What I ACTUALLY packed in my Hospital Bag

Let me start with a little back story on what I packed after delivering Oliver, my first son. Needless to say I was extremely naive.. we were the first in our friend group to get married and the first to start having children so I didn’t have anyone to help me out, show me the ropes, prepare me for what was to come. Being my 24yo self, I literally thought I would “bounce” back after I delivered.. that I would magically loose all that fat, stretched skin and excess water weight the second I pushed Oliver out. HA! What a sad sad reality that was when I got up to to take my first shower and glanced in the mirror to find myself still looking 6months pregnant! Say what!

Looking back I have to laugh because what was I honestly thinking.. my body just grew and birthed a healthy baby boy and all I could think about was how fat I felt. It also didn’t help that all I packed in my bag was cute stuff for baby, nothing cute for me. Nothing maternity, nothing nursing friendly, nothing comfy! After all, I was gonna bounce back so I should of been able to fit into my skin tight leggings again.. even with the elephant pad they give you to stick down there! I literally packed form fitting, tight ass clothing that was sooo ungodly uncomfortable I think I just sat in my hospital gown and robe until we left home. And let me tell you, what a discouraging concept that is to grasp. That my pre-pregnancy clothes didn’t fit and I still looked pregnant! lol

So if you’re a first time mom and looking for what you actually need to pack in your hospital bag and what you will actually WANT in your bag, look no further! I’ve rounded up my essentials to pack for you, baby and even daddy so that when the time comes you won’t make the mistake I did and you can feel good about yourself after delivering!

In the Hospital

Everywhere you deliver is different in what they provide for you after you deliver but for me I know I will at least get those sexy nylon granny panties, pads, witch hazel pads, and a peri bottle to use after I pee (usually for vaginal deliveries) so you don’t have to wipe your sore, swollen, stitched up vagina! Am I making this sound awesome yet.. haha don’t worry! It really is!

Essentials for Mom


  • My duffle bag! I love the color and how large it is, shop HERE.

  • Travel size shampoo, conditioner, body wash. Or bring your big stuff.. whatever you want to carry.

  • Toothbrush and toothpaste.

  • Makeup wipes or for me I like to bring my norwex face cloth to wash my face.

  • Face cleanser (if you use one) and moisturizer! I’ll be bringing my Beauty Counter!

  • Wet wipes, some women say they can be useful for wiping the behind but I’ve actually never used them.

  • Body lotion or body butter, it tends to be very dry in the hospital.

  • Body spray or perfume.

  • Deodorant.. postpartum sweats are the real deal.

  • Dry shampoo.

  • Hair volumizer.. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this stuff.

  • Hair brush and hair ties.. these are the BEST for not creating kinks.

  • Makeup. It’s okay to want to feel pretty and put together.. I find that I feel 100% better when I showered and got ready so I didn’t feel like a complete slob.

  • Curling iron/hair dryer. (some hospitals have the wall ones)

  • Toiletry bag to hold it all in! I have this one! But this one is also really cute

  • Any other go-to toiletries you personally love to have.


  • I bring my maternity leggings that go over my belly because it helps me feel sucked in without wearing a girdle or postpartum belly fit. Plus they aren’t as skin tight and feel somewhat comfortable. Also any joggers or sweat pants are nice to have!

  • Favorite cardigan, I love this one it is sooooo soft or this one, is equally as soft but slightly cheaper!

  • Loose comfy tops, I like these!

  • Loose comfy nursing dress.. not necessary but is nice to have so you don’t have to wear pants. This one is similar to the one I’m wearing in the pics here, but I also like this one.

  • Slippers, the hospital floors can kind of be nasty. I have these but these are slightly cheaper!

  • Comfy robe, this could also double as a cute robe if you have one to take a few pics with. I purchased this one and also brought this lace kimono to throw over a loose dress for pretty pics.

  • Comfy pajamas, I hate pants when I sleep so I love this set HERE

  • Comfiest nursing bras you own, if you plan on nursing. I purchased this one HERE but I also love this one! Not that you will get your milk in while in the hospital, but you may want breast pads. I got my milk in faster with each consecutive child.

  • Socks

Tech Accessories:

  • Phone charger

  • Wall diffuser/essential oils, if you’re into that. I didn’t pack one.

  • Camera and charger if you plan to take a few pics, but I just used my phone and then hired a photographer for our birth and fresh 48.


First of all can I just take a moment to say that after birth meal is pure HEAVEN. Like the best damn meal you’ll every eat haha but I also do like to have some snacks in our room since you are there for a day or two.

  • I love to have a few things to munch on while I’m there (like granola bars, licorice, chocolate, gold fish, chips, snacks lol ) and beverages are also nice to have such as Gatorade or tea. You could also bring champagne and beer if that’s your thing to celebrate afterwards!

For Dad

He can obviously pack for himself, but to help him out here is a list of a few things I usually pack for Jay. Again, he made the mistake of not really packing great the first time around and just brought literally one outfit. No undies, no jammies, no slippers, barely a toothbrush haha luckily we lived like 4 miles away from the hospital I delivered at and were able to go grab stuff as we needed.

  • Toiletries he needs (toothbrush, hair pomade or gel, face wash, deodorant, cologne, body wash and shampoo)

  • Underwear and socks.

  • Slippers, Jay wears THESE all the time!

  • Comfy pants/sweats.

  • Shirts, something decent if you do take a few pics with new baby and other kids coming to visit.

  • phone charger

For Baby

  • Diaper Bag, I am SOOO excited about this one I just purchased because it has a cooler in it and lots of space! Thanks Britt! You can shop it HERE (doesn’t need to be filled because they usually provide you with diapers and wipes, but it’s nice to pack all their blankets/outfits you bring and use as an extra bag to bring stuff home in)

  • Car seat This carseat is a little spendy, but comparable to others out there. However, I cannot say enough about how convenient and easy it is to use. It connects directly into the stroller and is quick and easy to take in and out of the base.

  • This is the carseat base that we have to go with the UPPA mesa above. The self retracting LATCH connectors make it the easiest carseat base I’ve ever used, plus we’ve used it with all THREE kids now!

  • Car seat cover, especially since it will be cold when I deliver! I have this one, and like that it’s gender neutral, but I also use my heavier duty one found HERE.

  • Milestone plaques or Gender Reveal Plaque I’ll be bringing from our shop! You can purchase HERE.

  • Blankets to swaddle them in, I love these and you can purchase HERE.

  • Going home outfit, not necessary but fun to do!

  • I love gowns and kimono tops for babes to wear, super easy and convenient in the hospital. Carters has some nice ones otherwise KidWild brand sells some really cute ones!

Other things you may like to have

  • Pillow from home.

  • Cozy blanket, just be sure not to forget it there!

Hopefully you find this post helpful for your hospital stay or to reference to other mamas to be! As always leave a comment with questions! Best of luck to you, and enjoy that snuggly baby.


Please note that by clicking on any of the links above I may gain a very small commission from you buying any of those items. I appreciate you being here and thank you in advance.

All photos above taken by my friend Samantha Cater with Samantha Cater Photography