Dorm Room Essentials List: 10 Things First-Year Students Desperately Need

Welcome to our dorm room essentials list!

Moving into a dorm room is a big moment, marking a massive leap in independence — which is why it’s important that it’s done right. For many, this is the first time living away from their parents and the need to make a home away from home is at an all-time high. Their new living space has to be both functional and comfortable. To help get them ready, we’ve curated a list of items first-year students desperately need.

This list includes:

  • Storage solutions
  • Dorm cooking solutions
  • Food storage for dorms

So without further ado, prepare your undergraduate for a successful collegiate career with this dorm room essentials checklist!


Dorm Room Essentials List

  1. 90L Large Laundry Hamper
  2. 90L Large Laundry Hamper

    This amazing hamper is created with a double-layer 600D fabric oxford that adds PE coating inside to keep moisture out. Thanks to its convenient size and aluminum handle with a soft grip, you can take it anywhere or even hang it at the door of your closet. At 15”(L) x 15”(W) x 31”(H), this spacious hamper can hold just about everything – toys, books, CDs, clothes, and more – making sure everything in your dorm room has its place! And since convenience is key when it comes to decluttering and organizing your living space, the hamper is designed for effortless maintenance. All you have to do is use a damp cloth or brush to clean away any dust from the bag – just make sure not to use a washing machine as it will damage the handle and coating.

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  3. 17 Qt Plastic Stackable Storage Drawers
  4. 17 Qt Plastic Stackable Storage Drawers

    When it comes to organizing and decluttering, the 17 Qt Plastic Stackable Storage Drawers are an ideal solution. Whether it's for your bedroom, bathroom, craft room, nursery, or dorm room, this multi-functional organizer is here to help. It can store a whole range of household items with ease and help you keep things neatly organized. What makes it so great is that each drawer can be stacked securely on top of another, giving you total freedom when it comes to designing your own customized storage space. Additionally, comfort of mind comes from knowing that these drawers were made entirely in America with high-quality materials designed for strength and durability. At 12.1"L X 14.3"W these neat little drawers are the perfect size for small apartments or tight budgets as well. And because they've been green-circle certified with recyclable material used throughout, you can stay organized without hurting the environment too!

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  5. Instant Vortex 4-in-1 Air Fryer
  6. Instant Vortex 4-in-1 Air Fryer

    Step up your game with the Instant Vortex 4-in-1 Air Fryer! Able to air fry, bake, roast and reheat, it’s the perfect tool for creating delicious and nutritious meals that are sure to wow guests! With EvenCrisp Technology that drives air flow top down, and customizable one-touch Smart Programs to make wings, roasted veggies, garlicky potatoes and more in minutes, you’ll be able to create gourmet meals at lightning speed. This kitchen must-have is quick to preheat from frozen to golden in just a few minutes and easy to clean up thanks to its non-stick dishwasher safe air fry basket and tray.

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  7. AstroAI Mini Fridge
  8. AstroAI Mini Fridge

    Are you a student looking for the perfect dorm room essential? Look no further than the AstroAI Mini Fridge! With its compact size and 4 liter capacity, this fridge has it all. Store food and drinks, beer, snacks, makeup and skincare, even breast milk - this mini fridge is ideal for any need. It connects to 100-120V home power supply or your car’s 12V power supply so you can keep your items cold while on the go. Not only is it convenient and perfect for small spaces but also eco-friendly with its freon-free semiconductor refrigeration chip! The ASTROAI MiniFridge makes a great gift - especially for first year students moving into their dorm room.

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  9. Shower Caddy Basket Shelf with Soap Holder
  10. Shower Caddy Basket Shelf with Soap Holder

    Are you a college student or someone living in a dorm room? If so, it can often be difficult to stay organized in such limited space. Fortunately, this clever design not only ensures your bathroom is kept neat and tidy, but also provides you with the convenience of taking shampoo and shower gel when you take a shower. The design features two high-quality bathroom shelves that can be combined for the most personalized look. Crafted from stainless steel, you can rest assured of maximum durability and rust resistance even when exposed to humid environments. The surface has undergone sandblasting technology, which further improves its corrosion resistance and scratch-proof. On top of that, the adhesives are gravity tested and held up to 22lbs even with pumps! This product really is an essential for all college students or anyone living in small spaces. Not only will this add a modern touch to your bathroom look and make it more inviting, but it will also save you time and effort by always keeping your essentials in one easy-to-reach place.

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  11. Matein College Computer Backpack
  12. Matein College Computer Backpack

    The Matein backpack isn’t limited to just laptops; it features a separate compartment that can accommodate laptops up to 15.6" in size, as well as 15", 14" and 13" laptops. The large storage compartment is perfect for carrying textbooks, documents and other items necessary for classes. Being able to stay organized is easy with the many pockets, pen pockets and key fob hook found in the front. Thanks to its comfortable and sturdy design, carrying all of your belongings doesn’t have to be a challenge. It has thick but soft multi-panel ventilated padding for maximum back support, foam padded handles for convenience and adjustable shoulder straps to make sure that carrying it isn’t tiresome. Additionally, slide The Matein backpack over the handle tube of your luggage when traveling as there's a dedicated luggage strap on the back. And lastly, there's an anti theft pocket located in the back where you can store all your valuable items safely.

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  13. Surge Protector Power Strip
  14. Surge Protector Power Strip

    Keep your dorm room electronics safe and powered up with the Surge Protector Power Strip! From computers to gaming consoles and even your cell phone, this essential item has all your charging needs covered. With 8 AC outlets and 4 USB ports, and a 6 feet heavy-duty extension cord, you can easily power up multiple devices at the same time while protecting all of them from electrical surges. The 3-level complementary surge protector circuit composed of TVS (transient voltage suppressor) and MOV (metal oxide varistor) provides over 2700 joules of protection when a fluctuation in voltage occurs. Meanwhile, each USB port features 2.4A Max output with fast and smart charge capabilities that detect your device's amount of power needed and deliver it automatically. Whether you're studying at home or entertaining some friends, the Surge Protector Power Strip helps you stay plugged in confidently!

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  15. Mattress Pad Protector
  16. Mattress Pad Protector

    Make sleep time even more restful with this Mattress Pad Protector! This Cotton Top & Down Alternative Fill mattress pad is the perfect dorm room essential. With a Twin XL 39x80 inch size and 21 inch deep pocket, this protective layer is designed to fit most mattresses. The 30oz down alternative fill adds great softness to your firm mattress while the 300TC cotton surface absorbs sweat, making it breathable. It also comes with 130GSM single-track elastic fabric to keep your bed sheets neat all night, so you can enjoy peaceful slumber without worry. Plus, it's easy to maintain since you can machine wash it in the gentle cycle before fluffing it up again when dried under the sunshine.

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  17. Dorm Room Towel Set
  18. Dorm Room Towel Set

    Spoil yourself with a luxurious upgrade to your dorm room essentials with the Dorm Room Towel Set. Made from 100% cotton and designed with advanced twist management technology, these towels are ultra-soft and durable. Additionally, they’re thick and plush terry gives them amazing absorbency. This set contains everything you need - two bath towels (30" x 54"), two hand towels (16" x 26"), and two washcloths (12" x 12"), making them an oversized indulgence! And you can trust their quality, since each product is certified according to OEKO-TEX standards, making sure that all textiles meet the highest safety and environmental standards with no harmful chemicals included.

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  19. King Size Sheet Set
  20. King Size Sheet Set

    Bring indulgent comfort to your bedroom with the King Size Sheet Set! Perfect for any dorm room or guest room, this 4 piece set comes with a flat sheet, fitted sheet, and two pillow cases–all crafted from a luxurious 100% polyester fabric. Enjoy maximum comfort as you drift off to sleep thanks to the deep pockets and easy-fit design of the fitted sheet that accommodates mattresses up to 16” deep. Receive a heavenly cocoon of warmth and breathability from these sheets, which remain cool and soft all night long. This versatile King Size Sheet Set is perfect for every season; it’s a must-have for any environment ranging from bedrooms to RV’s or vacation homes. With so much quality at such an affordable price, this bedding set makes an ideal treat for your dorm room essentials list.

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People Also Ask These Questions About Dorm Room Essentials Lists

Q: What are the must-have items for a dorm room?

  • Bedding, desk lamps, desk chairs, microwaves, mini fridges, shower caddies, towels, cleaning supplies, and power strips are all must-have items for a dorm room.

Q: How much should I budget for dorm room essentials?

  • Your dorm room essentials budget depends on many factors — including budget — however, you could generally spend roughly in the range of $500 to $1000 to get your dorm room ready. 

Q: Are there any good DIY dorm room decorations?

  • There are many good DIY dorm room decorations including but not limited to DIY photo walls, washi tape frames, string lights, painted cork boards, tassel garlands, upcycled storage, and wall art.