What's In My Hospital Bag For Labor

lifestyle pregnancy/birth Jun 11, 2024

I'm excited to share my hospital bag checklist, including essentials for mom, baby, and partner. From comfy clothes to baby's take home outfit to pain relief tools for labor, I'm sharing all the things I have packed at 38 weeks pregnant with our first baby. 

UPDATE: I'm 3 weeks postpartum as I update this. I've added notes below in red sharing which items I used and which ones I would skip next time in hindsight :)

I'm guessing I have more packed than I'll need but I'm okay with that ;) I want options and all the comforts/tools I might want or need. My sister and I went through everything I packed about a week ago and were laughing hysterically over how much I packed. Since then, I've narrowed it down some but I'm still erring on the side of I'd rather have and not need than need and not have :)

I'm packing everything in my Away Carryon Suitcase & Beis Large Tote Bag and all the snacks are going in a large reusable Marshall's bag.

Here's A Video With Everything: Find The Checklist & Links Below

Hospital Bag Checklist For Mom 

  • ID/Insurance Card/Wallet
    • Definitely needed
  • Birth Preferences 
    • LOVED having these - it really helped everyone on the team be on the same page.
  • Affirmation/Reminder Signs To Hang On Wall & Tape
    • Didn't use: I was far along in labor when I arrived at the hospital so this wasn't something we we cared about. If I'd gotten there earlier in labor or had a super long labor (like a few days), I think these would have been nice
  • Phone, laptop, airpods, kindle & chargers
    • I'd bring an extra long iPhone charger next time! I got these a few days after labor because they're great for breast feeding too. I loved having my airpods & kindle for the time between delivery and discharge. I would also bring my laptop next time to watch TV/movies in the time between delivery and discharge from the hospital.
  • Speaker/charger
    • We had to leave a lot of stuff in the car because labor was intense when I arrived at the hospital so we didn't get to use a speaker for music but I will definitely bring a speaker again next time.
  • Toiletries: makeup, chapstick, face moisturizer, body lotion, deodorant, toothbrush/paste, disposable toothbrush, face wipeslip mask
    • I LOVED having nice shower stuff after delivery and for me, it felt really good to put on a little makeup before going home!
  • Shower stuff: shower shoes, shampoo, conditioner, facewashlavender bodywash
  • Blanket (we own 5 of the king size ones LOL...we love these)
    • LOVED having our own soft, comfy blankets.
  • Slippers
    • I'd skip next time. I was worried I'd slip in these so I didn't use them.
  • Cozy Socks
    • I'd skip next time. I was worried I'd slip in these so I didn't use them. 
  • Pillows (I ordered these pillow cases so they're distinguishable from the hospital ones and we can throw them away if needed)
    • Loved having our own comfy pillows!
  • Battery Powered Fairy Lights
    • Didn't use: I was far along in labor when I arrived at the hospital so this wasn't something we we cared about. If I'd gotten there earlier in labor or had a super long labor (like a few days), I think these would have been nice 
  • Dim Touch Light
    • Didn't use. 
  • Sleep White Noise Maker
    • LOVED having our noise maker so we could sleep better overnight after delivery.
  • Sleep Eye Mask
    • LOVED having an eye mask so we could sleep better overnight after delivery. 

Clothes I'm Packing:

My biggest priorities are comfort and ease for nursing so here are the clothes I'm bringing. I definitely have more clothes than I'll probably need but I want to have options depending on what I'm in the mood to wear.

What I'm Packing For Labor:

  • Workout Puzzle Mat (I can see myself laboring on all fours so I wanted a big mat to put on the floor that had room for my husband to also support with counter pressure, etc)
    • I didn't get to use mine because we had to leave some stuff in the car but it would have been great to have.
  • Essential Oils: stress away (for calm), peppermint (for nausea), mother mother calm inhaler (for calm)
    • Essentials oils were the last thing I was thinking about during labor but I will probably bring them again next time just in case - it's nice to know you have them if you think of them.
  • TENS For Labor Machine (lots of mammas swear by tens machines for reducing pain so I'm planning on trying it. I tested it out the other day and it seems like it's going to be a fantastic tool) & extra electrode pads & batteries just in case
    • I used the TENS for several hours at home and the hospital. It's hard to say what it would have been like without it but I do feel like it made a big difference getting through the intensity of the contractions. Make sure to practice using it beforehand so you know how it works.
  • Stroller Fan
    • Didn't use - I never got hot during labor but I know lots of other people do. 
  • Lemongrass Shower Steamers
    • These were SUCH a treat for my first shower after delivery - my husband and I each used one in our first shower after. Highly recommend. 
  • Extra Large Heating Pad
    • Didn't use. My contractions were intense at the hospital and I don't think a heating pad would have made a difference. I'll skip next time.
  • Old Bathing Suit (in case I labor in shower or tub)
    • I ended up not getting a room with a tub so didn't use but I'll bring again next time!

What I'm Packing For Postpartum:

  • Skims Boy Shorts (hoping these work with postpartum pads because they're so comfy)
    • Didn't use - the hospital gave me pads and disposable underwear that were the best option for immediate postpartum. I definitely didn't need my own underwear.
  • Knix Period Sleep Shorts (also hoping these work as pad/diaper alternative)
    • Same as above. 
  • Magsoothium (natural pain cream)
    • Didn't use - just wasn't necessary or something I was thinking about during labor.
  • Lactation Cookies (right now I have prepackaged ones a friend gifted me but if it flows, I plan to make homemade ones to share with the nurses - they sent me a recipe and said they love to enjoy them too)
    • Definitely a fun treat to bring!
  • Lansinoh Perenial Pain Relief Spray
    • Didn't use - the hospital had everything I needed for aftercare.
  • Magnesum Glycinate (for sleep and help with bowel movements)
    • I took one for sleep but it probably wasn't necessary to pack.
  • Stool Softeners (in case the magnesium doesn't work)
    • The hospital gave me these so I didn't need to bring them.
  • Wishgarden Postpartum Emotional Herbal Blend
    • I didn't start using this until a few weeks postpartum; it definitely wasn't necessary at the hospital but I am loving it now.
  • Uppababy Carseat
    • Definitely need to have a carseat ;)

Hospital Bag Snacks & Drinks

I way overpacked snacks and will definitely bring less next time ;) I'd definitely recommend some protein bars and a couple other fav snacks and drinks but that's about it.


Hospital Bag Checklist For Baby

  • Going home outfit
    • This is the only baby outfit we used. Otherwise, he was swaddled in hospital blankets and didn't need clothes :)
  • Little Sleepies Zippy (they don't have the print we got as a gift anymore but here's another one I love)
  • Kyte onesie

Hospital Bag Checklist For Partner

This is the one list that was very accurate :) I would still recommend the same items for partners after going through the experience.

  • ID/Wallet
  • Blanket
  • Toiletries
  • Book
  • AirPods, phone & chargers
  • Changes of clothes (2)
  • Sleep clothes (2)
  • Shower shoes
  • Water bottle
  • Old bathing suit or shorts (in case we labor in the tub/shower)
  • Sleep eye mask

I hope this list helps you pack what is most aligned for you :) I would love to hear in the comments - is there anything you're bringing that I didn't list or anything you wish you brought to your first birth but didn't? 

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