Preparing to bring a new life into the world is no easy feat. One important must-do before your bundle of joy makes their entrance is pack your labor and delivery hospital bag.

“You can start to plan and pack around 28 weeks to make sure you have time to get everything you need,” nurse practitioner, Christina DeJesus told 21Ninety.

DeJesus also notes that you’ll want to have your bag packed by week 36, just in case you go into labor early. When it comes to packing your hospital bag, bring whatever you deem essential for your birth. However, know that the hospital will also have a number of items ready to go.

What You Should Not Pack in Your Hospital Bag

While you might be tempted to throw your whole life into your hospital bag, know that you don’t necessarily have to. Elite certified postpartum doula, Kristin Revere, told 21Ninety that you should definitely have your photo ID, insurance cards, and two copies of your birth plan in your hospital bag.

Otherwise, there are a number of items you can leave at home. You won’t have to pack things like pads, mesh underwear, and a peri bottle, according to Revere. Hospitals have those items in stock for moms. The postpartum doula also noted that your newborn will likely be given a swaddle blanket, a pacifier, a bulb syringe, a newborn shirt, and cap.

“You can check with your hospital to see what supplies will be provided to determine if you’d like to use their supplies or if you’d like to bring your own to be more comfortable,” DeJesus mentioned.

Best Bag

CALPAK Stevyn Duffel Bag with Shoe Compartment

CALPAK’s Stevyn Duffel Bag with Shoe Compartment is the bag that can hold all of your labor and deliver essentials. It features several internal and external storage compartments including a large bottom section for shoes and slippers. Grab yours in one of 10 color options.

Best Birthing Gown

Kindred Bravely 3-in1 Universal Labor and Delivery Gown

Kindred Bravely’s 3-in1 Universal Labor and Delivery Gown has a button down front and back as well as buttons on the shoulders for easy access and adjustability. Plus, it has pockets.

Best Charger

Belkin 10000mAh Power Bank 15W with USB-A and USC-C 

Both experts agree that a power bank should be on your hospital bag checklist just in case your electronics and hospital’s outlets aren’t compatible. Belkin’s 10000mAh Power Bank 15W with USB-A and USC-C features two different ports so that you can charge any of your devices during your hospital stay. 

Best Coconut Water

Vita Coco Coconut Water

Photo Courtesy of Amazon

Revere recommends packing coconut water to help you stay hydrated. Vita Coco’s Coconut Water is a 12 pack of the electrolyte-filled drink. Plus, it contains less than one percent of sugar and vitamin C – the rest is just coconut water. 

Best Comfort Robe

Silver Lilly Plush Fleece Bath Robe 

$38 - $40
Photo Courtesy of Amazon

Silver Lilly’s Plush Fleece Bath Robe will keep you warm inside the chilly hospital. This plush ankle-length robe features an oversized collar, tie belt, and pockets.

Best Grippy Slippers

Vionic Sakura Slipper 

Photo Courtesy of Nordstrom

Instead of just wearing the grip socks the hospital gives you, try Vionic’s Sakura Slippers. These slippers have traction and feature substantial arch support so that your feet won’t fall flat as you take your daily postpartum walks around the hospital.

Best Hair Ties

Bunzee Bands Adjustable No Damage Ponytail Holder

The last thing you want during birth is to have hair in your face. Grab a set of the Bunzee Bands Adjustable No Damage Ponytail Holder. These adjusts to fit fine hair and voluminous afros without ripping your hair out when it’s time to remove them.

Best Honey Sticks

The Honey Jar Plain Raw Honey Sticks

According to Revere, honey sticks can help give you an energy boost during your hospital stay. The Honey Jar Plain Raw Honey Sticks are a gluten-free, nut-free, and food color-free option with no added sugar. Grab these sticks in three multi-pack sizes in 13 flavors.

Best Lip Balm

Topicals Slick Salve Glossy Lip Balm for Soothing + Hydration

“Your lips will feel very dry during labor,” the doula noted. So, to avoid chapped lips, grab a tube of the Topicals Slick Salve Glossy Lip Balm for Soothing + Hydration. This moisturizing vegan balm creates a barrier on the lips that keeps moisture in – preventing any dryness for hours on end.

Best Newborn Take Home Outfit

Carter’s Baby 6-Piece Organic Cotton Hand-Picked Gift Set 

Although the hospital will give you a swaddle and cap, both experts recommend grabbing a take home outfit for your newborn. This Carter’s Baby 6-Piece Organic Cotton Hand-Picked Gift Set comes with three additional outfits and a cap in a convenient carrying bag. Shop this set in cream and the NB size for your new family member. 

Best Nursing Bra

Gratlin Cotton Nursing Bra 

Photo Courtesy of Amazon

Gratlin’s Cotton Nursing Bra holds you up without cutting into your skin. Plus, there are only two hooks on this pull-on bra to keep the front panel in place when you’re not feeding.

Best Portable Speaker

Sony XE200 Portable Waterproof and Dustproof Bluetooth Speaker

Sony’s XE200 Portable Waterproof and Dustproof Bluetooth Speaker is a durable device to add to your hospital bag checklist. It will help to play your favorite tunes before and after giving birth. This bluetooth speaker also doubles as a speaker phone when it’s time to contact family members that are out of town. DeJesus mentions to double check that your hospital allows speakers before bringing it with you in your hospital bag.

Best Snack Pack

SmartBox Fitness Box 

Photo Courtesy of SmartBox

SmartBox’s Fitness Box has a variety of high protein snacks to keep you satiated between meals at the hospital. Each box has about 25 portions of portable treats like nuts, protein bars, gummies, and popcorn. Grab a one time box or a customizable subscription. 

Best Toiletry Kit

Convenience Kits International Women’s Travel Bath and Body Kit 

The Convenience Kits International Women’s Travel Bath and Body Kit has the essentials for your face, body, hair, and oral care needs. The 10-piece kit includes everything from shampoo to toothpaste – including a toothbrush and carrying case. Grab this kit and throw it in your hospital bag well before your due date.

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