Skip To Content

    32 Tips To Help Save Future You From Life's Little Problems

    Spend a little money now to save your sanity later.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    1. Save your hard-as-rock brown sugar by adding a terra-cotta sugar-saver that'll transform it into a soft pile of ready-to-use sweetness (and keep it that way).


    Just soak it in water for 20 minutes and place it in your sugar to soften and maintain moisture for approximately three to six months.

    Promising review: "I was nervous to try them in case they were a waste of money. Yesterday, I followed the directions, i.e. soaked them in water for 20 minutes, then plopped one each in containers of hard-as-concrete dark brown sugar and one of light brown sugar. I didn't dry them, just dropped them in on top. So today, I took the containers down and looked, and each container of formerly concrete-hard sugar was easy to measure out, no lumps, it's a miracle!" —NGS

    Get it from Amazon for $3.99+ (available in three styles).

    2. Add a couple of cable clips to your workstation if you're tired of crawling under your desk yet again to fetch fallen charging cords.,

    Promising review: "Fixes a problem I didn't know how to fix! Keeps cords where I want them and prevents them from falling behind my nightstand. Especially helpful with working from home. Get them! You won't be disappointed." —Ally

    Get a six-pack from Amazon for $6.97.

    3. Prep your lenses with a quick coat of anti-fog spray to help prevent the dreaded face mask fog when wearing eyeglasses or sunglasses. The pandemic changed a lot of things — your desire to see clearly is not one of them.,

    A heads-up that this works *super* well for some reviewers, but not all. Note that this is meant for lenses that don't have anti-reflective coating, and the instructions for use are very specific. To apply, spray a small amount on both sides of your lenses, and use your fingers to rub it across the whole area. Let it sit for a full minute, then wipe with a dry soft cloth. Once they're fully dry, you should be raring to go!

    Promising review: "I’m a nurse working during COVID-19. I am using this anti-fog spray every day! It really reduces the fog on my glasses that develops from wearing them in combination with my surgical mask! I just spray the front and back of the lenses and wipe them dry with my microfiber cloth. It’s easy to use every morning. An added benefit is that it cleans my glasses, lasts all day, and saves me from a lot of frustrating fog during delicate procedures! I’m so glad I found this product! Thank goodness!" —PAD

    Get it from Amazon for $8.95+ (available in three sizes).

    4. Rock wrinkle-free fits by deploying some Downy fabric spray whenever there's no time (or energy) to break out the iron.

    a reviewer photo of a blue dress shirt looking wrinkled on the left, and the same shirt with less wrinkles on the right

    I hate wrinkles *and* am lazy — two at-odds conditions. This stuff has been a staple in my life since approximately ninth grade (thanks to my mama). As a former Catholic school uniform wearer, this stuff was VITAL to freshening up wrinkly dress shirts that spent the after-school hours stuffed in a gym bag. The scent is light and fresh and its wrinkle-releasing powers are nearly instant. It definitely works better on some fabrics than others (great on cotton, less great on some synthetics), but it'll improve the look of most without dealing with an iron or steamer. 

    Get a two-pack from Amazon for $13.94

    5. Stop drowning your counters with an absorbent faucet drip catcher and cut out the after-dinner ritual of sopping up the small lagoon that forms behind your sink every time you do dishes.

    Two Lilacs Studio / Etsy

    Two Lilacs Studio is a Saint Helens, Oregon-based Etsy shop lots of fun and functional handmade goods like face masks, bags, and stasher scrunchies!

    Promising review: "LOVE these splash catchers! They save me from having to chase the puddles that form around the base of our faucet before they start creeping over the counter. So reasonably priced, made well with neatly finished edges, and packaged with gift-ready care." —Alina

    Get it from Two Lilacs Studio on Etsy for $12+ (available in four sizes and three colors).

    6. Manage Fido's constant shedding with a pet hair remover equipped with reusable bristles so you can keep your clothes and furniture fur-free without dragging out the vacuum or wasting a bunch of single-use lint roller sheets that just can't keep up with your pet's endless amount of hair.

    Because it doesn't rely on adhesive paper, you only have to buy it once and can reuse it — cleaning the hair off the brush when it gets clogged, of course!

    Promising reviews: "Finally a lint roller that really works. Now I have an obsessed husband picking up German shepherd hair off the couch. Worth the price paid. It will pay for itself. No more sticky tape rollers!" —Blanca LInda Hatter

    Get one from Amazon for $24.95.

    7. Treat your kinky-curly hair right with a beloved-by-the-internet detangling brush because your old brush isn't going to get any better no matter how many pain-induced swears you throw at it.

    @cravenaturals / Via,

    Promising review: "I purchased this brush three weeks ago and have used it every day. I like the brush so much I ordered three more for my adult daughters. Not only is the brush gentle on my gray hair, but it also feels like I am giving myself a head massage. Also, I appreciate the wide hand base design. I have rheumatoid arthritis and it is not always easy to grip an ordinary hair brush. Plus, the brush is easy to clean. It truly glides through my wet hair." —Alicia N Steimel

    Get it from Amazon for $11.88 (available in six colors).

    8. Prevent tangled bedsheets from derailing laundry day by using wad-free pads to help maintain a balanced washer drum, reduce dry times, and prevent wet clothes from getting trapped in the sheets.

    the wad free pads attached to a bed sheet

    Wad-Free is a small biz that was launched during the pandemic by Cyndi, who learned CAD (computer-aided design) to create the pads. 

    Promising review: "Wow!!! You wonder if things like this really work and well, I can absolutely confirm it does! First, I was impressed that the package came with two of the devices because I was only expecting one. So there was one for the fitted sheet, and the flat sheet. Finally, I tried it out and my sheets not only did NOT wad up, they came out of the dryer feeling fresher, feeling more dry, and unwrinkled! I will be buying a set of these for each of my immediate family members and close friends! What a great gift!!!" —katy

    Get two from Amazon for $18.99.

    9. Make your money go further with these Shark Tank-approved miniature spatulas so you can scoop out every 👏 last 👏 drop 👏 of that expensive foundation, lotion, hot sauce, etc., Amazon

    The set comes with one spatula with a 6-inch handle, and another with a 12-inch handle.

    Promising review: "So worth it! I'm so happy with it. You will definitely save money using this. I think about how much I could have saved if this was invented 30 years ago. I mostly use it for small makeup jars. I tested out the longer one on a 18-ounce lotion and it worked fine. Some reviews complain about not being able to get every curve and corner of their container. ..oh please...You get so much more than you would without it." —Liz

    Get a set of two from Amazon for $11.99.

    10. Revitalize dull and dry hair with a silicone-free L'Oreal moisturizing treatment if you want visibly healthier-looking hair fast — like, eight seconds fast. This rinse-out formula works on any hair texture or length, delivering the proteins and amino acids necessary for a shiny, flippable mane.,

    Shine in a silicone-free product?! Dreams really do come true.

    Promising review: "This stuff is life-changing. I’ve had extremely tangly hair since my baby was born and this made it so silky. It feels like heaven afterward and the smell is great too!" —Alyssa

    Get it from Amazon for $8.97.

    11. Open the jars you used to ask your neighbor to open with an under-cabinet lid opener. This inconspicuous gadget will help you master pickle and sauce jars, and is great for seniors or anyone with joint or arthritic pain.,

    It comes with peel-and-stick adhesive strips and three screws for installation! For more info, check out our full under-cabinet lid opener deep dive.

    Promising review: "Love this! Makes life a little easier every day! I love this so much, I bought two more for my sisters. We are all over 60, but I wish I had one since 40 years ago, it's that great. No more banging jars on the floor, or looking for pliers to get a bottle open. I had to install a piece of wood under my upper cabinet to attach it properly, but other than that the install was easy. Highly recommend this product to everyone!" —Happy Camper22

    Get it from Amazon for $13.35.

    12. Revitalize stubbornly droopy houseplants by adding Miracle-Gro plant food spikes that continuously feed plants with nutrients they need to thrive for up to two months.

    Promising review: "My mother has always used the MiracleGro plant food spikes, so I grew up familiar with them. Of all the products out there, these are the easiest to use and have never burned my plants. It works like a charm for plants that are droopy and out of sorts!" —BlueFug8

    Get a 24-pack from Amazon for $2.49.

    13. Make almost any device in your home "smart" by installing Wi-Fi connected outlets to control lights, your humidifier, and even the curling iron you forgot to unplug all via your phone or voice control.

    a reviewer photo of a smart outlet plugged into a wall socket

    No specific hub is needed to use these outlets (just a smartphone), but they are compatible with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant! To set up, simply plug the mini outlet into an electrical outlet, connect a device to the plug via the app, and wirelessly control the device using a tablet or phone — they just need a Wi-Fi connection!

    Promising review: "These little mini sockets are awesome!!! I tried two other brands of smart sockets but these are by far the best I’ve tried. All I did is download the app, open it, plug the socket in, waited a few seconds for the little blue light to flash...then the app asks me to accept and then I can change the name of the socket, then click, bam, boom! Done! They can be up and running in literally seconds. They are amazing. So far they work flawlessly." —Harper Lee III

    Get a four-pack from Amazon for $24.99

    14. Safely pull piping hot bowls out of the microwave sans hand burns with a pack of microfiber bowl huggers. They'll also absorb minor spillage from too-full bowls as you make the treacherous journey from kitchen to couch.

    A pair of hands holding a bowl that's resting in the red bowl hugger

    These bowl huggers are machine-washable for easy cleaning!

    Promising review: "I use this for my soup bowls very often. My hubby and I often eat our dinner by the TV and I make a lot of homemade soups and stews that he loves. These little 'bowl huggers' make it easy to sit with your soup on your lap, they keep the soup hotter, and they keep the bowl from burning your legs. Cozy!!" —badputter

    Get a four-pack from Amazon for $9.99.

    15. And avoid frozen hands with crocheted pint cozy that'll wrap your favorite flavor in a protective layer so you don't feel like you've got frostbite when you're on the couch just trying to enjoy some Ben & Jerry's.

    Whimsical Winnie / Etsy

    Whimsical Winnie is a Rising Sun, Maryland-based Etsy shop creating adorable handmade crochet creations from cozies to beanies you'll want to spend all winter in.

    Promising review: "Oh my goodness I so love this ice cream cozy. These are so well made. I just don't have enough words to describe how wonderful these are. I will definitely be making another purchase!!" —Stephanie Augustine

    Get it from Whimsical Winnie on Etsy for $7 (available in nine colors).

    16. Save your hand from painful search and rescue missions by installing a car gap filler — a Shark Tank product you might recognize as the simple yet genius invention for preventing loose change, french fries, and earrings from falling into the space between the car seat and the middle console.


    The seat gap filler is flexible and fits into most cars. The pack comes with two gap fillers (one for both the driver and passenger sides), a sticky pad for keeping items like your phone from sliding around, and an LED car light.

    Promising review: "I have to admit, my expectations weren't very high. I thought it was more of a joke when my husband got this for me for Christmas. Little did I realize, it would be one of my favorite gadgets ever! I don't know if I realized just how many things went missing in my seat gap. It has really saved a lot of things from disappearing into that black hole. It was easy enough to fit into my car and it's soft! It's just like an extension of my seat, except it fits every curve of my seat! There really isn't another product that compares to this. That's why I gave it five stars!" —Tessa Forbes

    Get a set of two from Amazon for $24.99.

    17. Secure your fitted sheet by adding bedsheet fasteners if your tossing and turning leads to you having to essentially remake the entire bed come morning.,

    Promising review: "These work really well! I have a 14-inch mattress, so keeping the fitted sheet well secured has been a struggle until now. One of the best purchases I've made. I followed someone else's advice here of turning the sheet inside out, putting the fasteners on, then putting the sheet on the mattress. Made them very easy to use." —Jayne Voyt

    Get a four-pack from Amazon for $8.99 (available in three colors).

    18. Invest in some comfortable period underwear because you won't wake up with blood on your sheets when your underwear has the ~absorbency powers~ of up to three regular tampons.

    Target, Danielle Healy / BuzzFeed

    I was SO pleased to see Thinx doing a diffusion line with Target. The price of the original Thinx kept me from purchasing a pair for a long time. It's a risk to spend 30-something bucks on something that might not work for you! I ended up getting my first pair of Thinx for $17 on sale — and that's the exact sweet spot that they've achieved at full price with this diffusion line. So much more accessible, especially if you're trying to stock up on multiple pairs. I feel no real difference between these and my regular Thinx. They're comfy, I've had no leakages (I wear them on my lighter days), they wick moisture relatively well, and wash up like a dream. I have two pairs and have zero complaints. Combined with my one other pair of original Thinx and my Flex Cup, I now have a zero-waste period routine that actually makes my entire period experience better than when I was using pads and tampons, which makes me very very happy.

    Between each wear, just toss your Thinx in the wash on cold (skip the bleach and softener) then line dry!

    Get it from Target for $17 (available in sizes XS–4X and in three colors).

    19. Squeeze in a nutritious breakfast even when you oversleep with a Dash rapid egg cooker that can make boiled, poached, or scrambled eggs, and even individual omelets quicker (and with less mess) than cooking on the stove top.

    The egg cooker in black filled with six eggs

    In need of an egg cooker deep dive? Check out BuzzFeed editor Marquaysa Battle's Dash Egg Cooker review.

    This cooker includes the base, clear lid, measuring cup, poaching tray, omelet bowl, boiling tray, and a handy little recipe book!

    Promising review: "Where has this gadget been all my life?! I love to cook but I always find boiling water for eggs to be annoying. It's very easy to use and the eggs come out perfect! You just pick how you want to make your eggs, fill the cup with water to the appropriate line, pierce the egg, cover it, and turn on. All in all, it's a great product and I’m happy with this purchase." —Death2Barbie

    Get it from Amazon for $16.99+ (available in seven colors).

    20. Carry all your groceries from the car to the house in ONE run with a handy bag holder featured on Shark Tank. It easily holds up to 80 pounds and can be carried by hand or tossed over your shoulder (it's padded) for hands-free ease.,

    Click & Carry is a Los Angeles-based, woman-owned small biz founded by Kim Meckwood, who wanted a way to solve her own struggles lugging shopping bags. Since then, the Click & Carry has been utilized for a range of uses, from carrying paint cans to sports equipment.

    Promising review: "I heard about this product from a friend and had been meaning to check it out. My only regret about this purchase is not getting it earlier! I used to dread going to the grocery store due to the hassle of struggling with all my bags and the multiple trips to and from the car. Now those days are a thing of the past because of this ESSENTIAL product. After realizing my newfound love of this product, I did some research and found all sorts of other uses for it such as using it to secure my purse to my shopping cart and hooking my dog leashes together to walk both dogs at the same time. I love this product and love gifting it to others as well!" —Lisa Gilroy

    Get it from Amazon for $12.99 (available in five colors).

    21. Rescue well-loved knits from the horrors of aging — lint, matted fibers, and pilling, oh my — with a battery-operated fabric shaver. It's like a tiny vacuum; just empty the detachable lint catcher when you're done, and enjoy your revitalized sweater.

    A split reviewer image of a pilled sweater with text that reads "Before" on top, and the same sweater without visible pilling with text that reads "After" on the bottom

    It kills me inside when I see a favorite sweater start to pill, so I bought this exact shaver to spruce up some of my older knits. It's great and weirdly relaxing. When I first got it I was de-pilling everything, from the intended sweaters to the throw pillows on our couch. It's a little loud so your roommates may or may not come out of their rooms to see what you're doing...but it's totally worth it to make any pilled fabric look years younger.

    Also, be sure to pick up two AA batteries! They're not included.

    Get it from Amazon for $12.99 (available in five colors).

    22. Stop scratching sooner when you use a bite suction tool to suck out the venom left behind under the skin by our bug and insect friends. It'll help reduce both itchiness and swelling and get things healed up sooner.,

    You can also use it to treat bites from bees, wasps, biting flies, no-see-ums, chiggers, and sea lice.

    Promising review: "Everything that bites, bites me. This easy to use gadget works like a charm. The itching stops within a few minutes." —Margaret M. Newburn

    Get it from Amazon for $9.95 (also available in black).

    23. Banish stinky kitty smells by sprinkling the litter box with a layer of unscented deodorizer for a better smelling home and extending the life of your litter, saving you $$$., Amazon

    Promising review: "This stuff works really well. My upstairs bathroom has no vent and no window, so it gets kind of stuffy, and that's really the only place upstairs that makes sense to keep a litterbox. I never used that bathroom really ever because the smell of the litterbox just sort of lingers in there, even when it's clean. This stuff has eliminated the smell completely. It's amazing. It does have a little bit of a chlorine smell when you first sprinkle it on, but it goes away quite quickly and doesn't bother my cat. It keeps the litter fresh for so much longer, and I don't find that I need to use very much. I just sprinkle in a bit after I clean the box and no smell." —Marie

    Get it from Amazon for $11.97.

    24. Halt that zit dead in its tracks by applying acne patches with gunk-absorbing powers that speed up the pimple healing process without picking or popping.

    Promising review: "I ordered these on a whim after a long day of isolation and internet browsing and because I have a terrible habit of picking at spots on my face and making them into something much much worse. These magical spots are life-changing!!! Put them on before bed (or before work) on clean skin and FORGET about them. You don't notice they're there — unless you go to pick at something and then YOU STOP!! Leave them in place for at least six hours and then peel them off. They come off easily (but not so easy that they come off while sleeping) and the amount of 'bleck' they suck out is amazing!!! So a spot that was going to erupt into Mount Vesuvius ends up being NOTHING!!!! I've purchased six packages and will keep buying them. An amazing value!" —Jennifer Nothdurft

    Get a 40-pack from Amazon for $8.49.

    25. Trap the flies and gnats living rent-free in your home with Sticky Stakes if you're tired of buzzing creepy crawlers distracting you right in the middle of an important presentation (or Netflix binge).,

    BuzzFeed editor Heather Braga swears by these. In her own words:

    "There is NOTHING more irritating than gnats or any other tiny insects invading your home. I have these Sticky Stakes in every potted plant I own and they actually really work! Each pack comes with seven traps, so feel free to stock up."

    Get a pack of seven from Amazon for $6.99.

    26. Always be prepared for life's little mishaps with this travel-ready mini emergency kit printed with the city skyline of your choice and stocked with those easy-to-forget provisions that'll save you in a pinch. A Band-Aid for those new-shoe blisters, a sewing kit for lost buttons, or a deodorant wipe because — don't lie — we've all been there.

    A small white faux leather pouch with a black skyline print surrounded by a mix of travel-sized toiletries and on-the-go essentials
    Anne Cate

    Anne Cate is a Cleveland-based, woman-owned small business creating minimalist keepsakes to commemorate your favorite locations, with over 100 hand-designed skylines depicting cities and colleges from around the world!

    What you'll get: Inside your mini wallet, you'll find a hair tie, ChapStick, two floss pics, sewing kit, Band-Aid, emery board, two safety pins, two earring backs, makeup wipe, two bobby pins, two mints, deodorant wipe, SHOUT wipe, tampon, hand sanitizer, and pain relief.

    I, your resident forgetful person, bought the NYC skyline version of this at the start of COVID-19 to keep in my work tote. Unfortunately, I haven't touched my work tote in months because...*gestures at the world around*...but it's a really handy kit I know will save me a ton whenever I regularly leave the house again. Everything from Anne Cate is super high-quality. The wallet on its own is adorable and could be used for a million different things.

    Get it from Anne Cate for $22 (available in 96 styles).

    27. Save your shoes with a suede and nubuck cleaning brush because anyone who hasn't accidentally got caught in the rain while wearing a pair of suede shoes is lying. This brush will diminish the look of water stains with no additional cleaners required so you and your favorite shoes can reunite for another (drier, I hope) outing.

    You can totally use it with another cleaner or spray if you want, but it seems like reviewers have success without! It just takes some elbow grease.

    Promising review: "I am very impressed with this product. I was new to suede shoes and instantly regretted buying a gray-colored shoed once I got them dirty. Luckily I found this lovely thing. Very easy to use, straightforward packet comes with it that tells you which sides to use and when. I would definitely recommend this since you invest so much in those shoes you might as well keep them nice and clean!" —Celeste

    Get it from Amazon for $6.99.

    28. Stop surrendering socks to the black hole in the laundry room by using sock keepers that keep pairs together in the washer *and* dryer. Now, you can enjoy fewer lost socks and quicker folding times.


    Promising review: "I've tried a few different sock holders. These are the best I've found. Sturdy material and they hold the socks together securely in the washer and dryer. The best part is that the design allows my athletic socks to be easily inserted. Not only do they keep socks from going rogue, but they really make it super easy to sort the laundry when it's out of the dryer. Grab 'em and toss them in the drawer; a real time saver because no more searching in the pile and matching socks. You need these." —Just a Guy

    Get an eight-pack from Amazon for $12.99 (available in two styles).

    29. Extend the life of your charging cords with spiral cable protectors to prevent fraying and other external damage without sacrificing mobility, so you can still lay in bed with your phone and bend the crap out of your charger like you do every night.

    Promising review: "These Cable Protector Spiral Phone Cable Savers are really great. They go on easily and stay on the cord. Even when I’m using my phone with the cord attached the saver stays in place. Plus it’s comfortable and not bulky at all. If you are tired of replacing charging cords, these savers are the answer." —Friendlybbw

    Get an eight-pack from Amazon for $4.77.

    30. Keep area rugs from slipping and sliding all over the place with a roll of double-sided carpet tape that's safe to use on wood, tiles, vinyl, and more. No one wants to start the day with a twisted ankle before they've even left the house.

    Promising review: "I have runner rugs on carpet, have tried heavy-duty Velcro and other things to keep them from sliding around. Up until now nothing kept them in place for more than a few hours. I've had this on there for about a week and it hasn't slipped at all. It's not the easiest to cut through but it's worth it. Make sure to lay your sticky side down on your rug or floor before pulling off the paper side. I threw a few pieces away because it's so sticky, it curled up and stuck to itself. I thank the reviewer who said it works for rugs on carpet. May not have tried otherwise." —Raven

    Get it from Amazon for $8.97.

    31. Spray those pesky sneezes away and try this concentrated allergen spray for a quick and easy way to reduce the presence of airborne and surface allergens from pets, mites, and more.

    the allergen spray

    Allergy Asthma Cleaning Store is a family-owned business making safe cleaning goods for the whole family. If you suffer from pet allergies, it's recommended you spray this daily. For dust mite allergies, try three times a week.

    Promising review: "I am honestly and simply amazed by this product. It lived up to all it promoted. The true test was a long visit from my daughter who is highly allergic to my cat. Typically the visits are cut short due to constant sneezing or drowsiness from allergy medication. I’m sooo pleased to say she spent hours at my house Christmas Eve and never sneezed once. I spray often and especially before her arrival. Works like a charm!" —Di

    Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

    32. Preserve that half-drank bottle of vino with a wine-saver pump that'll keep things tasting fresh for up to a week by sucking the air out of the bottle. It's suitable for all types of wine and comes with two super-sealing bottle stoppers.


    It literally creates a vacuum seal: you wet the rubber cork, stick it in, then use the pump to suck out all the air remaining in the bottle. When it makes a *click* sound, you know you're done!

    Promising review: "Having downed a bottle or two in my life, I've always been flummoxed as to how to store the wine afterwards. I'm quite picky and the taste of 'blown' wine is disgusting. This is the solution. The stoppers fit perfectly (naturally) and the vacuum pump is also perfect. Just pump until you hear the click and the job is done. Easy to release the pressure and re-enjoy the wine. For the cost of wine, the minor expense of this pump and stopper system pays for itself immediately. In vino veritas!!!" —erik

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99+ (available in four colors).

    You with the tools to handle all that annoying life stuff:

    Pop TV

    Reviews here have been edited for length and/or clarity.