What’s in My Hospital Bag
What I pack in my hospital bag in preparation for a hospital birth. Everything I need for mom, dad, baby and more. Plus, some packing tips + tricks I’ve learned from my 2 previous hospital births!
This post is sponsored by Chomps
It’s January! Officially baby month! I’ve got my bag all packed and ready for the hospital!
This is my 3rd baby. By the 3rd time I’m a pro at knowing what I need (and what I don’t need to bring) to the hospital. And also know that sometimes your water can break 8 weeks early before you’ve even bought ONE THING for the baby, let alone pack a bag, and it’s all just fine too. Haha!
Here are my best tips and what I pack in my hospital bag for delivering a baby at the hospital.
First, A Few Tips
- I like to have my bag packed 6 or 7 weeks before I give birth. I feel much calmer having most things crossed off my to-do list. I’ll never regret being prepared early! Plus, less for me to do once I’m really pregnant and just want to relax, haha!
- Most things you can have packed far in advance. Like clothes, phone chargers, non-perishable snacks. But some things you’ll be grabbing day of. Like makeup, iPad, toothbrush, etc. I like to have a list of “grab day of” things on the Notes app of my phone. When I start early labor, I get those things together so the bag is ready to go.
- I like using 1 big suitcase. I have a basic suitcase from Costco that I love. (the big kind on rollers that’s too big to fit as a carry-on) It’s mostly empty when I bring it. But they send you home from the hospital with tons of stuff, and I don’t want to be stressing about getting it all to fit when it’s time to go home. Plus, just 1 suitcase is much easier to keep track of when changing rooms, and for Shawn to be carrying in from the car, etc.
- To keep it somewhat organized inside the suitcase, I am obsessed with packing cubes! They’re mesh bags where you can keep “like” things together. I use these to keep all our items separate and easy to locate. I have these ones in small, medium and large. Can’t recommend enough!
What’s In My Hospital Bag
- Nursing bra (I love this one, true to size)
- 1 pair of maternity leggings (obsessed with these ones, true to size)
- 2 pairs of socks, and I just wear the shoes I wore there home
- I don’t bring clean underwear because I love the mesh hospital ones they give me for free at the hospital (and that’s pretty much all I wear as underwear for like 1-3 weeks after giving birth, haha! No need to ruin my underwear!)
- 2 comfy long sleeve tops (love these ones)
- 2 comfy short sleeve tops (love these ones)
- My makeup bag
- A chapstick (this is my favorite lately)
- Toiletries (for me that’s my cleansing/moisturizing oil, deodorant, travel size bottle of my shower gel, a mini loofah, razor, toothbrush, toothpaste, 1 or 2 hair ties, a few bobby pins, hair brush and my complexion spray that I love spraying on my face as a refresher. I don’t bring shampoo or conditioner, I’ll wash my hair when I get home.)
- Even though a lot of people love to have shower shoes/flip flops, I actually don’t (NOBODY PANIC!). If you’re someone who does, pack cheap flip flops. I’m also fine using the hospital towels, even though they’re small. I like traveling light!
- My water bottle (they have a pitcher they give you at the hospital, but I prefer my own)
- Nursing pads
- Elvie Curve wearable silicone breast pump and milk bags (my milk always comes in fast and furious, so I like to have these silicone pumps to catch any extra so the colostrum never goes to waste, and encourage my milk to continue coming in. Plus, some milk bags in case I have some extra milk to bring home. I keep any extra milk I have on ice that the nurses replenish for me. I don’t pack an electric pump. If I need one for some reason the hospital has one I can use)
- Boppy nursing pillow with this waterproof cover
- 1 pair of jeans
- 3 t-shirts
- 3 pairs of underwear
- 3 pairs of socks
- A hat
- A button front flannel (or zip open sweatshirt) to stay warm AND that he can wear when doing skin to skin with the baby
- Toiletries (he uses a lot of the toiletries that I listed above for Mama, but additionally likes to have his shampoo and hair gel. I don’t pack him a razor or shaving cream, he’s fine going a day or 2 without shaving his face)
- His water bottle
- A going home outfit (for me, that’s a basic white long sleeve onesie in both Newborn Size and 0-3 month size and some plain pants, I’m clearly not fancy with clothes at all, haha!)
- a swaddle (these are always my babies favorites!)
- 2 swaddle blankets (I love these ones, I find the hospital ones are kinda itchy and not so cute, much prefer my baby in plain white)
- a cute hat, to keep him warm AND to look cute for a picture (got this one for newest baby boy in the the color Blue Moon)
- a cute wooden name placard for a picture (I got this one) and a sharpie to write birth stats
- 1 binkie, just in case (my babies always love these ones. If I can, I try and wait a few days before giving a binkie to avoid nipple confusion, but also fine doing the binkie right away. Whatever feels best in the moment for baby and mama is fine with me!)
- travel size of my favorite baby wash (I’m so so so weird about smells, and love giving my baby a little sink bath/wet wash cloth wipe down the morning after he’s born in the hospital using a tub and towels I get from the nurses and fill with warm water and baby wash. This is not necessary, just something I love to do!)
- little nail clippers (my babies always come out with long nails, and I love giving them a little trim so they don’t scratch themself. Again, not necessary, just something I love to do!)
- newborn car seat (which we leave in the car until it’s time to come home. We don’t worry about a stroller, Shawn is fine carrying the car seat to the car)
- I don’t pack any diapers or wipes, the hospital gives me those
For Snacks + Food
I love having healthy food ready to snack on, especially important for Shawn who I want fed and alert and ready to help (and not leaving the room to get himself food at critical moments, haha!)
- 12 Chomps sticks: These are my FAVORITE clean keto snack made with 100% grass fed beef or free range turkey! These travel great, no need for refrigeration, no artificial ingredients, have 9-10g of protein and fill me up. Perfect fuel I’ll need during and after labor for a quick snack. I seriously eat one of these every day. My go-to snack! You can use code TASTESLOVELY20 for 20% off chomps.com!
- roasted nuts for a handful of protein and fat pack snacking
- a few fresh apples and oranges (I’ll grab these just before leaving for the hospital so they’re fresh)
- a small jar of my homemade mixed nut butter and a spoon. Love this by the spoonful, and to dip apples in.
Usually we have lots of downtime between getting the epidural and when it’s time to push. Nice to have a few things we can use for entertainment, and help the time go by faster until we get to meet our newest baby!
- our iPhones
- an iPad loaded with some downloaded movies from Netflix since wi-fi can be spotty at the hospital
- chargers for both our phones and the iPad
- my wireless charger (in case I don’t want my phone to have to be plugged in to the wall to charge. It also has a charger for my kindle!)
- my kindle
- a book and some magazines for him to read
Last, Some Tips on What To Bring Home
One of the main reasons I love bringing such a big suitcase is so I can bring the free hospital goodies home. Here are my favorites to stock up on.
- Get SO MANY of the mesh hospital underwear. They’re my fav. The nurses always give me like 20 pairs.
- Get lots of the pads and chucks from the hospital too for postpartum bleeding. The nurses always load me up with tons too.
- I get as many of those ice packs the hospital has as possible. The best for cooling and reducing swelling. I just shove them in my pants over my underwear. Another reason I love bringing maternity leggings so much, they help hold the ice packs in place.
- I use that squirt bottle the nurses give me to “clean myself” after going pee without wiping the sensitive area. I do this for a good 2 or 3 weeks after giving birth. I bring this home.
- I’ve never needed a ton of the dermoplast (numbing bottom spray), but the nurses usually give me a bottle to take home. I might use it for a day or 2. Depends on the birthing experience.
- I usually head home with a pack of diapers and wipes. I’m never one to turn away free diapers!
- Make sure you get any medications prescribed by your doctor. I try and not take any pain medication if I can avoid it. Mostly because it can cause constipation, and that first after birth poop is horrific enough. Also, I start taking probiotics (my Farmhouse Culture Gut Shots) RIGHT AWAY to make the first after birth poop as painless as possible, haha!
- If you have older toddler kids, listen up! I like to order and wrap up presents from the “new baby” to the older sibling(s). They get their new present right after meeting the new baby. We did this for Josh when we brought Ryan home from the hospital and it was a huge hit! Started off that the new baby is bringing him presents and making his life better! Plus, it’s fun for them to have something new to play with while you’re adjusting to life with a newborn. Do all this way in advance and have the hidden present hidden somewhere at home that they’ll open the day you come home from the hospital. This is a list of my favorite toys for kids if you need some inspiration!
This post is sponsored by Chomps! Thanks for supporting the brands that support me. This post contains affiliate links, thanks for the love!