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    23 Things From Amazon College Students Actually Swear By

    You're a grownup now, you can do whatever you want — yes, that includes decorating your dorm with fairy lights and taking notes in 18 different colored pens.

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

    Hey there! Did you know you get all kinds of perks when you sign up for Amazon Prime Student? We’re talking three free months of Calm, free one-day delivery for more than 10 million items, a free monthly Grubhub+ Student membership, and more. And of course, Prime Video is included (happy bingeing). Campus life just got a little easier — you can even start with a six month free trial. 

    1. A string light curtain to help jazz up the white cinder block shoebox affectionately known as a "dorm" you now spend all of your time in.

    reviewer's yellow-toned string light curtain behind their bed
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "I bought these for my dorm, and I really like them. The light is just enough to light the room, and they were easy to put together. They are not Christmas lights, which is nice because they do not put off any heat. They have different settings, but I prefer the solid light. I keep them on for a majority of the day, and they are very nice to look at." —shilscher

    Price: $17.99+ (available in white or color versions)

    2. A pair of fluffy crisscross slippers, because padding to the shared hall bathroom before your 8 a.m. class feels so much better when you're wearing trendy, comfy footwear.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Promising review: "Bought these to wear around my college dorm and hall! They're so comfortable! Highly recommend." —Angelina

    Price: $16.99+ (available in women's sizes 4.5–10.5 and 14 colors and patterns)

    3. A desktop shelf and organizer so you can keep your desk tidy *and* display cute pictures and keepsakes at the same time.

    the light wood desk organizer holding various knickknacks on a desk with notebooks
    amazon.com

    The shelf comes in two parts that are easy to assemble, as well as adjustable to fit your space perfectly.

    Promising review: "I got this to put on my desk in my dorm to provide more storage and I was blown away by the quality. It held all my notebooks and textbooks no problem. I've had a full-sized fern in a terra-cotta pot on it and it hasn't bellowed or buckled. It has many different slots so I could keep all my sticky notes, notecards, paperclips, etc. in arm's reach. It was very easy to assemble and even came with the screwdriver to put it together. I highly recommend it especially if you're a college student or work at a desk frequently." —Breanna Jones

    Price: $27.99 (available in three colors)

    4. A set of cascading hangers, because you knew the dorm closet was gonna be small, but still overpacked anyway. It's a tale as old as time, but these will help.

    reviewer's clothes hung vertically using the cascading hangers
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "I brought waaaayyyyy too many clothes to college (Fashion merchandising major. Sue me.) and these were the ONLY way to get all my clothes to fit in the limited closet space provided in a college dorm. It's certainly not as nice as having all your clothes hung on the rack normally because you lose some visibility and clothes on the bottom can be slightly difficult to access, but if you're desperate for space they are a true lifesaver. They're super sturdy and I never had any issues with them breaking in all four years of college." —Danielle Healy, BuzzFeed Staff

    Price: $14.99 (available in two colors)

    5. A Keurig K-Mini coffee maker so you can whip up a quick cup of java in the dead of night while studying or in the morning to avoid the crowded dining hall.

    reviewer's slim light blue keurig on their counter
    amazon.com

    Need some coffee to go with? Try this variety pack of 60 K-Cups ($36.99) or these reusable K-Cups ($12.95) for a low-waste option.

    Promising review: "It’s the PERFECT size for my dorm room. Super pretty color and super cute. Nothing bad to say about this product. Shipped quickly and works great. Can’t wait for my 2 a.m. essay coffees with this bad boy!" —Mary

    Price: $56.26+ (available in five colors)

    6. A pair of soft Bluetooth headphones that doubles as a sleep mask to help you fall asleep listening to music or a podcast while also blocking out the light your roommate is stubbornly keeping on.

    reviewer wearing the headphones across their ears and eyes to sleep
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "This thing has changed my life. Completely blocks light, super comfortable and useful. Makes it so easy to fall asleep in a dorm room." —Gab

    Price: $22.97

    7. An 18-pack (!!!) of colorful pens, perfect for note taking or journaling. You're a "grownup" now, and that means taking detailed notes about advanced subjects in rainbow colors if you want to.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Promising review: "This is my second time purchasing these pens. They are my absolute favorite to take notes with. I used them about two years ago and then decided to purchase them again for college. I like color-coding notes and such and find these to be the easiest to write with. I love the variety of colors as well. They don’t feel cheap when you hold them, compared to some other pens I have used in the past. They do, however, tend to bleed through if you press down or color in something. They also seem to last forever! My previous set lasted a good year before I lost them." —Sarah Overman

    Price: $7.99 for an 18-pack

    8. A Nalgene water bottle, because reusable water bottles are a must while schlepping across campus and sitting in class all day. These are virtually indestructible and are a great price, meaning if you accidentally lose it while living that fun collegiate life of yours, it's not a ton of money down the drain.

    reviewer's orange 32-ounce Nalgene with a wide screw-top lid
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "I love this water bottle! I used to have a Hydroflask, but I lost it and was out $40! As a college student who didn’t want to buy another expensive bottle, I turned to Amazon. Little did I know I could get a water bottle with durability for such a low price, so I am very satisfied with my purchase. The only flaw with this bottle is that the plastic ring around the lid sometimes slips off when the cap is unscrewed, so be aware of that. But I am definitely happy with this purchase and would buy again." —Trevor Haumschlit

    Price: $11.99+ (available in 30 colors)

    For more on why this bottle rocks, check out our full Nalgene review.

    9. A pack of 24 sheet masks for keeping up a regular skincare routine on a budget. This pack comes with so many masks, you can even share some with your hallmates to make a few new friends!

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    The masks each have a different scent, but they all contain vitamin E and collagen.

    Promising review: "I am always impressed by Dermal Korea's masks. I enjoy buying them in bulk because I get more bang for the buck/more masks for less money. They all work well. I have normal skin but it tends to get on the oily side from time to time (forehead, hairline, chin). Putting on one of these masks is a little luxury for me. It has a pleasant but very subtle scent so it's not overpowering at all. They sort of all have similar scents. I just use these for a quick moisture fix or to help me relax after a stressful day. I also use them when I have migraines and lay down on my bed in the dark for 20 minutes. These masks provide cooling, soothing relief! As a college student/young adult, this is a great value product that helps me take care of my skin on a budget." —Melinda

    Price: $14.99 for a 24-pack

    10. A four-piece drawer organizer set to make the most of your little dresser and always know *exactly* where your lucky pair of socks is.

    reviewer's drawer of socks, bras, and underwear organized with the soft organizers
    amazon.com

    This set includes a six-cell bin, an eight-cell bin, a seven-cell bin, and a 24-cell bin.

    Promising review: "A great organizer! I use it for my underwear drawer in my dorm room and it really helps with organization. There are plenty of slots of different shapes and sizes so I can fit socks, underwear, bras, sports bras, etc. They also fold flat, and are easily stored." —Amazon Customer

    Price: $14.97 (available in seven colors)

    11. A six-compartment laptop backpack with vintage flair that has a large zippered section, a laptop compartment, two small front pockets, an interior power bank pocket, and two side pockets, ensuring you can stay organized.

    amazon.com

    A power bank is not included, but if you're looking for a good one, try this Anker Powerbank ($21.99+).

    Promising review: "I love this backpack! I am a college student that consistently carries a planner, my laptop, and an assortment of notebooks and textbooks. I have plenty of room to carry what I need, plus more for when I pick up a library book or pack snacks for the day. Since the port is on the outside of the bag, it lets me charge my phone and access it easily. No more losing a phone to the bottom of the bag. Overall, I enjoy the design of the bag a ton. Plus, it’s really comfortable. I find backpacks uncomfortable and sometimes painful due to a bad shoulder. I have yet to notice any significant discomfort." —Emma Green

    Price: $27.99+ (available in eight colors)

    12. A gel-infused memory foam mattress topper to turn that rock-hard dorm bed into a place of comfort.

    Amazon, amazon.com

    Promising review: "I got this for my college dorm room, as I have had problems in past years with the crappy mattresses they provide us. Using this mattress pad is so much better than the cheap foam one I had been using! I sleep better now and with little discomfort. I wish I had gotten this sooner! If only I had known quality could be bought at this price." —Lenna

    Price: $39.99+ (available in twin–California king sizes), but the Twin XL, which is most likely what you'll need for a dorm, is $42.99

    13. A clip-on reading light that has two brightness levels and two light temperature settings so you always have the perfect amount of light. Reading without risking your roomie being mad at you? Incredible.

    amazon.com

    Promising review: "I love this product because I'm a college student and need good lighting and with this I am able to clip it right to my desk and it works perfectly. With four different settings, I always have the perfect lighting for any activity. Late at night when I want to read but my roommate is asleep, I turn it on the dim setting and clip it to my bed and read without interrupting her sleep at all. The only thing that is slightly inconvenient about this product is that it has to be plugged in but other than that, I give it five stars because it is absolutely amazing!" —Amazon Customer

    Price: $15.99 (available in three colors)

    14. A garment rack and shelving unit to store coats, bags, and accessories with ease, whether you're in a dorm or a tiny studio apartment.

    reviewer's white garment rack with four shelves storing coats, shoes, and accessories
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "I’m a college student living in a room with a small closet and a lot of clothes. This rack provides a convenient storage option for smaller spaces. The rack gives me plenty of space for my clothes and the wood shelving is a nice touch to store things or decorate! The quality is great for the price! I enjoy how it makes my simple, minimal room look very stylish. I recommend this item for those on a budget that need a nice organizing piece or enjoy the minimalistic style." —Megan

    Price: $99.99 (available in two colors and nine styles)

    15. A bottle of Downy wrinkle release spray, because who has time to iron or a place to put an ironing board? Not me when I was in college, that's for sure.

    amazon.com

    Promising review: "As a college student with a full course load, I'm in and out of my room all the time. This helps me keep my clothes wrinkle free without having to waste time ironing them. It's also great as it leaves a VERY nice smell on my clothes." —Seth

    Price: $13.94 for a two-pack

    16. A pack of classic college ruled Mead spiral notebooks for some old-fashioned note-taking. Taking notes on a laptop just isn't the same, and doodling is a vital part of higher education.

    the notebook in black, blue, green, lavender, red, and yellow
    Amazon

    Promising review: "I always purchase these notebooks at the start of the school year. It has the perfect amount of pages for my college classes. I especially love how it's not too thick or thin and comes in a variety of colors." —Sammi

    Price: $9.70 for a six-pack

    17. An Instax instant camera to capture fun times with new friends — any party with an Instax is a fun one in my book.

    the Instax camera in white with batteries, camera and strap displayed on a bedspread
    amazon.com

    The camera has an LED flash, "High Key" mode to take brighter pics, and a selfie mirror! 

    Promising review: "Such a fun camera! I got it at the end of the summer to take to college with me and document my adventures. It worked great all semester, never had any problems with it! The picture quality isn’t as good as my phone, but my iPhone is pretty hard to beat. Overall, it’s a great camera!" —Hannah

    Price: $60+ (available in 13 colors) 

    18. A really, REALLY cute little humidifier to keep your room from getting too dry in the winter without sacrificing space. This one happens to look like a dog in a *checks notes* reindeer spaceship, so uhhhh yeah, you're gonna need that.

    amazon.com, amazon.com

    Promising review: "Super cute and elegant to help me sleep better in stuffy dorms! Very easy to transport with me when going on trips as well." —Bro boy

    Price: $12.99 (available in five colors)

    19. A supportive back pillow, because when a Twin XL bed is one of the only pieces of furniture you have, it's important to make it as versatile as possible.

    the pillow with two slight arm rests in blue and grey
    Amazon

    Promising review: "As a college student and an avid reader, I spend a lot of time on the couch or in bed reading or writing on my laptop. I've always had difficulty finding a comfortable position to sit and relax that didn't force me to either sit straight up or lay all the way down. For me, this pillow provides a nice liminal stage for ultimate comfort. The pillow comes compressed, and when it first expanded, I was a little surprised at how small it was. However, when I was using it, I found that the size of the pillow wasn't a problem (I ordered the standard size). It's very soft, and although the shape looks very structured in the photo, in real life, it maintains its shape while also being soft and adjustable." —Alyssa Witbeck

    Price: $39.99+ (available in three sizes and two colors)

    20. A cold brew pitcher so you can save a little money by making your own chilled bean juice right in your mini fridge. All you need to do is put grounds into the filter, add some water, let it sit overnight, and enjoy.

    Maitland Quitmeyer / BuzzFeed

    Promising review: "I was going to assemble my own cold brew system but this was a lot more convenient and less expensive. It works perfectly for my roommates and I (college students) we save money by making our own coffee." —Alexander

    Price: $22.20+ (available in two sizes)

    21. A bedside organizer to keep everything you need right by your side and avoid late-night stumbling around your room for your water bottle, phone, or glasses, often made even more of an obstacle by bed risers.

    reviewer's fabric organizer in blue tucked under their mattress to hold it in place and holding remotes, bottles, notebooks, and glasses
    amazon.com

    Promising review: "So great for college! At least in my dorm, the bed is super high and I hate having to keep getting up and down off the bed, especially at night with the really squeaky bed. I also hate sleeping with my phone next to me because it makes me immediately turn off my alarm clock! This bedside organizer is a godsend. I thought it wouldn’t be able to fit my water bottle, but it does perfectly and that was the main reason I got this. It’s nice to keep your phone in, tissues, a water, and I’m sure you could fit a book and plenty of other things. I recommend to anyone who doesn’t have convenient or close access to a bedside table, especially college students. This would be great if you have a loft bed or bunk bed. Kind of had a smell when I opened it but I’m just being nit picky. I would absolutely encourage anyone to buy this!" —Makenzie

    Price: $7.99+ (available in three styles and five colors)

    22. A small Brita pitcher to keep in your dorm fridge because unfortunately, "great tap water quality" wasn't a priority on your pros and cons list when choosing schools.

    amazon.com

    This pitcher has a five-cup capacity and can fit in most mini-fridges! The filter should be changed after 40 gallons of water, which lasts approximately two months, depending on how much water you drink.

    Promising review: "I keep this in my dorm room because my city does not have the best water. This pitcher makes water taste so much better. It fits well in my fridge and is very easy to clean." —Mollie

    Price: $19.99 (available in three colors)

    23. And littlest, but certainly not least, a mini stapler, because I got in trouble with professors for not stapling my papers enough to pass along this sage wisdom. Just buy one. Keep it in your backpack. You will need one basically every day. Don't be stubborn like me.

    the mini stapler in black next to the pack of refill staples
    amazon.com

    The mini stapler comes with a refill pack of 1,000 (!!!!!) staples.

    Promising review: "I keep this in my backpack and use it ALL the time! I'm very impressed that being in my backpack for about a year now it still is in the same condition it was when I bought it — very durable! It's also so small that it is so easy to carry around. I'm a college student and I constantly have to staple assignments together, essays, you name it, and I'm so happy to not have to run around at the last minute to find a stapler or go all the way to the library on campus just to find one. Personally, this product has been so worth it I'd definitely buy it again." —Bridget

    Price: $4.99+ (available in three colors and two styles)

    Literally you with your mini stapler:

    Paramount

    Looking for the perfect gift for any occasion? Check out all of BuzzFeed’s gift guides!

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    The reviews in this post have been edited for length and clarity.