Clothes, Supplies, Bedding, Etc: What to Bring For College

Natalie Thompson
Natalie Thompson

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Heading off to college? If you’ll be living in the dorms, you’ll want to have everything you need… as well as some room to spare. We’ve made a sample list to get you started! Here’s what to bring for college to make sure you don’t get stuck in a sticky situation.

First of all, when thinking about your college packing list, make sure to include those things that help you feel at home. Also, check with your college for any restrictions on items you can have in your room. With that being said, here is a list of items you’ll likely want to bring with you to college.


  • Jeans, t-shirts, sweaters, sweatshirt
  • A nice outfit (or several) for evenings out
  • Business casual outfit (for interviews)
  • Closet organizer
  • Hangers
  • Comfortable shoes
  • A nice pair of dress up shoes
  • Coat, jacket, hat (if possible, pack for one season at a time)
  • Swimsuit
  • Workout clothes
  • Pajamas
  • Rain boots
  • Umbrella

Bath and Shower Supplies:

  • Bathrobe
  • Towels and washcloths
  • Shower caddy
  • Hairbrush/comb
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Hair dryer
  • Hair products
  • Soap or body wash
  • Lotion
  • Cosmetics
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Dental floss
  • Facial wash
  • Razor
  • Tweezers
  • Nail clippers
  • Sunscreen

Electronics and Accessories:

  • Computer (laptop or desktop)
  • Extension cord and power strip
  • Charging cords
  • Headphones/earbuds
  • Desk lamp
  • Fan
  • Microwave
  • Mini fridge

School Supplies:

  • Backpack or book bag
  • Binders and notebooks
  • Binder clips (great for keeping things together)
  • Planner
  • Pencils and pens
  • Highlighters
  • Paper clips
  • Stapler and extra staples
  • Tape
  • Sticky notes
  • Notecards
  • Dry erase board with dry erase markers


  • Hygienic mattress protector
  • Mattress pad or foam topper
  • Pillows
  • Sheets
  • Blanket or comforter

Cooking and Cleaning:

  • Dish soap
  • Dishtowel
  • Sponges
  • Microwave safe bowl and mug
  • Utensils (plastic or metal)
  • Plastic food containers
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Snack baggies
  • Paper towels
  • Travel mug
  • Duster
  • Laundry basket/hamper
  • Laundry soap
  • Stain remover pen


  • Bed risers
  • Duct tape
  • Earplugs and eye mask
  • First aid kit
  • Pain medication (Tylenol, Advil, etc . . .)
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Sewing kit (for quick fixes)
  • Tool kit (a small one)
  • Wall adhesive (make sure it’s removable)
  • Calendar
  • Desk organizer
  • Mini trash can
  • Small iron and ironing board
  • Under-the bed organizer

What NOT to Bring:

  • Hotplates, toasters, toaster ovens, skillets
  • Air conditioner
  • Candles
  • Pets (unless you have a service animal)
  • Hammer and nails

Too many college students either bring too much or forget something essential. With a packing list, you can start the school year off without worrying about having to buy something or return items before classes begin.

For questions relating to your college process, Empowerly is here to help!

Questions? Let us know!