While we had a completely different birth story than planned, the items in our hospital bag made all the difference. I’m excited to share what I packed, actually used and loved in my hospital bag. I read so many different blog posts, watched countless youtube videos and looked at tons of IG posts on this topic. Since we’re first-time parents, I tried my best to think of what would make not just me comfortable during our stay, but Johnny as well. Here’s what we brought and wish we packed, too.
Even though I labored at home and delivered in the car, I didn’t exactly make use of anything that couldn’t have come with us to the hospital. I’m going to organize this post with what you’ll need for you, your partner and baby.
A big boundary Johnny and I drew in advance with family and friends is no visitors unless specifically invited and no gifts or food unless asked for. Think about it: anything someone brings into your hospital room you have to either bring home or throw away. Throwing away feels wasteful to us and bringing home can be tiring on top of all everything you’ve just experienced.
FridaMom Kit – Truly an essential. Yes, your hospital will provide you with everything you need, but I felt like what was in this kit was better quality. The first three bathroom breaks I used what the hospital provided since my nurse helped me. After that, Johnny would help me and when I used the kit it made such a difference. The underwear is thicker, better quality and much more comfortable. I appreciated the cooling pad liners and the peri bottle was a game-changer! The angle made all the difference. Also, the socks with grippies were great!
Hospital Gown (Code HOANGKIM for 15% off)- Your hospital will provide you with a gown, but I wanted my own. Our birth photographer recommended black so blood and other bodily fluids don’t show up if you take pictures. The FridaMom kit comes with a gown, but I’m so thankful I had this one, too! I delivered in the FridaMom gown in the car and upon arrival in the hospital, a nurse recommended changing out of it because of all blood, liquids and more. We waited until I was stitched up to change and it was so nice to have another gown because of the uterus checks every 15 minutes the first night. I wouldn’t recommend PJs because the checks are so frequent and they need to check the pad you’re wearing for bleeding. Taking off bottoms will become a chore and could be hard to do when you’re recovering. I wore this for the rest of my hospital stay until discharge day.
Comfy Clothes / Pajamas – Make sure these are button-front! You can use these the second night if you’d like but I opted to stay in my hospital gown. These can also be used for cute photos or if you want to look more put together.
Robe – I highly recommend a comfortable robe! I actually left the hospital wearing this robe since it almost looks like a dress and was so comfortable.
Pillow & Blanket – Definitely an extra, but helped the both of us sleep much better in the hospital! There’s very frequent checks on Mom and baby, so anything that can make you comfortable and fall alseep quickly and into a deep sleep helps! I actually brought a heated blanket since I’m always cold and it made such a difference for me!
10 Ft Charging Cord – A must because hospital beds aren’t super close to outlets! We use these at home and I like how they are a softer cable, too.
An outfit for photos – I had actually planned to wear something else, but since our daughter came two weeks early I grabbed this gingham dress from my closet!
Makeup/Toiletries – I had actually packed my travel makeup bag with everything I need to do a full face of makeup and any skincare items. This bag is my favorite because it’s so compact and can fit everything!
Pump – if you have a pump you plan on using, bring it. This way the nurse and lactation consultant can help you get familiar with it. I wish I brought mine, but we were rushing to get out the door both times, lol.
Shoes to wear in the shower is a common item to pack, but following Vietnamese postpartum I didn’t want to shower until I was home and had my sister to help since exposure to cold is supposed to be extremely limited.
Two Swaddles – I recommend buying different kinds since babies come out of the womb with preferences! Our daughter loves these swaddles and preferred them to the muslin ones without stretch. Since she was so tiny we actually just swaddled her for newborn photos because the onesies and footies were all too big for her. We also love this brand, too!
Footies – Bring two footies for your newborn to wear, one for each day. Like I mentioned above, our daughter was so tiny, even preemie clothing was too big. However, I’m glad I ordered them because two months later she’s just now fitting into newborn clothes. Our favorite brands are Magnetic Me, which fit her really well right at the beginning, Posh Peanut and Kyte Baby. I recommend getting something with built-in hand covers.
Two Burp Cloths – I love these! They are so soft and absorbent. They wash so easily and I like how durable they are. We haven’t had any issues with piling, stains or tearing.
Car Seat – They won’t let you leave the hospital without this! After a lot of research, we got the Nuna URBN and are so happy with it. We got the TRIV stroller and it is so so easy. I love how lightweight the car seat and stroller are, plus it’s so easy to connect.
For Your Partner
Johnny is an easygoing guy, but I wanted to make sure he was as comfortable as he could be during our stay! Here’s what we packed to make things easier for him!
Comfy Clothes / PJs – Johnny actually doesn’t wear pajamas so he packed one of his favorite brands: Outdoor Voices. He lives in these shorts and T-shirts and that’s what he wore in the hospital at night. During the day he got “dressed” in less casual clothes.
Socks or Slippers – My husband never wears slippers lol but putting on shoes was an effort, especially if you’re just staying in the room. Socks or slippers make sure your feet don’t actually touch the ground.