Categories: College Life

20 Products To Start Next Semester Off On The Right Foot

You’ll find tons of lists out there about what you should pack for college. These lists include things like bedding and towels. Lists like these are great for necessities, but there are some other items that can make your college experience better, even if they aren’t necessities. 

Here are 20 products you should consider buying before you go back to school for next semester. 

1. Bedside Caddy

Bedside tables are an item that you don’t fully appreciate until you get to college and find you don’t have one near your bed in your dorm room. If you’re the kind of person who charges their phone over night and relies on your phone for your morning alarm, a bedside caddy might be a valuable purchase.

A bedside caddy is a pouch that hangs on your headboard and instantly gives you easy access to things like your phone from your bed. 

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2. Pop Up Hamper

A pop up hamper is great thing to have in your dorm room. It takes up less space than a regular hamper and are also easy to bring down to the laundry room when it’s time to wash your clothes. 

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3. Shelf Bins

Dorm rooms aren’t exactly known for their abundance of storage space, so something like shelf bins can come in handy to help you maximize your storage space. These bins can be great for storing things like school supplies on your desk or things like cleaning supplies under your bed. 

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4. Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Any hang out with friends can be improved with some music, and in some cases your phone speaker just isn’t going to cut it. While it’s definitely not a necessity, a portable Bluetooth speaker might be a good purchase. 

A small Bluetooth speaker can easily fit into your backpack and connect to your phone wirelessly so you can play music without having to sacrifice using your phone. 

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5. Desk Organizer Set

A desk organizer can help you make the most of your limited desk top space in your dorm room. Some metals trays can be a great way to store things like notebooks, folders, and textbooks when you’re not using them. A few cups can be used to store writing utensils like pens and highlighters. 

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6. Planner

While it may not seem like a necessity, a planner can make a world of difference when it comes to keeping yourself organized in college. Some people pride themselves on being able to remember all of their homework and obligations without writing them down, but that’s a lot harder to do when you have four or five classes with their own assignments and due dates and other extracurricular obligations. 

Writing things down in a planner can allow you to get a better sense of what your week looks like, which can be really helpful in terms of keeping your stress levels down, especially during midterm and finals seasons. 

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7. Mini Backpack

While your large backpack may be great for going to class, a small backpack might come in handy for when you go to hang out with friends or when you’re doing a study session where you don’t need all of your books. A mini backpack can give you the convenience of having a backpack without the hassle of having to carry around your regular backpack. 

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8. Dry Erase Board

In addition to making great decor pieces, a mini dry erase board can be a great and practical addition to your dorm room. Use it to write reminders for upcoming assignments or for weekly meetings or commitments. 

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9. Wireless Earbuds

If you live on a campus where you’ll be doing a lot of walking to get where you need to go, wireless earbuds are a must. Your walk to class is way more enjoyable when you’re listening to music on the way. Plus, wireless earbuds are way less of a hassle than wired earbuds because there’s no chance of them getting tangled while they’re in your backpack. 

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10. Mini Fan

Dorm rooms can get hot, especially at the beginning of the fall semester if you live in a dorm room that doesn’t have air conditioning. Having a fan in these cases can make a world of difference in terms of your comfort. There are some models you can get for under $20, which is more than worth it when it comes to making those hot days a little more bearable. 

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11. Electric Kettle

Everyone knows prepackaged ramen noodles is a broke college student diet staple. I’ve found that an electric kettle is a useful tool to make the process of cooking ramen in your dorm room even easier. It’s also super useful if you’re someone who loves a good cup of tea in the morning. 

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12. Reusable Water Bottle

Reusable water bottles can really come in handy in college. It’s better for the environment than using disposable plastic bottles and, let’s be real, no one wants to carry an entire case of plastic water bottles back to their dorm from the grocery store. Some college campuses will even have bottle fillers in class buildings, making it easy to fill up your water bottle on the go. 

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13. Shower Tote

Unless you’re in the lucky few who can snag a suite or on-campus apartment with a private bathroom, you’ll probably have to share a communal bathroom with an entire floor of people. This means you use the luxury of leaving your shampoo, soap, and other shower items in the shower like you would at home. 

A shower tote is a great way to solve this problem. It puts all of your shower supplies in one place and makes them easy to carry to the bathroom when it’s time to take a shower. Most shower totes are made of a plastic material, making them water-safe enough to take into the shower with you. And some models feature a waterproof phone pocket. 

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14. Shower Shoes

Communal bathrooms can get pretty gross. Think about it: you’re sharing a bathroom with an entire floor full of people. If you’re in a dorm with a communal bathroom, shower shoes are a must have. They’ll keep your feet protected when you shower. 

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15. Bathrobe

If you live in a place where you have to use a communal shower, it’s not realistic to get dressed and undressed in the bathroom. A bath room can help you stay covered as you make your way to and from the bathroom before and after your shower.

I recommend looking for one with a pocket on the outside for keeping things like your keys. Nothing is less fun than coming back from your shower to find that your roommate has accidentally locked you out of your dorm. 

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16. Makeup Storage

Having easy access makeup storage can make your life a little bit easier. It’s okay if not all of your makeup is on your desk top, but it helps if some of the products you use on a day to day basis, like foundation or mascara, are easily accessible.

It really helps when you’re just looking to throw on a little makeup before your 8 AM class, and it’s way easier than dragging out your whole makeup bag just to do a quick five-minute look. 

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17. Makeup Mirror

In college, you may not have access to a bathroom mirror with perfect lighting to do your makeup in front of every day. For this reason, I recommend getting a small makeup mirror that you can put on your desk. 

The lighting in some college dorm rooms can be a little lackluster for doing your makeup, so it may be a good idea to get one with a light built in. 

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18. Waste Basket

A waste basket is a good thing to have on hand in your dorm room. It comes in handy for every day trash that you need to throw out, like food wrappers or scraps of paper. It’s way easier than having to walk down to the trash room every single time you need to throw something out. 

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19. Diffuser

Most dorms on campus won’t let you have candles for safety reasons, but if you like candles because of how they make you room smell, try getting a diffuser instead. A diffuer allows you to diffuse essential oils, so you can have the relaxing effects of burning a candle without the fire hazard. 

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20. Phone Wallet

Most schools will give you an ID card for things like swiping into dorm buildings and dining halls. You’ll have to have it on you at all times, so a phone wallet can come in handy for this. It can also be used for carrying other cards you’ll need frequently, like your credit or debit card. A phone wallet is way less bulky than a full wallet and is a little more discreet than something like a lanyard. 

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What products will you be buying for this semester? Let us know in the comments!

Kaitlyn Riggio

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