what to pack in your hospital bag

Hospital Bag essentials: What to pack for you and your baby

For all you mummy’s-to-be. I felt so unprepared during my first hospital visit – packing scented candles and massage oils (for a hospital!) that I was determined I’d be super-mum when it came around to my next time. Needless to say you can never be totally prepared, but having my baby daughter in the water was an amazing experience and made all the better by the fact I had my swimwear and other essentials to hand :).

expectant mum

So, whether you’ve chosen to have a home or hospital birth I’ve put together the ultimate, tried and tested, survival guide on what to pack in your hospital bag to see you through labour and back home. I’ve also included some time saving recommendations where they help. You can thank me later!


Preparation for hospital

  • Car Seat (leave this in the car so you don’t forget it. You won’t be allowed to leave the hospital without one) We like the Cosatto Ooba 3-in-1 Pram system in Duck egg from Kiddicare which includes carrycot, pushchair and changing bag. Silver award winner of Mother and Baby for best lightweight pushchair.
  • Music player
  • Camera and charger
  • Phone and charger (if you have a Smartphone get the free Labour Contraction timer App – great for timing contractions and will keep you occupied if nothing else)
  • Hospital Bag (fit it all in one bag – no need for the kitchen sink -so your lovely hubbie doesn’t leave anything behind). If you’re treating yourself  Vertbaudet do a handy striped bag for £25
  • Exercise ball (check if the hospital has one to save you taking yours)

In your hospital Bag: Labour Essentials

  • Hospital notes and Birth Plan
  • TENS Machine – we used this one by Medfit. There’s a new one out from Mamatems that even monitors contraction times so need for stopwatches and apps.
  • Birthing t-shirt
  • Hairband
  • Lip balm
  • Warm socks
  • Flannel
  • Bottles of ice cold water (keep in freezer and make sure your partner remembers them!) – as they melt you can suck the ice cubes.
  • Drinks and snack bars (you won’t be in the mood for a burger but keep your energy levels up with granola bars, chocolate and Lucozade)
  • Paracetemol

In your hospital bag: most recommended for you by other mums on Cahootsy. See Hospital Bag collection

  • Toilet bag of travel essentials (incl shampoo, conditioner, showergel and make up)
  • Toilet roll
  • Nursing bras
  • Breast pads
  • Nipple cream
  • Maternity pads
  • Ear plugs and Eye mask (essential if you share a ward later)
  • Flip Flops
  • Towel
  • Arnica tables (help with post labour bruising)
  • Going home outfit – Loose fitting
  • Disposable large dark underwear
  • Lightweight dressing gown
  • Dark cheap nightie or PJ’s with front fastening and no waistband (in case of caesarean)

In your hospital bag: most recommended for Baby by other mums on Cahootsy. See Baby Essentials collection

  • Going home outfit – bodysuit, hat, socks
  • Sleepsuits x 3
  • Vests for newborn and 0-3 mths x 3
  • Socks x 3
  • Scratch mittens
  • Cardigans
  • Muslin Squares x 5
  • Size 1 nappies x 1 pack
  • Baby wipes
  • Nappy cream
  • Baby wash
  • Baby Washing powder
  • Baby bottles and teats x 2
  • Ready made formula

We send out warm, well wishes to all you yummy mummys about to give birth. Good luck!

Thanks to Nina Mathews for the gorgeous Flickr photo.

Did we cover everything? If not let us know below.



Tarika Marshall – Co-founder

One thought on “Hospital Bag essentials: What to pack for you and your baby

Add your thoughts

%d bloggers like this: