Shopping·11 min read

Your Fave Products Under $25 This Year

Best budget finds of 2021
Design: theSkimm
December 17, 2021

Fact: Good things come in small packages…and especially with small price tags. Since finding quality items on a budget is kind of our thing, with 2021 coming to a close, we rounded up the best bargain products Skimm’rs (hi, that’s you) shopped this year. From gadgets that’ll help keep your space clean and tidy to things that’ll make travel easier, here are your most purchased items under $25. Future you (and your wallet) are giving the thumbs-up. 

PS: Check out the rest of your end-of-year favorites here. We rounded up Skimm’rs favorite books of the year, self-care products you couldn’t live without, and more. Don’t miss it.

Vaccine card holder

A vaccine card holder for your most valuable item of the year...

This super-minimal clear option is the perfect vessel to keep your immunization card in mint condition. Buy one or snag ’em in a pack of two, five, ten, or twenty to supply your crew. They’re made of durable PVC material that’s waterproof and corrosion-resistant. All you need now is a lanyard to accessorize. No folded or torn edges here, thank you very much. ($4.79, Amazon)

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Self-watering planter

A self-watering planter to make maintenance so much easier… 

Let’s face it: Keeping up with your plants’ demanding water schedules can be annoying. So let this planter do all the work for you. The built-in tray at the bottom retains water. And if you fill it from the tiny opening at the bottom, the roots of your plant can directly absorb it. Aka less wasted hydration on soil at the top. And more left for your plant to drink over time. ($3+, Target)

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Water bottle cleaning tablets

A little tablet that’ll help you clean your water bottle and your fave coffee cup…

Because no one wants gross stains or odors when you’re just trying to stay hydrated. Enter: these all-natural, biodegradable, chlorine-free cleaning tablets. They’ll give your drinking vessel of choice a fresh new look and smell. They work on stainless steel bottles, hard-to-clean mugs, and even dishes. Just drop a tablet in your cup, fill it with water, let it sit for 15 to 30 mins, rinse it out, and presto — you’re good to go. ($12/8 pack, Amazon)

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Laptop webcam cover

A tiny webcam cover so you can get a lil’ privacy…

Aka your Zooms won’t turn on before you’re ready. Pop this on your laptop and feel free to roam about the cabin. Just slide it over away from the camera when you’re ready to say ‘hey’ on your company-wide call. WFH made easy. ($6.99/2 pack, Amazon)

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Anthony Bourdain travel book

A must-have book for anyone who loves to globe-trot… 

Even the most well-traveled can take a tip or two from the GOAT. Anthony Bourdain’s latest book, published posthumously, chronicles his many travels and offers tips about what to eat, where to stay, and what to avoid when hitting the road. It also includes essays from friends and family members, which will help you get a deeper look at the man behind the screen. Bon voyage. ($19.99, Amazon)

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Silicone makeup pad

A tool that makes cleaning your makeup brushes hassle-free…

Because the struggle is real when it comes to getting old, caked-on foundation off your brushes. This silicone tool suctions right on to your sink. And its different textures and grooves really help you get in there for maximum results. Once you buy it, you won’t believe you never had it in your life before. Trust us. ($5.99, Amazon)

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Calming pet glove

A calming glove that functions as a brush for your fur babies… 

If they get spooked at the groomer, just slip these on. They work on long- or short-haired dogs, cats, and horses. The petting motion helps soothe them and clean their coat at the same time. So they look their best and you don’t have to worry about a nervous, shaking pup. ($13.99, Amazon)

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Ipad holder

A device holder so you can go hands-free on the plane…

This genius phone stand was created by a flight attendant and can be molded to your tablet. So you can just sit back and relax mid-flight. It’s also great for setting up the iPad in the car for the kiddos’ latest movie obsession. ($9.99, Amazon)

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Portable dog water bottle

A portable dog water bottle that flips up for easy access… 

So your pup can stay hydrated on long walks. Oh, and so you don’t have to lug around a bowl or try to get them to drink from a water bottle or fountain. Now when you hear them panting, you can flip up the built-in cup, squeeze, and the cup will fill up. The water they don’t want will drain back into the bottle for later. ($13.57, Amazon)

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Tubshroom drain protector

A drain protector so all your excess hair won't clog your shower…

No plumbers needed here. This mini silicone item will catch all your hair before it goes down your pipes. Simply place it right in your drain and voilà. You’ll be shocked by how quickly it works (immediately) and how much hair it collects along the way (a lot). ($12.99, Amazon)

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Cable clips

Cable clips that will organize the jungle of charging cables hanging from your desk… 

Instead of having cables rest on the floor, these clips will hold them in place. Every clip has a sticky back, so depending on your setup, you can put each one in a different place where you need a wire available. When you’re running low on battery, you’ll have a charging cable waiting at the ready. Sometimes it really is the little things in life. ($7.99/6 pack, Amazon)

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Wine wand purifer

A tiny filter that can help you avoid some classic hangover symptoms… 

Just place the wand in your wine before drinking. It removes histamines and sulfites. Aka the things that can cause reactions like congestion, red cheeks, and headaches. And no, it won’t affect the taste. They’re tiny so you can throw ‘em in your bag and bring ‘em out to a party. Or buy a bunch and keep some out on the table for your guests. Simple solutions, we see you. ($19.95/10 pack, Grommet)

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Tool to clean laptop

A double-sided tool that’ll help keep your electronics clean…

Goodbye, fingerprints and crumbs. This tool can wipe away on-screen smudges with one end and sweep away dust and dirt with its other end. And when it's not in use, just slide the retractable brush and storage cover on both ends so it stays clean and protected for next time. Yes, please. ($10.99, Amazon)

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Pimple patches

A pimple patch to remove all the gunk that sits underneath your skin… 

Stress breakouts, we’re looking at you. These patches cover breakouts and reduce inflammation. They work to extract pus, healing the skin along the way. You can apply one before heading to bed and then remove it in the morning or rock it under your face mask while you’re running errands. It’s called multitasking, people. ($12.99/36 patches, Amazon)

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Bag hook for car

A bag hook that attaches to the back of your car seat…

So the inside of your purse doesn’t go flying when you round a corner. It can hold up to 45 pounds per hook — so it’s also great for holding heavier items like a winter coat or your laptop backpack. The soft microfiber leather won’t scratch up your seats either. Let’s be real, your purse looks better right side up. ($11.98, Amazon)

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Martial bliss card game

A card game that’ll shepherd in some marital bliss…

Complete the task. Get a sweet reward. Repeat. Each card features a kind gesture (like getting groceries or cooking dinner) that your partner will appreciate. And in the long run, the game will help couples (especially newlyweds or those who’ve recently moved in together) get into the groove of everyday life. Hashtag winning. ($15, Uncommon Goods)

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Personalized crayons

Personalized crayons for your lil’ one… 

Like that 120-pack we all longed for back in the day, but maybe even better. Their daily coloring sesh will seem a whole lot cooler with a set of crayons made just for them. Bonus: It’s a great foray into spelling, too. ($3.50+, Arch2Crayons on Etsy)

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Dimmable stickers

Stickers that’ll help you keep the blinding lights in your home at bay…

These are great for dimming those pesky lights you find all around your space when you’re trying to get some Zzz’s — like on your TV or the blinking green flash on your Wifi. Just place one of these guys on the spot of your choice and breathe easy. You’ll still be able to see whatever you’re dimming but won’t have the flare and glare that comes with it. Each package has over 100 dimmers. And they won’t leave a residue behind once you remove them. Sweet dreams. ($5.49, Amazon)

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Hand-poured candle

A hand-poured candle that makes the perfect gift…

This “soul sister” candle can burn for 65 to 70 hours. It's made from a coconut wax blend, and once you burn through it you can repurpose the glass jar to hold pens, Q-tips, you name it. Aww. ($22, LunaMountainCandles on Etsy)

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If you buy anything from this article, theSkimm may get something in return. Oh, and if something’s out of stock, oops, it was there (and all prices were accurate) when we published. Thanks.

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