10 Things Needed To Survive Winter at DePaul

Going to school in Chicago means that winters can get a little harsh. It’s nothing to worry about as long as you come prepared and getting to see a snow covered campus is totally worth it! But as a commuter student I feel I especially learned some tips and tricks to stay warm while waiting for trains and walking to campus. Here are my top ten things you need to stay warm this winter.

Thermos for Hot Drinks

I found the most important thing to have is a good thermos. I personally like Takeya, but others work great too. It keeps my drink hot all day from when I make it at home through the train ride and my classes. Sipping on a hot drink just makes the cold feel less.

Hands holding up a white thermos outside the DePaul buildings.

Hat & Gloves

While wearing a hat can seem a little silly it is a hundred times better than having cold ears. Same with gloves, it can be hard to move around and I know use your phone, but they really help beat the cold. They sell great ear warmers too if you don’t want to mess up your hair, but I love a DePaul beanie. 

Sienna standing in front of the DePaul University, Driehaus College of Business sign, with a DePaul Blue Beanie on.

Layering Up

Layers are the key essential so you don’t die of heat exhaustion while in classes, but are nice and toasty when outside. Some classrooms will be absolutely sweltering while others are a nice temperature and that can vary a lot, so having a t-shirt underneath a sweatshirt is a good idea.

Sienna smiling in DePaul with a thick pink sweater on with blue jeans.

Walking Boots

I learned that having a pair of boots made for walking is important and your feet will thank you later. The cute fuzzy boots and even sneakers do not stand up against snow and ice. Having a pair of boots that are meant to be walked in are crucial to get through the city.

A pair of brown boots standing on snow

Pack a Snack

This seems silly, but snacks really help boost my mood. I always try to pack something that I can nibble on between trains and walking around. The cold can take a lot out of you and staying full can fight that.

A white thermos with a bag of pretzels sitting next to it inside DePaul’s cafeteria

Winter Coats

The longer the coat the better! The more the winter coat covers the more heat that gets trapped in. While I love a good cropped coat, I also love my longer warmer winter coat too!


Sienna smiling in front of a DePaul University Sign, in a white long winter coat in winter.


Trying to find tissues in school is hard. I always make sure I have a tissue packet on me because they are hard to come by. Being out in the cold will without fail make my nose run and I don’t want to always be running around looking for tissues. 


Two colorful travel size tissue packets.

Hand Warmers

My new favorite addition is hand warmers. They sell little rechargeable ones on Amazon that are so useful. The charge lasts forever and they get really warm. I have one in each pocket so when waiting for the “L” my hands stay warm.


A pink circle handwarmer in a hand.


Now I know an umbrella, in winter, sounds crazy, but they come in handy. First off we might still have rain, and for slushy snow an umbrella is a life saver.


A bright green and blue umbrella with snow as a background.

Chapstick and Hand Cream

With the weather being cold and dry my lips get so chapped. I usually have at least one chapstick and hand cream on me at all times and it really helps. Also it’s no fun when your lips or hands hurt because they’re so dry.


Two chapsticks one in a pink tube the other in a brown resting on a surface.

Overall while it gets really cold sometimes, winter can’t stop the fun from happening. There are still so many things happening on and off campus. As long as you bundle up and try to think warm thoughts, before we know it, spring will be here. 


Visit DePaul!