In July we welcomed our baby boy, Charlie, into the family. This was my second hospital experience and I can definitely say that I packed right this time around, especially knowing what to expect. The first time you have a baby you don’t really know what the hospital will supply and what items you’ll actually use so I’ve broken it down below for the first-time-mom (FTM) to take away that guesswork. Here’s a list of my hospital bag essentials and what you need so you don’t over pack.
Hospital Bag Essentials:
- weekender bag
- wallet & ID, black pen for filling out forms
- phone + charger
- camera (if you have one or just use your phone)
- entertainment (iPad, magazines/book, music) – you could have some waiting around to do so it’s nice to have entertainment to pass the time and take your mind off things if you’re feeling anxious
- toiletries (shampoo, body wash, deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste, floss)
- baby body wash/shampoo
- makeup + skincare (lip balm, lotion, mascara, etc.)
- hair brush + elastics
underwear– just go with the hospital underwear that’s provided; you won’t regret it. I even packed a few to take home because they’re so comfortable pj’s + robe– again, just go with the gowns provided in the hospital. It’s one less thing to pack and unless you have a rotating door of visitors you need to dress up for then the gowns will do the trick
- nursing bra – comfortable one to sleep in
- coming home outfit for you to wear
- coming home outfit for baby, 1-2 undershirts
- flip flops (NOT slippers)
- muslin swaddle blankets
- baby wipes + diapers – the hospital provides you with plenty of diapers for your stay but you may prefer a specific brand. With my two boys I use Huggies and love the fit but my friends that have girls prefer Pampers
pads– the hospital also provides you with an abundant supply of pads, even the frozen ones
- car seat + car seat cover
- snacks – in case the cafeteria is closed and you don’t want vending machine food
- The OneCover – Serenity Stripe – I love this breathable protective car seat cover by Love my Life Boutique. We packed it for the hospital because we knew once we left our room there would be germs, construction dust, sun, smoky air, and strangers that we wanted to protect Charlie from. The fabric is amazing; it is so soft and buttery. It stretches beautifully without losing it’s shape or having the pattern fade. My other favourite feature is that it has a reversible pocket sewn on the side of the cover. The entire cover folds up into the pocket creating a compact little pouch to store in your bag. Genius.
- Rosa Cream – Ferlow Botanicals – Grab your favourite daily moisturizer to keep your skin hydrated in the hospital. The Rosa Cream by Ferlow Botanicals is my fave and will keep you feeling rejuvenated after a tough labour.
- T-shirt Dress – Wilfred Free – After having a baby your stomach reduces its size back to about a 3-5 month pregnant person so you’ll want to either wear maternity clothes home or something loose and comfy that isn’t restricting. I’ve always had summer babies so I personally opt for the t-shirt dress every time because it’s breathable in the summer heat.
- Crown Print Jumpsuit – Jacadi – A cozy onesie is the perfect option to take your baby home in. (The hospital will provide you with a cute hat so you don’t necessarily have to worry about packing one if you’re fine with a knitted option.) I love this soft cotton jumpsuit with striped trim and cozy covered feet by Jacadi. My other favourite onesies for newborns is the organic apparel line at Gap.
- Bravado Body Silk Seamless Yoga Nursing Bra – This bra is the most comfortable casual nursing bra out there. It’s supportive, provides GREAT shape, and the best choice for every day wear. Grab yours from Ella Bella Maternity Boutique.
- Metallic Flip-Flops – Havaianas – I was told by so many people to bring slippers to the hospital but I totally disagree. The last thing I want to deal with is cleaning cloth slippers when I get home. I highly suggest bringing flip flops so you can easily wash them or wipe them down if there is a leak/spill…
- Weleda Baby Calendula Shampoo & Body Wash Travel Size – Your baby will have their first bath in the hospital and you might not like the wash they use so I always bring my own. The Calendula wash by Weleda is gentle and hydrating on your baby’s skin for the first time and allows their natural newborn scent to takeover.
- Classic Muslin Swaddle Blanket – Aden & Anais – The hospital offers swaddle blankets for your newborn to use while you’re there but, I’ll be honest, they’re not great so bring your own. Yes it’s more you have to pack and extra laundry to take home, but it’s important to perfect the swaddle with your blankets so you get the hang of it. It’s also nice to pre-wash your blankets with your home detergent vs. using the hospital blankets that are washed in harsh chemicals.
Hope this hospital list helps check all the boxes when you’re packing! What’s your must-have item in your hospital bag?