Laurey W. Glen

Have you gotten accustomed to the piles on your countertops? Here’s how to get rid of them—for good.

For so many of us, the kitchen is the heart of our home. Whether it’s small or large, traditional or modern, barely used or the busiest room in the house, your kitchen will always be a place where people gather to hang out and of course, to eat. And while it might be easy for you to keep the kitchen clean, it’s not always as easy to keep it clutter-free. We’re talking about the random items that build up on the corner of your counters, the appliances you see every day but only use once a week, the dishes you hand wash and then let air dry—for 2 days. It’s easy to get used to your clutter and start to overlook it, but we all know it’d be better without it. Below are our best tips for helping you get rid of the clutter for good.

Keep Countertops Clear

This may seem like an obvious tip, but the more items on your kitchen countertops, the more cluttered your space will be. Whether it’s appliances, cookbooks, or actual food, address the issue that’s keeping those items out in full view. Certainly prioritize actually putting things away in a cabinet or on a shelf—even if you use them more than once a day. But if you in fact lack the necessary storage, fix that issue first. Invest in cabinet organizers, get rid of any bulky items you don’t use regularly or put them in a larger storage area like the pantry or even the attic.

WATCH: 10 Shortcuts to an Organized Home

Keep Refrigerator Art to a Minimum

Whether it’s wedding invitations, preschool art projects, or after-school schedules, the kitchen fridge can often end up as your family’s de facto messaging board. While we aren’t suggesting not leaving those papers on display, having them clipped and magneted all askew on your fridge can give your whole kitchen a cluttered vibe. Hang a bulletin board in the mudroom or even on a wall near the kitchen and relocate those items you want to display so they’re in a contained area.

Start a Junk Drawer

That’s right. It might sound like mixed messaging, but having a designated place for the odds and ends that end up on your kitchen counter (coupons, bottle openers, pens, charging cords) will actually help you keep visible clutter to a minimum. Just don’t neglect the junk drawer—make sure to go through it every month or so and toss anything that you no longer need, and relocate any items that have a more appropriate home elsewhere.