Hospital Bag Essentials – What You Need to Pack

Hospital Bag Essentials

The time has arrived for me to get organised and pack my hospital bag essentials!

It isn’t just a bag that I’ll need for the hospital if I give birth there but a collection of the essential things I will need during the birth of my second baby and in the day or so afterwards.

Hospital Bag Essentials - What to pack in your hospital bag what to take to the hospital for labour birth plan Pregnancy Hospital Bag

When I was pregnant with my first baby 2 years ago, I spent a lot of time researching what to pack in my hospital bag.  I consulted many, MANY lists on popular baby websites and magazines and packed pretty much every single item suggested.  It was like I was going on holiday for a month!  Yes, there was a bikini in their too in case I had the chance of a water birth!  Unfortunately Miss M was preterm and needed to be monitored but you can read about my hynobirthing labour and delivery story here.

In the end I think I used about 3 items from the bag and the rest was completely unnecessary!  This time round, I’m attempting to be more streamlined in my approach and only pack essentials.

So here is a list of the hospital bag essentials that I’m packing this time around and some are shown in the image below:

1.  New Baby Outfits

I’ll pack a couple of outfits, onesies, vests and hats to keep Mini warm and snug in case we need to stay in.  They’ll all be neutral as we don’t know the gender yet.

2.  Baby Nappies & Nappy Cream

Fairly obvious!

3.  Snacks & Water

I didn’t snack during labour last time but I do remember being STARVING and very thirsty after the birth so I’ll take a large bottle of water and some energy boosting snacks.  Water and meals are, of course, provided at the hospital too but nice to know I have my own on hand for when I want them.

4.  Slippers & Flip Flops
For walking around the hospital during labour so I don’t slip over – that would NOT be fun.

5.  Maternity Pads

Lovely!  but very necessary of course so I’ll be taking some of these for afterwards.  I’ve opted for Night time ones rather than the actual maternity ones because they’re thicker.

6.  iPhone & Charger

Because I’ll be playing Candy Crush during labour :)  Maybe not – but of course I’ll be calling our closest friends and family with our exciting announcement and capturing a few pics of the new baby.

7.  Hypnobirth book and Earphones

I’ll be taking my The Mongan Method Hypnobirth book in case I want Mr M to read any of the meditation exercises to me and my earphones to plug into my phone where I have some meditation mp3s stored.  Last time I took some relaxing music to listen to during labour but in reality I had no interest in listening to it and breathed my way through.  One thing I didn’t expect from my hypnobirthing experience was that whilst I was doing the breathing exercises, I couldn’t hear anything at all around me.

8.  Toiletries

I went over board here last time, packing shampoo, conditioner and all sorts of unnecessary things.  This time I’m being more practical and taking face wipes/wash, deodorant, make-up, hair bands, toothbrush and toothpaste.  I remember being desperate for a shower after my last birth but washing my hair was the last thing on my priority list so I’ll be taking dry shampoo too.  I’ll have my hair out of my face during labour.

9.  Spare Clothes & PJs

I’ll pack 2 comfortable outfits and PJs in case I need to stay in hospital over night.  I hope to have a straight forward birth and come straight home, depending on what time of day or night it is but I’ll take some clothes just in case I need to stay in.  Very comfortable and loose clothes – that baby bump doesn’t disappear over night unfortunately!

10.  Nursing Bras and Underwear

My maternity bras double up as nursing bras with clips to release the front so I’ll be taking a couple of these.  I’ll also be taking breast pads and Lansinoh cream as I intend to breastfeed again.

Well, that’s all I can think of for now – have I missed anything?  What did you take in your hospital bag and what did you find necessary and unnecessary?  I’d love your tips so please comment below!

What are your hospital bag essentials?

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Hospital Bag Essentials - What to pack in your hospital bag what to take to the hospital for labour birth plan Pregnancy Hospital Bag

Image Source: Pixabay


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  1. 30th March 2015 / 12:18 pm

    This sounds like a very sensible list! I remember looking like I was going on holiday for two weeks with my hospital bags although it did work well as I was in for a csection and stayed in for a few days! I definitely wore all the giant pants and nightwear that I’d packed and the other half had to replenish the babies clothes! There was lots I didn’t use though! This would be a very useful list for any mum to be! Thanks so much for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:15 pm

      Thanks lady! Ha ha yes, you would have definitely needed more with a longer stay! :)

  2. 28th March 2015 / 10:28 pm

    I think a flannel was the best thing I took to hospital. It was so nice on my forehead! Thanks so much for linking up to #TheList x

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:14 pm

      Oh good thinking – I’ve popped one in!! :)

  3. 28th March 2015 / 10:06 am

    Oh I love a good hospital bag post always makes me broody. I know I am weird. So excited for you! Thank you so much for linking up to Share With Me. #sharewithme

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:14 pm

      Ha ha it would put me off!! Thanks lovely :)

  4. Gemma Louise
    27th March 2015 / 9:13 am

    great post, love reading what people pack!

    thanks for joining in on #mummymonday :) love, Gemma – host xo

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:14 pm

      Thanks lovely! :)

  5. 26th March 2015 / 10:04 am

    Lip balm for sure!

    I also bought some dark coloured knickers 2 sizes too big so they could hold those damn maternity pads, and not be tight anywhere around my tummy.

    Other things I used – eye mask to shut out those bloody hospital lights, ear plugs to block out other peoples’ babies, and a few magazines to flick through in between feeding sessions.


    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:13 pm

      Oh you forget how big those pads are ha ha! :)

  6. 25th March 2015 / 11:58 am

    Im going to be packing my hospital bag next week, last time I was in and out the same day so I wrote a list and then thought this time I might not be so lucky so best to be prepared for at least one night stay in. So exciting its getting so close now :)

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:12 pm

      I’d love to be in and out if I do end up in hospital – back in my own bed :) Good luck for your birth!

  7. 25th March 2015 / 8:46 am

    I took my own toilet paper, much softer than the one at the hospital :)


    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:08 pm

      Ooh I bet – I hadn’t thought of that!! :)

  8. Suzy Walker-Toye
    25th March 2015 / 9:26 am

    I haven’t started packing mine yet, I was told jelly babies are a must thou! #madmidweekbloghop

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:09 pm

      Oh I like the sound of jelly babies! :)

  9. 24th March 2015 / 1:33 pm

    Lovely post. You seem to have the essentials sorted. I would also say lip balm, as my lips were so dry after the gas and air! #twinklytuesday

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:07 pm

      Thanks Sophie! Yes to lip balm too – I’ve just added that! :)

  10. 24th March 2015 / 8:49 am

    Great list and think you’ve pretty much remembered everything. I had net knickers in my hospital bag which were great for immediately afterwards as I could just bin them. Second time round my hospital bag was really an emergency bag as we’d planned a home birth so it was much more streamlined that with my first daughter’s birth when I had to prepare for an extended stay in hospital.

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:06 pm

      Thanks Louise! Mine is the same, it’s like a ‘just in case’ bag as we’re hoping for a home birth too – although will be handy to have the things I need in one place so Mr M can grab it all for me :)

  11. Spidermummy
    24th March 2015 / 1:57 pm

    Wow how exciting!!! Now this is a bit of a sad & sensible comment I’m afraid, but you really do need to use the maternity pads as we (Midwives) have to check your blood loss and you can’t tell on the ‘normal’ towels as they absorb more. They’re likely to send your other half out to get some to be honest. Sorry about that, just had to say!! Good luck with it all lovely, looking forward to hearing your news! x

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:08 pm

      I hadn’t even thought of that – thanks lady! I think I just used the hospital ones last time. Will add to the next Tesco order ha ha :)

  12. 23rd March 2015 / 7:13 pm

    Really good list, it is interesting what you pack, and what you leave out, second time round isn’t it? Having had C Sections both times and knowing I would be staying in affected my bag too. Thanks for linking with #MaternityMondays

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:05 pm

      Thanks Caroline! It’s such a difference from the first time :)

  13. 23rd March 2015 / 2:23 pm

    Gosh — I had SO much stuff with me — much more than you’ve listed! But I had an elective section and stayed in hospital for 4 nights after I had the twins so most of it was really useful!! One of the things I took with me was my own tea bags — as I was staying in hospital, it was lovely to have a proper cuppa whilst I was there! :) #MaternityMondays

    Caro |

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:04 pm

      Ah you need so much more for 4 days – that’s a mini break…without the ‘break’ bit! :)

  14. 23rd March 2015 / 10:57 am

    I’ve packed loads again in my hospital bags!! Although I think it is less than last time round :-)

    Helen – #maternitymondays

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:03 pm

      Ha ha I love that you said BAGS and not bag! :)

  15. 23rd March 2015 / 10:09 am

    Snap, I’ve just done a similar post, but mine is more “Things I wish I had remembered for the ward” – I wasn’t the most organised first time round, if there is a second time I will vow to be! The Candy crush in labour is an important part of the process :P Good luck :)

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:03 pm

      Thanks Lisa and I’ll have to check out your post! :)

  16. 23rd March 2015 / 8:11 am

    Yep, I packed alot of stuff I didn’t need! Next time I’d also pack a tiny baby outfit as none of the newborn clothes fit Archie as he was so dinky. Also, lucozade sport gave me a boost when I got really thirsty! #mummymonday

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:01 pm

      Ooh good tip for the Lucozade Sport – you do get thirsty and good for the energy definitely! :)

  17. 23rd March 2015 / 7:57 am

    I’ve started thinking about packing my hospital bag and like you for your first birth I checked out loads of lists on the Internet… Pretty overwhelming! Thank you for putting this essentials list together, it looks more realistic. I’ll be following your advice!

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:01 pm

      Thanks Marion, I’m glad it helped and good luck! :)

  18. Eimear
    23rd March 2015 / 8:55 am

    Good tips, I found bringing really light pj’s that have buttons on the front are handy for feeding and also because those hospitals are so warm! #mummymondays

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:02 pm

      Oh good thinking thanks!! :)

  19. 22nd March 2015 / 1:23 pm

    I think keeping it light is one of the main ideas that sticks out. No point lugging around a huge bag full of stuff you don’t need. I’d maybe pack a lip balm; all that breathing can dry out your lips xxxxx

    • 2nd April 2015 / 3:00 pm

      Definitely agree – keep it as light and simple as possible I say! I’ve added lip balm to my list now, thanks! :)

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