Shelf liners are rolls or pieces of contact paper that are placed on shelves or in drawers for an aesthetic or functional purpose. They can be a part of room makeover and can be a way to incorporate a design all throughout a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom or anywhere you have shelves and drawers. They can also help older cabinets or drawers look like new without the cost of replacing them.
Aesthetic shelf liners come in any design imaginable or in a transparent look, and are usually just flat pieces of glossy, durable paper with a peel-off, sticky backing. They might also be made of plastic, and might come in sheets or on a roll. You can cut them to the size you need, peel off the back, and stick them to the shelves. It is a good idea to thoroughly clean the shelves beforehand, removing any dirt or crumbs that could show up under the paper and ensuring that the paper will adhere well. Once the paper is placed on the shelf, you can smooth out any bubbles with a soft cloth or brush.
Shelf liners that serve a functional purpose might also be made of plastic or soft foam. For wire shelves, you might choose to place a sheet of heavier-duty plastic liner over the wire to prevent smaller items from falling through. These are referred to as wire shelf liners. Soft foam, waffle-type liners are also used for their non-slip properties. These might be used to protect fragile glass items or collectibles from slipping out of the cabinet, and can also help keep fragile items in one place to prevent them from bumping into each other.
Shelf liners are convenient because they can be cut and customized to fit your exact cabinet space. If you are renting somewhere, you can purchase shelf liners in non-adhesive forms. These are easier to clean because they can be pulled out of the cabinets and washed. Keep in mind that adhesive liners can be difficult to remove, and should probably not be placed in cabinets you do not own.
Shelf liners have other uses as well. You might use them in pet kennels used to bring your animals back and forth to the vet or groomer, to prevent them from slipping. Non-adhesive foam liners might also be placed under rugs on the floor to keep them in one place and to prevent slips and falls.