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The Best Dorm Room Organization and Storage Hacks

female college student moving in
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Moving from your home’s bedroom into a small dorm room can be a major adjustment. The key to “living small” is all about dorm room organization. Avoid the dreaded small-space clutter with these must-know storage ideas.

  • Keep it close with a bedside caddy: This genius dorm room organization hack is tiny but mighty with pockets to store your water bottle, phone, and laptop. No assembly required, just slide the bedside caddy between your mattress and bed frame.
  • Make laundry day easy with a collapsible cart: Keep your laundry off the floor in this rolling laundry cart that can collapse when not in use. Easily wheel your clothes back and forth to the laundry room.
  • Replace a basic nightstand with a storage nightstand: Put your bedside table to work with a storage tower nightstand. The extra drawers add much-needed space, while the solid top is a sturdy spot for your bedside lamp.
  • Hang it up with collapsible hangers: Dorm room organization includes your wardrobe or closet. Hang as many clothes as possible with space-saving collapsible hangers. Keep your clothes wrinkle-free and neat without taking up a ton of space.
  • Rise (up) and shine with bed risers: Under the bed storage is vital and bed risers create instant extra space. Adjust your riser based on your needs, whether it’s a few inches off the ground or maximum height for a loft look.
  • Never forget your soap again: Lugging toiletries to the shower doesn’t need to be a hassle. Keep your shampoo, conditioner, razor, and other necessities stored in a mesh shower caddy. The quick-drying mesh leaves the water in the shower, not on your dorm floor.
  • Create your own in-dorm food station: Dorm room food and snacks are a necessity, especially if the dining hall is across campus. Keep your food items contained with a dedicated food station. The wheels make it easy to move it out of the way when friends come over to hang.
  • Over the door storage: An over the door shoe organizer is a perfect way to keep your kicks in order, but it’s also a fantastic option for storing accessories, makeup, and first aid supplies. The storage options are unlimited, so get creative.
  • Hang it ALL with Command hooks: Command hooks are the ultimate in dorm room organization. Grab a Command hook variety pack to hang your items without damaging the walls. From sunglasses and purses to plants and fairy lights, be sure these hooks are on your packing list.
  • Avoid the junk drawer with a desk organizer: Supplies can easily get lost in the shuffle. A desktop organizer will keep your homework gear all in one place. Keep it stocked with whatever you need to power through your papers.
  • Stay dry with a collapsible laundry rack: You’ve taken a shower and now have a damp towel to contend with. Keep a collapsible laundry rack to dry your wet towels or jacket that got soaked in the rainy walk from class.
  • Keep outdoor accessories accessible: Keep your scarves, belts, and baseball hats from taking up too much space with a streamlined closet storage hook. Get creative with your dorm room organization and maximize efficiency by keeping your accessories near your door or closet.
  • Access under your bed with ease: Every inch of space counts, so don’t forget beneath your dorm bed. Keep items easily accessible with rolling storage with lids. Store items you don’t want to keep out in the open or don’t need on a daily basis. The lids keep the dust away, while your contents are protected.
  • Expand your closet with an adjustable closet rod: Double a limited closet space by adding another rod to create top and bottom hanging stations. Closet “doublers” are a great way to avoid overcramming your dorm room drawers.
  • Stick on wall caddies for easy access: Stick-on storage caddies are perfect at your bedside or right inside your dorm door. Stow sunglasses, lanyards, keys, or headphones with ease.
  • Stay fresh with a style station organizer: Makeup can accumulate quickly (there are never too many lip glosses). Keep skincare and makeup at your fingertips with a rotating cosmetic storage organizer. Add whatever you need to keep you looking your Friday night best.
  • Level up with an over the desk hutch: Your school desk may not have shelving, so keep your dorm room organization on point with an over the desk hutch. Keep textbooks, binders, and other study essentials out of the way.
  • Get the message with a memo station: A dry erase and cork board combo is a great way to stay connected with your dorm mate without all the post-it notes. Use the corkboard to keep coupons or event flyers, or add hooks to hold keys and IDs. Get creative and customize your memo station.
  • Make taking out the trash easy: Keep your dorm room trash can from getting funky with a lidded trash can. Look for one that has an inner bucket. This will make emptying the trash easy.

The bottom line

Keeping your dorm organized will be a breeze when you use these dorm room storage and organization tips. Remember to look for items that are multi-purpose. And as tempting as it may be, don’t overpack.

Frequently asked questions

How do you store snacks in a dorm room? 

Keep snacks in one area with a dedicated food storage cart.

What are some dorm room essentials? 

Under and above the bed storage, collapsible closet hangers, a desk organizer, and an over the fridge organizer will keep your dorm room clean and uncluttered.

How do you maximize storage in a dorm room?

Think vertically. Your dorm may be narrow and small but adding shelving above your bed or a hutch on your desk will create more areas to store items efficiently. Don’t forget under your bed; rolling storage bins keep items contained while out of sight.

How do I organize my dorm room? 

Plan dorm room organization around the layout of the space. Check with your housing advisor on the room dimensions and any furniture included. Think about what you’ll be bringing to college and how to best keep it organized.

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