My bag is packed! We’re ready to go…INTO LABOR!


hospital bagThis post contains affiliate links. Rochester Mom may profit if you purchase a product through a link. 

Over the years, I’ve seen many hospital bag blogs written. I found them helpful and used inspiration when packing mine. My list is straightforward – zero fluff! In my three-year tenure as a mother, I’ve found many things I can’t live without, and I consider myself an expert in extraordinarily long births. It was nearly a six-day hospital stay for me, and another six for sweet baby Fritz. 

A little about Fritz’s delivery: I had an induction at 38 weeks. Six rounds of cervadil, a foley bulb, and three hours of pushing put us just under the 72-hour mark. I needed to feel at home. 

One thing to remember: the hospital gives you everything you need, medicinally speaking. I was given: pads, disposable underwear, Tylenol and Ibuprofen, Witch Hazel Pads, and Ice Packs. I also started to feel extremely nauseous, and the nurses brought me an essential oil pen to smell. I still keep it in my purse! 

Every pregnancy is different, and because I am Type-A and was convinced I would go early, I had my bag packed by 35 weeks; 37-38 weeks is typically the norm. 

Here is my hospital bag essentials list! I would love to hear about your must-haves in the comments!

Nursing Bra:

Truly the most comfortable seamless bra. And regardless of chest size, I found it incredibly supportive. 

Postpartum Diapers – FOR MOM:

Did you think your baby will be the only one wearing a diaper? Think again! I know some friends loved the hospital pads, but at 5’10”, they were still so long. I loved the ease of these.

Postpartum Underwear:

If you choose to use a regular pad, this pack of underwear is fantastic for postpartum life. High enough to cover a cesarean incision, and the cotton is soft and breathable. I would have preferred 100% cotton, but the 5% elastane gives them a bit of supportive stretch, perfect for a changing body.


An unexpected induction meant I had a full face of makeup on. Three years later, I’m still proud of having my makeup bag packed with my skincare ready to go on our bathroom counter. Makeup remover wipes are easy to use when you can’t move your legs due to that fantastic epidural. 

This chapstick is clean and feels amazing on dry lips. 

While on the topic of beauty, I recommend packing a small bag of things to make you look and feel like yourself:


I ordered the cutest monogrammed nightshirt to wear in the hospital. I am 5’10”, so it barely covered my tush. I like something with buttons and sleeves, and this L.L. Bean nightgown fits the bill. I liked wearing pants postpartum, and these Kindred Bravely pajamas look amazing. 

I am generally not a sock gal. But, to get that baby moving, I did countless laps in these. I loved that they had grips on the soles. 

I got in my head about delivering in a hospital gown that someone had passed away in; I couldn’t shake the feeling. I wish I were joking. I loved this and then threw it away after delivery. 

I am not into bathrobes. I know that many moms live in them, but I prefer a long cardigan. There is something about bathrobe sleeves and their lack of control that turns me off. This Barefoot Dreams cardigan is an investment, but oh my, you will wear it all the time! 

Don’t forget a going-home outfit for you and your baby! My favorite special outfits are from SK Creations. I lived in Lululemon Align Leggings throughout my pregnancy and maternity leave. I would pair them with an oversized shirt; I love the price of this one from Target. 


Invest in a charger that won’t break and is long enough for you to use in your hospital bed. This one works great! 

AirPods are also a lifesaver if you want to listen to a podcast and your partner wants to watch something on TV! 

What would I have changed?

I should have packed my things in a rolling suitcase. Packing in a duffel meant one of us had to carry it. 

No one tells you how dry your nose is going to get. I ended up getting blisters in mine. Though the hospital had ointment, next time, I’m bringing my Egyptian Magic.

I like to sleep in the dark, and all of the lights and beeps kept me awake. Next time I will bring a sleep mask! 

I saw someone do this on Instagram, and how genius to bring your Amazon Firestick (or other smart T.V. devices) to watch all of your favorite shows while you wait to push or while you are up feeding in the middle of the night. 

I also asked a few of my friends what their favorite thing they packed for delivery was:

“A soft robe for myself! I didn’t get dressed until we left the hospital.”

“My camera.” 

“Insanely comfy P.J.’s and slippers. Also, a good playlist to drown out the hospital sounds!” 

“I washed my hair with my own shampoo and hair products when I was there, and I’m super happy I did. Also, having my own face moisturizer made me feel like a human.”

“A nice bathrobe!”


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