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Which shower caddy is best for the dorms?

Heading to and from dorm showers can be somewhat of an ordeal if you don’t have a shower caddy in tow. These convenient organizers, largely considered essential dorm living investments, are an easy way to make sure shower time is as stress-free as possible.


Dorm shower caddies have compartments to organize shower essentials, like body wash, bath poufs and shaving products. Most designs are waterproof or water-resistant for quick drying. Some dorm shower caddies even double as toiletry bags or mini beach totes, making them ideal purchases for college students who like to travel. The top option is the KINCMAX Caddy, complete with hooks for hanging all your shower essentials.

What to know about dorm shower caddies

Basic features of dorm shower caddies

SALT 2-in-1 Portable Shower Caddy

Handles: Dorm shower caddies are almost always equipped with handles, as seen on the SALT 2-in-1 Portable Shower Caddy. Others have longer tote straps, like this Handy Laundry Caddy, which can be looped over the wrist or elbow for hands-free carrying. 

TravelGenixx Hanging Toiletry Bag

Loops: In addition to handles or straps, many dorm shower caddies, such as the TravelGenixx Hanging Toiletry Bag, have loops or hanger heads. These are convenient to hang from pegs or on door handles in bathrooms or showers.

Compartments: Most dorm shower caddies have at least a few compartments to separate shower essentials. Most caddies accommodate several full-size products. Plastic shower caddies have rigid slots, whereas mesh shower caddies typically have a series of flexible pockets. 

Materials for dorm shower caddies

Plastic shower caddies

Plastic shower caddies are popular for their low-maintenance designs. They’re easy to keep clean, plus they’re durable and can withstand a few years of daily use. However, some plastic caddies have nooks and crannies that accumulate mold and mildew if they’re not cleaned on a regular basis. 

Mesh shower caddies

Mesh shower caddies are appreciated for their lightweight, flexible designs. They have expanding pockets and fold down for easy storage. While they tend to dry quickly, mesh caddies take longer to dry than plastic shower caddies. 

Cloth shower caddies

Cloth shower caddies, which typically include toiletry bags, are made with polyester or nylon. They boast the best curb appeal and are fairly lightweight in design. While these caddies are usually water-repellent, they may become saturated with prolonged exposure to moisture.

How to clean dorm shower caddies

Dorm shower caddies should be cleaned on a regular basis to prevent the accumulation of mold, mildew and bacteria. 

disinfecting wipes

While many can be rinsed off for quick cleaning, it’s recommended to wipe them down with disinfecting wipes or treat them with disinfectant spray at least once a week. It’s especially important to disinfect shower caddies that are placed on high-contact areas, such as sinks, shower floors or locker room benches.

How much you can expect to spend on dorm shower caddies

Entry-level dorm shower caddies with limited compartments cost $5-$12. Mid-range options, priced between $15-$25, include a broad range of caddies with a high level of organization. Caddies priced $30 and above mostly include travel organizers and toiletry bags. 

Popular types of dorm shower caddies

Basket bins

Basket bins, as their name implies, are the grocery baskets of the shower caddy world. They’re usually made from rigid plastic and have one or two handles. Many basket bins have drainage holes or perforations to expedite drying. 

mDesign Plastic Portable Utility Caddy

Simple and durable, the mDesign Plastic Portable Utility Caddy is a student favorite for its high-capacity design. It holds over half a dozen full-size shower products and toiletries, plus it’s available in over 10 colors. 

iDesign Orbz Plastic Shower Tote

The extra-long handles of the iDesign Orbz Plastic Shower Tote offer both carrying and hanging versatility. The caddy has drainage holes at the base and sides to help shower essentials dry quickly. The deep compartments prevent products from falling out or tipping over. 

Casabella Basket Shower Tote

The Casabella Basket Shower Tote is an affordable option that holds the bare essentials, including bottles, soap and a couple shaving products. The sleek design doesn’t have nooks or crannies, making it easy to keep clean and mildew-free. 

Mesh totes

Mesh totes are usually made of nylon, polyester knit or plastic. They allow for maximum airflow around the tote and shower products for quicker drying. Most mesh totes have flexible compartments with elastic or drawstring openings. 

SALT Large Mesh Shower Tote

A spacious option that holds a wealth of products, the SALT Large Mesh Shower Tote has room to hold jumbo bottles of shampoo and body wash. It’s made with rubbery, breathable mesh that repels water and dries quickly. 

Moyad Mesh Shower Caddy

The Muifa Mesh Shower Caddy, often called a “convenient dump bag,” lets users carry several full-size shower and shaving products. Unlike other dorm shower caddy options, this tote zips closed to secure contents. For that reason, some shoppers buy more than one to use as a makeup bag.

Haundry Mesh Shower Caddy Tote

The Haundry Mesh Shower Caddy Tote is an oversized design with a single main storage compartment and seven outer pockets. The tote features a key hook that secures dorm keys while you shower. The caddy is often used as a sand-free beach day tote. 

Toiletry bags

Toiletry bags and travel organizers often hold fewer shower essentials than basket bins and mesh totes. However, most offer a lot of organization and may include premium features like mirrors, hanger hooks or wet/dry compartments. 

Terra Home Portable Shower Caddy

The Terra Home Portable Shower Caddy is praised for its practical design, given its large metal hook and durable 600D Oxford construction. The main compartment holds up to four full-size bottles, while the outer pockets are suitable for storing cosmetics or small toiletries.

Sport Mesh Shower Tote

The Sport Mesh Shower Tote is a compact, affordable option that features two large size pockets and six smaller pockets throughout the design. It’s made with rubberized mesh and has a full-length zipper. The tote is a popular choice for carrying inside gym bags as well. 

Narwey Hanging Toiletry Bag

The Narwey Hanging Toiletry Bag is a traditional travel bag with several zippered compartments and pockets. The bag can be hung for easy access and folds down to the size of a tablet for storage. It’s available in over a dozen patterns.


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Sian Babish writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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