doing it. Writer Olivia loves its low price and ample surface area, among its other good qualities. "I still do find myself rearranging products and storage containers on the shelves every couple weeks, but for the most part, it’s exactly the organization solution I needed," she wrote. "Plus, the shelves look a lot better than staring at a pile of products on the floor every day, trust me."