The Dorm Room Essentials Every Main Line Area Freshman Needs

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Freshman year can seem a little intimidating, but these dorm room essentials will help make a new college feel like home.

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The Main Line area has its fair share of colleges and universities, from the big-name Villanova University to a host of smaller schools like Bryn Mawr College, Haverford College, Swarthmore College and Saint Joe’s. For freshmen starting their first year of college in just a few weeks, preparing to leave home can seem like a daunting task. We’re here to make taking that step a little easier with these dorm room essentials.

While most schools provide a list of dorm room requirements like duvet covers, book shelves, clothing storage, etc., Main Line Today shares under-the-radar essentials your college might have forgotten to help make your transition as smooth and exciting as possible.


Soft Robe


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Making the switch from an at-home private bathroom to dorm room showers can be a tough adjustment. Getting yourself a comfy robe makes the transition way easier. A soft, luxurious robe can make you feel like you’re walking through a cloud.

Handheld Vacuum

You’d be surprised how messy a small dorm room can become even with just you and one roommate. Given that many colleges use carpeted floors, a handheld vacuum is a must-have to keep crumbs off your floor and dust in its place.

Extra Storage

However much storage you end up bringing to college, it won’t be enough. Inevitably, you’ll end up buying more clothing and/or products while at school, so the oft-used college provided dresser just won’t cut it. Check out these fabric drawers or over-the-door hanging shelves to give yourself some growing room throughout the semester.

Shower Caddy

Whether your dorm has an ensuite shower or you share a shower with the floor, you’ll want a caddy to either keep in your personal bathroom or something to carry down the hall. This handheld option is also a great choice.

Full Body Mirror


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Many dorm rooms won’t include mirrors besides what comes above the bathroom sink. These over-the-door or wall options take up next to no space for your morning ‘fit check.

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First Aid Kit

Be prepared to tell at least one story about how you got injured doing something stupid in your freshman year. Just make sure you have a first aid kit in advance before the bumps and bruises arrive.


Fake Ivy

Plants can make make a dry dorm room come to life, but between all the partying and studying, sometimes it’s just smarter to put something green on the walls before shelling out money on something that might not survive the semester.

Soft Lighting

So many dorm rooms have harsh white lighting reflecting off bland eggshell walls. Getting a set a string lights or LED ceiling lights goes a long way to making your room feel less like a hotel and more like home.


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Bring color to your dorm room with posters and art that reflect your interests. Whether it’s a classic reprint or an image of your favorite athlete, covering up colorless walls with anything goes a long way toward personalizing your space.

Related: Your Guide to Colleges and Schools Around the Main Line

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