What do I need in my hospital bag?

As someone who packed entirely too much stuff for the hospital, and used approximately 50% of it, I’ve put together a comprehensive list of stuff you’ll actually use in the hospital (obviously, my opinion). I had a scheduled induction with Theo, so my packing list may be different from someone who spontaneously went into labor, or someone having a scheduled c-section.

Side note: I delivered Theo before COVID, so I am not sure of hospital protocols during the pandemic. I’d check with your specific hospital before you pack your hospital bag, to determine if there is anything you cannot bring with you.


Nursing Bra or Cami: 10/10 recommend these Bravado nursing camis from Target, they are for nursing but also great for skin to skin, and I can assure you these are the best tank tops that I have ever owned, and I will be wearing them long after I am done nursing!

Barefoot Dreams Cardigan: Mom spends a LOT of time topless in the hospital, especially if you are breastfeeding, so a nice soft cardigan to go over your nursing bra or cami is a must-have.

Signing the birth certificate forms, doing skin to skin in my cardigan

Extra long phone cord: You’ll be fielding lots of texts and messages, so make sure to bring a phone cord that is extra long, so you can be plugged in at all times. It might be hard to get in and out of bed readily, so this was a must-have.

Pajamas: Something soft and comfy to wear when you have visitors (although, this doesn’t matter in COVID times). Lake Pajamas is my preferred brand of jammies, and they even have maternity/nursing pajamas!

Going home outfit for you and for baby: I recommend some roomy joggers, a nursing cami, and t-shirt or sweater (depending on the weather). I am sure you’ll have a special outfit picked out for baby as well, and I am sure no matter what you have picked out, it will be too big for them LOL.

Carseat: they won’t let you leave until they see baby strapped in to the carseat, safely. The nurses can provide guidance, but they can’t strap the baby in for you for liability reasons. We chose the Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35.

Toiletries: just the essentials – deodorant, a hair brush, shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. That first post-baby shower is absolutely glorious. Oh, and one adult diaper so you don’t have to wear the giant hospital pad home. May I recommend Always Discreet? I wore them for weeks after I got home, and they even worked fine under yoga pants! Although, when you get home after having a baby, I can assure you that you will not be worried about panty lines.

Pregnancy Pillow: Hospital pillows suck. I was induced, so having the pregnancy pillow was imperative. I thought we had too much stuff so I didn’t pack it at first, but my mom brought it to the hospital for me and for that I am so thankful.

FridaMom Peri Bottle: I did not bring this to the hospital with me, but I surely wish that I did. The one that they provide you S U C K S. And this one will be your best friend, I promise.


What did I bring that I had no business bringing?

  • Kindle & iPad: any spare moments you have where you aren’t tending to your baby, or nurses aren’t barging into your room, you’re going to want to try and sleep.
  • Makeup: LMAO I do not even wear makeup on a regular basis, so I am not sure what I was thinking?
  • My own gown: I wore the hospital-provided gown for delivery because… ew, fluids (LOL) and did wear my own gown after my first shower, but I wish I had just brought some comfy jammies.
  • Post-partum supplies: I lived for the Fridamom post-partum supplies because they just made life easier once we got home (ice maxi pads & cooling pad liners, specifically) but you don’t need to drag them to the hospital with you. Just the one adult diaper & peri bottle will do. The hospital will supply everything else that you need.
  • Baby things: you don’t need to bring your own swaddles, diapers, formula, shirts, baby body wash, etc. The hospital will supply all of that. Your baby will spend a lot of time in just their diaper anyway, doing skin-to-skin with you or dad.

What were your hospital must-haves when you had a baby? What did you bring that you absolutely didn’t touch?

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One thought on “What do I need in my hospital bag?

  1. Pingback: Hospital Bag – Scheduled C-Section – Pieces of Cake Blog

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