June 20, 2024


Creative meets living

48 Dope Home Upgrades That Seem Expensive But Are Cheap AF

If you’ve ever dreamed of tricking out your space with cool little design features — but have never followed through because of the cost — there’s something you need to know: Amazon is packed with dope home upgrades that seem expensive but are cheap AF. In fact, nothing on this list costs more than $35, and there are plenty of finds that cost much less than that (which means you’ll have cash left over to enjoy takeout in your newly spruced up home).

You probably already know that good lighting is key to a more expensive-feeling space, which is why I’ve put some great options at the top of the list. From solar-powered path lights that line your front walk to under-cabinet lighting that can make any old bookshelf feel special, you’ll find tons of ways to add atmosphere. The best part? Nothing requires fancy electrical wiring. Beyond that, I’ve included fantastic storage solutions that double as design pieces, as well small upgrades like amber glass soap dispensers to make your bathroom counter look just a little more high end.

So go ahead and start dreaming of a home that feels luxe — thanks to these affordable products on Amazon, your dreams are definitely within reach.

Table of Contents


This Under-Cabinet Lighting Kit

A few tweaks to your home lighting can work wonders to upgrade the atmosphere, and this under-cabinet lighting kit is a great way to do it. Perfect for kitchen cabinets, closets, and bookshelves, it installs with the adhesive backing and comes with a remote control, so you can adjust brightness and set timers.


These Path Lights That Are Solar-Powered

If good outdoor lighting feels like a distant (and expensive) dream, well, you’re wrong (no offense). These solar path lights are a great bargain and a breeze to install — just stick the stakes directly into the ground. Since they’re solar-powered, there’s no complicated wiring involved, and they won’t add a nickel to your electrical bill.


The Smart Plug With Voice Control Capabilities

Life just got a lot easier, thanks to this smart plug that gives you the power to voice control anything that’s plugged in — lamps, fans, coffee makers, humidifiers — you name it. You can also set schedules and scenes, so your home is customized to your exact liking. And while it’s Alexa-compatible, you don’t need an Alexa device to operate it — just download the app to your phone for remote use.


These Under-Cabinet Hooks That Maximize Storage

If your cupboards and drawers are jam-packed, these under-cabinet hooks can give you some precious space back. They install easily to the underside of any shelf, giving you easy access to mugs, cooking utensils, and oven mitts. The set comes with three racks for hanging a grand total of 12 items.


An Industrial Shelf That Clears Up Shower Clutter

Got a bunch of bath products loitering around your shower floor? Give them a permanent place to hang out with this wall-mounted shower caddy. The industrial-chic caddy is made from rust-resistant stainless steel and is generously sized for shampoo, conditioner, and a whole lot more (there are even hooks for razors and loofahs). Choose from two finishes: black and silver.


This Under-Bed Lighting That Helps You See In The Dark

Not only does this motion-activated under-bed lighting make your bedroom looks pretty magical, but it also guides your way when you get up for a midnight snack. It installs with 3M adhesive and is totally customizable: You can trim it to size, set the motion sensor on a timer, and adjust the brightness to ensure that no one else wakes up when it’s activated.


An Outlet Shelf For Your Smart Assistant

I’m all about clever storage solutions, and this outlet shelf is one of the best. It’s sized for smart home assistants, and keeps them safely out of the way in the kitchen (or any other room). It can withstand up to 10 pounds and has a cutout in back, so you can thread through a charging cable.


These String Lights That Cozy Up The Backyard

Nothing makes an evening in the backyard more merry than outdoor string lights. These weatherproof lights feature vintage-style Edison bulbs to provide a cozy glow that feels just like being at an outdoor café, and they’re available in warm, soft, and neutral white.


This Bidet That Makes Your Bathroom Undeniably Fancy

Bring the feel of a European hotel straight to your home bathroom with this bidet. It operates on two modes and features dual nozzles that retract when you’re not using them. The bidet has a slim profile that won’t look obvious on your toilet, and reviewers say it’s surprisingly easy to install (which means you won’t have to bother with a plumber).


The TV Backlights That Upgrade Your Viewing Experience

For a true night-at-the-cinema feel, attach these backlights to your TV. Beyond adding some movie magic to your night, they also help prevent eyestrain during TV marathons. They’re color- and brightness-adjustable, and get this — you can even set them to sync with the beat of music… perfect for your next living room dance party.


An Understated Area Rug That Adds Texture To Any Room

If you feel like your space is missing a little something-something, there’s a good chance that something-something is an area rug. A simple way to add texture and color, this rug has a muted palette that gives it a perfectly worn-in look. That being said, you can also opt for bolder prints and patterns, all in an array of shapes and sizes.

  • Available colors and styles: 13
  • Available shapes and sizes: 38


A Magnetic Frame Made From Modern Teak

Framing photos and prints gets pricey fast, but this magnetic hanging frame is an affordable way to go about it. The minimalist, glass-free frame features teak clips on each end that are outfitted with magnets — simply place your print between them, and voilà, you’ve framed your art in the most chic (and cheap) way possible.


These Velvet Throw Pillow Covers In 33 Colors

One of the best things about these velvet throw pillow covers is that they come in 33 colors and nine sizes, so can afford to be picky about the exact shade you choose (perfect for any design perfectionists out there). The second best thing is that they’re an affordable way to update your existing throw pillows, since you can slip them right on. (No throw pillows yet? Pick up a couple budget-friendly inserts.)


A Pleated Bed Skirt That’s So Polished

A bed skirt can make your bed look a lot more finished, but it’s also a great way to conceal whatever storage you may have going on under there. This corner-pleated bed skirt is made from wrinkle-resistant microfiber and has a tailored look for some dressed-up style in your bedroom.

  • Available sizes: twin, full, queen, king
  • Available colors: 16


This Expandable Organizer For Under Your Sink

Get twice as much storage under your sink with this under-sink organizer. The two-tier shelf features an expandable rail and four height levels, so you can adjust everything to maximize space. Plus (and this is key), you can rearrange the platforms so none of them get in the way of any pipes.


These Shower Hooks In Chic Metallic Finishes

Get more hanging space for washcloths and loofahs with these shower door hooks. Compatible with frameless glass shower doors, the two hooks can hold up to four items, and come in four elegant finishes: copper, black, gold, and silver.


This Elegant Turkish Towel That’s Super Absorbent

Casual and chic, this Turkish towel is a design-savvy alternative to your standard terrycloth towel. Boasting an intricate diamond pattern and fringe, it’s lightweightsuper absorbent, and quick-drying. The best part, though, is the fact that gets softer with each and every wash.


The Magnetic Shelves That Attach To Your Fridge

These magnetic shelves attach to your fridge, giving you space to store spices, condiments, and everything in between. Each of the two shelves can hold up to 6 pounds, and there’s even a rod for a roll of paper towels. Go for colors that’ll blend in with your fridge, like gray, white, and black, or add a cheerful pop of color with red.


These Amber Glass Soap & Lotion Dispensers

Replacing your plastic soap and lotion bottles with these amber glass dispensers is a cheap and easy way to make your kitchen or bathroom look, well, expensive. Each dispenser holds 16 ounces, and the stainless steel pump comes in several finishes, like copper, black, and oil-rubbed bronze.


The Battery-Operated Night Lights That Don’t Require Outlets

Line your hallway with these stick-on night lights, and you’ll always have some illumination to guide you in the dark. Powered by AAA batteries, they stick onto any flat surface with the adhesive backing and feature a push button that makes it easy to turn them on and off. They’re also great for closets (so you can find that one black shirt that’s always squeezed in with the others).


These Smart Bulbs That Give You Tons Of Upgraded Lighting Options

These smart light bulbs are Wi-Fi-enabled, which means you can use the accompanying app to control them remotely, or use your Alexa to give voice commands. With these bulbs, you can set timers, toggle between 16 million, and opt for specific “scenes,” like a reading mode that offers the perfect illumination while you dive into a novel.


A Shower Squeegee That’s Somehow Luxurious

There’s nothing too glamorous about wiping down the shower, but this gold-colored squeegee actually manages to make the task feel sophisticated. Made from rust-resistant stainless steel, it has a 10-inch rubber blade, and comes with an adhesive storage hook you can attach to the shower wall. Choose from other colors, too: black, silver, and bronze.


The Echo Dot Holder That Comes With A Faux Succulent

Who says tech gadgets have to look utilitarian? This Echo Dot holder amplifies sound while neatly concealing the device, and comes with a faux succulent that turns the whole thing into a planter. Plus, you can remove the succulent (if you like) and use the cup to store jewelry, coins, or other small items.


These Bamboo Sheets That Are Soft & Cooling

Reviewers report that these bamboo sheets are “so super soft,” and “like sleeping on a cloud.” As if that weren’t enough, they’re also naturally temperature-regulating, making them a perfect choice for hot sleepers. Each set comes with a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and two pillowcases.

  • Available sizes: twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
  • Available colors: 12


An Outdoor Rug That Makes Your Patio So Much Nicer

If you’re working with hard, utilitarian concrete on your back patio, this outdoor rug will warm the space right up. The durable machine-woven fibers are weather-, stain-, and UV-resistant, so you can enjoy the outdoors without worrying about wearing out your decor. Choose from colors like gray, terracotta, or the nautical navy pictured here.

  • Available sizes: 23
  • Available colors: 8


These Dividers That Organize Your Closet Shelves

If you’re anything like me, your closet shelves can quickly become home to messy piles of half-folded sweaters and out-of-season clothes toppling all over each other. Get these (pretty much life-changing) closet shelf dividers. They hook right on and keep everything neatly stacked and in order.


A Set Of 6 Prints In Subtle Earth Tones

Add some life to bare white with this set of six art prints. The 8-by-10-inch prints feature minimalist designs in earthy prints that are reminiscent of the best of the ‘70s. Create a gallery wall by grouping them together, or scatter them around for art in every room.


This Down-Alternative Comforter That Reviewers Adore

This comforter is proof that it’s possible to get luxe bedding without using up half your paycheck. Boasting a sky-high 4.7-star overall rating after more than 60,000 reviews, the comforter features piping along the edges and box-stitching to keep the filling in place. You can add a duvet cover, thanks to the four corner loops, but the comforter also looks just as good on its own.

  • Available sizes: twin, twin XL, full, queen, king, California king
  • Available colors: 9


The Rolling Cart You Can Use In Any Room

Perhaps one of the most versatile pieces on the list, this rolling storage cart can be used to store just about anything: toiletries in the bathroom, desk supplies in your home office, detergent in the laundry room, or cooking supplies in the kitchen. And at just 9 inches wide, it’s easy to sneak it into small space where other storage units just won’t fit.


A Floating Shelf That Fits In The Corner

This floating corner shelf is a design piece in itself, and it’s just right for displaying books, photos, and mementos. The zig-zag shelf mounts to the wall with the included hardware and can hold up to 30 pounds. Choose from white, black, gray, and natural dark wood.


This Jute Basket For Towels, Throw Blankets & More

Storage solutions tend to have a utilitarian vibe, but this woven jute basket is so pretty, you’ll want to keep it right there in the open. The two-tone basket has built-in handles and can be used to store towels, throw blankets, pet supplies, or toys.


A Hanging Shelf With Torched Pine Planks

Give your living room some laid-back style with this hanging shelf. The three-tier shelf is made with torched pine planks suspended from macramé ropes, and the metal loops make it easy to hang it on the wall.


The Rolling Hamper With Compartments To Separate Colors

Laundry day is a drag, but this rolling hamper streamlines the chore. The three divided compartments let you separate your lights from your darks from your delicates, and each one lifts out, so you can throw the load into the wash. Plus, the wheels let you roll the hamper from your bedroom to the washing machine — no heavy lifting required.


A Dinnerware Set Made With Unbreakable Wheat Straw

This wheat straw dinnerware set is the best of all worlds: It offers the unbreakable durability of plastic, but it’s eco-friendly and looks a lot like ceramic. Available in pink, blue, and multicolored options, the 12-piece set comes with dinner plates, dessert plates, and bowls, and everything is dishwasher- and freezer-safe.


This Highly Rated Shower Curtain

A cloth shower curtain is an easy way to upgrade your bathroom, and this highly rated one is made from machine-washable polyester with rust-resistant metal grommets. It comes at a great price, and you can choose from designs like ombré orange chevron, classic white, or the beige and white stripes pictured here.

  • Available colors and patterns: 22


These Drawer Dividers That Are Extendable

These bamboo drawer dividers extend from 17 to 22.5 inches, and since they’re all separate from each other, you can make each individual storage space as wide or as narrow as you like. Use them in kitchen, dresser, bathroom, or desk drawers.


This Surge Protector With 6 Outlets & 2 USB Ports

You might not believe that a simple outlet extender could gain a cult following, but this one has, boasting more than 25,000 five-star ratings. It increases plug-in space from two outlets to six, and has two USB ports for electronics. There’s also a night light with a dusk-to-dawn sensor, so you can plug in when it’s dark.


A Dual Showerhead With 6 Spray Settings

This dual showerhead features a handheld attachment and a 7-inch rainfall head with six relaxing spray options: power rain, pulsating massage, power mist, rain/massage, rain/mist, and a water-saving pause mode. It’s got design cred too — the showerhead comes in chrome, brushed nickel, and oil-rubbed bronze.


A 2-Tier Spice Spinner With Space For 40 Jars

This spice spinner has two tiers to maximize vertical storage space, and since it rotates, you always be able to find (and reach) the cloves, allspice, and red pepper flakes. This genius little invention also has a center section that’s ideal for storing larger items like olive oil and cooking spray. Put it in your cabinet or keep it on the counter.


The Nonslip Hangers That Save Space On Your Closet Rod

The fuzzy texture of these velvet hangers grips firmly to clothes, so you never have to deal with your favorite silk shirt falling to the bottom of your closet. The hangers are also ultra-thin, which means you’ll be saving space on your closet rod, and the rose gold hardware makes everything feel just a little more fancy (even if you’re just hanging T-shirts).


A Ceramic Planter With A Wooden Stand

Let your greenery shine in this planter elevated on a wooden stand. Available in two sizes, the white ceramic planter has a textured design and features a drain hole at the bottom. Place it on your coffee table, nightstand, or kitchen counter.


This Cutting Board That Makes Food Transfer Easy

This cutting board has an ingenious design hack that streamlines your cooking routine — after you’re done chopping, squeeze the handle to create a funnel that makes it easy to transfer food into the pan. It comes in three sizes, and it doesn’t hurt that you can choose from colors like black, dove gray, and avocado green.


A 3-Pack Of Cloth Storage Bins That Look So Chic

These storage bins have plenty of space to tuck away clutter, and they look so much better on your shelves (or out in the open) than plastic versions. Made from durable fabric with faux leather handles, the three-pack comes in a variety of sizes and colors.


This Knife Sharpener That’s A Kitchen Game-Changer

A good knife sharpener makes a world of difference when it comes to food prep (no, you don’t have to struggle so hard to cut up that onion), and this one rings up at a super affordable price. The sharpener works in two stages: Use the coarse slot to repair dull, damaged knives, then use the fine slot to polish and finish already-sharp blades.


A Wall-Mounted Rack For Extra Towels

This towel rack is a pretty much guaranteed to impress overnight guests, but it’s an even better way to get some space back in your linen closet. The wall-mounted rack has space for up to six bath towels and hand towels, and the satin finish gives it a nice touch. Hot tip: Pick up a second rack and use it to store wine bottles in the kitchen.


These Candles That Come In 30 Delicious Scents

An instant pick-me-up for your space, this scented candle comes in 30 fragrance options, including jasmine and lily, black tea and sage, and ocean breeze. They handcrafted candles are made with eco-friendly soy wax with cotton wicks that burn slow.


A Rack That Preserves Your Wine With Sideways Storage

This wine rack is a nice way to display your favorite bottles, but it’s functional too; storing wine horizontally keeps the cork damp, which can help prevent drying out and premature aging. Made from solid wood, the rack has room for up to 10 bottles.


This Serving Bowl Made From Natural Bamboo

Turn your caesar into a work of art by serving it in this solid bamboo bowl. With a beautiful light wood grain, the wave-shaped bowl is generously sized and can also be used for fruit, pasta, bread, or popcorn.