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Best Napkin Holder of 2020

By Liv Mertens ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Sep 30, 2020
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To help you find the best napkin holder, we did an in-depth dive with a range of styles and brands to bring you a comprehensive overview and help you discover which model is right for you. We focused the top nine napkin holders of 2020 and tested them on our own tables with our own dining ware. To test each of the product's versatility, we bought four different size paper napkins and later placed each of them in front of a box fan to test how well they would hold up against the wind. Each napkin dispenser was judged by how easy it is to use, how well it holds your napkins down, and how versatile it can be.

1

Best Overall


OXO Good Grips Neat


Editors' Choice Award
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$15
List Price
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Napkin Size: Any | Material: Stainless Steel
Can use it with any size napkin
Easy to grab a napkin
Clip to hold napkins in place
Not very pretty

The OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser is the most functional model we tested. It can cater to all four napkin sizes and keeps the napkins secure. Some napkin dispensers demand a precise dimension from a napkin, but this one allows for versatility. Once you have picked out the napkins of your choice, you don't have to worry about them flying everywhere in the wind. This product has an innovative pinch mechanism to help keep your napkins in place without making it too hard to pull a napkin out.

Next to some of the other products we tested, the OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser lacks decorative swirls and rustic style. It is not the prettiest holder we encountered, but it's functionality far exceeded the others. The only real complaint we had against this product was some glue left from the packing that just won't come off. We thought that it might affect the functionality but were pleased to find that it does not, and with a good scrubbing, it should come off one day.

The OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser is the most versatile and functional napkin holder we tested
The OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser is the most versatile and functional napkin holder we tested

2

An Excellent Value


Barnyard Design Rustic Wood


Best Buy Award
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$14.95
at Amazon
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Napkin Size: Any | Material: Wood
Can use it with any size napkin
Easy to grab a napkin
Napkins secure against breezes
Nice to look at
No clipping mechanism
The Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood napkin dispenser is versatile, easy to use, and cute to boot. It also happens to be one of the least expensive models we tested. This product is a great deal. Not only can you use it with any size napkin that you please, but when we put it up against the fan, it held up well. We loved that it is made out of wood and has a charming rustic appeal. We found that it was easy enough to grab a napkin and think it is well worth the price.

Although the Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood napkin dispenser held up well against the box fan, without a clipping mechanism to keep the napkins in place, there is no guarantee that they will stay put. There is also a chance that this product might not be as durable as the other products. Its wooden frame makes for a charming aesthetic but could prove to break more easily. That being said, this product is a great and affordable option for your kitchen table or even your garden on less windy days.

The Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood napkin dispenser can hold any size napkin.
The Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood napkin dispenser can hold any size napkin.

3

Best Bang For Your Buck


Home Basics Scroll Collection


Best Buy Award
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$11.58
(45% off)
at Amazon
See It

Napkin Size: Any | Material: Steel
Can use it with any size napkin
Easy to grab a napkin
Napkins stay put in the wind
Nice to look at
No clipping mechanism
If you are looking for something to accent your dining room table and works for all sizes of napkins, the Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispenser is our vote. This product manages to be simple, elegant, and incredibly functional. When held up to our wind generator, the napkins stayed nicely in place. This product offers versatility without being physically intrusive.

Our critique of Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispenser is only that it lacks a clipping mechanism and that sometimes napkins might get caught on its beautiful swirls. Although this product did not seem to need a clipping mechanism to keep all the napkins secure during the fan test, it may not perform so well outside on an especially windy day. We also noticed that when we tried to load the napkin dispenser, sometimes the outermost napkin would get stuck in one of the decorative swirls. However, this napkin hold would work well in almost any other situation and is a great option as it offers artful functionality.

This napkin dispenser has elegant swirls to highlight your dining room table.
This napkin dispenser has elegant swirls to highlight your dining room table.

4

Best Decorative Napkin Holder


Saratoga Home Farmhouse


Top Pick Award
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$19.98
(33% off)
at Amazon
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Napkin Size: Standard square napkin - 6.5" by 6.5" and smaller | Material: Steel, Wood
Easy to grab a napkin
Clip to hold napkins in place
Great style
Expensive

The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser is our favorite model for holding square napkins. It has a nice aesthetic without sacrificing function. The wooden handle that keeps the napkins in place works well, and the notch in the front makes it noticeably easier to grab napkins. The handle isn't too heavy, keeping the napkins in without preventing you from getting them.

Unfortunately, the Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser is a little less versatile than some of the other products we tested as it only fits a standard square napkin or smaller. This product is also surprisingly expensive compared to the rest of the products we tested, but perhaps worth it. Despite being limited to square napkins, this napkin holder checks all the boxes and looks good doing it.

The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser has a napkin weight to keep the napkins in place.
The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser has a napkin weight to keep the napkins in place.

5

Practical and Easy to Use


Simplehuman Quick Grip


Top Pick Award
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$19.99
at Amazon
See It

Napkin Size: Standard square napkin - 6.5" by 6.5" and smaller | Material: Stainless Steel
despenses napkins with ease
Secures napkins with effective clip
Not very pretty

The Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser is a great option for someone looking for a square napkin dispenser with a clip. This product has an innovative and out of the box design that makes it easier to grab a napkin from any angle but keeps the napkins in place otherwise. This is a great napkin dispenser to place in the center of your kitchen table as it is easy to access from all sides.

Although it is innovative and functional, the Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser does not have a delicate charm or aesthetic prowess. It is not obtrusively unattractive, just not beautiful. It also has more moving parts, increasing the chance of problems. Fortunately, it does come with a five-year warranty. This product does the job well without drawing too much attention to itself.

The Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser has a paper weight to keep the napkins in place.
The Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser has a paper weight to keep the napkins in place.

6

Best Rectangular Napkin Holder


CY Craft Acrylic Guest Towel Holder


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$22.87
(9% off)
at Amazon
See It

Napkin Size: Standard rectangular napkin - 4.5" by 8" | Material: Plastic
Easy to grab a napkin
Napkins stay put in the wind
Only fits one size napkin
No clipping mechanism

The CY craft Acrylic Guest Towel napkin dispenser is great for rectangular napkins. It has a great weight so that it won't get bumped around too easily as people reach for napkins, and it has a unique and modern aesthetic. We were also pleased to see how well it held the napkins in place during our box fan test. The thick plastic walls protected the napkins well. It also has a notch in the front so that grabbing a napkin is quick and convenient.

We found it unfortunate that the CY craft Acrylic Guest Towel napkin dispenser does not have something to keep the napkins in place. Without this function, the napkins might blow away with a strong wind, although the solid plastic walls proved to be effective against our box fan wind generator. However, this is a great product for any indoor setting, such as your kitchen or dining room table, and can be used outside on less windy days.

This napkin dispenser protects the napkins from the wind.
This napkin dispenser protects the napkins from the wind.

7

Simple and Pretty


Artifacts Trading Company Rattan


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$19
List Price
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Napkin Size: Standard square napkin - 6.5" by 6.5" and smaller | Material: Burmese Rattan
Napkins stay put in the wind
Nice to look at
Not easy to grab a napkin
We loved the basket look of the Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon napkin dispenser. It is constructed with a tight and sturdy weave and frames your napkins beautifully. The basket also protected the napkins against the wind from our box fan surprisingly well.

We did notice that the Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon napkin dispenser was not the easiest model to grab a napkin out of. Because this product doesn't have a small cut out on the side from which to grab a napkin, it's a little less convenient to grab a napkin quickly. That being said, it is a beautiful product for square napkins and would be a wonderful and decorative addition to your table.

The Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon napkin dispenser beautifully frames the napkins.
The Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon napkin dispenser beautifully frames the napkins.

8

Homey and Square


Home Acre Designs Modern Farmhouse


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$18
List Price
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Napkin Size: Standard square napkin - 6.5" by 6.5" and smaller | Material: Metal
Napkins stay put in the wind
Looks great in the kitchen
A bit awkward to retrieve a napkin
The Home Acre Designs Modern Farmhouse napkin dispenser is a beautiful square product perfectly fit for a country feel. It has small handles on the sides and homey cursive writing, reminding you to put napkins in its belly. It is charming, and square napkins stay put in breezy conditions. It is made out of tin, which makes it light and easy to clean.

Unfortunately, the Home Acre Designs Modern Farmhouse napkin dispenser does not have a notch in the side to make it easy to grab a napkin. We found this simple feature can make a world of difference in accessibility. All in all, this is a beautiful, simple, and functional napkin dispenser.

The napkin dispenser is light and decorative.
The napkin dispenser is light and decorative.

9

Most Decorative Rectangular Napkin Holder


Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy


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$20
List Price
See It

Napkin Size: Standard rectangular napkin - 4.5" by 8" | Material: Stainless Steel
Simple and convinient napkin access
Elegant
Napkins do not stay put in the wind
If you are looking for a graceful napkin dispenser to accent your dining room table, the Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy is an excellent choice. It has beautiful gold swirls and an easy-grab notch in the front. This product even has tiny little feet to add to its elegance. This product is a handsome choice if you prefer rectangular napkins.

The Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy was the only napkin dispenser we tested that did not hold the napkins in place during our box fan test. When placed next to the fan, the napkins almost instantaneously began lifting out of the towel caddy. This product would be a beautiful addition to your indoor dining set, but we would not recommend taking it outside.

This towel caddy has a beautiful golden design.
This towel caddy has a beautiful golden design.

Why You Should Trust Us



Head tester Liv Mertens recognizes the importance of a napkin holder and our team has a critical eye for decor, and a logical approach to function. When our team sits down to eat, we like to have napkins readily available, and preferably tastefully displayed. Whether we are eating outside, inside, or need a tasteful guest towel holder for the bathroom, our team is looking for something practical and classy. We picked out nine of the top napkin dispensers available to test at our own tables. By handling and testing each of the products with our own hands, we were able to gain invaluable insight to pass on to you.

We tried to uncover the best napkin dispenser in every situation, whether that is a napkin dispenser for your garden, your dining room table, or one you can use for both. Our team has carefully taken each priority into account in order to give you a better picture of the products themselves and what to expect as the consumer. We diligently selected the top eight napkins holders to compare against one another, focusing on function, special features, function, and versatility.

The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser makes it easy to grab a napkin.
The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser makes it easy to grab a napkin.

Analysis and Test Results



Once we had received all nine products, we quickly saw that all of them were made well and did their job in accordance with basic expectations. Deciding which napkin dispensers were the best came down to our testing process. We bought one of every size napkin we could find. This gave us four different napkin sizes to work with. We then employed a box fan to test the products against the wind, because we all remembered picnics and birthday parties that included running after paper napkins.

While some napkin holders require specific dimensions  others work with any size.

Function



We considered how easy it was to grab a napkin and how well it held napkins against our box fan wind machine. For the box fan test, we placed each product full of napkins in front of the wind generator blowing at full force. We were surprised to find that all of the napkin dispensers held their own against the box fan except for the Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy.

The Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy does not protect very well against wind.
The Chez JuJu Gold Towel Caddy does not protect very well against wind.

Testing for ease of use was a little more straightforward. This metric depended on whether it was easy to grab a napkin or not. Some napkin dispensers are easier to use than others. We found that the Simplehuman Quick Grip Napkin Holder is the easiest to grab a napkin from because there is access no matter what side you happen to be facing. The products we found difficult to use are those without any notch in the walls, such as the Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon and the Home Acre Designs Modern Farmhouse napkin dispensers.

We also though it was important to note that when testing the Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispenser we noticed that the decorative scrolls would sometimes accidentally catch the outer napkin. This was easy enough to fix, but a little annoying and affected the function of the product.

While putting napkins in the Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispenser  sometimes the decorative swirls will get in the way.
While putting napkins in the Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispenser, sometimes the decorative swirls will get in the way.

Special Features



When we were considering special features, we were looking for features that make the product easier to use. The most useful feature was the clipping or weight mechanisms found on the OXO Good Grips Neat, the Saratoga Home Farmhouse, and the Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispensers. We found that the clipping mechanisms were a great idea to help keep the napkins in place against the wind or rowdy table guests.

The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser has a wooden paperweight handle to keep napkins in place.
The Saratoga Home Farmhouse napkin dispenser has a wooden paperweight handle to keep napkins in place.
The OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser has a great clipping mechanism.
The OXO Good Grips Neat napkin dispenser has a great clipping mechanism.
The Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser has a weight to keep the napkins in place.
The Simplehuman Quick Grip napkin dispenser has a weight to keep the napkins in place.

We also considered aesthetics in special features. If a napkin dispenser can do its job well and look good doing it, it is all that much more desirable. We thought the prettiest napkin dispensers were the Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood, the Home Basics Scroll Collection, and the Artifacts Trading Company Rattan Luncheon. Each of these products are not only functional but nice to look at as well.

Versatility


To evaluate versatility, we tested each of the products against the four different sized napkins. We found that some napkin dispensers work well with all sizes, while others demand more specific dimensions. Depending on which napkins are available to you, or which you prefer to use, versatility could be a make or break factor. The most versatile products were the ones that sit upright, such as the OXO Good Grips Neat, the Barnyard Designs Rustic Wood, and the Home Basics Scroll Collection napkin dispensers. They were also the only products that fit the larger 8.5" by 8" dining napkins.

The envelope style napkin dispensers were the only products able to hold the big dining napkins.
The envelope style napkin dispensers were the only products able to hold the big dining napkins.
The square napkin dispensers were too small for the biggest napkins.
The square napkin dispensers were too small for the biggest napkins.

Conclusion



We put each of these products through rigorous testing in order to discover the best and the worst of each of these products. Depending on whether you like rectangular napkins or square napkins, you want it to function outside or inside or both, or if you just want something that looks good, any of these products could be what you are looking for. By evaluating each of them, we are happy to be able to give you the information you need to make the right decision.

Liv Mertens