We know how stressful it can be to put together your dorm room packing list. You don’t want to go overboard on dorm items but you also don’t want to forget anything. That’s why we put together this list of dorm room essentials for guys that will make your dorm the perfect place to live.
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PDF Printable College Packing List For Guys
Want a free PDF college packing list for guys to take with you to the store? Get our free printable list of dorm room essentials for guys!
Dorm Room Bedding Essentials For Guys
1. Twin XL Comforter
Dorm room beds are almost always Twin XL sized, so it’s important to have a super comfortable comforter that fits your bed.
2. Twin XL Sheets
You’re also going to need sheets for your Twin XL bed. I recommend getting ones with deeper pockets so that they fit over your bed and mattress topper without sliding off. These sheets from Amazon are affordable and really high quality.
Pillows are another obvious dorm room essential for guys. I recommend getting the same amount of pillows that you usually sleep with at home. If you love having a ton of pillows, you won’t be able to get a good night sleep with just one.
4. Mattress Topper
This mattress topper is one of the top selling dorm room essentials for guys that we recommend here. It has insanely good reviews and it seriously makes your dorm mattress feel like a hotel bed.
Don’t believe me? Check out some of the reviews on Amazon! Trust me, this is an underrated dorm room essential that you’ll be glad you brought.
5. Bedrest Pillow
Your bed is probably going to be the place where you spend the most time in your dorm room. That’s why a bed rest pillow is one of my dorm room essentials for guys.
It’ll make studying and hanging out in your bed so much more comfortable and less straining on your neck and back.
6. Bedside Table
A bedside shelf or table is absolutely crucial in your dorm room. You need a place to keep your phone, water, headphones, etc. while you sleep.
If you’re planning on lofting your bed, I highly recommend getting a good bedside shelf that’s made for dorm rooms. If you’re just using bed risers, they make extra tall bedside tables for dorms.
Dorm Room Storage Essentials For Guys
7. Closet Storage
Dorm closets are usually pretty small, but there are some genius ways to optimize your closet space.
These space-saving hangers are so useful for cramped closets. They allow you to fit way more clothing in your close than you would with regular hangers.
I also really like these hanging storage shelves for dorm closets. They’re perfect for items like pants, t-shirts, shoes, and hats.
8. Storage Ottoman
A storage ottoman is one of the best dorm room essentials for guys because it serves so many purposes.
It can be extra seating for when friends visit, a footrest for your futon, and an extra storage spot (so important). I always put my extra blankets in there when they weren’t in use.
9. Storage Drawers
Storage in dorm rooms is often pretty limited, so most students will have some storage units under their bed for things like snacks, school supplies, and extra clothes.
I really like these plastic drawers for underneath a raised dorm bed. They look nice, are pretty affordable, and they hold a ton of stuff.
[RELATED: 23 Under Bed Dorm Storage Ideas You Need In Your Dorm Room]
10. Under Bed Storage
As we mentioned above, dorm room storage can be super limited. One of the best ways that we recommend to increase your storage space is putting bins or shelves under your bed.
If you’re not planning on lofting your bed, I highly recommend these storage bins on wheels. They have dual-hinge lids so you don’t have to pull them fully out in order to access the contents inside.
These would be the perfect size for storing extra textbooks, off-season clothing, and shoes or accessories.
11. Clothes Hangers
You’ll definitely want to get a good set of clothing hangers for your dorm room closet.
I highly recommend getting these thin velvet ones. They take up less space so you can fit more clothes in your cramped dorm closet. The velvet also creates friction so your clothes won’t fall off of them as easily.
Kitchen Essentials For Guys Dorm Rooms
12. Mini Fridge
A mini fridge is another necessity for college guys. Even if you think you’ll eat all of your meals in the dining hall, it’s still nice to have a fridge for snacks and drinks in your dorm room.
This mini fridge is my top pick for dorm rooms because it looks really cool, has plenty of space, and includes a small freezer section.
Even if you plan on using your meal plan a ton, you’ll still want a way to cook food in your dorm.
Whether it be ramen, hot cocoa, or microwave dinners, cooking food in a microwave microwave can help you cut down on costs and allow you to quickly make food for yourself and your friends.
14. Mini Keurig
Coffee drinkers absolutely need a coffee maker in their dorm room. Coffee shop trips get so expensive and they can be inconvenient when you’re running late to class.
This Mini Keurig machine brews up a single cup of coffee really quickly. It’s also small enough that it’ll fit on your desk or on top of your mini fridge.
15. Mini Fridge Caddy
How genius is this mini fridge caddy? It’s perfect storage for your utensils or snacks without taking up any extra room. This is one of my favorite dorm room essentials for guys and girls.
16. Dish Set
If you are planning on preparing food for yourself, having a dish set on-hand is essential. This dinnerware set is perfect for storing in your room, and is easy to clean and maintain.
17. Water Filter Pitcher
Sometimes tap water just doesn’t cut it. Rather than being wasteful and buying plastic water bottles all the time, just use a water filter pitcher!
You just fill it up with water and it filters out all of the chemicals, particles, and bad tastes that can show up in tap water.
18. Ziploc Bags
The uses for Ziploc bags are absolutely endless. Having them on-hand in your dorm room will be incredibly handy! Use these Ziploc bags to store food, supplies, or any miscellaneous items.
Dorm Bathroom Essentials For Guys
19. Shower Caddy
A shower caddy makes it really easy to carry your things from your dorm room to the communal showers. I recommend getting a mesh caddy rather than a plastic one because it’ll dry much quicker and won’t bring water back to your dorm room.
Towels are obviously an essential for any college student. We recommend having at least two sets of towels for your dorm so you always have a fresh set.
This set of towels from Amazon is perfect for college guys. It comes with two of each size towel, which is the perfect amount to have in your dorm. They’re also super plush and durable so they’ll last you all through college!
Don’t forget your essential toiletries that you use at home – shampoo, toothpaste, conditioner, deodorant, etc. We have found that it’s best to stock up so that you are not without any of these products when you need them.
22. Shower Shoes
If you’re living in the dorms, you absolutely NEED shower shoes. Seriously, it’s non-negotiable.
Communal bathrooms are disgusting and you don’t want to be walking around barefoot in them. These shower shoes will protect your feet and have drainage holes so you don’t track water back to your dorm room.
23. Waterproof Mirror For Shaving
This waterproof mirror isn’t exactly “essential” but we think it’s really handy to have! Communal bathrooms can get crowded so it’s nice to be able to get your shaving done in the shower.
This mirror won’t fog up in the shower, so you can be sure you get a clean shave every time. It
24. Hanging Toiletries Kit
When brushing your teeth or getting ready to go out, it’s super helpful to have your toiletries be accessible and handy.
This toiletries kit will keep your counter clear and your bathroom essentials clean. Plus, it’s really easy to carry back and forth to the communal bathrooms.
Electronics Essentials For Guys Dorm Rooms
If you do not already own a laptop, we highly recommend getting one for college. Laptops are essential for classes, studying, and just general leisure. You’ll use your laptop for multiple hours every single day in college.
While there are many different options out there, here is one laptop that we recommend that is budget-friendly and perfect for a college student. We also recommend the MacBook Air if you’re looking for something a bit more expensive that will last you many years.
We have all heard horror stories of a noisy roommate that cannot stop snoring or making noise. Especially if you are trying to study in your room, a good pair of headphones are essential.
I was a religious headphone user in college. They help maintain focus and block out external noise that sometimes you just can’t ignore.
These noise cancelling headphones are perfect for studying in your dorm room or in loud coffee shops.
I may or may not have done my fair share of dorm partying in college, and at every one, there was a speaker. You and your friends will love this portable speaker for bringing life to the party.
Speakers can also be great for beach days, playing sports, or working out. Having a portable speaker available in your dorm room is essential.
Who doesn’t love kicking back to watch Netflix or play video games after a stressful day of class and studying? Having a TV in your dorm room is definitely essential for most guys.
This TV is the perfect size and style for any dorm room, and will not break the bank.
29. Extra Long Charging Cord
You probably wrote down charging cords on your packing list. But did you think to pack a few extra long ones? Most dorms were built forever ago when there wasn’t as much of a need for outlets. You may have one or two outlets in your whole room!
Make sure your charging cords are long enough that they can reach your desk or bedside table. I like to have a few different lengths of charging cords for my phone, laptop, and other electronics.
This pack of extra long iPhone charging cords comes with 3 different cord lengths, so you’ll have a charging cord for every possible scenario!
30. Power Strip
There’s nothing worse than getting your dorm all set up and realizing all of your outlets are blocked by your furniture.
That’s why a power strip with a long cord is essential to have in a dorm room. I love this one from Amazon because it has USB ports as well as standard plugs.
Cleaning College Essentials For Guys
31. Small Vacuum
Your dorm building may have a vacuum that you can rent out but usually it’s a million years old and a giant pain to haul it up to your room.
Having a compact vacuum cleaner in your dorm room saves you a ton of time and sanity. This one is super affordable and works really well.
32. Air Freshener
Chances are you do not keep your dorm room perfectly clean (I did not), so who knows what other people are smelling when they walk into your room.
Keep your room smelling nice and fresh with this air freshener spray. Trust me, these are absolutely a dorm room essential for guys – you do not want to be known as the guy with the smelly dorm room.
33. Cleaning Wipes
Cleaning products are a must-have dorm essential in this day and age. If I had to pick just one cleaning product that is a dorm room essential, I would pick disinfectant wipes.
Wipes are a quick, effortless way to keep your dorm room clean. Just wipe down any hard surfaces a couple times a week. Trust me, you’ll want to have disinfectant wipes in your room at all times.
34. Trash Can And Scented Trash Bags
Your dorm floor may have a place to put trash, but you of course do not want to be walking there every time you want to throw something away.
A small trash bin can be placed in the corner of your room and will be convenient for you any time you want to throw away trash. The scented bags will help neutralize any gross smells that come from your trash can.
If your dorm has a recycling program, make sure you get two bins so that you can have one for recyclables.
35. Laundry Detergent
Ahh yes, laundry. Every college kid’s favorite task. But, it needs to be done, and it is important to stock up on detergent for your laundry loads.
36. Bathroom Cleaner
If you have a bathroom that is not cleaned by your school, it is essential to have your own bathroom cleaner. This bathroom cleaner is perfect to have on-hand when it is time to do everyone’s least-favorite chore.
37. Dish Soap And Sponge
Especially if you are having a microwave and dishes in your room, we absolutely recommend having your own set of a dish soap and sponge.
If your communal dorm kitchen has its own dish soap and sponge, chances are the sponge is nasty, and you can’t always count on it being there. So, best to pack your own.
Dorm Decor Essentials For Guys
A rug is definitely one of the most overlooked dorm room essentials for guys. Dorm carpets are usually pretty gross and ugly, so a rug will really help make the space feel cozier.
This rug is the perfect size for dorm rooms and is super affordable.
39. Desk Lamp
This one may seem obvious, but it really is important to have solid and adjustable lighting for your dorm desk. You may be spending a lot of time studying at your desk, so a good desk lamp is essential.
40. Blackout Curtains
Blackout curtains are one of those dorm items that you wouldn’t think to bring but it’s a total life saver! Not only do they keep your dorm room dark when you’re trying to sleep, but they actually help keep heat from transferring through the window! That means your room will be cooler in the summer and warmer in winter.
Make sure to get curtain rod holders that don’t require any drilling. These curtain rod holders stick to your wall with adhesive, so they won’t cause any damage.
41. Throw Pillows
Throw pillows are a great way to make your futon or couch look nicer and feel more comfortable. Just don’t go overboard – too many throw pillows will feel cluttered and awkward.
42. LED Light Strips
LED Light strips are a classic dorm decoration for college guys. You can stick them pretty much anywhere in your dorm room – along the ceiling, under your bed, around your TV, etc.
Tapestries are one of the most popular dorm decorations for guys and girls rooms. You can find tapestries that fit pretty much any design style.
I love tapestries as dorm decor because they’re cheap, cover a lot of space on the wall, and are easy to hang without damaging your walls.
[RELATED: 35 Cheap Tapestries Under $25 To Hang on Your Dorm Room Wall]
Miscellaneous College Essentials For Guys
Having friends from your home town visit you is one of the most fun parts of being in the dorms. So, having a futon for a guest can be incredibly handy!
This faux leather futon is sleek, and a great size for any dorm room. It would fit perfectly under a lofted bed.
45. First Aid Kit
First aid kits are essential for any living space. While it may seem dorky to have this in your dorm room, trust me, you will not regret having it when the need for it comes.
My mom really pushed for me to have one in my room in college, and I actually used it a few times! This first aid kit is affordable and the perfect size for a dorm room.
46. Tool Kit
Another unexpected dorm essential for guys is a tool kit. Pretty much all dorm furniture comes unassembled, so you’re going to need some tools for move-in day.
They also come in handy for repairing things throughout the semester. You never know when your futon is going to have a screw loose!
47. Reusable Water Bottle
We recommend that every college student have a reusable water bottle for bringing to class. It’s way cheaper and more sustainable than buying plastic water bottles all the time.
You can fill them up with a Brita filter in your dorm room or just grab water from your dorm’s water fountain in the morning.
Most dorms don’t allow you to adjust the temperature in your dorm room, which means they can get super stuffy. This fan clips onto your bed or desk and will keep you cool and comfy all night.
[RELATED: How To Cool Down A Dorm Room With No Air Conditioning]
49. Board Games
Who doesn’t love board games with friends on a rainy day? Board games are also great ice breakers for dorm parties!
50. School Supplies
School supplies are, of course, an essential for college. We recommend getting a hefty supply of notebooks, folders, pens/pencils, and any other item that you may use during your school week.
Since the weeks leading up to school can be busy and stressful, it’s important to stock up on these essentials before everything sells out.
You may be surprised to hear that dorm theft is actually super common on campuses. Smaller valuable items like phones, credit cards, and laptops are common targets for thieves.
Make sure you have some type of safe in your dorm room for storing all of your valuables. This safe is a really popular option for dorm rooms, but we have a full post with the best lock boxes for dorm rooms if you want more options.
52. Laundry Basket
This laundry basket backpack is absolutely genius for college guys. It allows you to carry your laundry on your back, which is really handy for going up and down the stairs in your dorm building.
The backpack also has external pockets for carrying your laundry detergent and dryer sheets.
53. Command Hooks
Because you can’t drill any holes into your walls, command hooks are an absolute essential dorm item. You’ll use them for hanging string lights, decor, etc.
If you’re planning on hanging pictures or posters, grab some command strips too. You won’t regret stocking up on these!
This post was all about the best dorm room essentials for guys.
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