Whether you’re prepping for freshman year or prepping lunches for the kids, one thing’s certain: Back to school season is here (and it’s time to get organized). If you’re in college, that means finding a slim, portable hamper that’ll fit in your dorm room and make schlepping to the laundry room less painful. If you’re a parent, it means finding a hip-hugging basket that can stack in the closet—because you’ll have zero time to de-clutter once after-school activities resume—and a sturdy hamper that will make sorting everyone’s clothes a breeze. So below, find the ten best hampers and baskets for everyone, from backpack laundry bags for college to collapsible baskets and two-compartment hampers for the home.
The 10 Best Laundry Hampers & Baskets for Your Home or Dorm Room
Laundry basket, meet backpack
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The Best Laundry Hampers in 2023
What's the Difference Between a Laundry Hamper vs. a Laundry Basket?
The short answer? A hamper is more of a permanent home for dirty clothes, while a basket is what you use to carry said dirty clothes when you finally get around to doing two weeks' worth of whites. The more technical differences, however, are in the size, shape and utility. Baskets are built with an open top, wide base and handles that make transporting heavy loads less grueling. Hampers, meanwhile, tend to be taller with a slim, sturdy frame (and a lid in some cases), so they can collect day-to-day wear without making your bedroom look messy. And sure, a hamper can be used to transport clothes—especially if it has wheels—and a basket can be put on display in your space. But more often than not, hampers are constructed with design-friendly materials, like cotton, linen or rattan, while baskets are usually made with plastic or mesh (aka better off hidden in the closet). Not to mention that there are a slew of collapsible baskets that make for easy storage in tight spaces.
What to Look for When Choosing a Laundry Hamper
- Size: The size of your basket or hamper should boil down to how much space you have, plus how many loads of laundry you want it to hold. For a hamper, you want to measure its intended corner or closet spot and make sure its dimensions will fit seamlessly (so it doesn’t jut out awkwardly from the wall). For both hampers and baskets, it’s important to consider how many loads of laundry you want it to hold. A capacity of 20 liters should be enough to hold a week of laundry for one person. But, if you’re looking for something that can hold two to three loads of laundry at a time, be sure to go with a capacity of 60 liters or more.
- Portability: If you’re planning on using your hamper as a basket, you want to look for ones that offer maximum portability. Think: side handles, wheels and detachable liners that’ll make the haul less taxing. (And if you’re a college student, peep number two on this list for a backpack-style hamper). For baskets, it’s all about handles and hip-hugging. Look for baskets that have an ergonomic grip with some cushion (like rubber or silicone). Then, for the shape, you want to stick with curved silhouettes that will make it easier to press against your hips for support.
- Durability: Last but not least, let’s talk longevity. For a hamper, it’s all about the frame. Look for one’s with sturdy metal builds or waterproof materials (like PP rattan, bamboo or plastic). That way, it won’t crack or cave in over time—even when you’re using it to carry loads of 55+ pounds. For baskets, however, it’s all about ventilation. Make sure you’re choosing one that has perforations at the side, so your clothes won’t stink if you leave them damp. Plus, for collapsible baskets, it’s best to go with one that has a rubber folding center (so it doesn’t decompose like the all-canvas options).
How We Picked the Best Landry Hampers and Baskets
After sifting through thousands of top-rated items, we chose the best laundry baskets and hampers based on: a) that they can hold at least 20 liters in capacity, b) that they included portability features, like side handles, wheels or detachable liners and c) that they used durable, waterproof materials, including coated plastic and PP rattan.
Best Overall for Home
- What We Like: durable and sturdy, two included liner bags and mesh bags, liners have ties, metal frame for stability, handles on the sides, available in three colors
- What We Don't Like: bags may need replacing down the road
- Size: 13.4"L x 13.4"W x 21.7"H
- Capacity: 90 liters
Aside from its 4.5 out of 5-star rating with over 4,100 reviews, there’s a reason why we’re putting this hamper at the top of our list: Durability. While the handwoven PP rattan frame makes it waterproof, its generous 60-liter capacity is supported by a thickened wireframe (aka it won’t crack or cave-in over time). Plus, it’s equipped with two included detachable liner bags and two mesh laundry bags—but thanks to handles on the side and lightweight build, this guy is super easy to carry (without removing the bags). What’s more, the liners include ties to the back that prevent it from falling into the basket, and thanks to its high-quality canvas material, it can hold up to 90 liters of laundry (or 60 liters, in the smaller size). Oh, and did we mention that the wicker finish is available in three colors (brown, grey and natural)? “This laundry hamper with lid is exactly what I was looking for,” one reviewer raves. “The capacity of the basket is 60 L which is large enough to fit a whole week worth of laundry! The fact that it has a lid is a hugggeee plus…The quality is really good and seems to be durable to be used for a long time. It’s sturdy and stable. No sharp edges or messed up basket threads.”
Best Overall for Dorm Room
- What We Like: works as a basket, hamper and backpack, sturdy handles and straps, exterior pockets for storage, available in 13 colors and patterns.
- What We Don't Like: doesn’t stay upright as a floor hamper
- Size: 13" L x 13" W x 29" H
- Capacity: up to 44 pounds
Sorry, but where were these ingenious backpacks when we were in college? This clever design combines a laundry hamper, basket and backpack all in one: When you’re not doing laundry, it can be hung as a hamper on a wall or door with a thickened nylon hanging loop. Then, when the pile-up has become excessive, it has adjustable, reinforced stitched shoulder straps that allow it to double as a backpack/basket. Plus, not only can it hold two or three loads of laundry and 44 pounds at a time, but it also features external mesh and inner pockets for detergent, fabric softener, cell phones, coins, etc. Even better? It’s available in 13 different colors and patterns. One reviewer writes, “Great size yet lightweight and folds up nicely. The pocket on the outside is very convenient for holding cleaning supplies- also has an inside zip pocket for money or laundry card.” Another student says, “Needed a dorm laundry bag and this works great. We actually used a hook to hang the handle from the wall and it works perfectly. It has a large enough area on the front door detergent and can fit a bag of Tide pods. Also love that it has straps to be a backpack carrier.”
- What We Like: two-in-one design, wheels, retractable handle, lid, spacious capacity, aeration holes, sturdy plastic
- What We Don't Like: lid doesn’t stay open when loading into the washer
- Size: 21" L x 13.75" W x 28.38" H
- Capacity: 21 liters
With a slim build can fit seamlessly into closets and tight spaces, we love how this lamper has a cover to keep things from looking messy—along with wheels that take up minimal floor space (so it still hugs the wall). It also has aeration holes along the front to keep clothes fresh, and the side handles offer the same transportability of a basket. That said, there’s no need for heavy lifting, thanks to its retractable handle. Plus, the 21-liter capacity makes it great for large families—you can wheel it around the house and pick up everything from kids' dirty socks to kitchen towels. Take it from this reviewer, who says it’s a standout option for keeping your laundry organized: “The inclusion of a lid is a fantastic feature. It helps to keep your dirty laundry concealed, preventing any unpleasant odors from spreading. [The] addition of wheels is a game-changer when it comes to convenience. You no longer need to struggle with carrying a heavy laundry basket from one room to another… Plastic is lightweight, durable, and easy to clean. It can withstand moisture and humidity [and] ensures that the hamper will last for a long time.”
Best Under $15
- What We Like: two-in-one basket and hamper, four ergonomic handles, narrow enough to fit inside closets, durable resin construction
- What We Don't Like: side handles could be smoother
- Size: 21.65” L x 16.96” W x 18.86” H
- Capacity: 2 bushels
Here, a hamper-meets-basket (aka “lamper”) that offers the best of both worlds. What sets this guy apart is its unique two-way carry, featuring four ergonomic handles for easy toting. The 19-inch height means it’ll fit snugly in closets—without being too tall to reach on top of the laundry machine—and the two-bushel capacity ensures you can fit plenty of dirty clothes. Add to that the fact that it’s crafted from high-quality resin, so it’s thick, strong and won’t crack over time. One reviewer writes, “The sturdy polyethylene construction just screams durability! The ergonomic lift handles make for easy lifting only using your back muscles. If this thing was a car it would definitely be the Chevy Vega.” Another adds, “It is tall, but the best part is a nice wide opening that doesn’t narrow at the bottom.”
Best Slim Hamper
- What We Like: slim and tall, lidded, ventilated design, handles on the sides, available in eight colors
- What We Don't Like: some reviewers reported that their hamper arrived scuffed/dirty
- Size: 18" L x 10.4" W x 23.5" H
- Capacity: 40 liters
With a sleek and slender shape, this 40-liter laundry hamper fits perfectly in small spaces—from the corner of a dorm room to the crevice of a closet. Its plastic wicker build is lightweight yet durable with cut-out handles that make it easily portable, even when full. The premium perforations also allow for maximum ventilation, so it has the same benefits of a basket and will keep clothes and towels fresh without accumulating buildup. Not to mention that it also includes a lid, which is hard to come by for a hamper with such a minimal footprint (just 10.4 inches wide). “In shopping around this was basically the only ‘slim AND tall’ laundry basket that I could find that was not canvas and it did not disappoint,” writes one happy shopper. “I have a tiny laundry room and the traditional-sized baskets get in the way and make it feel really cluttered. This laundry basket fits perfectly in the gap remaining on the wall with a washer and dryer.”
Best Stackable Basket
- What We Like: available in a six-basket set, handles fold down for easy stacking, hip-hugging contoured shape, durable and easy-to-clean
- What We Don't Like: some might find them too small
- Size: 23.75” L x 16.38” W x 11.75” H
- Capacity: 2 bushels
First thing’s first: Sterilite seems to be a breakout brand among reviewers when it comes to the best laundry baskets—and this stackable set of six is no exception (also available for purchase as a single basket). The contoured shape ensures a cushy fit against your hip or stomach, while the ergonomic handles are designed not to pinch your hands. It also features two pivoting handles attached to the rim, which makes them easy to carry and stack (when handles are folded down). It also has a two-bushel capacity, ventilated air holes and an easy-to-clean plastic construction, so durability is built into its design. One happy customer shares, “Nice size, nice handles, nice price, amazing stackability…very sturdy, have comfortable handles and were great on their first run to the laundromat. Some may find them too small: I say why screw up your back carrying too much laundry? Stack 'em high in your bedroom and do a load once full. One basket = 1 load, really… Laundry basket Nirvana has been reached: share the wealth.”
Best Collapsible Basket
- What We Like: locks in place when it folds down, large capacity while opened, non-slip rubber grip handles, available in multiple colors
- What We Don't Like: might lose its shape over time
- Size: 24.25" L x 17.5" W x 10.5" H (3” H when collapsed)
- Capacity: 11 gallons
This basket folds flat to a mere 3 inches high, making it a neat freak’s dream storage solution. And don’t let its collapsible design fool you; the basket is generously sized—approximately 17.5 inches wide when fully opened—and its 11-gallon capacity can hold a full load of laundry while supporting up to 35 pounds. Plus, aside from the fact that it stays locked in place when folded down (so it won’t spring up when it’s stored), it also features cushy, non-slip rubber grip handles on each side, making it less grueling on your hands. One reviewer notes how its four color options make sorting laundry a breeze: “We are always in some stage of laundry here. It never ends. This allows me to throw [my kid’s] clothes in altogether, and then sort and fold in their own colored basket. It’s much easier to put everything away when this is delivered to their rooms.”
Best Two-Section Hamper
- What We Like: dual compartments for easy sorting, removable tote bags with carry handles, helper handle on base of bags for emptying, bags self-locate back into basket, sturdy and durable, modern design available in four colors
- What We Don't Like: expensive
- Size: 22.05" L x 15.55" W x 27.95" H
- Capacity: 90 liters
Why this hamper is racking up rave reviews across the board? Well, for one, its contemporary fabric exterior is stunning—available in black, ecru, grey and green—and it has dual compartments, so you can separate darks and lights (or share it with a partner). That said, what really makes this guy unique is its versatility. Underneath the lid, you'll find two fabric tote bags equipped with top handles, so you can lift ‘em up and carry each bag directly to the washing machine. It also has a helper handle on the base that ensures easy emptying, and thanks to the self-locating rim, there's no need for fiddly ties or buttons when replacing each bag in the basket; they drop perfectly back into place for the next load. Each bag has a 30-liter capacity, so you’ll have plenty of time before it’s filled to the brim with dirty clothes. Not to mention that it’s also ultra-durable: “We were expecting the exterior to be plastic-like based on pictures, but it is actually a sturdy fabric,” writes one reviewer. “There are rods in the corners for stability, then you tuck it in all around the top and bottom. There is a mechanism on the bottom that you expand with an included Allen wrench to make the exterior taught, basically like tightening a drum. It's very clever! The interior bags snap right into place when you drop them in, and the velcro seems very sturdy.”
Best Hamper With Wheels
- What We Like: locking wheels, heavy-duty steel frame, side handles, water-resistant, ventilation
- What We Don't Like: hamper lining might feel thin
- Size: 18.9"L x 14.17"W x 29.06"H
- Capacity: 100 liters
Unlike most of the wheeled canvas options on the market (which eventually cave in and lose shape over time), this number is built with longevity in mind. Its frame is crafted with heavy-duty steel and side handles on each side while the bottom features water-resistant rattan that allows for ventilation. The real draw, however, is its locking wheels, which ensure that it won’t roll around when you’re loading things into the washer. But of course, it also includes a detachable, machine-washable liner, so you can leave it in the bedroom and carry clothes separately. One reviewer says, “It holds a good amount of laundry. The liner is made from like a canvas material that can be removed to wash. My favorite thing about this laundry basket is the wheels. I love that it can roll and I don’t have to carry it across my house. It seems very sturdy and it looks cute so I don’t mind it sitting out in my bedroom.”
Best Hamper With Lid
- What We Like: liner included, chic rattan design, durable and sturdy, anti-scratch feet, holds up to 55 pounds, narrow and slim
- What We Don't Like: rattan color is lighter in person
- Size: 18.1" L x 13" W x 23.6" H
- Capacity: 90 liters
With a 4.6 out of 5-star rating and over 1,500 reviews, it’s safe to say people are loving this design-friendly hamper. It’s crafted with a combination of handwoven rattan and a sturdy metal frame, making it waterproof and breathable, and the silica gel feet at the bottom ensure your floors will stay scratch-free. The included liner is also made from breathable, machine-washable cotton while the strap detail keeps it firmly tied to the outside of the basket. Best of all: It has a 23.8-gallon capacity that can hold up to 55 pounds, yet it’s still great for smaller spaces with a narrow 13-inch width. One happy customer writes, “This hamper allows you to either take the laundry bag out and/or take the hamper itself to the laundry easily with the handles on each side. My old hamper had neither bag or handles for easy transport to the laundry so it was very cumbersome when it came time to do laundry.”
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