COLLEGE

Here's What College Students Really Want On Their Back-To-School Shopping Lists

Is it really a dorm room if it doesn't have LED string lights?

08/11/2017 16:03 EDT
Neustockimages via Getty Images

Shopping for college and dorm essentials can seem like a huge undertaking with a huge price tag to boot. From comforters and desk lamps to laundry bins and cleaning products, the list seems never ending. But it doesn’t have to be this complicated.

We wanted to hear from the horse’s mouth what some of the most essential back to school items were, so we asked a few college students from all over to weigh in on the items that are on their shopping list.

Check out some of their must-haves to make back-to-college shopping a breeze, and don’t forget to sign up for our Full Carts, Can’t Lose email to stay on top of the best sales each week.

  • 1 I Am Very Busy 17-Month Hardcover Agenda $32
    Nordstrom
    "This is a great organizer for homework, events, parties, or holidays and it comes with stickers and colorful pages for each month...There are also things to do each week that are meant to be funny but also activities worth trying out like 'jam out to a silent disco' or 'go on a booze cruise.' Not only does it help compartmentalize everything for you, but it gives me confidence in myself and in my work. - Heran Mamo, University of Southern California. Shop it here.
  • 2 WenTop LED Light Strip $27
    Amazon
    "My favorite dorm or apartment decoration is this remote control light strip; it's really cheap, it impresses people, and works for parties, date nights, or general ambience." Daniel Evans, Berkeley. Shop it here.
  • 3 Expo Markers $6
    Amazon
    "Working out practice problems in preparation for exams gets tedious, and can use up a lot of paper. Studying with expo markers on whiteboards, mirrors, etc., changes things up and gets me more engaged." - Ryan Salmasi, Irvine Valley College. Shop them here.
  • 4 bkr Spiked Glass Water Bottle $40
    Nordstrom
    "I never cared about a water bottle as much as I have in college. I would always lose them in high school, but water bottles are an actual accessory in college. Plus it's kind of an unspoken competition for who can find the cutest water bottle. You want the best/weirdest/most universal water bottle." - Kindra Nims, University of Arkansas. Shop it here.
  • 5 Bedrest Support Pillow $15
    Target
    "My favorite item is a chair pillow for my bed. For $15 at Target I can easily buy something that helps me stay awake while studying in bed. It's a must-have for my dorm!" - Imani Brooks, Emory University. Shop it here.
  • 6 Trianium's Battery Case $20
    Amazon
    "If you use your phone often, it's frustrating to have your phone run out of battery. It's also annoying when you have to camp out by the outlet waiting for your phone to charge. As such, it's essential to have a portable battery case for your smartphone. I use Trianium's battery case and it's affordable and durable." - Nathan Chiu, University of Pennsylvania. Shop it here.
  • 7 Urban Outfitters Nerita Tapestry $39
    Urban Outfitters
    "Tapestries are huge for dorm rooms and my friends and I love all the ones from Urban!" - Paula Hong, Georgetown University. Shop it here.
  • 8 Muji Gel-Ink Ballpoint Pen $1.50
    Muji
    "These are the best pens I've ever used and make taking notes slightly more tolerable." - Divya Vijay, Berkeley. Shop it here.
  • 9 UGG® Classic Water Resistant Slipper $70
    Nordstrom
    "I'm going to be a junior at Hamilton College, and after two years of trying to figure out what I actually need and what I can do without at school, I've come to realize that the most important thing to me is slippers. There's just no way to live in a dorm (with tile floors or a nasty carpet) without having something cozy to walk around in." - Maura Colley, Hamilton College. Shop it here.

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