Looking for the best places to shop for all your back-to-school needs? We’ve got you covered. If your class schedules are all finalized, it’s now time to find everything you could possibly need to make this year your best yet – especially if you’re going back to school IRL.
Honestly, the beginning of a new school year is always super stressful. For starters, you’re juggling moving into a new dorm room, ensuring everything is organized before you head back to classes, and dealing with the nervousness that new adventures tend to bring. To make it worse, going to stores during this time period is chaotic, leaving you overwhelmed and unsure of what to do.
The good news? Whether you’re looking for a new laptop, a cozy hoodie for your early-AM classes or you are looking to spice up your dorm with dorm décor, you can also avoid crowds and get almost everything you need online. And, to help you tackle the endless options, we’ve rounded up the best beauty, fashion, technology, and lifestyle essentials from 16 of our favorite retailers.
Head to Bed, Bath, & Beyond to score helpful back-to-school finds like sheets, comforters, and other dorm necessities.
Whether IRL or online, you will never leave Target empty-handed. It doesn’t matter if your after dorm room essentials or basics that’ll last you past college, chances are you’ll find everything you need to get through the yea at Target – from mattress covers to lamps, and more. Plus, there is free shipping or local pickup on most items!
If you want to get the most bang for your buck, Walmart is our top choice. Here, you’ll always score savings on everything from school supplies to bedding, which is ideal for getting yourself prepped and ready for the school year ahead.
If you’re in serious need of dorm décor inspo, you should totally check out Dormify. Dormify curates exclusive products so that you’re shopping experience is easier and you actually feel excited about putting your home away from home together.
Dermstore — aka your online BFF all things beauty — is a great place to discover new favorites. On our list for the new year? Sunday Riley’s new sunscreen because SPF always. Another pick? R+Co’s Cool Wind Air Dry Creme for those days when you took a bit (okay, maybe a little more than a bit) too long showering post-workout and have to be in class in ten.
If you’re like me, your cart on Sephora is always filled to the brim with makeup, skin care, and hai r care. The good news? Heading back to school is the perfect excuse to stock up on all those products you’ve been eyeing since you probably don’t have everything you need at school.
Ultralip, Balm Dotcom, Boy Brow… I could go on! In case you didn’t already know, Glossier’s all-time favorite makeup and skin care products are worth the hype. The new school year is a great opportunity to stock up on old faves or finally get your hands on some newer drops (like the Solar Paint).
Make sure you have all the necessary tech to start the school year on the right foot. Believe it or not, Amazon is one of the go-to places to purchase tech for the lowest price and, even if sometimes the difference is negligible, every dollar counts. Some of the top picks for a new school year include a new laptop for note-taking, a pair of wireless headphones for noise-free study sessions, and a printer to make sure you hand in all those papers you spent hours on deadline.
Nobody does tech like Best Buy, so if you are looking to upgrade your old favorites, it should be the place to monitor. For uninterrupted phone calls, TV, or reading sessions, opt for the Apple Airpods Pro. Looking to jam to your favorite tunes? Try this JBL portable speaker, which you can take virtually anywhere.
Walmart is also a top choice to score tech items on a budget. We love a good all-around store to keep shipping to a minimum.
What can’t you get on Amazon? From a new pair of jeans to a set of TikTok-viral earrings, the online retailer has it all.
Looking for basics that will last you longer than a few seasons? Head to Everlane. Snag some basics you’ve had on your wishlist for a while or upgrade those timeless pieces that you’ve completely worn out.
Chances are you’ve spotted Alo Yoga on celebrities like Kendall Jenner, Hailey Bieber, and Gigi Hadid. Its chic athleisure pieces have become a favorite of many because they’re super cute and comfortable. Seriously, you can easily wear one of these the entire day without feeling uncomfortable or like you need to change outfits. The best part about Alo Yoga pieces is also their versatility. Each piece can be paired with practically anything – whether you want to dress up or down.
If you’re looking to hop on the latest fashion trends without breaking the bank, ASOS is your go-to. Aside from its own ASOS collection, the site is also stocked with a ton of incredible brands like Free People, Levi’s, Dr. Martens, and way more. Basically, it’s one-stop shopping for all the clothing, accessories, and shoes that you could possibly need to get through the school year.
With the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale (aka one of the best sales of the year) underway, now is the time to stock up on all the nice things you’ve been eyeing. Refresh your fall wardrobe with staples like this balloon-sleeve sweater or faux-leather leggings. There are also tons of shoes available at discounted prices — from a gorgeous pair of boots to classic white sneakers and even UGG slippers.
If you prefer to shop in installments (and interest-free) but want to see the clothes IRL, Urban Outfitters is part of AfterPay’s in-store program. Basically, you need to complete a one-time card set-up flow via the Afterpay app to get your UO Afterpay Card. After that’s done, you can check your Afterpay balance and make your purchase at the register. It’s literally the same process as online, but IRL.
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