Dorm rooms are notorious for being tight on space and with August on the horizon, many incoming first-year students may be starting to worry about how they will fit all of their belongings in their new space. College is a new, exciting experience and stressors that can be easily avoided - like a messy dorm room - should not get in the way of having the best college experience. Here are eight dorm room essentials to help youstay organized and have one less thing to worry about while enjoying being a college student!
1. Create a Multipurpose Desk Area
Your desk is likely to be the largest flat surface in your dorm room. This means that you will end up using it for many things ranging from doing homework, getting ready for a night out, late-night snacking, and everything in between. Using different compartmentalized containers will help keep this space multifunctional and clean. A sectioned cup can hold pens, eating utensils, and makeup brushes. Desktop drawers can store files, homework, and makeup palettes, and a desk shelf keeps all your textbooks in order and ready to grab in a rush.
2. Shower Caddy
Shower caddies are ESSENTIAL when dealing with community bathrooms. Sharing a bathroom can be difficult, especially if you don't have a designated space to store all your toiletries. A shower caddy makes it easy to transport your shampoo, soap, loofah, and other supplies back and forth to your bathroom whenever you need to shower.
3. Storage Bins with Lids
If you're driving all of your belongings to and from college and are concerned about packing, buy storage bins with securable lids. These keep your belongings neatly packed during the school year but are quick and easy to pack up into the car at the end of the semester.
4. Folding Fabric Boxes
If you are not driving, are tight on space when transporting belongings, or are an out-of-state student planning on flying in, use fabric boxes. These come in many sizes to hold anything you need during the semester but can fold flat and neatly out the way during summers at home.
5. Shoe Rack
If you're like me and have many shoes, shoe racks are essential when trying to avoid creating the dreaded shoe pile. If you have a large enough closet, go for a fabric hanging shoe shelf. These can also help you keep small items like jewelry, socks, sunglasses, and all your other favorite accessories organized.
6. Bedside Shelf
If you have a lofted bed or top bunk, getting out of bed can be such a hassle when you're so high up. If your small space doesn't allow for a bedside table, keep essentials close with a bedside storage caddy. They make small, sturdy shelves that clip onto the side of your bed frame or fabric caddies that secure under the mattress and hang down the side of your bed.
7. Rolling Carts
A small, rolling cart is precisely the extra piece of furniture you need for your room. These are entirely multipurpose and can hold whatever you need: Extra snacks, beauty products for those with a multi-step skincare routine, coffee for those with a slight caffeine addiction, or anything else you need on hand. These carts are usually small enough to roll under the bed and out of sight and the wheels mean you can move it to wherever suits you at the time.
8. Don't Overpack!
The final tip is don't overpack! No matter how good your organization may be from these tips, the dorm room is still a smaller space than you may be used to, especially if you are sharing for the first time. Chances are you will never wear that one pair of heels or that extra fluffy sweater. My packing tip is to start with the bare essentials and add just a few creature comforts and things that remind you of home. If you miss certain items THAT MUCH while you're away at college, you can always pick them up when you're back during vacations or have them sent to you.