What To Pack In Your Hospital Bag For Labour And Birth

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When you’re preparing for labour or birth, one of the things you’ll want to get prepared is your hospital bag. Having this ready to go well in advance will give you peace of mind, and means that when the time comes, you don’t have to think, just grab and go.

Hospital bag essentials


Here are some things that you’ll want to pack, to use in labour or after your baby is born. If you’re having a c-section – check out this post from Something About Baby for inspiration about specific things you might need when having a Caesarean.

Related: Newborn essentials – what you need for a new baby

Things To Pack In Your Hospital Labour And Birth Bag

  • Comfortable nightdress/comfy clothes to labour in.

Labour can take a while, and you’ll want something loose to wear that’s comfy and also cool, as you’ll get hot and sweaty.

  • Bottle of water/juice

The hospital should keep you topped up with plenty of water to drink, as you’ll need to stay hydrated through labour, but it’s not a bad idea to have your own bottle handy, especially if you’d prefer something different to drink.

  • Maternity pads

Postpartum bleeding is heavy and lasts quite a while, so you’ll want to stock up on maternity pads. Pop a couple of packs in your hospital bag as you’ll definitely need these.

  • Slippers or flipflops

You won’t want to be wearing shoes, but it’s nice to have something for walking around in.

  • Toiletries

Make sure you take toothbrush and toothpaste, hairbrush, and shower gel or soap. You might also want some shampoo and conditioner, especially if you end up staying in a bit longer.

  • Nursing Bra

These are so much more comfortable than a standard bra and make it much easier to breastfeed your baby if that’s what your planning.

  • Breast pads

Pop a few of these in, you’ll want them when your milk comes in to stop any unfortunate leaks through your clothes.

  • Nipple cream

Breastfeeding can be quite sore to begin with as your nipples aren’t used to it! Using a good nipple cream – I love Lansinoh- can be really soothing and help heal any cracks.

  • Comfy clothes

You’ll want to pack some comfortable clothes to wear home from the hospital.

  • A towel

Your hospital may or may not provide you with a towel, so it’s a good idea to be prepared and bring one with you.


  • Your mobile phone and a charger
  • A camera if you want to take those first photographs

Related: Top Tips for labour and birth

Newborn baby feet

For Baby

It might be worth taking a separate bag for your baby, so it’s easier to find what you need.

Here are things you’ll need to pack for your baby.

  • Vests and sleep suits.

At least 2 of each, although you may end up not needing them all, it’s always handy to have spares.

  • Nappies
  • Wipes

Make sure to get wipes that are definitely suitable for new-borns and pop a pack in baby’s bag.

  • Muslin cloths

Muslins are great for wiping milk, or mopping up sick, or just about anything really. Pack a couple of these.

Related: The best postpartum tips and advice

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