What You Really Need in Your Hospital Bag

Packing Tips from a Mama of Four



This fourth time around I can confidently say I knew exactly what to pack in my hospital bag and what to leave at home. After going through the process three times before and always overpacking (any other chronic over-packers in the crowd?) I finally narrowed down my must-have list for baby and mama this go around. Here are things that I had in my bag for my latest delivery and what I left at home.


What to pack in your hospital bag

- Soft pajamas or a gown that you can wear after baby is born that is easy to nurse in

- Slip on shoes of your choice (I’ve done slippers, I’ve done sandals, it doesn’t really matter)

- A pair of socks if you get cold feet

- Smell good soap for your first postpartum shower

- Your own towel and washcloth (the ones at the hospital are tiny and rough, so having a nice cushy towel will make you feel like yourself)

- Chapstick (I don’t quite know why labor makes your lips so dry)

- Nursing bras without wire. My favorites are linked in my amazon list and can be found on this blog post

- Cardigan or open front sweater that you can easily nurse in but can slide on and off as those hot flashes come and go

- Bluetooth speaker (to play during labor or soft music for baby, especially if you don’t like hospital silence)

- Snacks. Sometimes hospital food just doesn’t satisfy your raging cravings and ravenous appetite after pushing out a baby. And no husband wants to be sent on a middle of the night vending machine trip.

- Knotted gown for baby and a going home outfit. That’s right, only 2 outfits for baby. Millie slept in a knotted gown the first night and then she changed into her going home outfit (and that was all I brought!) The knotted gowns are super simple for late night diaper changes

- A few burp cloths. The muslin ones are the BEST! Super soft and absorbent. They are great on newborn baby skin for spit up

- General toiletries (don’t forget deodorant). I really enjoyed putting on a little bit of makeup after my shower. It makes me feel human and presentable for any guests that may visit and it helps for looking back at pictures.

- A soft stretchy swaddle or two. My favorite is the Copper Pearl brand. I used one for baby and one to cover the bassinet for pictures

- Gifts for nurses if you choose:

- snacks

- $5 coffee gift cards

- little hand sanitizers or lotions

- Car seat

- Blanket and Pillow for you and your significant other. The hospital again provides these, but they aren’t the softest and most comfortable.

- Charger and extension cord

- Notebook or baby book. I used mine to jot down notes if you want to remember your birth experience, stamp baby feet, etc. while fresh on the mind. You can have nurses or visitors sign too!

- A going home outfit for yourself. A loose fitting summer dress, or yoga pants and a sweater depending on the time of year

- Bow or two for baby girl or a hat for baby boy

- Camera! Take lots and lots of pictures and videos.


What to leave at home

- Pads (the hospital will have plenty for you)

- Diapers and wipes (again, there is a full stock there. In fact, you will likely be bringing a lot home with you!)

- I honestly didn’t bring underwear this time… shocker, I know. Our hospital provides you with disposable undies which I pretty much lived in for the first 2 weeks.

- Pacis (hospital provides one if you ask)

- Baby soap, washcloths, bath time goodies, etc. Again, the hospital will provide them as well as a comb and suction bulb

- Diaper bag. You honestly don’t need to pack a whole separate bag for the baby. You can fit everything in your suitcase and have one less thing to carry in.

- Boppy (again, just something bulky that you don’t need to bring) You can use pillows for nursing support if you need it. The nurses will be happy to bring you an extra pillow or two if needed.

- Breast pump


Hello Jude Photography is a North Georgia Newborn Photographer specializing in luxury family, maternity, newborn, and baby photography. I believe in the beauty of simplicity and the value of tangible heirlooms that you can pass down from generation to generation.

Bailey serves clients in the North Georgia region including Habersham County, Hall County, White County and beyond. Our natural light studio is located in Clarkesville, Georgia.


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