Cut the Clutter: Power Strips to Help Manage Your Plugs

Stay completely plugged in without a mess of tangled cords.

In the age of electronics, there never seems to be enough places to plug them all in. And even when wall outlets are plentiful, they’re often not strategically placed. A dozen power outlets with none beside the bed won’t allow you to charge your phone as you sleep (or roll over and hit snooze). Power strips to the rescue! Here’s what to look for in a good one.


A lit on-off switch offers overload protection, and the product comes with technical support. Bototek


With power plugs, size matters … sometimes. Some computer chargers and other devices are too large to plug into a standard evenly spaced power strip configuration without blocking the outlet adjacent to it. Instead of losing a perfectly good outlet, you can get a strip with two plugs that are spaced far enough apart from the others to accommodate oversize adapters.


Two mounting holes make it attachable to walls, and it’s small enough to fit inside your bag when you’re on the road. TESSAN


For added versatility, some power strips come with a combination of outlets and USB ports so you can provide power to multiple electronics while recharging others.They’ll come in particularly handy in a small home office when you need to plug in a laptop, printer and lamp as well as recharge your phone and tablet.

Ultra Slim

This one comes with loads of security extras. TESSAN


Beware of power surges, those brief, unpredictable spikes in electric current that can burn out computers and televisions. A strip with a built-in surge protector will give you added security should lightning strike a power line close to home. Also look for built-in protection from power overloads, short circuits and voltage fluctuations, all of which can damage appliances.