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100-plus back-to-school deals and must-haves

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School-worthy essentials for every student

Back-to-school shopping can be challenging. From clothing to classroom supplies and backpacks for carrying gear to and from school, there are numerous items that students need to get the new school year off to a successful start. To help you shop for this busy time of year, we’ve put together a guide that’s packed with the essentials.

Whether you need crayons for a preschooler or a mini fridge for dorm life, our product list has something for students of all ages. What’s more, we’ve organized our favorite products into easy-to-follow categories to simplify your back-to-school shopping goals.  

Shop this article: Black and Decker Compact RefrigeratorTexas Instruments TI-84 Plus Graphics Calculator and JanSport Cortlandt Backpack

Top products

Champion Backpack

This backpack has everything a student needs to tote their belongings to and from school — spacious pockets, a laptop sleeve, and comfortable straps. Dual side pockets come in handy for carrying water bottles. It’s also durable and available in several stylish patterns. 

Sold by Amazon 

Instant Pot Duo Plus

Dorm dwellers have limited options for preparing meals, but the Duo Plus significantly increases the possibilities. It’s a multicooker that has nine functions in one appliance. It’s available in several sizes, but the 3-quart model is ideal for students with limited space. 

Sold by Amazon

Black and Decker Compact Refrigerator 

A mini fridge is a must-have for dorm life. This compact model doesn’t take up much space but has enough interior room for a small stash of groceries. The door can fit tall bottles and the interior shelves are removable to maximize space. It also has a small top freezer compartment. 

Sold by Amazon

Cooluli Mini Fridge

If your college student’s dorm is extremely small, that doesn’t mean they have to give up on having a fridge. The Cooluli mini model offers just enough space for a few beverages, leftovers, or skin care products. It can be powered with the included standard or USB cords.

Sold by Amazon

Elegant Comfort Four-Piece Bed Sheet Set

These sheets are available in twin and twin XL sizes that are suitable for most dorm beds. They resist fading and wrinkling, so they are easy to launder. You can choose from a large selection of attractive colors. 

Sold by Amazon 

Coffee Gator French Press

Many college students need coffee in the morning, and whenever they require an energy boost for late-night studying. A French press brews quickly and has a compact design, which are great features for busy scholars. This popular model also keeps coffee warm for as long as an hour, and is available in a choice of several fun colors. 

Sold by Amazon 

Clothing and shoes

Hanes Boys’ Eco Smart Pullover Hoodie

This kid-safe hoodie is cord-free but still blocks the wind on cooler days. It’s made of a cotton/polyester blend, with 5% of the polyester coming from recycled bottles. The fabric also features a high-stitch density for improved durability and pilling resistance.

Sold by Amazon

Crocs Unisex Child Classic Clogs

These versatile, comfy shoes are perfect for school because kids can quickly get them on and off. They’re also flexible, so they let your child move freely. Best of all, they’re available in more than 20 colors to please any kid. 

Sold by Amazon and Macy's

Levi’s Girls' Pull-On Jegging

These soft, lightweight jeggings pair well with tees, sweaters, and more. They have a slim fit from the hip to the ankle and feature a comfortable elastic waistband. They also have five pockets to give your child plenty of room to keep their essentials. 

Sold by Amazon

Barbie '90s Barbie Logo Graphic T-shirt

Thanks to the new Barbie movie, clothing with the popular character is trending. This classic T-shirt offers the best of both worlds — a fun vintage design with the timeless Barbie logo. It's available in five attractive colors and in sizes for women, men and kids. 

Sold by Amazon

Hey Dude Girls' Wendy Youth Linen Shoes

These sharp-looking linen shoes are comfortable enough for a full day at school. They have a rounded toe and a flexible design that allows the feet to move freely. They also feature elastic laces, making it easy for kids to slip them on and off. 

Sold by Amazon

Wonder Nation Heart and Unicorn Dresses, 2-Pack

From the first day of school to picture day, there are certain times that students want to wear a dress when heading to classes. Not only is this duo fashionable, but it's also ideal for budget-minded shoppers since you get two attractive dresses for a reasonable price. You can choose from sizes 4 to 16. 

Sold by Walmart

Other clothing and shoe deals worth checking out

College and dorm life

Bare Home Comforter Set

Most college dorms have twin XL beds, so it can be trickier to find bedding in the correct size. This comforter set comes in twin XL and features a comforter and matching pillow sham. It's available in 24 colors, including gray and aqua.

Sold by Amazon

Keurig K-Mini Coffee Maker

Coffee-loving students will appreciate having a quick way to make coffee so they don't have to pick some up before class. Since the K-Mini is a pod coffee maker, there's no hot plate, so it's allowed in most dorms.

Sold by Amazon

Levoit Air Purifier

Dorm rooms can sometimes be stuffy or musty, but an air purifier improves air quality, making them more pleasant places to spend time. This model is also great for filtering out airborne allergens. It's energy-efficient and quiet, so you can run it all night. 

Sold by Amazon

Highland Dunes Pettis Rattan Accent Chair

This chair doesn't take up a lot of space, which makes it a good option for a dorm dweller. But don't let the size fool you, as it has a thick cushion that's soft and comfortable. The stylish round design is available in 18 colors. 

Sold by Wayfair

Bose Wireless Noise-Canceling Headphones 700

One of the latest versions of over-the-ear headphones by Bose, the 700 wireless model stands out for offering 11 noise canceling settings so you can block out sounds in noisy areas. The trim design is lightweight and comfortable to wear. Another feature busy students love is the battery life, which lasts as long as 35 hours with each full charge. 

Sold by Amazon

Other college and dorm life deals worth checking out

School supplies

The Happy Planner 18-Month Daily Planner

Keeping track of assignment due dates and after-school activities is easy with a daily planner. This one is designed for 18 months and has ample space to fill in and organize daily activities on each date. It also has an appealing pattern. 

Sold by Amazon  

Samsill Earth’s D-ring View Binder, Four-pack

Kids always need binders for projects, assignments, and other important documents. Each of the binders in this pack of four has the capacity for 350 sheets of paper. They’re made of recycled and renewable materials, which makes them a good choice for eco-conscious students. 

Sold by Amazon 

BentoHeaven Premium Bento Lunch Box

With multiple compartments in one convenient unit, this bento lunch box makes it possible to pack a nutritious lunch with several courses. The lids feature silicone seals to prevent leaks. It includes a compartment for storing utensils. 

Sold by Amazon 

HP DeskJet 2755e Wireless All-in-One Printer

Students who like the convenience of being able to print their assignments at home will appreciate the features that this versatile printer has to offer. It’s compact, affordable, and has built-in Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and mobile printing. It’s able to print in black and white and color, and it comes with a six-month subscription of Instant Ink to support these capabilities while saving money. 

Sold by HP and Amazon

Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus Graphics Calculator

When it comes to classes such as algebra, geometry, and statistics, a standard calculator just won’t do. The TI-84 graphics calculator is packed with features for solving complicated equations. Its impressive features include a lightweight build, a large and vivid screen, a rechargeable battery and a choice of several colors. 

Sold by Amazon 

Other school supply deals worth checking out

Computers and tech

Apple 12.6-Inch iPad Pro, 6th Gen 

An iPad is a versatile tablet computer that’s great for creative individuals. A student can use one for writing papers, taking notes, keeping track of assignments, doing research, and more. However, they’re also excellent tools that allow a student to flex their creative muscles when it comes to making art, movies, and musical compositions. If you are going to invest in one, we recommend the latest 6th generation model that has the fast iPadOS with an M2 chip, a gorgeous display and secure Face ID. 

Sold by Amazon


Samsung Galaxy Tab S8

The Galaxy Tab S8 is a popular Samsung tablet that features Microsoft 365 integration, which lets your student work on Excel, PowerPoint, and Word files. The all-day battery means the student won’t have to worry about running out of power halfway through the day, and the S pen is the company’s fastest, most responsive model to date.

Sold by Amazon and Samsung

Apple AirPods Pro Wireless Earbuds

Wireless earbuds that have active noise cancellation, like the Apple AirPods Pro, are great for a student. They can block out environmental noise and allow them to focus on their studies. Additionally, they can be used to listen to educational podcasts or instructional videos. If the student needs to hear what’s going on around them, they can switch to transparency mode. What's more, the second-generation AirPods Pro have been revamped to deliver even better sound than the previous generation. 

Sold by Amazon 

Logitech C920x HD Pro Webcam

A quality webcam is essential for remote learning and study groups that can’t meet up in the same physical space. This model lets you remove, blur, or replace your background without a green screen. It offers 1080p video calling and records at 30 fps. The camera also has HD lighting adjustment and autofocus, so you always look your best, even in low-light settings.

Sold by Amazon

Other computer and tech deals worth checking out

Backpacks and storage


JanSport Cortlandt Backpack

Since it’s designed with premium vegan leather on the bottom and trims, those searching for an eco-friendly option will appreciate this backpack. A 15-inch padded pocket secures and protects a laptop, while the flap pocket is helpful for organizing cords and other electronic accessories.

Sold by Amazon

Fjallraven Kanken Classic Backpack

With over 35 color combinations and a trendy silhouette, students can finally get a backpack that expresses their style. At 16 liters, it has enough room for every product on the back-to-school checklist. Plus, it features a two-way zipper for functionality and a rain flap for protection.

Sold by Amazon

The North Face Borealis School Laptop Backpack

From school to sports practice to commuting, this backpack features the brand’s flex vent technology to ensure breathability and support. Fill it to the brim with art supplies, tech, or clothing, thanks to its 28-liter capacity and durable padded pockets. You can choose from a nice selection of colors and patterns to suit any student. 

Sold by Amazon

Herschel Heritage Classic 21.5-Liter Backpack

This backpack is lined with Herschel Supply’s signature red and white striped polyester for a flashy surprise. With a classic silhouette and diamond details, it won’t ever go out of style. It also features an interior sleeve pocket and a media pocket with a headphone port.

Sold by Amazon

Other backpack and storage deals worth checking out

  • A padded Puma Backpack with adjustable straps will stay comfortable, even when carrying must-have supplies from morning to night.
  • For a lightweight and compact option, the HotStyle Backpack has an 18-liter capacity.
  • Some students may prefer the style of this Sweetbriar Classic Vintage Canvas Messenger Bag for its versatility and spacious main compartment.
  • This Dakine 25-Liter Backpack has a large enough capacity to carry textbooks for a full day of classes or traveling between multiple campuses.
  • The HP Renew Backpack is designed from recycled plastic bottles and is built to protect must-have electronics.
  • Get the style of this 100% leather messenger bag by Oak Leathers with three pockets to organize electronics and other accessories. 
  • The High Sierra Loop Backpack is stylish and packed with pockets. 
  • A Nike Backpack that puts a new twist on a classic favorite with additional features and pockets
  • A mini version of the trendy and durable Fjallraven Kanken is ideal for young children or those seeking a compact alternative.
  • This leather, waterproof, and scratch-resistant Egoelife Canvas Messenger Bag has convenient adjustable and detachable shoulder straps.
  • Simple Modern Kids Backpacks come in an abundance of fun designs including unicorns, bold color patterns and Disney themes.
  • Styles always come back around, and this Vans Old Skool backpack is one that never stops being trendy.
  • A totepack modeled after the popular Fjallraven Kanken backpack that can be worn as a backpack or carried over the shoulder.
  • This Timbuk2 Classic Messenger Bag makes it easy to do just about anything, including commuting or rushing in between classes.
  • This Patagonia Tote Pack is made of water-repellent fabric that shields textbooks, laptops, and tablets from the elements.
  • A waterproof and stylish travel school backpack by Himawari is made of eco-friendly canvas. 
  • This tech-friendly laptop backpack by Matein is made with an external USB port, padded pocket and anti-theft back pocket for valuables.
  • This Dakine Backpack is both affordable and practical. 
  • A durable and water-repellent Carhartt Backpack is tough enough to last through just about anything


Contributing Authors: Jennifer Manfrin, Jennifer Blair, Allen Foster, Bre Richey and Lauren Corona

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