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    34 Practical Products For Your First Apartment Our Readers Actually Swear By

    Helpful products if you're just starting out.

    We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

    We asked the BuzzFeed Community for helpful products for anyone moving to their first apartment. Here are their responses!

    1. A fluffy blanket you can snuggle under to warm up chilly nights on the couch.

    blanket with a color on one side and white faux-fleece on the other

    "A good, thick, fluffy blanket! Because sometimes you have to choose between your heating bill or Easy Mac for dinner, again." —asalvino

    This one has two buttery-soft sides: one fleece, one faux sherpa fur. Get it on Amazon for $24.99+ (available in 20 colors and four sizes).

    2. A full-length mirror so you can primp to your heart's content, especially if you live with roommates or have a small bathroom mirror.

    white framed over the door full length mirror

    "I’ve had an antique full-length mirror for 20 years, which is usually the first thing I hang in a new home. Hard to get ready in the morning with only a bathroom/sink mirror, and not all apartments have more than that." —Lolo76

    Get one that hangs over any door from Target for $17 (available in four colors) or if you prefer something with storage, this one from Amazon for $146.90.

    3. A shelving and storage unit that can be whatever you need it to be: a room divider, bookshelf, dresser, TV stand...the possibilities are (sort of) endless., Walmart

    "I ended up buying Walmart's version of Ikea's Kallax shelves to create a "wall" that made my sleeping arrangements more private and broke up my studio into two distinct sections. I was going to fill the shelves with knick-knacks from my travels, but decided to put in little bins in the end because they offered a TON of storage space and even more privacy for my bed. It was a great purchase and totally changed my living space, and people mention how functional/cute it is regularly!" —maggievoelzke

    Get it from Walmart for $92 (available in six colors).

    4. A coffee table with hidden storage for all your magazines and remotes, plus a lift-top so you can comfortably eat dinner on your couch.


    "A coffee table with a liftable top: the best for a comfy dinner spot in front of the TV after a long day." —samw43139c1c0

    This coffee table has over 5,000 five-star ratings — get it from Amazon for $99+ (available in five finishes and two sizes).

    5. A step stool that folds up and fits in small spaces, so you can grab something from a high shelf then store the stool away in the blink of an eye.,

    "A step stool. Need to reach the high up cabinets? Step stool. Need to reach the high shelves in your closet? Step stool. Need to change a light bulb? Step stool." —elizabethmariem4c8d8b570

    "A step stool! I’m really short and can’t reach the highest shelves in my closet or kitchen cabinets. Since I don’t live with anyone who can reach things for me, I use my step stool all the time." —izzyr42a4562f3

    Get the pictured one on Amazon for $12.99 (available in three colors).

    6. A toolkit you can reach for to assemble furniture, fix a loose screw, or double check that your wall art's actually level.

    a craftsman toolkit with all the tools laid out

    "A decently stocked toolbox. It helps if a screw on a door is coming loose and a simple turn of a screwdriver will fix things up." —jandyd

    This 57-piece homeowners toolkit comes with all the basics you need, including a hammer, pliers, a tape measure, a drive ratchet and drive sockets, a screwdriver with 11 interchangeable bits, a basic Phillips screwdriver, a basic flathead screwdriver, a snap-off utility knife, and a set of hex keys. 

    Get it on Amazon for $53+ (also available as a 102-piece set under the same listing).

    7. A shower curtain liner and shower curtain rings because you'll prooobably get sweaty moving in, and need to shower the very first day.


    "When I first moved on my own, I thought I was prepared and had everything I needed. Do you know what I forgot? A shower curtain. So I had spent all day in August moving furniture and unpacking and realized I was going to have to flood my bathroom in order to shower off the sweat from moving! Now, it’s like the first thing I set up when moving, haha." —k4dd7a9364

    Get an antimicrobial transparent shower curtain liner on Amazon for $11.99+ (available in four sizes and finishes), and a set of 12 shower curtain rings for $7.95+ (available in 19 colors and finishes).

    8. And a shower curtain cadddy to keep all your bath products organized and mildew-free *and* separate from your roommates stuff.

    mesh caddy with six pockets that fit a couple bottles of shampoo each

    Assuming you're living with roommates.

    Get it on Amazon for $8.99 (available in three colors).

    9. A first aid kit, some cold medicine, and other medical supplies — because when you truly need them, you probably won't have time to go get them.

    Open first aid kit full of medical supplies

    "Stock up on cold medicine and medical supplies. The last thing you want to do when you're sick is make a trip to the pharmacy." —caitlinm18

    Get the one pictured above on Amazon for $16.04.

    10. Plenty of toilet paper so you don't have to worry about running out anytime soon.

    12-pack of quilted northern toilet paper

    "Toilet paper. Lots and lots of toilet paper." —eliseg41d833732

    "Toilet paper. You’ll have deep regrets the first night when you realize you don’t have any." —jennab17

    Get 12 rolls on Amazon for $32.

    11. A good toilet plunger because you'll want to have it on hand the very first time you encounter a clog.

    closeup product image of the plunger + toilet brush combo

    "A plunger! Cuz when you need it, you're not going to want to run out and get one." —Tara Wilde, Facebook

    FYI, you definitely want a flange plunger for your toilet. The classic pink rubber kind are really just for sinks

    Get this one with a no-touch canister for storage from Amazon for $41.33.

    12. A document folder that'll keep all of your important ~adulting~ papers in one place, so you can find them when you need 'em.


    "Like anyone, my mom held all my important documents — Social Security card, birth certificate, passport, etc. As an adult, not only did I need to take responsibility for that stuff, but things were added, like my apartment lease, car payment info, credit cards, student loans, etc. Having a place to keep all that is super convenient, and much better than panicking when you can't find something. I still have one seven years later, and constantly to go back to it for the important stuff. Get one!" —angelav45d8cf1a3

    "A document box. Bc its amazing how your passport is always gone when you need it." —ryandubyahseab

    Get this 13-pocket star-print file folder from Amazon for $18.47+ (available in two styles).

    13. A nightlight + flashlight combo that can light up your house the moment you walk in the door, and brighten your day if the power goes out.

    reviewer photo of the night light plugged into power strip

    "It may sound silly, but a motion activated nightlight/flashlight combo! If you put it by your front door, it turns on when you walk in (when no one is there to turn the lights on for you). And it turns on automatically when the power goes out. It’s stopped me from running into stupid things (and made me less scared of the dark)." —mega46c2e4194

    Get a three-pack of these on Amazon for $39.99.

    14. A corkscrew with a bottle opener so when you get a bottle of wine or six-pack of beer without screw tops, you can actually drink it.

    Urban Outfitters, Wayfair

    "A wine opener." —lt071292

    "A bottle opener." —alexandraadlerm

    The ~Corkatoo~ (on the left) works like a classic waiter's wine key: it's beak's also a bottle opener. Get it on Wayfair for $16.54.

    You can also get other options on Amazon: a plain but well-reviewed traditional wine key for $12.94 (available in nine colors), or a multifunctional corkscrew and bottle opener for $13.99 (available in four colors).

    15. A smooth-edge can opener that won't drop the can's dirty lid into your favorite tomato soup.

    "A freaking can opener. Seriously, I thought of everything BUT that. Then I wanted to open a can of green beans...." —kimw4758a2d79

    Smooth-edge can openers cut a line around the outside edge of a can, then let you lift the "lid" off easily.

    Get this one on Amazon for $23.93.

    16. A pre-stocked spice rack that'll make your kitchen look organized just by sitting out on your counter.

    rotating rectangular stainless steel spice rack with four spices on each side

    "Spices! Especially if you enjoy cooking. Found a spice rack with every spice I'll probably ever need. I use it every single time I cook." —katiequeeni

    This one's stocked with 16 spices, and includes free-ish refills for five years if you register after ordering (you just pay for shipping). Get it on Amazon for $59.99.

    17. Command Hooks and picture-hanging strips for decking out your new pad without putting holes in the walls.


    "Command Hooks and Strips so you can hang artwork (and anything else) without puncturing the walls." —katiequeeni

    I like the medium utility hooks, which work to hang backpacks in my closet, my mini broom-and-dustpan under my bathroom sink, and a bunch of other things — get a nine-pack on Amazon for $10.99.

    And I've hung several pieces of art in different apartments using the picture-hanging strips. Get 16 pairs on Amazon (which will hang four pieces of art) for $15.98.

    18. Non-stick skillets so you can cook the easy things like scrambled eggs, grilled cheese sandwiches, sloppy joes, and tacos made with those pre-mixed seasoning packets.


    "A good quality non-stick fry pan that will not warp. The cheap ones do, then they won't lay flat on the burner and nothing will cook evenly." —Donna Fanning, Facebook

    I got this set of two oven-safe skillets when I moved into my first college apartment. Seven-ish years later I *still* use them almost every week, and while there are a few stains on the outside of the pans, I love cooking in 'em. And they're dishwasher- and oven-safe. Get the set of two on Amazon for $34.99.

    19. Or a cast-iron skillet that, if you keep it seasoned, will last the rest of your life — and is the best option for searing meat.


    "A cast iron pan for cooking. It will last a lifetime." —aaroncomerford1

    But you can't wash 'em with soap — they'll rust. They're good for searing because they get *really* hot, but they also don't distribute heat as evenly as aluminum or copper (stainless or non-stick) cookware does.

    Get at 12-inch pan on Amazon for $29.90. And find the recipe for Skillet Pork Chops with Herb Gravy here.

    20. An ice cube tray because many apartment refrigerators won't have those handy ice-and-water stations in the doors.


    This one has a handy silicone seal that lets you fill the tray with water, then put on its side to freeze — no more accidental spills in the bottom of your freezer. Get it on Amazon for $10.95.

    You can also find this ice cube tray in "41 Useful Kitchen Gadgets To Put On Your Wish List," along with tons of other awesome recommendations that you'll want to add to your kitchen ASAP.

    21. And a filtered water pitcher that'll transform funky-tasting tap water into something that could have come out of a water bottle.


    "A Brita water pitcher and filter. Your tap water is obviously safe, but you don't really know how mineralized and funky your water tastes until you start filtering it. I would be lost without mine." —savant76

    "The water tastes good, and its more cost effective and saves space in the fridge compared to filling it with multiple bottles of water. My first pitcher lasted us for nearly 3 years (the handle finally cracked when we were moving)." —morganlynne823

    Get one on Amazon for $26.98 (it only includes one filter, but you can get a pack of 6 replacements — which, if one filter theoretically replaces 300 water bottles, six will replace1,800 water bottles — on Amazon for $24.88.)

    22. A Magic Bullet blender so you can enjoy single-serve smoothies in a flash and impress your friends with instant fresh salsa.

    the personal size blender

    "A Magic Bullet, because you can use it for so many cooking things and great smoothies." —samw43139c1c0

    Get an 11-piece set on Amazon for $36.70.

    Be sure to check out our roundup of some other killer (and affordable) blenders!

    23. An Instant Pot that makes both slow cooker and pressure cooker meals, cooks rice, steams vegetables, and overall just makes dinner a LOT easier., Amazon

    "Instant Pot! I know it seems like just a fad, but it's a slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer and even more. Super useful!" —colettel45fd1ba03

    Read our review of the Instant Pot here, find the recipe for Chicken Carnitas here, and get an Instant Pot on Amazon for $69.99+ (available in three sizes).

    24. Or a basic slow cooker, like the Crockpot, for all sorts of big-batch, low-stress meals.

    hands holding stainless steel crockpot with snap-on glass lid and a handle on either end

    "Literally the best financial decision I've made. Make a meal, lasts like four days. Time AND money saved!!" —lauram4b2f65b4e

    Get the six-quart stainless with a locking lid (so you can take it to a friend's place!) on Amazon for $69.99.

    25. A toaster oven that'll let you cook without heating up your apartment *and* take leftover pizza to the next level.

    the toaster oven with clear window and button side panel

    "Invest in a nice toaster oven. I use this for everything! Step up your pizza roll game in one of these bad boys." —jamieh48f700856

    "A toaster oven! They’re not that expensive and it takes the place of a toaster. If you’re making something on the small side, it’s so much easier to use a toaster oven than your full oven. Plus, especially during the summer, you’ll probably want to use your full oven as little as possible: it’ll heat up your whole apartment. That doesn’t happen with a toaster oven." —amandatory

    Get this one on Amazon for $119.99.

    26. Or just a simple two-slice toaster — because you're just starting out and you're not sure you really need ALL of these great kitchen appliances just yet.


    "I cannot stress the importance of a toaster. The magnificent toaster should be cherished and loved by all." —rhinosrule658

    Get it on Amazon for $22.99 (available in two colors).

    27. The basic Swiffer Sweeper with wet and dry pads for an exquisitely lazy way to keep your floors sparkling clean.

    swiffer on hard wood floor

    "A Swiffer Sweeper! You can use the wet sheets to mop the floor or the dry sheets to broom it up. It’s truly a lifesaver, especially if you love to walk around barefoot." —swatib4536bd892

    Get the starter kit (which includes the mop, a bottle of 2-in1 multi-surface floor cleaner, 66 dry cloths, and five wet cloths) on Amazon for $34.82.

    28. And a handy Command strip clip that'll immediately give you a place to put your Swiffer away.


    Get a pack of two from Amazon for $13.99.

    29. A decent vacuum, especially if your new space has carpet, or you plan to get a rug.

    reviewer side-by-side of the upright vacuum, and a closeup of the dust bin

    "Buy a vacuum cleaner if your place is carpeted. Just do it, even if it's like the $30 Black and Decker one I got from Walmart. Not the most powerful, but compact, light, and gets the job done." —daniellems

    "I think a vacuum is an absolute need. Carpets can get really dirty!" —aaroncomerford1

    While I didn't find a $30 Black and Decker vacuum that had good reviews (sorry, daniellems! If only), there's a Bissell that should give you good performance for the price — get it on Amazon for $97.84.

    30. Clorox wipes and Lysol spray, so you can give the apartment a quick wipe-down on day one., Amazon

    "Clorox wipes and Lysol spray. Scrub that apartment before you move in! Not every landlord has apartments or houses cleaned professionally between tenants." —aismsonntag

    Get a three-pack of Clorox wipes on Amazon for $17.94, and a two-pack of Lysol spray for $11.99.

    31. Magic Erasers, just in case of accidental scrapes, scratches, stains, and spills. Oops!


    "Magic Erasers, because the white paint used in apartments is the cheapest, most easily-marked-up thing ever." —samw43139c1c0

    Get a nine-pack on Amazon for $5.99.

    BTW, we've got you covered with some more cleaning product recommendations that are *under* $15.

    32. Barkeeper's Friend, for the day after your dinner boiled over and it seems like no amount of scrubbing will get your stovetop clean again., Amazon

    "BARKEEPER’S FRIEND!!! You can use it to scrape up crap on pots and pans, on stove tops, on tile, EVERYTHING. This stuff works miracles." —haleym45fb9087a

    Side note: while it's great for both stainless steel and enamel pans, it'll scrape off the coating on the inside of non-stick pans. So don't use it on those!

    Get a pack of four spray bottles on Amazon for $18.75.

    33. A rechargeable flashlight that'll come in handy during a power outage, or if you're trying to see something in an extra dark or hard-to-reach place (sometimes your phone flashlight just doesn't cut it).,

    These bad boys also plug into the wall, so you've also got yourself an extra bright night light.

    "If you're living alone, get yourself one of those big heavy metal flashlights and some backup batteries and keep it by your bed. It's great for if the power ever goes out or if you start hearing ~noises~ and want a weapon in your hands." –akerkhoff

    Get the rechargeable flashlight from Amazon for $10.89+ (available in packs of one, two, or three).

    34. And the classics, baking soda and vinegar, to take care of life's other little messes.

    my showerhead with a plastic bag full of vinegar tied over it with a rubber band
    Natalie Brown / BuzzFeed

    "Also, baking soda and vinegar clean SO MUCH! Gotta clean the garbage disposal? Baking soda and vinegar. Lyme buildup on the faucets? Soak in vinegar. Fried food smell in the air? Boil water and vinegar. Puke in the rug and it smells? Pour baking soda to soak up the smell. Possibilities are endless with those two." —jandyd

    This is literally how I've cleaned the shower heads and kitchen faucets in all my apartments: pour some vinegar in a plastic bag, sprinkle in baking soda, then use a rubber band to secure it to whatever you need to clean.

    Get a box of baking soda for $0.93 and a gallon of organic distilled white vinegar for $5.29, both on Amazon.

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    Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Not all products were Community submissions.

    Make your life even tidier. Check out the best all-natural cleaning products for your home, the best bathroom cleaning products, organization products perfect for neat freaks, and, of course, our ultimate guide to cleaning every single room in your house.