Skip To Content
    Updated on Mar 5, 2019. Posted on Feb 9, 2019

    25 Things Under $25 That'll Upgrade Your Life

    Super fast-drying nail polish, a genius salad slicer, a luxe bath mat, and more affordable products you'll wonder how you lived without.

    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. The Elephant Planner, an undated little book with room for monthly and weekly planning, plus space to set goals and even create a vision board so you ~never forget~ what you're working towards.

    Amazon, BuzzFeed, amazon.com

    It also comes with a sheet of stickers and access to an e-book about productivity to really help you get shit together. No wonder this is BuzzFeed Reviews' pick for best low-priced planner!

    Promising review: "This freaking planner — it's EVERYTHING I needed. Here's how I organized mine: I color-coded all five goals at the beginning, and then when I was doing something daily, weekly, and monthly that served those goals, I wrote those in the corresponding color. That system helps me feel tethered in my daily activities to my bigger goals. I also love the vision board and space for mind mapping. I have severe adult ADHD and am a trauma victim, so I need therapeutic tools (plus meds) to help organize my thoughts and this planner has thought of everything. There's even space for journaling at the back — almost 60 pages. On each weekly page spread, there's a place for weekly goals, successes, and what I can work on. This is THE planner!!!!" —Kelly Wolfe

    Get it from Amazon for $18.99+ (available in three colors).

    2. A nonstick three-tier cooling rack to make any cooking or baking endeavor feel professional (and prevent things from getting too hot to handle). Three tiers for this wonder!

    Walmart

    Get it from BuzzFeed's Tasty collection at Walmart for $8.87.

    3. A sturdy, chic, and machine washable nylon tote for anyone who wants to make their everyday errands less of a mess. Carrying groceries, but make it ~fashion~.

    Amazon

    Promising review: "These bags are THE BEST! I've had them for years. Most of my regular reusable bags are huge and cumbersome and end up getting left in the car. These squish down so I can fit multiples in my little diaper bag, so they never get left behind. They easily hold three gallons of milk. When I'm dealing with a baby and a toddler, anything that makes life easier is a lifesaver, and these are perfect for packing for a day trip, groceries, beach trips, and even taking on longer trips so I can stay organized. The fact that I can throw them in the washing machine is incredible. I can't say enough good things about these! You wouldn't think you'd get compliments on grocery bags, but even the cashiers ask me what brand they are regularly. The colors make me happy when I see them by the front door." —Ann M. Karmol

    Get it from Amazon for $10 (available in 23 colors and prints).

    4. A simple yet game-changing salad making gadget that's a strainer, a chopper, a cutting board, and a bowl all in one.

    Amazon

    You can use it like a colander to rinse your veggies, then turn the clear part upside down over the green bottom. Slide a knife through all the slits, turn the top 90 degrees, repeat, and voila! You can even it it right out of the tool itself. Hello, fewer dishes (it is dishwasher safe) and less fear of cutting your hand! Check out a Tasty video demonstrating the use of a similar tool.

    Promising review: "I kinda got this as a joke because I HATE cooking and chopping veggies. Well, the joke was on me. It took me longer to take carrots, celery hearts, and lettuce out of the bags than it did chop a salad. I love it. I'll continue to use it and buy another if it breaks. It's well worth the price." —Mickeymalone

    Get it from Amazon for $8.99.

    5. Sally Hansen Insta-Dri nail polish, a product that proves dreams really do come true — you actually can get a great mani in basically zero time.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    It's got base and top coat built in, so this little bottle of magic is all you're gonna need. Plus, it dries in as little as a minute!

    Promising review: "I'm in LOVE with the Sally Hansen Insta-Dri line. This is the only brand I buy now. As a new mom, painting your toenails is kind of a rare luxury, so I place a high value on getting it done quickly. This polish allows me to do it fast, without sacrificing durability. I highly recommend this polish for busy adults." —KFrench

    Get it from Amazon for $3.87+ (available in 22 colors).

    6. A sleek ice cream scoop with a BPA-free rubber grip handle, a chisel tip, and over 1,400 positive reviews. Like, people get excited about it.

    Amazon

    Promising review: "I take my ice cream seriously. The taste, the texture, even the tools! When some aluminum-clad, non-dishwater safe utensil gets between me and my bowl of French vanilla, I get annoyed quick. I've tried lots of different types of scoops, and they all leave me wanting. I scoured the stores in search of something that A) is built like a brick house, B) was dishwasher safe, C) had a cutting edge or fluid-dynamic shape, so that it blasts through even the most frozen of frozen treats, and D) has at least as much style as function. NOTHING fit the bill! But this thing is OFF THE CHAIN. It meets and beats all of the requirements. It's built rock-solid and feels like you could probably take down a warthog or baby hippo with it. It's got a great cutting edge on it, and it slices through hard ice cream. It washes easily, and the solid rubber grip makes you feel like you're cradling a newborn's scalp. I actually bought a second one of these. WHO NEEDS TWO ICE CREAM SCOOPS?!?! I don't know, but now I have 200% more of the greatest thing to touch frozen diary-based deserts since chocolate syrup." —Sean

    Get it from Amazon for $13.99 (available in four colors).

    7. An adhesive pen loop to keep your notebook and pen as inseparable as peanut butter and jelly, Emily Blunt and John Krasinski, SpongeBob and his spatula...you get the idea.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    A notebook-obsessed friend of mine totally swears by these!!!

    Promising review: "These use a great 3M adhesive that adheres well. I happen use a skinny pen and the elastic works well, but my wife uses a fat four-color pen and that fits just as well." —Steve Harris

    Get a pack of nine from Amazon for $9.35.

    8. Spoon University's How to Feed Yourself cookbook, which is full of 100 yummy, simple, and affordable recipes for people who have no idea what they're doing in the kitchen (just @ me next time).

    Amazon

    Honestly, I think I need this. There's literally a section called "Make-Ahead Meals That'll Upgrade Your Life" for people trying to actually meal prep like adults. The other sections are all really practical and applicable to every day millennial life, too, like date night dinners or how to feed a group. Plenty of sections start with the basics, like how to make chicken that's not bland or how to cook all kinds of eggs. Finally, I'm LOL-ing at some of the names of the dishes, like "My Big Fat Greek Salad" and "The Most Extra Donut Cake Ever."

    Promising review: "I LOVE THIS BOOK! The recipes are approachable and creative and super fun to read. The photography is absolutely gorgeous and inspires me to cook more often." —MB

    Get it from Amazon for $11.99+.

    9. Amazingly soft leggings beloved by over 2,000 reviewers to give your lazy day (or everyday) wardrobe a leg up.

    amazon.com, Amazon

    Promising review: "These are so very soft. I want to wear them for every occasion, and I DO!!! I wear these with dresses, skirts, and long shirts as if they were regular pants, because they are in no way see-through. I love them. I bought a pair in black and one in teal, and am going back for more. I'm sure eventually I'll own a pair in every color. Just be careful removing the tag because they are super soft and lush and can snag easily. I can't stop touching my legs and neither can my kids. They're the best leggings I've ever found." —Tristyn Coker

    Get them from Amazon for $7.95+ (available in one-size-fits-most for straight and plus sizes and in 21 colors and prints).

    10. A handy hair tool holder that can withstand up to 450 degrees to make storing your styling must-haves way less of a hot mess.

    Amazon

    It's got one hook on the back to hang it in your bathroom, plus two smaller ones on the side to keep the tool's cord tightly wrapped around it.

    Promising review: "Until now, I hadn't found a receptacle that I could put a hot tool into, and I was forced to leave them on the counter, where I often forgot to unplug them or even turn them off. This handy holder is a lifesaver and has ensured that I remember to be an adult with my styling tools and put them out of the way of becoming a fire hazard! Save yourselves the stress of thinking you'll burn down your bathroom and buy this product!" —KCyalater

    Get it from Amazon for $8.18+ (available in four colors).

    11. A smartly designed dressing shaker with a whisk ball inside that does all the work for you. All you gotta do is make like Taylor Swift and shake, shake, shake and you've got some fancy schmancy homemade dressing to take your salads to the next level. Hidden Valley, who?

    Amazon

    To pour, you press on the lid lever. It seals closed the second you let go, so it's actually hard to make a mess with it. It claims to mix so well that it can keep oil and vinegar blended for up to an hour. Plus, it's dishwasher safe and can be taken apart for cleaning.

    Promising review: "This is the neatest little gadget! The no-drip spout works well, and the measurements on the bottle are a plus too. My family loves salad and we love homemade dressings. The blender ball works extremely well. Sometimes homemade dressing tends to settle, but with the whisk ball, you just give it a few shakes and dressing is good again. I definitely recommend this." —Lindy

    Get it from Amazon for $14.99+ (available in two materials).

    12. A USB mini vacuum that sucks, in a good way — it sucks all the crumbs off your desk.

    Urban Outfitters

    Get it from Amazon for $14.98 or Urban Outfitters for $15.

    13. Pretty metallic clips to instantly upgrade any updo, bar(rette) none.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    Promising review: "I assumed these would be like every other clip I’ve tried and be too cheap and flimsy. But they are awesome clips! I have very thick hair, and I’ve even been able to use these clips for half-updos. There's plenty of space between the clip and fastener for hair." —Colin

    Get a set of eight from Amazon for $7.99+ (available in two combinations).

    14. A set of interconnected fidget blocks you can work into all sorts of cool shapes. It's way more "adult" than a fidget spinner and will look cooler on your desk, too.

    Uncommon Goods

    Get it from Uncommon Goods for $16 or Amazon for $16.32.

    15. World's Best Life Hacks, a tome full of 200 tips and tricks sure to have you exclaiming, "Why didn't I think of that!?!?!"

    Amazon

    My dad and I actually got this for my mom for Christmas, or rather, we were out shopping for her and my dad found this book and decided to buy it and wrap it for her so he could read it. While the rest of us were opening our other gifts on Christmas morning, he kept flipping through this and going "Wow!" One of his favorite tips? Making two bowls fit in the microwave at once by stacking one on top of a cup or mug.

    Get it from Amazon for $5.99+.

    16. Genius and delightful clip-on dip holders, because something we love = dip. Something we hate = a damn mess of dip all over our plate.

    Amazon

    Promising review: "These little dip bowls are the perfect size. I wasn't expecting them to hold on so well. They work great with any size plate. I love them." —S Coates

    Get a set of four from Amazon for $6.99.

    17. An incredibly spacious pencil case that is serious enough for grown-ass adults and has tons of pouches and pockets for every school and office supply you could ever think of. No more losing things in the abyss of your backpack!

    Amazon, amazon.com

    You know how gross and pencil-dusty everything usually gets in pencil cases? Well this one's zip pockets are perfect for stashing things like tape and erasers that you want to keep fresh!

    Promising review: "This has been such a great tool for my college studies. It fits my pencils, pen, a couple sticky pads, multiple highlighters, my graphing calculator, and a couple of other small pieces. It fits into my backpack even with all of my binders, notebooks, and textbooks. I wish I'd discovered this sooner. I recommend it to everyone who asks. It's such a handy little pen case. It's made of pretty durable material, and despite all of the pointy objects that go inside, no puncture holes have made it through. IF this guy ever needs to be replaced (and that is a big IF) i would definitely repurchase." —Brandi H.

    Get it from Amazon for $8.99 (available in five colors).

    18. Non-slip sport socks sure to help you ~get a grip~ on your workout — or just your kitchen floor — way better than regular socks ever could.

    Free People

    Get them from Free People for $16.

    19. An amazingly affordable phone stand so you can conveniently put your most prized possession on the luxe pedestal it deserves (and always have it within reach).

    Amazon

    Promising review: "Great product. Cheap price, great quality. I bought this thinking it would be like any old regular phone holder made out of thin metal. However, when I got it I was pleasantly surprised. It's strong and sturdy. The bottom grip is great, and the part where it holds the phone provides grip, too. The gaps in the middle and by the bottom allow you to wire a charger through it; you can mount your phone and charge it at the same time without having to worry about damaging your cable! I bought the gold one and it looks really nice. I'm very happy with my purchase" —Amazon Customer

    Get it from Amazon for $7.98 (available in four colors).

    20. A fluffy as heck bath mat that'll basically upgrade your bathroom to a dang spa.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    It has a non-slip bottom, but one reviewer recommends washing it first to make it really not skid.

    Promising review: I needed a shag carpet look in my bathroom and this is perfect. It's super absorbent and feels soft under my feet. I've washed it in the machine many times and it's retained its original fluff very well! It's definitely worth the price." —GLow

    Get it from Amazon for $20.99 (available in two colors).

    21. The Affirmators! journal, which is full of positive and wholesome messages and words of inspiration, each paired with a page for you to record how you work that sentiment into your daily life.

    Amazon

    For example, the "Generosity" page asks you to reflect on times you were generous or could be more generous in the future, and the "Patience" page has you list people or things that make you impatient and think of something positive about them.

    You can also get a deck of Affirmators! cards with just the mood-boosting messages on them to pull out when you're feeling down.

    Promising review: "It's cute. I have depression, anxiety and PTSD. I bought this to include in my self-care kit, which I use every day regardless of crisis. I've been enjoying flipping through it. It's got beautiful, bright illustrations and is quite humorous and nonsensical, but most of all uplifting." —Allie Dyer

    Get it from Amazon for $17.84.

    22. An ingenious soap-saving dish so water won't pool around and waste your bar. I bet you didn't realize until right this second that your life would be a heck of a lot better without watery, gunky soap in it, but it certainly would.

    Amazon

    The base is a suction cup, so it won't tip over even though it's on an angle.

    Promising review: "This is one of the best things I have EVER bought. I love this! It keeps bars of soap BONE DRY, with virtually NO gummy buildup on the bottom. After your shower, just leave the soap in the dish, and the next time you reach for it, it will be in perfect shape. I plan to buy one of these, not only for every sink in the house, but for my mom's house too." —Deborah from Los Angeles

    Get it from Amazon for $5.50.

    23. A clever collapsible colander that'll get the job done without putting a strain on your limited kitchen space. Plus, it can also work as a lid or steamer when collapsed!

    Macy's

    Get it from BuzzFeed's Goodful line, exclusively at Macy's for $14.99 (originally $21.99).

    24. A hanging organizer for scarves, belts, or ties to make even the tiniest of storage spaces feel as full of wonderful accessories as the ginormous closets of your childhood style icons, Cher Horowitz and Hannah Montana.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    It's got 23 loops, but because hanging scarves will cover some of the loops, reviewers say it can reasonably hold about 15 scarves.

    Promising review: "I'm very happy with this purchase. It was easy to load up my scarves, they won't be all wrinkled, I can see each one at a glance, and it's easy to remove the one I want. I've tried several different ways of organizing my collection and I wish I'd thought of this sooner. I bought two and organized the racks by color. I ended up with a beautiful display!" —N. G. Moore

    Get it from Amazon for $9.87.

    25. An adhesive dry-erase calendar to keep your schedule at a glance. The positive? You'll never forget an important appointment. The negative? You can never tell visitors to your house you totally forgot they were coming. Guess you'll actually have to clean.

    Amazon

    Promising review: "My boyfriend and I have very different schedules. He works a full time job, and I work two part time jobs, go to school full time, and am usually part of a theater production or two. This whiteboard calendar, coupled with some colorful dry-erase markers, is ESSENTIAL! Not only does my boyfriend know what my schedule looks like this week, but I know where I'm supposed to be and when. It was very easy to put up and seems like it would be easy to move (though I haven't tried)." —Kalen Stockton

    Get it from Amazon for $5.99+.

    Check out more things under $25 that'll upgrade your life.

    You after taking your life to the next level with these products:

    NBC

    The reviews used in this post have been edited for length and clarity.

    Shopping for something specific? Check out BuzzFeed Reviews to find the best things for every budget!

    BuzzFeed

    Shopping Newsletter
     

    Find great products and the best-money saving deals around, delivered right to your inbox.
    Newsletter signup form