Trash cans have always been a challenge in my household. Let me explain. My dog Ruby is a notorious trickster who can climb any counter and knock down any container if there's food to be had. For years, I had no trash can, piled my recycling high above her reach on top of the fridge, then weighted down my previous cylindrical floor can with heavy metal chains so she couldn't knock it down.
Those days are over, thanks to simplehuman's steel bar rectangular step can, new this month with two compartments for separating garbage. Unlike most larger trash receptacles for the house, this one is wider than it is tall, which makes it really hard for a little nine-pound dog to knock down. Also, since it holds both the recycling and the regular trash, there are no more paper bags full of empty yogurt cups and milk cartons for Ruby to go to town on.
My favorite things about this trash can, though, are the little details that make throwing away garbage feel kinda classy. For example, it has a lid that doesn't slam and a hook you can engage so that you can keep it open while you change trash bags without stepping on the pedal. And to minimize stench while keeping it open, it has a little nook on the lid for a carbon filter — it doesn't eliminate the smell of dog poop completely, but it definitely seems to help. Speaking of the pedal, it's really nice and wide and sturdy so you don't have to search for it at all with your foot — and fingerprint-proof stainless steel means smudges rarely show up on its surface. The bins also have holes on the sides that you can tuck excess plastic from the bags into, so little dogs can't tug at its ends. (simplehuman cans have had this for years, but it's still worth noting.)
At $225 for the 38L and $250 for the 55L, this is not a cheap trash can, at all — but if you think of it as an investment into the overall cleanliness of your cooking space, I think it's totally worth it.