Welcome to Ariel’s Must Haves! This list features all my must haves for college students.
College Must Haves:
If you ask my friends, what I can’t live without, they’ll most likely say music or my AirPods. There is a good reason why AirPods are at the top of my college recommendations list. I can not live without my AirPods. I love them as much as I love my cat. AirPods have changed my life to where I can’t remember what life what like listening to music before having them.
They are very convenient and easy to use. I still need to buy a case for mine. But I always keep them either in my backpack or leggings’ pockets.
2. Ban.do Planner
Ban.do has been my planner brand since my junior year of high school. As a tradition in college, I would go to Barnes & Nobles and buy one of their new planners for the year. I recommended them countless times due to their practicability and cute design. Ban.do also sells clothes and tumblers. I like their planners the best because it’s just not a planner but also has a space for writing like a notebook (for times you forget your real notebook), a sticker book, and a calendar. It has everything you need in one booklet.
3. MacBook Air or Pro
I am an Apple girl, hands down. I love MacBooks due to their reliability and their sleek design. Apple is one of my favorite brands. I love my MacBook Pro and I liked my MacBook Air. I went into details about why I believe the MacBook Air is the laptop for most college students on my post on what you
4. Backrest Pillow
This is a must for any college student or anyone in general. I love pillows and blankets. Backrest pillows are VITAL for college students. There will be times when you want to do your homework in bed (especially now with classes going online). This pillow will replace your hard headboard and provide a soft cushion for your back.
5. Dry Erase Decals
Every year since my sophomore year, I have bought Wall Pops Dry Erase Decals. I absolutely love it. These are great for those who are forgetful or super busy or if planners are not the thing for you. Instead of opening a planner, you can write down what you need to do on one of these circles and erase it right after you finish that task.
I have one of these decals right next to my desk. On it, I write down any goals I have, my typical schedule, or a few positive quotes, or my ten mantras. I also used to write down anything I had to remember for my classes, such as all the notes on the guitar neck. I recommend these for anyone who might need an extra reminder to finish tasks.
6. North Face Backpack
NorthFace Backpacks are one of the best brands for college backpacks. It can hold everything you need for class. I have had the Jester before during my freshman and sophomore years of college. The Jester was adequate for my first year. I needed more space and didn’t like the front pocket on the Jester. I carry a lot of stuff and have back issues, so the Borealis was the right one for me.
The Borealis has three sections: one for a laptop, one for books, and another for any random items you may need. I personally recommend buying the Borealis from the beginning of college because it’s worth it. It has an extra cushion for your back and two sections for drinks or water bottles. But overall, Northface backpacks last longer compared to other brands I’ve had and worth every cent.
7. G-2 Pilot Pens
G-2 Pilot Pens are my to-go pens. This brand has every kind of pen you may want. I recently just discovered their erasable pens. G-2 pens are smooth on any texture. I personally use the 0.7 mm ones. These pens help you write faster and doesn’t hurt after hours of writing. They also produce some of the prettiest calligraphy.
I love Spotify. There is not a day where I do not use the app. Spotify has a student discount that is only $5 a month to have access to an unlimited amount of music and podcasts. I love Spotify so much that I want to work there one day. *fingers crossed*
Spotify is my recommendation for every college student out there. Even if you do not get Prenium, then their free version is still great. I used the free version all throughout high school.
Chegg is my recommendation for any textbook you need. Textbook wise for my college recommendations, Chegg is my top website. Chegg has most textbooks for a cheaper price. As I said in my blog post on saving money on textbooks, which is linked below, it’s best to hunt around for prices. Chegg is one of the first websites I go to when my university bookstore charges so much for a book.
It’s definitely worth signing up for Chegg because they also offer other services, such as an internship database, a writing service, and a study service.
I purchase 75% of my clothes from Aerie or American Eagle. I stand with Aerie’s branding and message behind #AERIEreal. There are all about body positivity and loving yourself. Aerie is one of the few brands that sticks to its message and put body positivity first. They do not Photoshop or edit their models.
I personally love their pocket leggings. Most students wear activewear because it’s hot and walking around from building to building can be a workout itself. However, most leggings do not have pockets! It’s too hot for jeans or other pants and the A/C in some buildings is so cold that shorts aren’t great to wear. So leggings are my go-to bottom. Their pocket leggings can hold several items and are stretchy.
Here is my link where you get a 20% discount off your first purchase: https://www.talkable.com/x/asrM4p
College Blogging Recommendations:
I am going against the blogging grain and not recommending Bluehost. Unlike most bloggers, I did not have the best experience with Bluehost with my first two blogs. For this blog, I use Siteground and saved tons of money. Siteground is also less confusing compared to Bluehost.
As a Mass Communication major, I had to learn how to use Adobe Creative Suite. But recently, I started using Canva for my blog, work, and class. It honestly surprised me how quickly and smoothly it worked. I wish someone would have told me about this website before I signed up for another year with Adobe!
I recommend Canva for anyone novice or professionals or students. It’s a great program that allows you to make quick graphics from flyers, social media posts, to logos. You can design anything on it and its templates are some of the best.
Skimlinks is the current affiliate program I use for my blog. I love their diversity among affiliates. I recommend this program for any beginner bloggers. I’m still learning how to use their interface, but it’s been an easy process. Getting approved for their program didn’t take long or required a lot.
4. Underline Designs
Underline Designs is the Etsy store that I get all my blogs’ themes from. I love their modern, minimalists designs. The WordPress themes are easy to use and come in different designs and versions. The designs are gorgeous for their low prices. If you are looking into blog designs for something like your student portfolio, this is one of my college recommendations for blog designs, for sure.
5. Creative Market
Creative Market has saved my ass when I had to design stuff for both my blog and class projects. This website has thousands of designers and creatives selling their designs for low prices. I personally love their font bundles and freebies. If you looking for somewhere to find fonts or anything related to graphic design, WordPress themes, or stock photos, they are a great place to start.
6. By Sophia Lee’s Perfect Blogging Course
This was the first true blogging course that I bought. If you are interested in blogging or making money online, I recommend this course 100%. I was completely lost and unmotivated until I watched Sophia’s course. She was a college student who is making FIVE FIGURES each month from her blog after three years. She is literally goals.
I recommend her course because she is relatable and not sales-y about it. She is authentic and relatable. Sophia cracked the code that mommy bloggers did years ago and put in the words for young Millenials and Gen-Zs, like myself, can understand. She goes into detail about writing blog posts, SEO, and setting up your website.
Trust me, if you are interested in making money from blogging, it is worth buying this course. Click here to purchase it.
Random College Recommendations:
1. Yoga Mat
Yoga has helped me so MUCH. I have scoliosis and do yoga every day. I recommend buying a yoga mat even if you are not into yoga. Working out has also been a force in my confidence and health. I even workout around 10-15 minutes a day after doing my daily morning yoga. A yoga mat will help you motivate you to be ACTIVE. This yoga mat is non-slip and anti-tear. You have no idea how many times I have had cut my yoga mats with my sharp nails in the middle of a yoga session. It’s worth it, trust me.
2. You Are a Bad Ass by Jen Sincero
You Are a BadAss By Jen Sincero is one of the best self-help books I have read this year. I have highlighted probably 70% of the book. I must admit that some of her points are a bit hippie and spiritual—so be warned. It is the perfect amount of optimism for anyone. I have also recommended this book in my college self-care post.
3. Maui Moisture
For anyone who has curly or kinky hair, Maui Moisture is a hair brand I recommend to try out. I use their Vanilla Bean line weekly for my natural hair and recently started using their new Hibiscus Water Shampoo. Their shampoo is for most hair types and I adore it. It is HANDS DOWN the best hair shampoo I’ve used that is UNDER $10.
Maui Moisture is a brand that I totally recommend to anyone. It’s on the cheaper end but it works (for me). The brand is supportive of all hair types. It is the top product/brand for my college recommendations.
4. Lemon Sparkling Peeling Mask
Exfoliating is one step that I have implemented into my skincare routine. This Lemon Sparkling Peeling Mask is one of the best masks I’ve ever used. If I have a breakout, this mask will get rid of it. What this mask does it not only moisturizes your skin, but it shows you all the dry skin cells that were living on your skin. It’s kinda gross, I admit, but it’s worth it. My skin breakouts less. It’s easier to exfoliate after a day of sweating with makeup on. I recommend it to anyone who needs a gentle exfoliator!
This blog post was all of my college recommendations. I hope that you take the time to check out some of these products. They are some of my must-haves and favorites that I recommend to every college student.