Packing your hospital bag can be a weirdly emotional experience, as it represents the end of a tumultuous, months-long journey. If it's your first time around the baby block, it's totally easy to get overwhelmed and over-prepare. We can't even begin to tell you how many 'essentials' we packed for our first pregnancy that we never touched. A birthing journal comes to mind, however, given how impossible it is to write down all your feelings between labor and welcoming your new child into the world.
We recommend you have your bag ready to go by the eight month mark; you never know which babies might be ready to make an early appearance. After more than a decade in the maternity space, we've come to realize that no two moms or hospital bags are the same. There are, however, certain universally awesome products all moms can use before and after delivery. We've rounded up some of our favorite hospital bag posts from mommy bloggers over the year and highlighted some of our must-have items.
Megan Quint Gressel of the Quintessentials Blog
put together an amazingly thorough list
, smartly broken into the following five categories.
- husband’s responsibilities
- going home
We love Joo Kim's streamlined list
, and Mrs. Seacannon's
which includes a birthing ball - a definite game changer for some women.
Without further ado, here's our very own list of must-haves.
- Insurance card and ID
- Cell phone and charger
- Hair ties or headband—you'll want to keep your tresses pulled back and out of your face
- A towel and pillow—while the hospital provides you with both, they've probably been used a fair bit. You won't regret having your own cozy ones from home.
- Snacks—there's nothing worse than being hangry while in labor. You and your partner will definitely want some treats to keep you energized. We suggest healthy snacks like trail mix or granola, along with electrolyte beverages like Gatorade or coconut water. If you are planning a C-section, keep in mind you won't be able to eat prior to surgery
- Lotions, creams, and lip balm—hospitals can be very dry!
- 2-3 pairs of warm socks—hospitals can also be very cold
- Music—whether you're looking to pass time during your contractions, pump yourself up during labor, or have some snuggly tunes to soundtrack bonding time with your little one, music is key. Make a bunch of Spotify playlists (or burn some mixed CDs if that's your thing) for the different moods you might find yourself in.
- A Nursing bra (or two)—the last thing you are going to want to put on after birth is your old, underwire, push up br
Some cozy PJ's and a robe—of course, the hospital provides you with the 'lovely' gown, but we all know that there will be a time in the hospital stay where you are going to want to feel much more human. If you are walking the halls or receiving visitors you are going to want to feel a bit prettier and warmer too. A comfy mom is a happy one. If you plan on nursing your little one, our nursing friendly PJs are a must!
- A Sleep bra—to wear under the hospital gown. If you wear a hospital gown you will probably feel really exposed. Also, a soft sleep bra is great to support sore breasts.
- Lanolin creme—for breastfeeding. We love Lansinoh.
- Sanitary napkins—the hospital will give you some but you may want your own favorite brand.
- Comfy clothes—our loungewear is great for heading home in. You feel totally put together and cute, while feeling as cozy as if you were still in your PJs.
- An adorable outfit for baby.
- Swaddling blankets—the hospital does provide little blankets to swaddle, but sometimes it's nice to have your own soft ones. We love these from Aiden and Anais.
- Carseat—most hospitals won't let you go home without one. Make sure it's installed properly before hand.
For more Hospital Bag inspiration, check out these other amazing lists: