What to Bring to College: The Best College Packing List EVER

Contains Content Sponsored by Mylan, Brita, L'Oreal Paris Sublime Bronze, Williams Sonoma, Inc. and Pottery Barn Dorm

Click here to download a printable version of this list!

We at HC know there are few things more daunting than packing up your life to move into your (really tiny) dorm or apartment at college, especially if you’re a freshman. What do you need to bring with you? What sounds like a great idea to pack now, but will just end up unused and taking up precious closet space? What if you forget something important (hello, health insurance card) and you can’t get it until Thanksgiving?

Lucky for you, we know exactly what you need to bring to college. Just use this all-inclusive checklist that covers everything from bedding to food to medicine, to help you avoid having any of those awful “oh-no-I-forgot-X-important-thing” moments on move-in day.

Click here to download a printable version of this list!

Bedding

Room

Laundry

  • Laundry hamper or bag 
  • Lingerie bag
  • Laundry detergent
  • Bleach
  • Color catchers
  • Fabric softener
  • Stain remover
  • Dryer sheets
  • Drying rack
  • Garment bag
  • Iron
  • Ironing board 
  • Lint brush
  • Portable stain remover pen
  • Quarters
  • Sewing kit 

Food

  • Bulk snacks (candy, granola, dried fruit, etc.)
  • Bottled water
  • Granola bars
  • Popcorn
  • Cereal
  • Coffee
  • Coffee creamer
  • Sugar
  • Instant hot chocolate
  • Microwaveable mac and cheese
  • Ramen
  • Soup
  • Instant oatmeal
  • Peanut butter and jelly

Desk/School Supplies

  • Backpack (HC Pick: PBdorm Atlas Backpack)
  • Tote bag
  • Binder clips
  • Paper clips 
  • Binders
  • Business cards
  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Clicker (if you need one for class)
  • Desk chair 
  • Desk lamp (HC Pick: PBdorm Penn Task Lamp)
  • Desk organizer
  • Envelopes
  • Stamps
  • Cards/notes to send home
  • File folder for important documents 
  • Desk storage box (HC Pick: PBdorm No Nails Wall Organizer)
  • Folders
  • Glue
  • Notebook paper
  • Notebooks
  • Notepads
  • Index cards
  • Sticky notes
  • Journal
  • Laptop fan/stand (HC Pick: PBdorm Little Big Fan)
  • Pencil case
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Pencils
  • Erasers
  • Pens/colored pens
  • Permanent marker
  • Highlighters
  • White out
  • Planner
  • Portfolio/portfolio case for interviews
  • Lunchbox 
  • Rubber bands
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Stapler
  • Staples
  • Staple remover
  • Tape 
  • Textbooks
  • Three-hole punch

Kitchen Supplies

Tech

  • Laptop
  • External hard drive
  • Flash drives
  • Keyboard
  • Wireless mouse
  • Lap desk/stand 
  • Laptop Case
  • Camera
  • SD card for camera
  • E-reader
  • Tablet
  • Chargers (phone, laptop, camera, etc.)
  • Portable phone charger
  • Ethernet cable
  • HDMI cable
  • Extension cords
  • Adapters (HDMI, ethernet, etc)
  • Headphones and spare headphones
  • Speakers
  • Printer
  • Printer ink
  • Cord organizer 
  • Printer paper
  • Router
  • Surge protectors
  • TV
  • TV stand
  • Batteries

Bathroom

  • Air freshener
  • Shower curtain and rings (if needed)
  • Shower mat
  • Shower organizer (if your school allows it) (HC Pick: PBdorm Hanging Shower Dopp Kit)
  • Upgraded showerhead (if your school allows it)
  • Bathroom rug
  • Shower shoes
  • Shower cap
  • Shower caddy (HC Pick: PBdorm Shower Mesh Caddy)
  • Bath pouf
  • Loofah
  • Washcloths
  • Bath towels
  • Hand towels
  • Bathrobe (HC Pick: PBdorm Very Busy Robe)
  • Tumbler/cup
  • Bathroom cleaning supplies (if you need them for your dorm: i.e., drain cleaner, glass cleaner, rubber gloves, shower cleaner, sponges, toilet brush, toilet cleaner)
  • Scale

Toiletries

Products 

Supplies

  • Hand mirror
  • Toothbrush
  • Floss
  • Toothbrush holder
  • Razor
  • Tweezers
  • Hairbrush
  • Comb
  • Bobby pins
  • Blow dryer
  • Diffusers
  • Hair curlers
  • Curling iron
  • Hair straightener
  • Hair ties
  • Hair clips
  • Headbands
  • Contacts, solution, and case
  • Eyeglasses and case
  • Eyeglass cleaner
  • Cotton balls
  • Cotton swabs
  • Tissues
  • Makeup brushes
  • Nail clippers
  • Nail files
  • Pumice stone
  • Tampons and pads
  • Toilet paper

Clothing

  • Bras
  • Underwear
  • Shapewear
  • Sports bras
  • Pajamas
  • Casual dresses
  • Little black dress
  • Semi-formal dresses
  • Formal dress
  • Going-out clothes
  • Long-sleeve shirts
  • Short-sleeve shirts
  • T-shirts
  • Tank tops
  • Jeans
  • Pants
  • Leggings/Yoga pants
  • Shorts
  • Skirts
  • Professional clothing (dress, dress pants, button-down shirts, skirts, blazers, shoes, purse)
  • Belts
  • Tights
  • Sweaters
  • Sweatpants
  • Sweatshirts
  • Fleece
  • Jackets
  • Raincoat
  • Winter coat
  • Gloves
  • Workout clothes
  • Athletic sneakers
  • Boots
  • Casual shoes
  • Flats
  • Flip-flops
  • Heels
  • Rain boots
  • Snow boots
  • Slipper socks
  • Socks
  • Socks for rain boots
  • Slippers
  • Sunglasses
  • Bathing suits
  • Hats
  • Scarves
  • Watch
  • Wristlet
  • Everyday purse
  • Formal clutch
  • Going-out purse
  • Change purse
  • Gym bag
  • Jewelry
  • Costume clothing for theme parties/extracurricular events

Documents

  • Bank documents
  • Credit card
  • Debit card
  • Checks
  • Driver’s license
  • Car registration and insurance information
  • AAA card
  • Copy of birth certificate
  • Copy of Social Security card
  • Passport
  • Student ID
  • Emergency contact list
  • Financial aid documents
  • Health/dental insurance cards
  • Lease (if you have an apartment)
  • Renters insurance (if you have an apartment)
  • Product warranties

Medical

Contains Content Sponsored by Mylan

  • Allergy medicine
  • Aloe lotion
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Cortisone cream
  • Vaseline
  • Bandages
  • Blister bandages
  • First aid kit
  • Birth control (check out this non-daily option!)
  • Condoms
  • Menstrual pain medication
  • Cold medicine (HC pick: Cold-EEZE to ease your symptoms)
  • Decongestant
  • Throat drops/lozenges
  • Throat spray
  • Eye drops
  • Hot and cold packs
  • Humidifier
  • Insect repellent
  • Multivitamins
  • Supplements (iron pills, etc.)
  • Over-the-counter pain medication
  • Prescription medicine
  • Prescription refill information
  • Retainer/mouthguard
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Thermometer
  • Thermometer covers
  • Upset stomach medication

Miscellaneous

  • Beach towel
  • Bike
  • Bike helmet
  • Bike lock
  • Board games
  • Books to read for fun
  • Video game console
  • Playing cards
  • Art supplies
  • DVDs
  • Musical instruments
  • Religious materials
  • Earplugs
  • Sleep mask
  • Flashlight
  • Lightbulbs
  • Safety pins
  • Safety whistle
  • Pepper spray (if legal in your state)
  • Tool kit
  • Duct tape
  • Weekend bag
  • Travel organizer for toiletries
  • Suitcase/duffel bag
  • Luggage tags
  • Umbrella
  • Vacuum
  • Hand weights
  • Yoga mat
  • Sports equipment

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