Did you think that any kitchen trash can would do? Rubbish! From lids to size and material, there are quite a few things that you should consider if you don't want to end up with a painfully impractical garbage can… and unpleasant smells.
Here's how to choose a kitchen trash can that matches your needs, budget and habits the most without wasting your patience every time you use it.
What Are the Different Types of Kitchen Trash Cans?
The main difference is the lid. Sure, because you'll keep your kitchen trash can indoors you won't have to worry about raccoons (hopefully!), but how you open it will still make a difference:
- No lid: this is surely quick and practical, especially when chucking vegetable peels as you prep your food, but… let's be honest: it won't smell nice! We don't recommend this type of garbage can unless you're planning on keeping it inside a cupboard and emptying it every day;
- Standard or lift lid: these are usually cheaper, and fewer mechanisms mean less breakage; however, these lids can be a bit impractical, since you'll have to touch them with your hands (not the best when you're cooking!);
- Swing-top lids: these are also quite cheap, but can be a recipe for disaster! Not only they require you to touch the lid: they can also result in spillages, especially when your bin starts to fill up. Don't forget that you'll also end up wiping them more often;
- Pedal: you won't need to touch the lid! Pedals are a very practical choice; just keep in mind that they might break after a while if your kids aren't too gentle when pressing them;
- Sensor-activated: no-touch nor pedals, this is a fantastic choice if you only want the best of the best and you're happy to spend the right amount of money for it, because buying a cheap one will usually mean that the sensor will stop working after a few months.
What Size Should a Kitchen Trash Can Be?
There are two things that you must look at in order to determine the right size for your kitchen trash can:
- The space in the cupboard or kitchen where you're planning on placing it: make sure you measure it, without forgetting about the available height and allowing enough room to lift the lid depending on the design you're planning on going for;
What is the Best Material for a Kitchen Trash Can?
Your best choice is a metal like stainless steel: these trash cans are durable, easy to clean, and great at retaining odors. Other options include:
- Plastic: usually cheaper, it does look less glamorous, but it doesn't really matter if you're going to place it inside a cupboard;
- Wood: it's undoubtedly a beautiful option and it might even complement the décor style of your kitchen, but an accidental leakage could result in a wet, smelly mess;
- Wicker or rattan: much like wood, they're a more decorative option, but, unless you already own other wicker elements, they'd be better suited for your patio.
Let's go through a little recap to make sure you choose a kitchen trash can that doesn't end up annoying you in the long run:
- Consider your habits, durability and where you're planning on placing the trash can in order to pick one with the right lid for you
- As for size, measure its designated space (allowing enough room to lift the lid!) and think of how much rubbish you usually accumulate on a weekly basis: 13 gallons is the standard size for kitchen trash cans
- While wood, plastic, wicker and rattan might be a better fit for your décor and budget, stainlesssteel is the best material: it's durable and impeccable at retaining odors.