Things I Didn’t Bring to College But Really Needed

Some of you may have seen my post titled “Things I Brought to College and Never Used”. It was a compilation of items that I bought before my freshman year that ended up collecting dust for the next two semesters (if you missed it check it out in my archives!). At the end of that post I mentioned that I would make another list talking about the things I didn’t bring but then realized I really needed. So here’s that list!

1. Paper Towels – This one is a little funny because I actually did have these packed away up in a cabinet in my room….I just forgot I had them. So I went on for almost the entire year cleaning up all my inevitable messes with tissues (and with all the sickness I experienced first semester I didn’t have many tissues to spare). Not having paper towels (err forgetting I had them) was very annoying and made keeping my room clean much more difficult. So don’t forget to bring them (or forget that you have them), because there will be messes and you’ll probably go through multiple rolls cleaning them up.

2. NyQuil – I mentioned in my other blog that you would need multiple bottles of NyQuil due to the sickness that always ensues when living in close quarters with a lot of people. I did not anticipate this sickness and therefore did not bring any cough medicine with me. I think it may have been karma that I then ended up being sick for about 2 months of my first semester (not an exaggeration) only to then find out over winter break that I had mono. I spent many a night not being able to sleep and coughing for hours on end, NyQuil definitely would’ve helped. Luckily I brought some with me in the Spring and had a much better (and much healthier) second semester.

3. Duster – Something I didn’t understand before leaving my parents house was that things will get dusty, and without your mother there to clean these things (shoutout Mom) the dust will pile up without you even noticing it. I rarely, if ever, dusted my things and when I moved out at the end of the year I paid the price. Packing took twice as long because I spent half the time dusting/cleaning every item I picked up. For my sophomore year I’m definitely going to bring a duster and make it my goal to clean more often (we’ll see how that second thing goes….).

Side note: You might also want a vacuum (a good one and not a crappy one like I had) and/or a Swiffer floor mop. Me and my roommate had both (she brought one and I brought the other) and they really helped with maintaining a bit of cleanliness.

4. A Good Winter Coat/Scarves/Hats – This mainly applies to all those people staying in the cold states for college. In high school I never needed a really good warm coat because my time outside consisted of walking from my house to my car and then walking from my car into school. I could handle the cold for those brief moments, so all the winter accessories weren’t necessary. Once I was at college I had to walk outside all the time (to get to class, to the dining hall, to the gym, etc.), and I ended up being very unprepared and very cold! I eventually had to have my mom order and mail me a new winter coat halfway through the semester. Then, during winter break I loaded up on hats, scarves, ear covers, and snow appropriate boots. This made spring semester much more bearable. All in all, if you’re going to a school where the snow and chill are prevalent, don’t forget all the cold amenities you’ll need!

5. Extra Socks – Basically I wore a lot more socks than I expected, so I had to have my mom order and mail me more about halfway through the fall semester.

6. Umbrella – Another weather item I forgot (I’m beginning to think that maybe normal people remember all these things and I’m just stupid). Anyways, I did not bring an umbrella to campus with me because I suppose I just figured that I’d wear a coat with a hood and be fine. I soon realized that having an umbrella would be much more convenient and better at keeping me dry. Once again, my mom mailed me one shortly after I arrived at school (as I type this post I’m beginning to realize more and more how awesome my mom is; still taking care of me even when she was so far away). The umbrella became a necessity (because it rained a lot more than I expected) and I ended up carrying it around in my backpack all the time in case rain came that I wasn’t expecting.

Side note: A good rain coat will work as well, but you can’t carry a rain coat with you all the time in your backpack so I find an umbrella better. Oh, and don’t forget rain boots!

7. Hangers – This was something that I didn’t forget but I figured I’d add it to the list anyways because even though I remembered them…. I didn’t have nearly enough. I’m pretty sure I bought more hangers the day I got to school, had my roommate buy me another pack a few weeks later when she made a Walmart run, AND brought more back with me after Thanksgiving/Christmas break. Some may think that maybe I just have a larger than average wardrobe, but I don’t think I have too many more clothes than the normal college girl (although I did do my fair share of online shopping first semester which might be why I needed to keep adding hangers….just now realizing this). Anyways, just make sure you have enough hangers, you should look in your closet now and get a feel for how many you might need so you don’t have to keep buying more like I did.

Hopefully this list helps all you incoming freshman not make the mistakes that I made! Stay tuned for more college advice as it pops into my head!

From me for you,


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