Shopping for college dorm room supplies is exciting, yet very overwhelming. As you know, space in a dorm room is extremely limited! You’ll want to make sure you have purchased all of the necessary items to make the best of your small living space. With these dorm room essentials, you’ll be able to have a very functional and organized dorm room! You’ll likely get a supply list from your school with the basic items you will need for college. Whether you’re a freshman preparing to decorate and organize your first dorm room, just looking to re-do your dorm room, or if you are sending your child off to college you’ll want to check out these ideas!
If you’re reading this, you are probably searching the internet trying to make sure you don’t forget anything. Check out the list at the bottom of the post. These items were highly suggested for you from other college students, they said, “they could not live without these specific items”.
You can do almost all of your college dorm room shopping online. This will make comparing items and checking reviews so much easier. No matter what, shopping for college is also very stressful.
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Dorm Room Bedding
The best way to start any dorm room decorating project is to select a quality comforter that not only reflects your personal style but can be used as the color or pattern foundation for your dorm room. Check with the dormitory to see what size bedding you will need. A lot of dorms have “Twin XL” mattresses and you will have to find special dorm room sheets.
These are the best dorm sheets and they are deep enough to fit over a mattress topper!
Speaking of mattress topper… definitely a must have – dorm room beds are far from comfortable! You will spend more time in your bed than you think (probably more time studying than sleeping) but either way, you will want to be comfy and feel more like you are at home!
There are many different types of mattress toppers and most are on sale right now – like this Cooling Gel Memory Foam Topper!
When you are picking out your comforters, blankets, and pillows, make sure that you purchase fabrics that are easy to clean. You may want to buy some additional pillows or cushions for your bed. These can double as extra seating when you have friends over to watch the game or have a pizza.
Dorm Room Furniture
Don’t forget, Empire Chairs can be stored away when not in use!
Futons are also a good buy for dorms as they double as beds when you have overnight guests., but most don’t have enough space.
Most dorms provide closet space and drawers for your things, but you will need to remember the little things like hangers, lamps and cooking supplies which are listed below.
If you know who your roommate is going to be, you can get together and figure out what items you can share and which ones you will need to purchase.
Most dorm rooms have built-in desks and chairs but if you’re not sure, you should contact your dormitory and ask. If the chair is provided, If you have a comfortable computer chair, you may want to bring it because you will likely be spending a lot of time in it. Studying is a lot easier if you have an organized work-space designed to meet the unique needs of the college student.
A wall decal set that is easy to apply and remove that includes a dry erase board, cork board, and monthly and weekly calendars make it easy to keep yourself informed of upcoming tests, parties, and study dates.
Getting a charging station for all of your electronics is also a good idea. This keeps things like your laptop, cell phone, and iPad all together and charging so that they are ready to go when you are. Keep in mind you may need a printer, depending on your classes.
A lap desk like this one is important as well, it will hold your phone, tablet/keyboard or a laptop!
Supplies You DON’T Want To Forget
College students from all over have recommended the below items as “must-haves” for your dorm room. Of course, all of these will not apply to everyone. Be sure to check with your school to find out what items are allowed and needed.
Shower Caddy – A top must-have is some kind of basket for all your shower essentials. Most dorms have large communal bathrooms and so you’ll need a way to transport your shampoo, conditioner, razor, body wash, etc. from your dorm room to the bathroom.
Antimicrobial Shower Flip Flops – You WILL want a pair of these if you are using a public shower, they will protect your feet from mold, fungus, and bacteria. YUCK! A cheap pair of flip flops from Old Navy or Wal-Mart will also do the trick!
Towel Wrap – Again, if using a public shower, some of the bathrooms don’t have anywhere clean and/or dry to put your clothes while you shower. A towel wrap will be a life saver!
Sound Machine – Drown out all of those obnoxious noises that you will hear in your room. Doors slamming, people walking down the hall, etc. If you want to get decent sleep (which you will need) you should look into this.
Noise Cancelling Headphones – When you are trying to study for exams and everything around you is loud – you’ll wish you got headphones or earplugs.
Tower Fan – You won’t have personal AC in your dorm…
Mattress Protector – Dorm mattresses are used over and over… and over again. It’s essential to have a mattress topper to protect you from bacteria, dust mites, and allergens.
Bed Risers – Use a set of bed risers to create extra space for storing luggage, excess clothes, books etc.
Bedside Storage Caddy – Anything that can save space and serve as awesome and convenient storage will make life easier!
Lounge Pillow – You will be doing a lot of studying and reading in your bed, these pillows will save you! Plus, they also double as extra seating.
Laundry Backpack – Dual purpose; hang it up to use as a hamper and carry it to do your laundry. Don’t try to bring big plastic laundry baskets, they are awkward, heavy to carry, and take up too much space.
Command Hooks – Total life saver. You can get them in a variety of sizes and make storage and organization so simple!
Surge Protector + USB – You will likely have outlets in very inconvenient places and there will never be enough of them.
Mini Fridge – This is a MUST! If your dorm doesn’t supply a mini fridge, you will need one!
Mini Microwave – Did someone mention cafeteria food? Yikes! That’s as good a reason as any to invest in a mini microwave. Whether it’s nuking a frozen dinner or popping some popcorn (to eat while you’re watching episodes of Family Guy on Hulu…), a microwave can be a true lifesaver when it comes to dorm life.
Fridge Caddy – Great space-saving storage for plastic utensils and paper plates.
Coffee Maker – More than likely, you won’t have time to run by the cafeteria or to the local Starbucks, if you need coffee or tea – get a coffee maker for your dorm room!
Lock Box – Having somewhere safe to lock up your valuables, cash/cards, jewelry, etc is very important! Be sure to purchase a safe that will connect to your bed or another sturdy surface.
Mini Tool Kit – Let’s face it, you’ll be the cool kid on the block if you have a tool kit… and I promise you will use it!
Portable Charger – Don’t think twice… you need this.
LONG Ethernet Cable – Most likely the WiFi will not be very good in your dorm room and your Ethernet outlet will be on the opposite side of the room.
First Aid Kit – or purchase a small plastic container and DIY your own personal first aid kit
Air Purifier – You typically don’t have much control of the air in your dorm. An air purifier will effectively clean the air around you a help to prevent allergies and sinus issues.
Disinfecting Wipes – I mean… you aren’t going to clean THAT much, but this will probably cover most of your cleaning needs.
Slim Hangers – You need all the closet space you can get! Using slim hangers can increase your closet space up to 50 percent.
Closet Organizers – Consider closet organizers and inexpensive plastic hooks for additional clothing and accessory storage.
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Finally, a room that you can decorate however you want! Posters, dorm bedding, and signage are an important part of making your dorm room your own. You can do almost all of your college dorm room shopping online. This can help you to avoid having to ask your parents for questionable items, like a dart board, shot glasses and, of course, the coveted inflatable beer pong table. When your dorm room is stocked with party essentials, a workable study space and lots of seating for friends, you will be ready to make your dorm room your home.