3 Expert Tips To Choose Paper Towel & Napkin Holders

A glass spills, a jar breaks, a mess is happening before your very eyes. What's your first reaction? Likely, you're reaching for a paper towel to help keep your home clean. If you can't find that towel or napkin quickly, you're going to get stressed.

Enter: Paper towel and napkin holders. These inconspicuous organizers sit on your countertop to keep your towels and napkins ready at all times! Let's talk about the different types of holders you'll see - and which might be the best for you and your home.

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What are the different mount types of paper towel holders?

In order for your paper towel or napkin holder to feel truly at home (and therefore truly useful) within your kitchen, you're going to have to find a place for it - so you know exactly where it's going to be when you need a paper towel! To make this really easy, paper towel and napkin holders generally come in two different types:

  • Wall or Cabinet Mounted: Whether you post one of these vertically on the wall next to your sink or use an under-mount attachment to affix it to the bottom of a cabinet, using a mounted paper towel holder can keep your towels dry - and keep them off the counter. Use one of these if you have limited counter space or like keeping your counters clutter-free.

  • Stand-Alone: Vertical paper towel roll holders and small square napkin holders alike have one very important trait in common: portability. Use a stand-alone napkin or paper towel holder if you need to move your paper towel source around!

Under Cabinet Mounted Paper Towel Holder
Wall-Mounted Paper Towel Holder
Wall Mount Paper Towel Holder
Metal Standing Napkin Holder
Freestanding Paper Towel Holder
Stand Alone Metal Napkin Holder

What material is best for my paper towel or napkin holder?

Paper towel and napkin holders come in a wide variety of materials, from metals such as stainless steel, copper, and aluminum to wood, bamboo, plastic, wire, ceramic, stone, or more. This means that you have a world of options! Because a paper towel or napkin holder is a static piece that's designed to do a rather simple job, any number of materials might work.

The best material for you depends on the look or utility you're trying to achieve. Think about it! If you're:

  • Going to be mounting your paper towel or napkin holder: steer clear of stone or ceramic paper towel holders; they'll be clunky and perhaps too heavy to mount safely. Instead, consider a lightweight bamboo, wire, or plastic paper towel holder to get the job done well.
Stainless Steel Flat Napkin Holder
Steel Over the Cabinet Paper Towel Holder
Stainless Steel Freestanding Paper Towel Holder
Stainless Steel Standing Napkin Holder
Freestanding Napkin Holder in Black and Grey Metal
Gold Steel Napkin and Paper Holder
  • Looking for sophisticated, classy appeal: For a high-end kitchen look, however, stone or ceramic might be just the thing! Choose a free-standing holder in a marble, rose gold, or heavily grained wood for a beautiful, luxurious feel.
Hand Painted Ceramic Freestanding Paper Towel Holder
Ceramic Standing Napkin Holder Holiday Theme
Freestanding Ceramic Paper Towel Holder
Small Ceramic Napkin Holder
Ceramic Sheep Freestanding Paper Towel Holder
  • In need of something functional: Aluminum or plastic are great choices for paper towel holders that you can bring indoors and out, use with several different types of decor, and are built to last forever. An aluminum paper towel holder can easily be mounted or stand-alone and goes with several different silver appliances very common in kitchens.
Black Plastic Napkin Holder
Plastic Classic Caddy and Standing Napkin Holder
Plastic Long Standing Napkin Holder
White Plastic Magnetic Paper Towel Holder
Plastic Wall-Mounted Paper Towel Holder
Plastic Caddy Organizer Napkin Holder

How can I match a paper towel holder to my home?

No matter how useful a tool is, you still want it to look good in your home! To ensure that your paper towel holder matches your home's unique aesthetic, start by defining just what that aesthetic is. Take a stroll around your property, look closely at your kitchen, and notice:

  • What colors you have on display. Do you lean towards bright and colorful patterns, or are you more into pastels and neutrals?

  • What metals you have on display. Copper, aluminum, stainless steel, brass - often, metals fade into the background as neutrals, but they each have a unique cast and tint.

  • How busy your home is? Are you a maximalist, a minimalist, or somewhere in between? Are your counters filled with items, or are they mainly clutter-free?

A wall - or cabinet - mounted paper towel holder can help keep the focus on your decor and help maintain a minimalist, clear-counter vibe, if that's what you're looking for. Because a paper towel holder is rarely going to be a statement piece, as far as color goes, it's likely going to be a good idea to match the colors or metals most represented in your kitchen. However, if you like bright colors and a busy aesthetic, go for a colorful, patterned piece!

Lily is a modern designer with great appreciation for sleek architecture, a love for art in its many forms, and a passion for sharing her experience with people. If you’re looking for advice on how to modernize your old-fashioned place or make your new restaurant a visual blast, she’s definitely the one to ask.