Whether you want to future-proof your furniture, make it look prettier, or provide stable storage, shelf liners are the ideal choice. These sheets cover your shelves, protecting them from dust and liquid spills while also adding to the aesthetic of your shelves.
But since a variety of liners are available online, finding a suitable option can be tough and, at worst, confusing. That’s where this guide comes in: here, we reviewed the top shelf liners in 2022 to give you an insight into their standout qualities. We’ve also laid down a detailed buying guide to ensure you make an educated decision. Let’s take a look!
A shelf liner will ensure your wooden, bamboo, or steel shelf remains safe against scratches caused by sharp items like knives. Shelf liners work as a protective layer on your furniture to improve its longevity.
Keeps away moisture and strains
Moisture is a major reason for damage to your furniture’s finish and material. Thankfully, shelf liners protect your furniture from moisture and liquid stains to help it stand the test of time.
Quick and easy cleaning
Your shelves and furniture are bound to accumulate dust, leaks, and spills over time. These stains not only make your shelves appear awful but also damage them in the long run. Pairing your furniture with shelf liners will allow for easy cleaning because you can simply swap the liners.
Things To Consider When Choosing a Shelf Liner
Shelf liners come in different materials and have different installation methods, designs, protection, and methods for storing items. If you’re seeking a fancy shelf liner, solid grip, paper, and beaded grip materials are good solutions. Plastic and polypropylene liners are also a decent option for protecting your shelves and easy cleaning.
If you’ll be installing shelf liners on shelves and furniture across your home, you’ll want a quick and easy cleaning solution, like machine washing. While some are machine washable, others are not to their hard materials. Consider what your needs are and pick a shelf liner accordingly.
In most cases, you’ll want to wipe off dust and stains from your furniture quickly, rather than machine-washing all the shelf liners. But, this will be difficult if your liners aren’t wipeable. So, if you like the idea of wiping your liners for cleaning purposes, opt for wipeable shelf liners.
When deciding on a shelf liner, measure the width of your shelves and consider a liner accordingly. Most shelf liners have widths of 12, 18, or 20 inches. Making sure that the shelf liner you pick meets the required width will make the installation seamless and worry-free. That said, if you find the liner you choose is too big, don’t fret — some liners can easily be trimmed and adjusted with a pair of scissors.
Additional Buying Tips
Say no to permanent liners
Permanent shelf liners are designed to stay on your shelves forever, mostly with the help of an adhesive. Though they’ll keep your shelves clean and good-looking, they’ll likely damage your furniture down the road. Also, removing them can be annoying.
Avoid slippery liners
Many shelf liners pack smooth, hard plastic surfaces and lack stability. Though they’re easy to clean and are good for linens and products that may leak, the items placed on them slip through. So, opting for liners that are ribbed for extra grip might be a better solution.
What Else Should You Know About Shelf Liners?
Reversible or non-reversible
Reversible liners let you position any of their two sides to the top, whereas you can only store items on one surface of non-reversible shelf liners. Reversible shelf liners are a good option as they offer a clean look with just a simple flip.
Adhesive or non-adhesive
Adhesive liners are cheaper and designed for short-term use. Once they catch a lot of dust and spills, you’ll likely be unable to clean them, leaving you with no option but to replace them. The non-adhesive liners, on the other hand, are designed for continuous use and usually support machine washing. So, non-adhesive liners tend to be a better option for long-term use.
If you need a way to keep your shelves protected, Sterling’s Shelf Liner is a great choice. It’s made of polypropylene which provides great resistance to moisture, along with good resistance to various chemicals to protect your shelves from liquid spills. If you’re looking to store items that are prone to leakage, this shelf liner might be your solution.
Furthermore, this shelf liner packs a smooth, wipeable surface for quick cleaning. It’s also available in different sizes to fit any shelf — but, if the sheet doesn’t fit your shelves, simply trim it using any household scissors as needed. Simply put, we think this shelf liner is the best one available as it offers easy installation and cleaning along with high-grade quality.
GorillaGrip’s Shelf Liner packs a strong grip to reduce slipping and bunching on the shelves. Their open-grid design makes them breathable while ensuring they protect your shelves from dust and debris. Other than that, the liners are reversible, meaning you can store items on either of their two sides.
Another significant benefit of this liner is how easily it can be cleaned — simply wipe down your liner with a damp cloth or sponge, dry it, and you’re set! Furthermore, their thick designs make sure that your items don’t scratch your shelves. Unfortunately, due to the open design, it is not resistant to moisture, making this shelf liner unsuitable for damp environments.
Here we’ve got a rubber-based shelf liner packing an anti-slip design from Smart Design. This liner’s anti-slip design ensures it’ll hold your items in place without needing a sticky adhesive. Though you can’t machine wash it, the liner can be wiped and, therefore, is quick and easy to clean.
When it comes to size, this rubber liner measures 12 inches in width and 20 feet in length and you can easily cut it using any household scissor to adjust it for your shelves. There are also smaller options available if you find that the 20-foot size is far too large for your needs.
Duck’s Shelf Liner is made from non-slip vinyl to offer a clear-looking waterproof design. Its top-quality construction keeps moisture, water, and liquid spills from reaching and damaging your furniture. Even more, its texture is optimized to reduce slipping so that the liner holds its place.
Other than that, the vinyl-based design makes this liner extremely easy to trim, ensuring you can cut it into any size and shape you like. Best of all, it’s equally suitable for kitchen shelves, cabinets, drawers, fridges, and shoe racks.
ANOAK offers some of the finest shelf liners on the market and this one is no exception. It is crafted from vinyl to provide a durable yet flexible surface for protecting your furniture and offers a raised stripe design for added grip and stability.
Another key feature of this shelf liner is its ease of use — it simply yet effectively protects your shelves from dust and debris and offers easy cleaning. You can either wipe its surface using a damp cloth or rinse it with water. And, as an added benefit, this liner is optimized for repeated use for cost-effectiveness.
Durable yet flexible surface
Easy to wipe or wash
Designed for repeated use
A waterproof design protects against liquid
Too thin to support pantry items
People Also Asked
Q: Should I line my shelves?
A: Installing a shelf liner on your shelves will help protect them from moisture, spills, and leaks. Plus, it’ll make them look prettier and will allow for easy cleaning and stable storage of your items.
Q: How do I protect my kitchen cabinet shelves?
A: The best way to protect a kitchen’s cabinet shelves is by lining them with a shelf liner. Shelf liners ensure that sharp kitchen utensils and accessories don’t scratch your shelves. Depending on the design, they can also help your shelves last longer by protecting them from spills.
Q: What is a non-adhesive shelf liner?
A: Non-adhesive shelf liners don’t use any sticky material, like glue and paste, for installation. Instead, they have a gripped bottom that keeps them stable on shelves.
The Old House Journal Review Team’s product reviews and in-depth guides are here to help you restore, repair, update, and decorate your home. The content is created by The Old House Journal Review Team. The Old House Journal editorial staff is not involved. Old House Journal is reader-supported: When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.