Real Simple’s mission, through its 20 years, has been to simplify your life with smart finds like these. From a spill-beating plate and place mat for kids to a ladder stabilizer for grown-ups, these genius items will make everyday chores and activities just a little easier.

Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Related Items

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Reforesting tree kits

1 Reforesting Tree Kits


These tree-planting kits contain seed types carefully chosen to flourish in most regions of the U.S. Order a kit, pick a place to plant (following local restrictions, of course), and watch your seedling grow in its ready-to-plant, biodegradable pot. You’ll actively contribute to more trees and cleaner air, but your purchase also leads to a cash donation to larger reforestation efforts.

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Ezpz Happy Mat

2 Ezpz Happy Mat


Make mealtime a whole lot tidier with this smart two-in-one placemat and plate. The placemat suctions to the table, so it catches all dropped food and can’t fall off the table; the built-in plate won’t budge, either, so there’s more food on the placemat and less on the table and floor.

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Little lady minicure remover

3 Little Lady Products Minicure Remover


The spray top on this nail polish remover makes it spill-proof, and it’s free of acetone, phylates, and parabens, so it’s gentler on nails and cuticles. Little ones practicing their manicure skills can remove polish more safely, and adults can borrow the bottle when it’s time to remove their own nail polish to avoid excess nail damage.

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Free Period Press Collage Kit

4 Free Period Press Collage Kit Magazine Vol. 1


Collaging or vision boarding is a great activity any time, but especially now, when you may be struggling to find safe, absorbing indoor activities or facing a steep drop in ambition, you might find that a few hours of collaging can give you a new perspective (for a day or two, at least). This 120-page magazine has curated photographs, illustrations, and textures ready to be cut up and combined in your collage, so you can skip flipping through magazines and get to creating instead.

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Ladder helper

5 Sargent Consumer Products Rooftop Ladder Stabilizer & Standoff


If gutter cleaning, trim painting, or light hanging lies in your future, protect yourself with this stabilizer, which fits on the front of the gutter to give your ladder a more stable spot to rest. It has raised edges to keep the ladder from slipping sideways, and a rubber underside gives it even more grip, so you can climb with confidence.

6 Clever Items (9/4/20) - Basket grocery shopping app

6 Basket

You can finally feel confident that you’re getting the best possible deal on your groceries with Basket, a free app that compares prices at grocery stores in your area. You can build your shopping list in the app, then it will compare prices (and availability) for everything on your list at multiple local stores so you can pick the most affordable place to shape, saving you time and money.