We’re on a mission to make 2021 our best year yet. There’s plenty of research supporting the idea that writing down your to-do lists, goals and schedules can improve your time management and productivity. So this year we’re vowing to keep our planner up to date. Like you, we have absolutely no clue what this new year holds, but we do know we’ll need a planner to keep us in check.
Whether you’re looking to manage your day-to-day or your personal well-being after the mess that was 2020, we’ve rounded up our favorite planners to cater to your goals. Planners aren’t one-size-fits-all, and it’s important to pick one that’s customized to your specific needs. To help you find the right option, we broke them down by the categories below.
Here you’ll find what we’d call a traditional planner, clearly dated with space to record the tasks at hand for that specific time frame. For the ultimate structure, a traditional dated planner should be your go-to.
Adamjk 2021 Unsolicited Advice 52-Week Planner ($25; urbanoutfitters.com)
This planner by artist and author Adam J. Kurtz is one our favorites. Beyond the eye-catching yellow-and-black design, this features month and weekly overviews, and leaves room to reflect on your progress by ranking yourself on a smiley-face scale. It’s a fun way to take charge this year.
Kodexlode 2021 Faux Leather Planner ($16.99; amazon.com)
This classic planner is sure to keep you organized in 2021. We love the sleek faux leather cover (especially the brown shade), gold stamping, monthly tabs and elastic closure that make this option hard to turn down.
Day Designer Wirebound 2021 Planner ($13.99; target.com)
Target has never let us down when it comes to finding a good planner, and we’re loving this one by Day Designer. With a petal pink-hued cover and gold spiral bounding, this planner delivers both monthly and weekly overviews that’ll come in handy this year. It even includes gold stickers, a ruler bookmark and a Four-Step Planning Process to help you set and achieve your goals.
Moleskine Horizontal 12-Month 2021 Weekly Planner ($19.74; amazon.com)
Moleskine products are notorious for being equal parts sleek and functional. That’s why we’d recommend this one, with a traditional calendar grid and weekly view that features the days on the left side and a page for notes on the right.
The Happy Planner 2021 Homebody Seasons Deluxe Classic Dashboard Happy Planner — 12 Months ($32.99; thehappyplanner.com)
This planner is as pretty as it is useful. The Happy Planner calls it the Calm Life Classic because it’s perfect for the homebody who needs to keep up with their tasks. (Sounds like a lot of us while we’re stuck inside more often than not.) It features monthly and weekly calendar pages, dividers and inspirational quotes, among other things that make this a great option to help tackle your to-dos.
Paper Source 12-Month City Windows Custom Planner ($44.95; papersource.com)
Now this is one well-rounded planner. We’re obsessed with the monthly check-in that allows you to jot down special dates, reminders, habits you want to maintain that month and more. The charming city windows cover design is really an added bonus.
BooQool 2021 Weekly and Monthly Planner ($11.49; amazon.com)
This budget-friendly planner has over 8,000 5-star ratings on Amazon. For about $10, you can get yourself an organizer that will give you space to schedule your life and keep track of your tasks.
Rifle Paper Co. 12-Month Pocket Planner ($11.90, originally $14; riflepaperco.com)
Go for a pocket planner like this one if you prefer something small enough to throw in your bag. Available in three colorful covers, each planner is made with lay-flat binding and monthly and weekly views.
Cavallini & Co. 2021 Zodiac Small Planner ($12.71, originally $16.95; papersource.com)
If you’re astrology-obsessed, you definitely need a planner with a zodiac-themed design. The beautiful cover on this one is its biggest selling point, with the inside featuring the monthly and weekly overviews of a traditional planner.
Morgan Harper Nichols Day By Day 2021 Planner ($34; anthropologie.com)
This planner by writer and artist Morgan Harper Nichols will remind you of your inner strength each time you reach for it. Inspired by the triumphs and struggles of people around the globe, this features both monthly and weekly views with space to write down birthdays, anniversaries and goals for the month.
At-a-Glance 2021 Appointment Book ($20.49; target.com)
An appointment book is a tried-and-true way to keep your schedule intact. Spanning 13 months, it breaks down the day in quarter-hourly appointments, giving you space to manage your time realistically.
Undated planners are great because they provide an extra layer of customization that you perhaps didn’t know you craved. Whether you don’t use your planner every day of the year (some of us don’t use a planner on the weekends or summer vacation, for instance) or truthfully just forget to use it sometimes, it’s nice not to be confined to a predated structure.
With the additional flexibility of the right undated planner, you can avoid wasting pages you don’t use and the guilt of skipping a day.
Urban Outfitters Daily Planner Journal ($24; urbanoutfitters.com)
Designed with a beautiful cover and sturdy material, this undated planner is great for someone who may not need to use one every day. It features sections to block out your schedule, write daily objectives, plan your to-do list and more. There’s no weekly or monthly view, so it really helps you focus on the day at hand.
Minted Things to Do…Next Year Planner (starting at $26; minted.com)
2020 canceled a lot of our plans, but maybe we can make them happen this year? Either way, we think this would be a cute undated planner to keep you organized. All Minted personalized notebooks are customizable as a weekly or monthly planner with a paper pocket for things like receipts, stickers and pages for notes, all in one handy little book. Better yet, a portion of proceeds from this planner, designed by Yours Madly, go to World Central Kitchen, an organization that provides food to people in need and supports restaurants in local communities.
Kate Spade New York Weekly List Pad ($16.95; amazon.com)
This planner by Kate Spade keeps it simple. It’s undated and features no prompts, so you’re free to jot down whatever makes sense for you each weekday and the weekend. It’s also pretty small, so it won’t take up too much room on your new work-from-home desk.
Urban Outfitters Weekly Planner Journal ($17; urbanoutfitters.com)
If you’re looking for a weekly desk planner, we recommend this one from Urban Outfitters. Reviewers love that it stands up and has plenty of room to record daily tasks. Let’s talk about how cute the gingham and strawberry design offerings are too?
Dean Daily Fill-In Planner ($18; anthropologie.com)
We’re loving the simplicity of this daily planner, available in two neon shades. It provides two full pages for each day, with one side for notes and another side for your priorities, plus space to write who you need to contact that day. It even includes a section called “Tomorrow” where you can jot down reminders for what to expect the next day.
Ban.do Cool Cat To-Do Planner ($22.95; bando.com)
Ban.do always delivers with the fun and quirky stationery. Reviewers love how the days in this planner are sectioned off, with space for your meals, schedule or shopping lists, and that the pages are perforated to easily take them with you — for quick supermarket trips or wherever you need to go.
Minted Sweet Frame Planner (starting at $26; minted.com)
We love the personalization of this planner at Minted by Emily Betts. Place your favorite image of your loved ones on the cover, then choose if you’d prefer a weekly or monthly planner. Available in six colors, this option is undated so you can start using it whenever works for you.
Constellations Weekly Planner Notepad ($19; urbanoutfitters.com)
This is another great weekly planner, and it’s available in either a sky or constellation design. We’d use this to write down important events, create a weekly to-do list and take quick notes or doodles during our next Zoom call.
We can all likely agree that 2020 was a year we’d rather not revisit. If you’re looking to put yourself first in 2021, a wellness planner may be helpful. We’re talking planners that help ensure you’re eating right, maintaining a healthy mental state and finding the good in each day — all while keeping up with your daily schedule.
The Lamare One Day at a Time: Daily Planner ($35.95; etsy.com)
The goal of this planner is to help you feel motivated and commit to practicing self-care, and we’re sold. One of the most aesthetically pleasing planners we’ve seen, this one gives space each day to write your top three priorities, craft a to-do list and practice acts of self-care and gratitude. There are also dedicated pages for you to reflect on your week and the month ahead. Take note, though: It covers a six-month time span, so it might be worth grabbing two.
Rifle Paper Co. Weekly Meal Planner ($15; riflepaperco.com)
If you’re looking to eat differently in the new year, a meal planner can be a valuable accessory to help you reach your goals. This weekly meal planner, available in three pretty floral designs, has dedicated spaces for scheduling your meals as well as making shopping lists.
The Productivity Planner ($26; urbanoutfitters.com)
Putting yourself first can mean ensuring you prioritize everything that’s on your plate to avoid burnout or simply forgetting a task. This is where The Productivity Planner comes in. It uses a Pomodoro-style work system to rank tasks for the week and day by importance, with space to give yourself a productivity score and take notes.
Enlightenment Planner Undated 12-Month ($24; amazon.com)
The Enlightenment Planner is sure to help you tackle 2021. This particular undated 12-month planner is key to organizing your reflections and staying true to your goals. From daily meditation to sustainability goals, it puts wellness first.
Ban.do Wellness Planner Issue 2 ($29.95; bando.com)
How are we feeling? Thanks for asking, Ban.do. Right now we’re feeling excited about this wellness planner. This is the second issue of its Wellness Planner that allows you to jot down not only your to-do list but also your intentions, affirmations and even what tasks can wait till tomorrow. (Issue 1 is pretty cool too.)
We’re classifying specialty planners as a sort of catchall bucket for planners that have a seriously unique spin on the traditional ones we might grab from the store. We’re talking digital, customizable or topic-specific options that will cater to your 2021 needs.
Amethyst Garnet GoodNotes Digital 2021 Planner ($13.51; etsy.com)
We had a major eureka moment when we realized that a digital planner might be the way to go in 2021. Formatted for any PDF annotation software but recommended for an iPad, this planner goes where you go to help you stay on top of your schedule as well as track your nutrition and even your finances.
The Happy Planner 12 Months Undated Classic Budget Planner ($27.99; thehappyplanner.com)
The Happy Planner is right: Girls really do just want to have funds. Budgeting and financial planning can be the most stressful task to manage year after year. If you’re looking for a fun planner to keep your finances in order, this is your best bet. Undated, it features a monthly overview and a weekly view with five different budgeting areas from bill organization to accounts and debts. One reviewer says they couldn’t budget without it.
Rocketbook Panda Planner ($37; amazon.com)
If you’re a fan of the Rocketbook notebook, you should definitely try the brand’s partnership with Panda Planner. Like the notebooks, this planner is erasable and reusable, so you’ll basically never need to buy a new one again. You can also save your entries to the cloud to access your pages anywhere, using apps like Google Drive and Dropbox.