My College

Save VS. Splurge: College Dorm Edition

As school is quickly approaching all last minute purchases are being made by college students before they move into their new dorm room. I still have a couple more weeks at home before I moved back onto campus to start my junior year of college.

Today I wanted to do a little post about which items are necessary for splurging and which you should definitely be saving your money for. There are pros and cons to every purchase, and I thought I would outline a couple that might save you a couple bucks allowing you to purchase something else or maybe save your money for a Friday night pizza run.

These are all my personal options of items that I have purchased or have regretted to purchase, and this is all based on your sole budget and how you plan to spend your 4 or 5 years in college.

Save vs. Splurge

Bedding: Twin XL Bedding
My favorite part my freshman year was picking out brand new bedding for my new room, I had searched the internet for hours and read multiple blog posts, and my roommate and I agreed on this Pottery Barn set that Amy had her sophomore year of college. Don’t get me wrong I love it but the reality for most college students except for the few is that they only sleep in a twin xl their freshman year. For me, this wasn’t the case and I did splurge on a nice bedding set, but if you plan on moving into an apartment or full-size bed after college splurging on bedding for a year might not be the best option for you.

 Metallic Diamond Print Bed Set $38| Pottery Barn Mia Duvet Bedding Set $179


Mattress Pad
This is ultimately up to you and your comfort level, but just like the bedding, my recommendation is to save, even if you were to live in an on-campus housing for four years after you move out your $300 memory foam mattress pad is going to mean nothing.

Memory Foam Mattress Dorm Topper $29 | The Purple Mattress Twin XL $699


Under The Bed Storage
Going in I knew I wanted containers and rolling drawers for under the bed was budget was tight since I had purchased bedding and a mattress pad already, so I went for the clear plastic three drawer containers from Target, I am going into my Junior year of college and these drawers just aren’t holding up anymore. I will have to replace them before I leave for school, what I should splurge on instead was these Container Store drawers while the price is a little bit higher the quality of these drawers would have withheld all four years of college plus some and if you look ahead specific weekends in the summer they offer 20% off to college students.

3-Drawer Wide Cart Storage $16 | Under Bed Storage Drawers 4 Drawers $92


Closet Accessories
When I first was looking into organizational options for my freshman year dorm I opted to purchase all the really cheap and inexpensive options that were sold at Target, HomeGoods and any store that sold dorm essentials. Purchased a couple of packages of plastic hangers from Target, what I regret to purchasing was a couple of nice packs of felt hangers instead from Homegoods or Tj Maxx. This item would last longer than the hangers that would end of breaking but also would hold up with me throughout college and to my next destination since they are hangers and I would need them later.

18-Pack Plastic Hangers $2 |  Velvet Hangers 50 Pack $20


In many cases this is just an added touch of fluff or color to the room, it’s simple and easy to pick up and there are tons of options. But you have to remember where you’re at, your freshman dorm room is going to be a place of many visitors from your hall, the snowy boots from a slushy walk to class and maybe a few spills of drinks or food when you’re trying to make easy mac at 2 am. If you think that you can maintain and manage a nice rug that will last all year then splurge for something super soft and plush might just be your path but for me and many college students replacing the rug every year might be the best option. Purchasing a cheap rug just might be your go to the path of course.

Shag Rug 4’x5’6” $50 | Ultra Plush Rug 3×5 $157


Over The Door Mirror
Essential if your dorm room doesn’t have one because we all need to see what we look like before we embark to class or out for the night but this is also college and things happen. Don’t spend a lot of money on something you know won’t make it through all four years especially if the first is in a dorm room. Target has super cheap options that won’t break the bank but is nice looking that would do a sufficient job, wait till after your freshman year if you truly want to invest in a nice mirror.

Over-The-Door Mirror $14 | White Mirror $100


Makeup Mirror
If you didn’t already have one from high school, this is seriously a must need, even if you don’t apply makeup every day. I did not purchase one my freshman year and regret it and ended up buying a mirrored frame instead so that I didn’t have to do my hair in the community bathroom. This is something that if you don’t already have I would invest in because it will seriously save so much time in the bathroom, from trying to get space in front of the mirror. If you’re not a serious makeup guru they have a lot of cheaper options just so that you have something also.

Removable Mini Mirror Rose Gold $10 | Folding Makeup Mirror $129

I would love to know which times you plan on splurging on and which you are saving a couple pennies.

Spreading Sprinkles & Sparkles,




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