In couple days I will be strategically shoving the car full of all the clothes, shoes, and accessories I can possibly fit. Packing a car has become a special skill of mine. This giant chaotic (yet somehow organized) game of Tetris is just EXHILARITING. As I carry a suitcase down full of shoes only and my mom rolls her eyes, I realize that my college essentials do not all fall under the clothing category. Thinking practical for once, I created a list of 10 college essentials that I have found to be my most loved possessions.
No matter what they tell you, you never truly have control of the AC or heat in your dorm. In my apartment in particular, we have a floor to ceiling window that receives direct sunlight for about 6-7 hours every day. Even with the blinds closed and windows open, the room heats to unbearable temperatures. Last year we would prop open our door with a laundry detergent bottle to take advantage of any cross breeze from the hallway. Bringing a fan for not only your room, but the common space is crucial. I definitely love being cold when I sleep, I pile up on the blankets. There is no sleeping when the temperature is too warm.
City tap water is not the purest water out there. Knowing it would take a great deal of consumption for us to be affected, traces of lead may be small but not what I want in my body. Since in my place four girls share a kitchen fridge, I keep a mini fridge in my room to hold all my drinks. Gallons of milk and large Brita filters take up so much space, having it in a separate fridge really maximizes the space for everyone in the common area. My Brita filter holds almost 2 1/2 liters. It starts filtering immediately and in no time I have safer water to drink. On the top of the filter there is a little power life screen that displays when you need to replace the filter! This has allowed me to drink clean water and not worry about potential exposure to lead in the Chicago water!
A couple of my friends from home were discussing that they are limiting themselves to 11 tees and 7 sweatshirts. I, however, do not have that kind of self-control. I pretty much justify everything, and I mean everything. Even to the point where I find a use for an old Abraham Lincoln baseball tee that says “That was so fore score and seven years ago” … I know I have a problem. Will I change it? No, probably not. I purchased my TRUNK from Bed Bath and Beyond going into my first year. I managed to stuff that thing mountain high with all my sweatshirts and t-shirts. No shirt left behind! When you prioritize your hanging clothes, you tend to run out of storage fast in the wardrobes the college supplies. With this trunk, I was not only able to store all the unnecessary amounts of lounge wear, but also looks super cute in my room.
This seems like a given, but bringing extra lightbulbs is critical. You are mid studying, it is almost midnight and your desk lamp decides to burn out. Now what? You have no source of light besides the lamps that you have brought. Speaking from experience, it is more of a pain to go out and get lightbulbs rather than keep them stored in box in your room.
Backups of your shower supplies
Going along with the lightbulbs, backups are essential. You don’t want to be running later one morning and hop in the shower to realize you don’t have shampoo! I keep all my extra necessities in a big Rubbermaid container in my room pushed under my desk, out of the way.
Blankets are the most amazing thing period. I fell in love with this oversized throw about three months ago at the beginning of summer. Let me tell you, I curl up in this thing and suddenly I am asleep. Pure magic. My go to is a Calvin Klein Queen Oversized Throw. I purchased mine in navy to accent the dark jewel tones in my room. However, they have an assorted amount of colors. This is probably the thing I am most excited to take with me, hands down.
Out of the giant suitcase of shoes I bring one pair is truly essential. A easy pair of slip on shoes. A real life saver! In my apartment building we have to leave our apartment to do laundry, take out the trash, check in guests, and most importantly pick up food that we get delivered. Nothing makes me move faster than when I get the call that my food is waiting for me downstairs, who has time to tie or zip up your shoes? I just bring a pair of simple Adidas slides and keep them in the corner for easy access.
Mirrors are great and all, especially when they aren’t the distorted mirrors that some schools have on their wardrobe. And the mirror above your sink in the bathroom is not worth the hassle of standing on a stool just to see if your shoes look good with your outfit. Let’s face it, full length mirrors are superior. Here’s one better…a full length storage mirror. Now that is revolutionary. I found mine at Target (of course, what a heavenly store). The storage in particular is made for jewelry. It has two rows of hooks, one for longer necklaces and the other for your shorter ones. Below the hooks are netted pockets that make it easy to see, display, and keep your bracelets and or watches organized!
Whether you are a college student or not, we all have those I slept threw my alarm days. Whether it’s 5 minutes before your 9am starts, or 15 minutes before you start work, getting ready in a rush is just plain stressful and no way to kick off your day. If there is anything I learned about getting ready in a rush is that a hat makes it ten times easier. My styles I gravitate towards are baker boy hats, baseball caps, and panama hats. When styling your outfit around these hats, the options are endless. In high school, hats were against dress code. This absurd rule added frustration to those days where your just not feelin’ it. By throwing on a hat you eliminate that rushed feeling, hide a bad hair day, or just creates a unique look to your outfit. I am completely a victim of hat hair though, so I usually keep my hat on until the end of the day avoiding any more unneeded frustration.