Is A Handleless Kitchen Right For You?

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Over the past ten years or so, handleless kitchens have really grown in popularity. Combining impressive design innovation and sleek, elegant looks, it’s no wonder they’re the kitchen of choice for many. If you’re considering updating your interior, you might be wondering if you should join the rising number of handleless kitchen lovers. We’ve put together this insight into handleless kitchens, their benefits and things to consider, to help you decide whether a handleless kitchen is right for you.


What are handleless kitchens?

As the name suggests, handleless kitchens do not have visible handles like most kitchens. Instead, they operate using either a clever rail system, a curved edge pull, or a push-to-open mechanism. Most handleless kitchens feature a flat slab door, which adds to their clean, minimal finish. However, as they’ve become more popular, some manufacturers have created handleless shaker-style doors to suit those looking for something more characterful.


How do handleless kitchens work?

There are three types of handleless kitchens, and they all work slightly differently.

True handleless- A slim rail attached to the carcass sits behind the door or drawer. It creates a gap that allows you to fit your hand behind the door to pull it open. True handleless kitchens are very durable and beautifully streamlined.

J-pull- In terms of function, J-pull kitchens aren’t so different from standard handled designs. A ‘J-shaped’ profile cut into the edge of the door creates a handle-like groove, allowing you to pull the door open.

Push-to-open- Push-to-open doors feature a clever mechanism that allows you to push lightly on the door to open it and then click it closed. They look fantastic and are very useful when you’ve got your hands full!

Callerton Handleless Kitchen


What kind of look are you after?

A key factor to consider when choosing any kitchen style is its look. Modern kitchens are often so much more than just a place to cook. They provide a backdrop to many family interactions and social events. Thus, choosing a kitchen that reflects your individual style and complements the rest of your home is a must.

Handleless kitchens are popular with those planning to achieve a sleek and minimal contemporary look. Whether you choose a dramatic textured finish or a neutral matt surface, a flat handleless design will bring a streamlined and sophisticated tone to your interior. While their uncluttered aesthetic differentiates them from other styles, handleless kitchens can be very versatile. Decorative splashbacks, wood accents and open shelving can introduce a wonderful touch of character. Alternatively, a handleless shaker makes a charming yet pared-back choice.

Milano Kitchen Dark Blue


Are handleless kitchens easy to use?

Handleless kitchens can be a joy to use. Doing away with protruding handles can help streamline your workflow and make your kitchen feel more spacious. Many handleless ranges also include fantastic features such as storage towers, corner solutions and drawer organisers that make using your kitchen easier. A continuous run of drawers looks stunning in any of the handleless ranges. As we mentioned, push-to-open designs are perfect when you’ve got messy fingers or a lot in your hands. And, for most, J-pull and true handleless kitchens are just as easy to operate as traditional, handled designs.

However, the slim recesses on some handleless kitchens make them difficult for people with limited dexterity to open. If you have arthritis in your hands or even if you have long nails, you may find handleless kitchens hard to use. The best way to understand how easy a handleless kitchen is to use is to try one out for yourself. We have several stunning handleless kitchens on display at our Barrow-in-Furness showroom. Please click here for more information.

Modern white handlesless kitchen


Are they easy to clean and maintain?

Handleless kitchens are easy to clean as they don’t have handles getting in the way. However, fingerprints can accumulate around the edges, with dark or gloss finish kitchens showing marks the most. While push-to-open and true handleless kitchens are relatively easy to wipe clean front and back, you’ll need to dedicate additional attention to the recess on a J-pull kitchen to prevent crumbs from building up.

Milano Handleless Kitchen

Handleless kitchens are unlikely to date.

Another fantastic benefit of handleless kitchens is their timeless looks. Without handles to age the design, handleless kitchens should retain their stylish aesthetic for many years to come.

Grey modern kitchen


They can also be safer.

While many of our clients love the detail handles can add to a kitchen, catching your clothes or knocking your hip on protruding handles can be annoying. Opting for a handleless design is a sure-fire way to prevent this from happening.

Handleless kitchens also make a safer option for families with young children. Handles are often, unfortunately, right at head bumping height. They can also prove rather tempting to curious little hands. While you should always store detergents and potentially dangerous items out of reach, a handleless design offers extra precaution.

Are handleless kitchens expensive?

You might assume a lack of handles would make handleless kitchens less expensive. However, the innovative technology behind push-to-open and true handleless kitchens put them in a similar price bracket to their handled counterparts. As with any kitchen style, you get what you pay for. A beautiful, high-quality handleless kitchen may be more expensive than a basic flat-panel design. Your local independent kitchen specialists should be able to advise on the best options to suit your budget.


After over 35 years of designing and installing beautiful bespoke kitchens, we’ve seen many trends come and go. However, with their elegant looks and impressive practical capabilities, we think handleless kitchens offer great potential, now and long into the future. We hope our article has given you some things to think about when choosing a handleless kitchen. If you would like to know more, please don’t hesitate to contact our expert team. You can do so by calling 01229 871122 or emailing [email protected].

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