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15 Dorm Room Essentials That They Missed On The ‘Move In List’

HANNAH LAVINE

Deluxe Pop Open Hamper

It was almost two years ago when I arrived to my freshman dorm only to be horrified by how old it was (60s people, it hadn’t been renovated since the 60s.) I soon found out there was no air conditioning, same sex halls and how small the rooms were. Not to mention I did random roommate, and once I got to our room I was only given about 1/3 of the already tiny space for my belongings: I knew I had a problem.

I, like other girls, hoped my room would be big, to become besties with my roomies and live in a mixed hall next door to my future boyfriend. But man, was I wrong.

One thing I did learn was how much you’re not told about your dorm rooms, and the key to the game is making as much space as possible out of what little you have. I was not a library person freshman year, so I slept and studied in my room, and I needed space to get up and walk around a bit to clear my head. So I’ve compiled a list of 15 things freshman need in their room to survive their first year living in a dorm.

7 Inch Power Bed Riser

7 Inch Power Bed Riser

Bed risers What’s the name of the game? Have as much space as possible! Don’t freak out if you get to your dorm and see how low the beds are. The best purchase you can make is bed risers, that way you’ll have space for under the bed storage. Oh, these bed risers have outlets which you will definitely need in your room. Can’t get enough of those power outlets for all of your electronics! 7-Inch Power Bed Riser

My Little Steamer Go Mini Hand Steamer

My Little Steamer Go Mini Hand Steamer

Steamer You have no idea how wrinkly your clothes get in college. I mean, it’s not like those washers and dryers are state-of-the-art, know what I’m saying? Also, people get very lazy in college and don’t feel the need to fold their clothes, which usually end up in the back of a drawer wrinkled to the max. A steamer is a fantastic tool to have, but a portable steamer will change your life. (Mine has made it to and from multiple sorority formals!) You won’t look like a bum when hitting the bars/frats, like most girls will. My Little Steamer Go Mini Hand Steamer($19.99)

Mesh Clip On Shelf

Mesh Clip On Shelf

Clip-on shelf You may be on a top bunk, your bed might not even be near a table, but you do need something to put your phone/water/chapstick on when you sleep. Trust me when I say you don’t want to sleep with your phone on that tiny bed, it does fall off and your iPhone screen will break (true story.) Purchase one of these and your life will be complete, and your iPhone will be safe. Mesh Clip-On Shelf ($12.99)

Red Cup String Lights

Red Cup String Lights

String lights If you want an awesome room, you need to decorate it. I swear my room looked like a jail cell when I first got there, but I made a point to deck my room out with pictures and decorations. One thing girls love to do is hang lights around their rooms, so why not one up them with something so college-y like red Solo cups? You’re bound to get a ton of compliments on them. Red Cup String Lights ($20)

Double Hang Commercial Grade Closet Rod

Double Hang Commercial Grade Closet Rod

Extra closet rod I’m telling you right now: your closet will not have enough space in it. And like I said before, everything gets wrinkled so you might as well hang up what you can. Getting this extra bar space for your closet will not only give you more room for your clothes, but organize them by tops/dresses on the top and skirts/shorts on the bottom. You can even hang your heels over them. Double Hang Commercial Grade Closet Rod ($14.99)

Compact Clothes Drying Rack

Compact Clothes Drying Rack

Drying rack After using the dryers once, you’ll realize you won’t want to use them again, especially with your delicates and undies. A drying rack will be your best friend, plus this one folds up and can be put away under your bed or in your closet. Drying Rack ($19.99)

Brita Water Filtration Pitcher

Brita Water Filtration Pitcher

Brita pitcher Drink your water now, because once you get to college it’s all water fountains, tap water or expensive water bottles you need to buy every day. That’s why you’ll definitely want a Brita water filtration pitcher in your mini fridge. Fresh water for days! Brita Water Filtration Pitcher ($24.99)

Illuminated LED Mirror

Illuminated LED Mirror

Mirror When I got to my dorm room, there were no mirrors. None. I had completely forgotten how important mirrors are/why didn’t they tell us we needed one on the move-in guide? Thank you, Bed, Bath & Beyond for saving the day. I suggest getting two mirrors: one long one so you can look at your entire outfit, and then a small one just for make up. Oh, and for the small one definitely get one that has lighting around it. Dorm rooms are not the brightest.Illuminated LED Mirror ($19.99)

Skinny Can Waste Basket

Skinny Can Waste Basket

Plastic trash can Thank my mom for this one: do NOT get a wire trash can. Just think of those nights when you’ve taking one too many shots with that cute frat guy and you come home and puke in your garbage can. A plastic waste basket is easy to clean, a wire one not so much.Skinny Can Waste Basket ($6.99)

Easy Fold Step Stool

Easy Fold Step Stool

Step stool If you’re short like me, this step stool will do you wonders. It’s easy to use when you need to reach for high up items in your closet or shelves, and if your bed is tall it can be used to get in and out of it. This step stool folds up so you can put it away when you don’t need it. Yay, everyone wins! Easy Fold Step Stool($12.99)

Under The Bed Shoe Organizer

Under The Bed Shoe Organizer

Shoe organizer The last thing on your mind when moving into a dorm will be your shoes, but I promise they will be your biggest problem. If you don’t have a way to keep your shoes in order you’ll probably have a treasure hunt around your room to find one shoe. This organizer will save your life and won’t take up any room since it’ll be under your bed. Under the Bed Shoe Organizer ($16.99)

Vornado Air Circulator

Vornado Air Circulator

Fan If you’re going to a college where you have seasons, I guarantee some of the dorms won’t have air conditioning. Mine, unfortunately, didn’t. And during the hot Indiana summer I survived off of the two fans that I bought. I would definitely find out if you have air conditioning ASAP because if not, you’ll want fans. Vornado Tower Air Circulator ($79.99)

Jessica Simpson Shower Wrap

Jessica Simpson Shower Wrap

Robe Chances are your bathroom won’t be in your room, which means you’ll have to walk down the hall to shower. At first I thought a robe was a silly idea, but I soon regretted not getting one once I had to start walking up and down the hall in a towel. You’ll want a robe.Shower Wrap ($12.99)

Keurig

Keurig

Keurig Okay I know Keurigs are usually banned from dorms, but honestly when do the RAs come searching for a coffee machine that practically saves your life? If you’re a coffee person, you know how expensive it can get if you keep buying Skinny Vanilla Lattes from Starbucks every morning (guilty.) For you non-coffee lovers, you will come to love the power of caffeine (guilty as well.) Buying a Keurig will save you money and keep you caffeinated during those long hours of studying. Plus, they come in cute colors that will match with your room color scheme! Mini Keurig Plus Brewing System ($99.99)

Deluxe Pop Open Hamper

Deluxe Pop Open Hamper

Hamper If you’re lucky, your laundry room will be down the hall from you. But that’s very rare, so be prepared to carry (more like drag) your laundry down the stairs to the basement where it will be. I first tried using the backpack laundry bag…turns out it can’t handle a lot of laundry because it broke easily. I suggest getting a pop-up bag: durable and easy to drag.Deluxe Pop Open Hamper ($14.99)

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