Happy college shopping! I know so many of you are asking for college dorm/essential tips & are getting prepped to probably go to college yourself. If you are wanting more details & to see more into my college & sorority prep videos be sure to check out my YouTube! I will be making a video all about what I packed, dorm must haves, what you shouldn't bring and more. We just hit over 15k subscribers & I would love to have you join the family!
Keep in mind I am a very ~extra~ human being so if there are things on this list you don't think you'd ever need just understand I am a very high maintenance gal & thrived from this list I'm sharing. Now let's get you prepped for your freshman year!
B E D D I N G
I think if you're going to splurge on anything going college dorm shopping, splurge on things for your bed!
Mattress Pad (this is the one I used my freshman year & will be using again this upcoming fall in my sorority house. 10/10 would recommend, all of my friends who would get in my bed said it was the comfiest bed!)
Sheets (I highly recommend these microfiber sheets. I still have my set from last year & just bought another pair to have as a backup for this fall. Don't worry about buying the cotton ones, these are soft, affordable, & long lasting.)
Throw Pillows (I loved having these not only because were they cute on my bed, but also nice when I had friends over)
I also encourage you to plan out your dorm bedding/layout on a Pinterest board! This helped me TREMENDOUSLY. It helped with stress on move in day because I already knew in my head what I wanted where & how I wanted it to turn out.
B A T H
This one can get tricky, I personally stayed in a suite style dorm so I had my own bathroom I shared with one other person. I don't really know everything you need for a "traditional style" bathroom, but my friends helped me formulate what they used in theirs.
Towels (body, face, hand) Tip: get ones from TJMaxx/HomeGoods. Best prices for the best quality.
Shampoo, Conditioner, Body Wash, etc.
Toothbrush Holder (or something to keep it safe & clean in a drawer)
If living in traditional style you might also want to add:
Shower shoes (flip flops, slide ons)
O R G A N I Z A T I O N
I loved having extra storage in my dorm room. I lofted my bed where I could use underneath for storage (everyone made fun of me for my high bed but IT WORKED!)
Ottoman (if your room has extra space). I loved mine I bought for my room, not only did I use it for storage but it also helped me get up on my lofted bed easier as well.
D E S K
So, I'm not going to lie. I used my desk more as a vanity rather than a "studying space". I normally went to my sorority house or my favorite library on campus, but I made sure I had my desk prepped for when I had those late night study sessions in my dorm.
Bulletin/Dry Erase Board
Planner (I am in LOVE with mine)
Desk Hutch. I had my brother make me some with plywood I bought from home depot. You can find them all online but if you are wanting a cheap option look up tutorials & get it done that way.
C L E A N I N G
I know you're probably thinking that you won't have to clean but you will. Especially right now also it is so important to keep everything sanitized & fresh.
Air Freshener (I shared on my Instagram story *now under the life hack highlight* a great at home air freshener to make your room smell AH-MAZING)
Trash Can & Bags
Dish Soap & Sponge
Vacuum Cleaner (don't get a fancy one, but you will thank me if you buy one)
Toilet Brush (If you have your own bathroom)
I also bought a mop just because we did have harder floors in our kitchen area & the bathroom that I could mop.
M I S C E L L A N E O U S
Here is everything I just couldn't think of a category for, but still very important.
Rolling Laundry Cart. Trust me on this one though. I came to college with this & once everyone saw how easy it was to transport my laundry everyone went to buy one.
6 Foot Phone Charger (buy a pack of them)
Fan (you won't be able to control the temperature more than likely & if you are it probably won't work that well)
Laundry Detergent/Dryer Sheets
Slippers (people also made fun of me for this, until they got their own pair. I loved wearing mine around my dorm & to do my laundry)
First Aid/Medicine Kit. I put one together myself before moving into college. I basically took a small plastic bin & filled it with bandaids, cold medicine, cough drops, allergy medicine, gauze, etc. Basically everything I could think of that I might need while I was there.
T I P S:
To pack your clothing, keep them on the hanger & put a garbage bag around the clothes and tie the string around the top of the hanger.
To save space, pack stuff in your book bag, laundry hamper, trashcans etc.
Don't go grocery shopping until you get there. You're going to want to keep snacks in your dorm, but wait until you move fully in to get those things.
DO NOT wait until you get there for decorative items/big items. Unless you already pre-bought & are picking it up in store, chances are they're already sold out of what you're looking for.
If you can, ship some boxes to your university. I know Alabama let us do that & it can save on some space in your car if you're traveling.
I HIGHLY recommend you get a head start at buying this stuff if you haven't already. Things are going to start getting sold out & shipping times are already longer than before. If you can go out safely & shop around (with your mask on!) go out one day with your list & buy what you can. Anything you couldn't find could be found online most likely. I normally make multiple trips to the store around this time (ESPECIALLY TJMaxx) to see new stock.
Well that is it! Of course there will be things here & there you will think about that you want to bring. To me, this is a "must haves" list for your first year. Be sure to check my YouTube channel later this month to see me shopping for my sorority room, dorm must haves, & a back to school giveaway! You guys are gonna rock your freshman year. xoxo, Lauren