What you REALLY need in your hospital bag (from a mom of three)

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I see post all the time that say “this is what you actually need for a hospital birth,” and I notice they are missing some key items. I have had three births and two of them were premature. You never know what will happen during a hospital birth and it is good to be prepared just in case. Here is a list of hospital bag essentials.

Mom to be:


Some mothers do not like the pads that hospitals provide. I did, however, I know several friends who wish they would have brought their own. Keep that in mind.


Occasionally throughout labor an OBGYN or Midwife will allow the mother to snack on food. Especially if the labor is long. (like all three of mine) Protein bars or honey sticks can come in handy. Don’t forget snacks for your husband or birthing partner!


Non-petroleum lip balm or chapstick can help keep your lips and nose from getting chapped especially if you require supplemental oxygen. If you are unaware petroleum-based lip balms cause potential risks if being used with oxygen because petroleum or vaseline are flammable. Instead, use a product like Burts Bees.

Phone Charger: 

Having a baby can mean staying in the hospital longer than expected. Make sure to have a charger handy. Most hospital rooms have outlets that aren’t near your bed.  The longer the charger the better.

Belly Binder: 

This is an awesome tool for healing and also for skin elasticity. It is also nice for c-sections. I only had it with my last, but it also gave back support I needed. The con is it is expensive. The pro is it comes in a multitude of sizes (including plus sizes) and it’s comfy.

Cozy Slippers:

Hospital floors are nasty, to say the least. While I was in the hospital I had a cozy pair of slippers like these to keep my feet warm and clean. It was worth it.

Hair Ties: 

Make sure to bring along extra hair ties. I had several ties break on me and backups were necessary on the days I didn’t want to do my hair.

Dermaplast/ Tucks Pads: 

Having a baby hurts. The healing process can also be grueling. Tucks pads are small cooling cloths that help keep the area clean and promote healing. Dermaplast is a numbing agent that can help keep the pain from being intense.

Nipple Butter/ Pads: 

Breastfeeding is painful. It shouldn’t be extremely painful so make sure to ask a lactation consultant if it becomes more than just chapped soreness. Nipple butter can numb and keep the nipples moisturized to prevent chapping. I really liked Earth Mama Organics Nipple Butter. Nipple pads are useful in order to keep your nursing bra clean and dry.Earth Mama Organics - Organic Nipple Butter

Cosmetics/ Toiletries: 

The hospital provides a few things like toothbrushes and toothpaste, but if you’re like me you will want to bring your own.

  • Toothbrushes

  • Toothpaste

  • Shampoo/Conditioner

  • Brush

  • Make-up

  • Hairspray

  • Deodorant

  • Body Spray (I picked up an all natural one so my babies wouldn’t have a reaction)

  • Body Wash (Also an all-natural)

  • Breath Mints

  • Contacts/ contacts case (if needed)

  • Glasses/glasses case (if needed)

Hand Sanitizer: 

I don’t know about you but I’m kinda a germaphobe with new babies. Especially since two of mine were premature.

Read Haydens Premature Birth Story (9 weeks early) by Clicking Here

Clean hands are a must to hold my baby. What easier way to ensure hands are clean than by bringing your own bottle of hand sanitizer.

Boppy Pillow: 

I have taken a boppy pillow to my first two deliveries and it was beyond valuable. Holding up a baby to breastfeed is tiring and a boppy pillow gives you the perfect amount of support.

Pajamas/ Nightgown x3:

I always say be prepared for at least a three-night stay. You never know and it is better to overpack than under pack. Bring at least three pairs of pajamas or nightgowns that are cozy and you can wear in the event of a c-section.

Granny Panties:

The hospital will give some “stylish” mesh underwear the id disposable and ill admit I liked them. But, when leaving the hospital, I was thankful to have my own dark-colored grannie panties in case of any excess bleeding.

For Baby:

Swaddle Blankets:

These have always been a necessary item for my hospital bag. All three of my kids needed to be swaddled to sleep the best. I recommend this brand here for their comfort and affordability.

Burb Rags/ Bibs: 

All three of my kids have had spit up issues. Burp rags and bibs are a lifesaver.

Cloth Diapers / Wet bag:

If you are using disposable diapers the hospital provides them while you’re in the hospital, (I recommend taking advantage and remember to take them with you when you leave because opened diapers and wipes have to be thrown away!) but if you plan on using cloth make sure to bring them and also your wet bag.


Babies have a difficult time regulating their body temperature, even if it warm outside. So we make sure to bring several (at least 5) outfits that will keep the baby warm. This includes footie pajamas and long sleeve onesies and pants. I always make sure to bring extra because blowouts and spit up are usually inevitable.

Coming home outfit: 

I always had a special outfit for coming home. It made it seem more real that this little baby was actually coming home with me. Some cute coming home outfits can be found here. I recommend bringing not only NB sizes but also 0-3 month sizes. You never know how big your baby may be (ultrasound predictions aren’t always accurate).


Again to keep baby warm and cozy.

Diaper Rash Creme:

Babies have sensitive skin especially fresh outta the womb. All three of my kids developed a rash within hours of birth I recommend buying some diaper balm to keep their skin from breaking down.Earth Mama Organics - Organic Diaper Balm

Baby Body Wash: 

Some hospitals won’t allow you to use your own body washes, but if yours does make sure to bring the baby wash of your choice.

Infant Car Seat: 

Every baby, of course, has to have an infant car seat. Make sure they are installed properly and that you know accurate car seat safety (i.e. where the straps belong and weight restrictions).

For Dad: 


Make sure dad has several outfits he can change into as needed.

Change for snack machine/ parking: 

In some hospitals, you have to pay for parking. In others, they don’t accept credit cards at the vending machines. Therefore, we always bring change (coins and dollar bills) just in case.


Like mom, dad, will most likely stay at the hospital. therefore, stinky is not an option. Make sure to pack dad toiletries for his stay.


Like above.


With extra batteries or a charger.

Anything I’m missing? Leave a comment!







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