Today marks 39 weeks (1 day) and I wanted to share my version of what to pack in a hospital bag! In all honesty, this looks different for everyone. There are minimalistic approaches to this (you really don’t need much) because the hospital has the majority of items you truly need. Since this is my second rodeo (2 1/2 years ago) I have a better idea of what to include, but it’s definitely a blur! I also included an IG TV with my hospital bag picks, so make sure to tune in! Hopefully you find it informative. Below, I’m sharing what to pack in your hospital bag for baby and what to pack in hospital bag for mom! (dads, you’re on your own!) If I’m missing anything essential, please comment below as that will be helpful to others visiting!
WHEN SHOULD YOU PACK YOUR HOSPITAL BAG?
I recommend 32-35 weeks! Maybe start adding things to a bag around 25 weeks and up to simplify the process later on. Never can be too early or too prepared!
packing cubes // cosmetic cases // luggage // pajamas // nursing tank // nursing bra // dry shampoo // phone cord // pacifier // nursing gel pads // ice-packs for recovery // baby onesie // white swaddle // video camera // adult diapers // havianas sandals // top knot hat // white sweater and grey sweats (going home outfit) // faux fur slippers // postpartum underwear // hair ties // dermoplast // frida mom spray bottle // chap stick // oranges robe
What do you need to pack in a baby bag for hospital?
- Car seat & Base: A no-brainer, but you never know! Make sure you install this at least 4 weeks ahead of time, can never be too prepared. I share my favorite car seat and base in my baby registry must haves post. So many great baby finds on there! I’m using the same one I used for Harlow to cut down on costs. Also in perfect condition! SHOP: CAR SEAT
- Swaddles: I am bringing 2 swaddles (this and this) for photo opportunities at the hospital. The hospital does supply swaddles, but I couldn’t resist the cuteness of these!
- Onesies: I am planning to bring 2 onesies (this and this) that will work for photos in hospital. They’re also extremely comfortable. Make sure to check-out my baby registry must haves post to see my favorite brands! I swear by the side-snap onesies! We probably won’t even end up using both, but nice to have options incase.
- Take home outfit: I always find it so special to get a take-home-outfit with each babe! I’m not going to give mine away, but I absolutely love this one. So soft, cozy and cuddly!
- Hats: I am bringing this top-knot hat (so cute, right?) and this one for more photo opps at the hospital! I cannot resist baby hats! I probably have 15 in his drawer at home! Again, you don’t need these — this is totally a personal preference. I’m a sucker for hats on babes!
- Pacifier: We used a pacifier with Harlow in the hospital, and I plan to do the same for baby boy. My hospital says it doesn’t affect any nipple confusion (like others suggest) and my mom friends swear by the Ryan and Rose brand! PS: Harlow actually hated the pacifier later on, I’d say about 2 months in we ditched it all-together.
- Big sister gift: Packing Harlow’s ‘big sister’ gift from baby brother! I got her this adorable doll, and sweatshirt. I just want her to feel oh so special!
How many baby outfits should I bring to the hospital?
I would pack 2-3 baby outfits in newborn size and 0-3 just to make sure! If you want, feel free to add hats/socks (although hospital will generally provide if you don’t have a preference)
HOW MANY OUTFITS DOES A NEWBORN NEED?
I would account for 2 outfits a day in addition to a sleeper at night. My baby went through plenty of outfit changes between dirty diaper blowouts and spit-up. If you don’t want to do laundry as often, maybe double this! I have some favorites in my baby registry must haves.
HOSPITAL BAG CHECKLIST
- Toiletries: Didn’t want to spend too much time on this one since it’s obvious! I’m planning to bring a toothbrush, toothpaste, body wash, contact case, contact solution, face wash, shampoo, conditioner, dry shampoo, chapstick, hairbrush, deodorant, shower gel and moisturizer. To be completely real – I didn’t even shower at the hospital post delivery with Harlow, I just wanted to get home! It’s the first thing I did once I stepped foot into the door.
- Makeup: Just to feel better (normal) and makeup remover wipes. Also good for hospital pictures!
- Hair Ties: Obvious, but you can’t forget these!
- Pajamas: OMG, this 2 piece set from Target feels like luxury quality and I cannot even believe it’s under $20! Here’s another one people seem to love (better quality) that is almost identical. I honestly lived in pajamas after delivery and at home. These feel like butter and I’m excited to be cozy! *my number one item for what to pack in hospital bag!
- Robe: I haven’t bought a robe since delivering with Harlow so I thought it was time. I mini-splurged on this one because the material is beyond. I also love the cheerful print. It’s not too heavy, yet not too light. Perfect year round! They have a few different patterns, but I just had to have the oranges! This is an Amazon favorite though! Oh, and I also wanted something pretty for photo opps at hospital.
- Going home outfit: I wanted something ‘new’ to wear home from the hospital. I got this 2 piece set and it’s beyond comfortable! Bonus: I can wear it out on those busy days, and feel like I’m wearing pajamas. I plan to wear this well after postpartum life, too!
- Cozy socks and slippers: I remember being so cold at the hospital so I really did utilize these fuzzy socks! I also found these faux fur slippers on Amazon and haven’t taken them off since. Not sure if I’ll end up using the slippers, but still nice to have the option!
- Pillow and blanket: My own pillow and blanket to bring a little slice of home with!
- Sandals: Cheap sandals to shower in
WHAT DO YOU WEAR DURING LABOR?
I had visions of a cute robe, but just stayed in the hospital gown! I recommend a pretty robe for photos though after delivery! I haven’t bought a robe since delivering with Harlow so I thought it was time. I mini-splurged on this one because the material is beyond. I also love the cheerful print. It’s not too heavy, yet not too light. Perfect year round! They have a few different patterns, but I just had to have the oranges! This is an Amazon favorite though! Oh, and I also wanted something pretty for photo opps at hospital.
WHAT ESSENTIALS DO I NEED FOR BREASTFEEDING?
- Nursing tank: I lived in this nursing tank for months and months. I swear by this brand! So comfortable and they hold up extremely well.
- Nursing bra: I got this nursing bra from Target (got so many raving reviews) and plan to pack this in my hospital bag. I probably won’t end up using it (I am small chested) but I like to pack just incase! Make sure to browse their entire selection because they have so many great ones to choose from!
- Nursing cream: I’m sure the hospital has this, but I’m bringing my own nipple cream just incase! I had a hard time with pain in the beginning, so anything helped!
- Gel pads: These gel pads were also a huge lifesaver in those beginning days.
- My breast friend pillow: I have heard so many people tell me that bringing a breastfeeding pillow is 100% worth it! I didn’t bring one last time, but plan to this time around! Just want to ensure mama and baby are comfortable. I never cared for the boppy, as it didn’t have a lot of support.
WHAT SUPPLIES DO YOU NEED AFTER GIVING BIRTH?
- Frida mom ice-packs: The hospital does supply ice-pads, but I’ve heard the Frida Mom ice-packs are awesome. I bought a box to keep at home, and I’m bringing some with to see if I prefer them. Again, I had a tear that took awhile to recover so I’m covering my bases this time around!
- Dermoplast: This stuff was my BFF! I couldn’t have gone through life without it! My hospital did have it (not every hospital does) because they are a bit pricey. I’m bringing my own bottle because they can be a bit stingy! Basically, it’s numbing spray. Feels so good post delivery!
- Frida Mom upside down bottle: The stuff nobody really tells you about! The hospital does provide you with a spray bottle, but other moms have sworn by this one.
- Pads/diapers: I’m actually bringing my own adult diapers with this time. I felt like the mesh panties really didn’t hold everything in. I had a bad tear with Harlow so relied on ice-packs and Tucks to get me through! Again, the hospital provides you with all of these essentials — these are just a personal preference.
- Large underwear: This postpartum underwear got good reviews, so I snagged a pack. I may be up for wearing it (over the ‘diaper/pad combo) All depends on the recovery.
OTHER HOSPITAL BAG MUST HAVES
- Snacks: Having gestational diabetes, I FULLY INTEND on bringing some naughty snacks with to celebrate after delivery! Gimme all the snacks!
- Mints/sugarless candy: Your mouth can get dry, so anything to have on hand is a big help! I stocked up on mints!
- Wallet: Don’t forget your license!
- Long phone-charging cord: You never know where the outlet is, so everyone always tells you to bring an extra long charging cord. Can be some long nights in the hospital, so this is essential!
- Video camera: I never see a video camera on other lists, but bring it! OMG, we have so many darling videos of when Harlow was at the hospital and they just don’t compare to those iPhone videos we store in the cloud — you know?!
- Gifts for nursing staff: I love the idea of gifting staff since they have to put up with me! Whether it’s donuts/coffee, or small gift-cards — anything helps and brightens their day!
- iPad: If you’re getting induced, or know you’ll be there for an extra amount of time — not a bad idea to bring an ipad to watch shows, play games, etc.
What did you pack in your hospital bag?
Am I missing anything? Overpacking? Let me know below!