I remember trying to find lists for hospital bags during my first pregnancy. I was trying to refresh my memory this time around, and I came across a post that literally had seven bags. Seven. I think most of us will be in a hospital close to civilization, so this is just crazy. Moms have enough to do, especially at this point in our pregnancy, and packing a bag should be a simple thing.
I don’t require many things, and I probably over packed the first time. Not only do I have some experience now, but we’ll also be at a hospital much closer to home in case we need something. If I have a hot shower and lotion, I’m a happy camper. I know there are those who would rather power through than use a hospital shower. Everyone is different, so feel free to make the list your own. However, just remember that it’s only a couple of days and you aren’t stranded on an island.
- 2 Nursing Sleep Bras- I’ll wear one during delivery, and have a second one to switch to later. One of mine is like this.
- Comfy Clothes- 1-2 outfits of lounge pants, nursing tanks, or PJs. I would try to stick to darker colors, and nothing that you love just in case. If something gets ruined or you run out, there are always hospital gowns.
- Going Home Outfit- Depending on what you wore in the hospital, you could potentially use the same thing. You’ll still be very swollen and look multiple months pregnant, so pack maternity clothes. If you don’t, at least lie to me to make me feel better.
- Flip-flops- These work for showering and walking the floor.
- Glasses/Contacts- Because its nice to see the human you made.
- Makeup- My everyday makeup takes about 3 minutes to apply, so I’m bringing it along to feel a little more human and put together for pictures. For me this happened the next day after I was able to shower. I’m not one to be concerned during actual labor.
- Labor Items- Bring items to help you feel comfortable like a tennis ball to massage or a speaker for a playlist.
- Toothbrush & toothpaste
- Lotion- Again, imperative for me
- Shampoo, Conditioner, and Soap- Many hospitals may provide, but if you’re particular you can bring your own travel versions
- Hair ties
- Lip balm
- Pillow- Make sure to have a non-white pillowcase
- Outfits- At the very least, some clean underwear. I had my husband bring a zip up hoodie so he could easily do skin to skin while still being comfortable.
- Snacks- Pack a few to get through some long stretches. Just remember you aren’t in the middle of nowhere and food will come again. You could also throw in some quarters for a vending machine.
- Toiletries- Share what you can from the list above, but bring some of their own if needed
- Onesies or Sleepers- The hospital will dress the baby, but I did bring a few last time.
- Going Home Outfit
- Phone Chargers
- Checkbook- We bring ours to write a check for the birth certificate
- Laptop and charger
- Insurance Card
- Nursing Cover- I think breastfeeding is hard enough without adding a cover, but you may want to bring it if it makes you more comfortable.
- Socks- Most other lists will tell you to pack nice fluffy socks. I’m naturally very warm, and the hospital also provides the socks with treads. For me, the provided socks work perfectly well for a stroll around the maternity floor.
- Nipple Cream- I didn’t use any in the hospital, but did once I got home. If you are particular about the brand, it doesn’t take up much room in your bag. The first time I used this, and I was recently given a second type at my sprinkle.
- Robe- This will definitely be in my bag because its easy to throw on over the hospital gown, tanks, or pjs. I have a thin cotton one like this.
- Baby Blanket- The hospital will swaddle the baby, but it can be nice to have your own. It can also double for the ride home depending on the season.
- Big Sibling Gift- This is obviously not something I had the first time, but I’m packing something small for my oldest to open.
- Camera- If you want more than your phone.
- No Jeans- I had time to get ready the morning I went to the hospital, so I had planned on just wearing the same outfit on the way home. However I wore full panel maternity jeans and ended up having a c-section. The seam between the panel and denim was right near my incision, so I luckily had some leggings as backup. It wasn’t the best outfit, but you really just need to ride home.
- Divide Bags- Pack your bags for when you need them, not who they are for. For example, but everything for mom, labor, and electronics in one bag. The baby and partner items can be in a second bag for later.
- No underwear- Hear me out. While they aren’t the most attractive, the hospital will provide mesh underwear. I fully support embracing them for awhile since they’re disposable and aren’t tight.
- Checklist- Leave a checklist on top of your bag for all the last minute items, like phone chargers
- Take It All- The hospital will provide many items for you and the baby, so feel free to take them home.