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The Best Desk Organizers Tame Tangled Cords and Corral Your Clutter

No drawers? No problem.
Morgan Bulman Avatar
Open Spaces multi-color Storage Gems on walnut-wood desk with green Work Week design border and badge.
Courtesy of Open Spaces.

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The end of August signifies the swan song of out-of-office messages and Summer Fridays. Work Week is our one-stop-shopping cluster dedicated to feeling good about getting back into a routine—whether that’s working from home, the office, or a classroom. We’ve got the snazzy task lamps, new desks, and sharp organization tools to help.

Over the past several years, we’ve all learned to make do with our WFH situation. At Domino, editors have created makeshift desks and carved permanent corners out of our apartments and houses; some have even taken the plunge on ergonomic swivel chairs, though time and again we find ourselves preferring a dining table or sofa (or even a bed). No matter which area you’ve claimed as your remote office—or if you’re back to in-person meetings!—it’s easier to transition into work mode if all the essentials are nearby, like a favorite pen (or a few), desk lamp, a notebook, and chargers needed to get you through the day. If you, like us, have decided it’s finally time to give your tools a more dignified storage solution, our list of the best desk organizers can help. 

Our Favorites

Best for Loose Papers: Best Made Spare Part Trays

Spare Parts Trays, Best Made

$44.95 $31.99
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Material: Steel | Number of compartments: 1 | Dimensions: 12-by-9-by-1.5 inches

What we like:

  • Stackable set 
  • Made in the U.S.  

Worth noting:

  • On the pricier side (compared to other trays on the market) 

Why we chose it: A streamlined, stackable design made for paper. 

One of the first steps to creating a thoughtful workspace is finding a place for all your notes, to-do lists, and inspirational clippings. And if your desk doesn’t have a drawer to store them in, papers tend to gather in messy piles. Our suggestion? Skip the folders and try Best Made’s stackable trays. The no-fuss, streamlined design in a goes-with-anything matte black finish is an inconspicuous addition to the office. Stack as many as you like or even designate a tray for every type of need—bills, pay stubs—before it’s time to shred them come recycling day. 

Best for Small Accessories: Pattern Storage Gems

Storage Gems, Pattern

$64
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Material: Acrylic | Number of compartments: 2 to 4 | Dimensions: 2.3-by-3.5 inches, 1.3-by-3.5 inches

What we like:

  • Stackable set  
  • Mix and match

Worth noting:

  • Small size; can’t fully close if too full  

Why we chose it: Colorful, acrylic containers with tops you can mix and match. 

The transparent quality of these stackable rounded containers means you’ll never have to guess where you keep all your paper clips, rubber bands, erasers, and Post-it notes (we’ve also enjoyed them as hosts for our huggie hoops, rings, and nail polish). If your desk is near a window, these cuties will catch the sunlight like gemstones, creating a prismlike effect across your workspace. Depending on your needs, you can choose between a set of two or four in blue-and-green and amber-and-pink combos, but might we suggest the multicolored option? There’s fun to be had in mixing around the tops.

Best for Tangled Charging Cords: Courant Catch Multi-Device Charging Tray 

Catch 2: Essentials, Courant

$90
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Material: Linen, plastic | Number of compartments: Zero | Dimensions: 7.8-by-3.1-by-0.6 inches

What we like:

  • Chic wireless charger
  • Comes in three colors: camel, charcoal, and natural 

Worth noting:

  • Only charges 2 devices at a time 

Why we chose it: Never worry about a low-battery warning again. 

If you rely on a lot of tech throughout the day, your outlet probably isn’t big enough to keep all your devices alive. (And is there anything worse than the low beeping sound your earbuds make when they’re about to die?) Enter Courant. One plug charges two electronics, and the design is easy on the eyes, to boot. A lot of charging stations aren’t the most aesthetically pleasing, but this Belgian linen-covered exterior totally won us over. Since it’s thinner in diameter, you won’t have to worry about it taking up too much surface area either, so you can free up desk space for other things. (If you’re just looking for a way to keep your cords in order, we also love this cute cable management system that you can snag for less than $7.)

Best for Working on the Go: Yamazaki Tosca Desk Organizer

Tosca Desk Caddy

$35
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Material: Steel, wood | Number of compartments: 3 | Dimensions: 3.3-by-10.6-by-5.3 inches  

What we like:

  • Clean lines
  • 3 different-size sections 
  • Free shipping 

Worth noting:

  • On the pricier side  

Why we chose it: A honey-hued wood handle makes for easy (and stylish) transportation. 

If you like to relocate throughout the day for a change of pace or need to tote essentials from one meeting room to the next, this Japanese brand offers a sleek solution. The Tosca organizer comes in Yamazaki’s staple white design and easily stashes notepads, pens, pencils, and more; if your day job is more hands on, this is the perfect carrier for rulers and tape measures. Of course, the ash crossbar is a handle, but it also keeps your items upright (the three separate compartments help).  

Best for Cluttered Drawers: Three by Three Seattle Drawer Organizer

Three by Three Seattle 5-Piece Organizer, Amazon

$24 $22.80
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Material: Tin, plastic | Number of compartments: 5 | Dimensions: 12-by-1-by-12 inches

What we like:

  • Colorful 
  • Range of size options
  • Affordable  

Worth noting:

  • According to reviews, not all trays sit fully flat 

Why we chose it: Separate compartments fit in a range of drawers, from deep to shallow. 

If your desk drawers look more like junk drawers, and you’re tired of hearing your pens roll around or finding a sticky note that’s far too old, order this set of five differently sized (and colored) desk drawer organizers stat. We love that they add a punchy neon moment (to help spark joy every time you open your drawers) and fit together like one of the best kitchen cabinet storage hacks. Nonstick, soft bases keep them in place and prevent scratches.  

Best for an Ever-Growing Pen Collection: Pottery Barn Mason Desktop Organizer

Mason Desktop Organizer, Pottery Barn

$39.50 $31
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Material: Stone | Number of compartments: 4 | Dimensions: 9.25-by-5 inches 

What we like:

  • Glazed stoneware 
  • Set includes 1 tray and 4 storage cups

Worth noting:

  • Use the shortest cup for sharpeners, erasers, etc. 

Why we chose it: If you can’t resist a good pen.

Sometimes just one empty candle jar–turned–pencil holder isn’t enough to house all of one’s writing utensils. If your collection has expanded beyond the typical Ticonderogas to encompass everything from felt-tip markers to fancy bullet pens, you’ll want these tools out on display rather than hidden from view. Sure, Pottery Barn’s organizer may have originally been created to house all sorts of desktop office supplies, but we see this being the ultimate open-face storage solution for writing implements in particular. The creamy glazed finish of the four cylindrical containers lets them shine. 

Best for Holding a Monitor: Navaris Computer Monitor Stand

Navaris Wood Monitor Stand, Amazon

$42.99
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Material: Bamboo | Number of compartments: Zero | Dimensions: 13.7-by-9.4-by-2.8 inches

What we like:

  • Natural material 
  • Compatible with all sorts of screens 
  • Secured with cork feet  

Worth noting:

  • Wood grain varies from product to product  

Why we chose it: Take your WFH setup to new heights. 

There are plenty of reasons to elevate your laptop or monitor: It’s better for your back and neck, frees up space for things like a separate keyboard and mouse, and just makes you look better on video calls. Yes, a yoga block does the trick, but if you have a piece of equipment larger than a MacBook Air, you might want to consider something sturdier, like this curvy bamboo number that looks like a waterfall bench for your tech. And cork feet keep wobbles and movement to an absolute minimum.

More Desk Organizers We Love

Assembly Desk Set by Alex Proba, Areaware

$60 $48
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Nomad Letter Tray by Skagerak, Afternoon Light

$115
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Pegs Desk Organizer, Artifox

$65
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Colour Storage Box, Hay

$10
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Rexite Multiplor Rotating Desk Organizer, MoMA Design Store

$48
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Acrylic Bloc Starter Set, Anthropologie

$42
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How We Chose These Products

Not everyone’s work situation is the same, meaning the best desk organizers should provide a solution to a variety of needs, no matter if you’re struggling with loose papers or one too many pens. That’s why we chose products that promise to reduce clutter rather than create it. Our list prioritizes extra storage but also just freeing up space by delivering on a range of styles, materials, and sizes so you can focus on the task at hand. 

Our Shopping Checklist

Size 

The ideal size of a desk organizer is based on your space, and only you can determine what may be too big or too small. Our advice is to measure, measure, measure. Confirm the depth of drawers to make sure you’ll still be able to shut them when you add the containers. We also advise against covering every inch of free space with some item or another—organization pretty much goes hand in hand with decluttering, and you don’t want to add to it. Or if your desk is actually a dining table, then you might benefit from a large portable organizer that can be relocated outside your 9-to-5 so you can turn your mindset from work to home. 

Compartments and Storage 

It may sound counterintuitive, but sometimes having more compartments and storage is only an excuse to keep hoarding all the things we don’t always need. Only a few of our options offer more than two designated spaces to hold items, but the ideal number is up to personal preference. What do you need in order to have your tools easily accessible and organized?  

Style and Design 

Our search for the best desk organizers started with the brands we trust for streamlined design. In theory we favor the idea of out of sight, out of mind, but this isn’t always the answer for a consistently tidy space. When it comes to office organization, we like storage that doesn’t completely hide its contents; this way you’ll never question where something is. Materials include steel, wood, acrylic, plastic, and tin—in other words, durable materials that can withstand daily wear and tear. 

Ask Domino

Q: What is the best material for a desk organizer? 

This is tricky, as all materials have their pros and cons, and the best depends on your personal desk situation. Do you like your work area to be matchy-matchy or do you prefer to inject a bit of pattern play and personalization? When shopping for the best desk organizers, going with two different tones and types of wood might not look cohesive in such a small, confined space. Instead, try pulling out colors from your electronics—whether a pastel keyboard or the black trim on your laptop. 

Overall, longevity comes into play here: Some materials are just inherently more durable and less prone to scuffing, scratching, and staining. And if you’re someone who likes to work through lunch, then you probably should skip buying that white linen organizer—cleaning will not be an easy feat.  

Q: How do I clean my desk organizer? 

Aside from food, frequent touch and dust will both wear down your office organizer, so be sure to wipe it down with a microfiber cloth from time to time to keep it looking new. 

The Last Word

Feeling energized, focused, and productive is closely tied to a thoughtful workspace. Whether you’re working from home or in an office, the best desk organizers corral clutter, keep papers in order, and store supplies and essentials within easy reach.