I’ve always loved reading these kinds of posts, even before I was expecting – just out of sheer curiosity, but now that I’m heading to the hospital soon I’m reading posts like this and taking heavy notes.
Hopefully this post helps you plan for your own journey to the hospital and I plan to annotate it once we’re home with things that we actually did or did not use.
The post is lengthy, but hopefully you find it helpful!
Clothing & Comfort
- XL Weekender Dagne Dover Bag – you can decide to go with a carry on roller or a weekender bag. Sahir and I went with the larger checked bag because I’m a first time mom and felt more comfortable over packing. Pro Tip: Get your partner to pack your hospital bag. I know it seems like such an easy task that you can knock out on your own – but TRUST ME – you do not want to be trying to explain where things are when you’re in labor. Lay out all of the items, sit down together, explain what everything is and why it’s useful. Let your partner pack the bag so he knows where everything is.
- Kindred Bravely Laboring Gown – I plan to labor in my own gown. I heard that when you are petite at times the hospital gowns are too big and literally feel overwhelming. Fully aware that I may end up wearing close to nothing, I’ve heard that having your own robe (that you will likely toss after this experience) helps you feel a little like yourself. Thus, my own hospital gown.
- Black ruffle hospital gown for post labor and while I’m still in the hospital. It has access points for IVs, etc.
- I’m told to wear dark color pajamas and went with something that is very comfortable since I want to prioritize comfort + they are nursing friendly.
- Aerie Henley top + Beyond Yoga joggers for daytime wear.
- I packed two different nursing bras this one and this one.
- I’ve heard cozy socks are wonderful, but grip is essential.
- These slippers are so comfortable and I plan on wearing them in recovery.
- I love my slip on sneakers. These APLs are how stretchy they are, even if my feet happen to swell.
- Just buy a cheap $10 pillow from Target + pillow case that you can leave at the hospital.
- Flip flops for the shower and an absolute must have (or so I’ve heard).
- I wore this cardigan throughout my entire hospital stay, from being in triage, to labor, and afterwards.
I’m so glad that I labored in my own gown. It made me feel very comfortable to be in my own clothing and yes I threw it away there afterwards. The only other thing that I didn’t use from this list were the clothes. I didn’t wear the pajamas or the leggings + top in the hospital, but wore them as soon as I got home. I also spent most of my time braless, but your milk can come in at different times, so it’s good to be prepared. I definitely used everything else on the list and added fuzzy socks to the list.
- Toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo, conditioner, body wash, dry shampoo, deodorant – all travel size.
- I heard it can make all of the difference in that first shower to have your own towel after you deliver vs. the hospital’s towels that are rough and small.
- Keep makeup removing or face wipes – anything to freshen up.
- Solimo Prenatal vitamins* – the hospital can provide you with prenatal vitamins, but if you prefer your own, remember to pack them.
- Face moisturizer, body lotion, stretch mark cream, chapstick – the hospital can be super drying so whatever makes you feel good.
- Hairbrush + hair ties
- Eye sleeping mask
Sahir and I used everything on this list and I’m glad we packed it so it was easy to find and use. The only thing we missed were Sahir’s medications and had to have his brother bring them on day 2 in the hospital.
- We don’t know when I’ll be able to eat, but we’ve heard horror stories about husbands who didn’t eat for 24 hours because of the chaos and fainted. I packed Sahir a ton of protein bars, nuts, and other good quality snacks
- We plan on keeping this light with us when we want to turn off the florescent hospital lights, mood setting is important when it comes to the labor room.
- They say you should bring at least two of these if you can, but I don’t plan on being on my phone often. We have at least one packed.
- We preloaded our iPad with my favorite tv shows, movies, and things for if labor is stalled.
- I was hesitant on this because I’m literally always cold, but a L&D nurse said that post baby your hormones will go crazy and its nice to have since fans are hard to come by in the hospital. I grabbed the one that we got for the stroller.
Related: My Baby Registry Must-Haves
We used all of the snacks over the course of our time in the hospital, so I definitely feel good about packing them. Also, let’s talk about the nightlight. We still use this every single day with Mila. It’s such a good light! It’s a nursery must have for us and I’m so glad we had it during labor. I didn’t use the iPad for long, but we snuck in about an episode and a half of the Mindy project.
Mom’s Care & Meds
Note: most of this will be given to you from your hospital. I’ve heard you should also bring an empty bag to take extra supplies, like the mesh undies.
- Frida Mom post partum box – this is a huge box but has pretty much everything you need it in.
- Frida Mom spray bottle – well except this, you have to buy this separately.
- Dermoplast spray – to relive any itching or burning
- Tucks pads – these are soaked in witch hazel and essential for recovery
- Lansinoh Disposable Nursing Pads
- Earth Mama Nipple Butter
- Spectra S2 Breast pump (optional) I’ve heard you can bring this is you want them to show you how to use it.
So, I didn’t actually use any of these except for the Earth Mama Nipple Butter. Everything else I used from the hospital and didn’t touch most of this. I’m glad I had it, but truly the hospital has everything. Especially the mesh undies and pads – use it all from the hospital, and TAKE IT ALL WITH YOU.
- When you’re picking out a cute newborn outfit, don’t go with any of the gowns. You’ll need access to the baby’s feet because the baby will have a band on his/her ankle so you’ll need to have access to their feet. This & this is what we chose.
- Because you aren’t sure of the size of the baby, grab a 0-3 month outfit with the same rules as above. We did this one.
- A cute swaddle, we got this one from Amazon.
- A cute hat and/or bow.
- We got the cutest newborn socks! Needed to grab size 000 for her and it was still a little big.
- Personalized name announcement card.
We kept Mila in her hospital robe for the first day, but it was fun to play dress up with her before we got home. You can always do proper photos when you get home. We only ended up putting her in one thing, but the swaddle was essential.
Hopefully you find this post helpful as you start to plan your own hospital bag journey. We started pulling items together at the start of my third trimester at 28 weeks and put the bag in the car around 32 weeks. I went into labor at 37, and I’m so glad the car was completely packed.