All The Sex Things You Need Before Heading Off To College

Photographed by Megan Madden.
Getting ready to leave for college for the first time can feel like your life is turning into one big checklist. You make a list of all the dorm stuff you'll need (and inevitably forget to buy enough clothes hangers). You make a list of all the books you'll need. And maybe you also make a mental list of your new, kinda hot, dorm mates based on some ~light~ social media stalking.
But there's one checklist you probably haven't made, and should: A sex list. Because if you're planning to have a sexually exciting first year, then you're going to need a few things (and not just protection). Ahead, we've rounded up some of the sex-related things you might want to add to your pre-college checklist, or at least grab once you get on campus.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Condoms

For anyone having sex with penis-having people, condoms are probably at the top of the college sex checklist. But if you either feel too weird about buying them at the local CVS or can't really afford condoms, then go to your college health center. Chances are good that there will be a bowl full of condoms and no one will bat an eye when you grab a handful.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Dental Dams

For oral sex on vaginas, because you need to use protection when you do that, too. Dental dams are a sheet of latex that you lay over someone's vulva when you go down on them, and they protect from STIs that can spread through tiny cuts in your mouth. They generally aren't as readily available as condoms, but your your college health center should have some.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Lube

Because all sex is better when you add a little bit of lube. Lube comes in two main types: water-based and silicone-based. Silicone-based lube is generally more slick and lasts longer, so it's great for things like anal sex or shower sex (not that you really want to have sex in communal college bathrooms). But, silicone lube breaks down silicone sex toys, so if you're mainly planning to use lube with toys, then you're going to want to go with a water-based formula like Sliquid.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Sex toys

Because college is all about exploration, and your body is worth exploring both solo and with a partner. Many people get their first sex toy after leaving home, because being away from your parents' house means that you finally have sexual freedom. So, go ahead and wait until you're at school to order your starter vibrator if you want. And don't worry, sex toy companies often send products in totally inconspicuous packaging. So the people who log dorm mail aren't going to know what's in your box.

Not sure what to buy? These are great for beginners. And these are really quiet (cause we all know those dorm walls are like paper).
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Antibacterial wet wipes

Because trying to clean your sex toys with soap and water in the bathroom sink is probably gonna be awkward (and you have to clean your sex toys). You can just get any kind of wipes from your local drugstore (as long as they're going to kill bacteria), but plenty of sex toys companies also make cleansing wipes specifically for your vibrators, like Unbound's Booshies.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Ear plugs

For sensory deprivation (if you're into that), but also for drowning out your roommate's sexcapades.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
Birth control and PrEP

Because no one is perfect and condoms are only 98% effective if you use them correctly every single time. Even then, condoms sometimes break. So if pregnancy is a concern, consider starting birth control before you head to orientation. And if you're worried about HIV, consider asking your doctor about PrEP. Because it's always good to have a backup plan.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
The Kama Sutra

Or at least a few good links to informative sex position roundups. Most people aren't super experienced with sex when they first start college. But missionary position gets old fast, friends. So do yourself a favor, and read up on some other fun things you might want to try.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
A one-night-stand bag

Because college hookups never seem to happen when you're totally prepared. So be like a Boy Scout and make sure you're always prepared. Pack a small bag with condoms, lube, extra contacts and solution, breath mints, underwear, and anything else you need to feel like an actual human when you wake up in someone else's bed. And carry it with you any time there's even a tiny chance of a hookup.
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illustrated by Anna Sudit.
A comfortable rug

Because those dorm room beds are really only made for one person. Sometimes, you might want to skip trying to squeeze two full-grown people into a bed made for a child. And if you're going to have sex on the floor, it'll be so much more fun with a fluffy rug cushioning your bum.
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