Moving into your new dorm room can be so exciting, you’re moving away from home, you have space to yourself, and you can’t wait to begin decorating! However, there are so many things you need when moving into a dorm room besides bedding and decorations. So, here is a list of ten absolute essentials you need for moving into your dorm this fall.
1. Storage Boxes
You don’t just need storage boxes when you’re moving in and out of your new dorm room. Storage boxes are a necessity in any dorm room to help keep your “stuff” organized. You can use storage boxes to contain your shoes, store your winter sweaters, keep your non-perishable food, and old decorations. Many people are able to fit their storage boxes under their bed so there’s no reason you shouldn’t get them. Storage boxes not only help to keep things organized but also get rid of a lot of the clutter you might have laying around. Instead of your winter sweaters taking up room in your minuscule closet year-round, put them in one of the storage boxes until you have a chance to take them home.
You will need batteries for everything. I know it might not seem like it now, but you use batteries way more than you think you do. Batteries are needed for many light decorations, toothbrushes, some lamps, and remotes. Plus, you usually lose batteries often and unexplainable, so it’s a good idea to have some around.
3. Command Hooks
What else are you going to use to hang up your pretty decorations? Many colleges frown upon the use of duct tape because it can tear paint off the walls, and oftentimes, it just doesn’t look as good. You can get command hooks in a large array of sizes and colors, many people opt for clear command hooks when hanging up decorations and lights because they are practically invisible.
4. Mattress Cover
Many universities provide you with a mattress when you get to campus, they say that this mattress has been cleaned, so on and so forth. There are a ton of issues with this, primarily, you don’t know who had this mattress before you, what happened to this mattress, if it had mold or bed bugs in the past, you do not know where it’s been or where it came from so it is extremely important that you get a mattress cover. A mattress protector will not only keep your sheets from touching the school mattress, but it will also add another layer of comfort. I also recommend getting a bed bug cover, foam mattress top, along with the mattress cover. Better safe than sorry!
5. Brita Filter
It’s likely you won’t have your own kitchen in your first dorm room, but you will probably have a mini-fridge. While you’ll have access to water fountains and bottled water, I strongly recommend getting a Brita. Getting a Brita gives you access to clean water all day and night long. You might not want to walk down the corridor at 2 am just for some water, plus it’s better to save on plastic and use a reusable water bottle (save the environment!).
6. Cleaning Supplies
Dorms need to be cleaned, and no one is going to do it besides you. Some of the things you’re absolutely going to need to include a (small) broom or Swiffer, vacuum, Clorox wipes, and Lysol. It’s also a good idea to get a plus in air-freshener, as they don’t allow candles in dorms and it’s a good alternative to an essential oil diffusor if you don’t have one. These are things that you simply cannot live without, and you can divide up who needs to provide what with your roommates so that you alone are not paying to keep your room clean. But if you’re a girl and you’re reading this, a vacuum is a necessity, unless you want your carpet full of hair, earring bottoms, and more.
7. Non-Perishable Food
Moving onto campus, I’m sure you’re also excited to have access to your school’s dining hall and cafeteria. While dining halls are full of food, it’s a good idea to keep some non-perishable (and microwavable) food around in your dorm. Some food items you might want to keep around are Top Ramen, popcorn, microwavable rice, microwavable lentils, hot sauce, power bars, bottled water, microwavable mac and cheese, cereal, and tea bags/instant coffee. Try to make sure you get foods you know are going to last.
8. Shower Shoes/ Towels
One thing that many people forget when moving to college is the importance of shower shoes. To save you from the gross explanation and possible side effects, just think of all the other people using the same shower and same floor as you are in your communal bathroom. You can get shower shoes for cheap on Amazon or at any department store. It’s recommended getting shower shoes that have holes on the bottom, so your feet aren’t sopping wet when you get back to your dorm room. While we’re on the subject, you should also invest in a shower caddy, so you’re not dropping everything on the way to the bathroom (and again you don’t have to rest your items on a communal surface), and a robe to walk to and from the bathroom, towels just don’t cut it.
You have very limited space in a dorm room, so if you’re not using storage boxes for your shoes, you should invest in a shoe organizer. You can get a shoe organizer that hangs from your closet, just like any other hanger with your clothes, or you can get one to hang or place somewhere else. Having a shoe organizer might not seem like a necessity now, but it will be, especially when you start to realize how little space you actually have.
Another important purchase is a lamp or desk lamp for your dorm. In many dorm rooms, lighting is awful, and yellow, which has been scientifically proven to affect your mood. Plus, it’s important in the winter season that you have enough light in your room, or it will affect your mood as well. Not to mention the need for light when you’re studying or getting ready to go out. You can get a small desk lamp or a larger one if it can fit in your room, but I recommend getting a lamp with a white light.
While moving into a new dorm can be stressful and exciting, I hope this list has provided you with some guidance on what you need to begin this new chapter of your life fully prepared!
As always, leave any questions or comments below! If you have any more suggestions for our readers, let us know in the comments.
I’m from Long Beach, CA and I’m currently a student at Villanova University, pursuing a major in Communications with a double minor in Psychology and Spanish. I started writing articles in the fall of 2019 and fell in love with writing, hopefully, you’ll enjoy my articles just as much as I do!