September 9, 2018

Hospital Bag Checklist

I packed my hospital bag at 38 weeks, so now I'm just in the painstakingly slow waiting game. It was so helpful to ask friends and read a few blogs on what to pack in my hospital bag, so here I'm sharing the essentials I'm bringing with me for the hotly anticipated hospital stay.


My Hospital Bag Packing List
• Birth plan
Soft robe 
  (or "disposable" robe)
Slip dress
Lounge pants and nursing tank
Nursing bra (one)
Cotton underwear (two pairs)
Slipper socks (one)
Postpartum girdle
Makeup kit
Nipple balm
• Aromatherapy spray
• Hairbrush and hair ties
Face mask

Going-home outfit
• Lip balm
Bath towel
• Favorite snacks 
 (cookieshoney sticks, jasmine tea)
• Cellphone charger
Portable camera
Baby blanket
Baby swaddle
Baby nail file 
  (hospitals won't provide these!)
Baby going-home clothes 
  (onesie, hat, mittens, socks)
• 2 Nurse Gift Baskets 
  (under-eye masks, sheet masks, tea)

My approach to packing for any kind of trip is to make sure I take everything that gives me joy. It's important to me to keep my routine, when I'm thrown into something and someplace new, so that there's a sense of normalcy and comfort for me to be my best self. I'm absolutely applying my packing approach to my hospital stay after labor, as I know those couple of days will be the most intense period of my life so far. While I'm so excited to meet and bond with our baby, I'm thoroughly preparing to give myself the best chance at recovery for my body, physically and mentally. The little things, like my luxe face oil and a nice robe, help me feel amazing and beautiful. But I'm also accepting of the fact that I may not even use half the things I brought. I may just stay in the default hospital gown the whole time and maybe my Le Labo shampoo will be untouched, but it comforts me now to know I'll have the things I love when I may need them.

Yes, I am bringing a vintage Christian Dior suitcase to the hospital. It is undoubtedly very extra on my part, though I'm sure Cedars-Sinai has seen their share of Louis Vuitton duffels and Chanel roller bags through the maternity ward. Kyle bought this beautiful piece off of Courtney as a surprise gift and he thought that this would be the hospital bag I pack. My husband knows me too well! I actually remember seeing this suitcase in Courtney's trunk the day she bought it and I just about died on the spot at such a beautiful find. She ended up selling this one, because she came across an amazing deal for the smaller carry-on size of this vintage Christian Dior suitcase that would be really great for traveling and so, I get to be the new happy owner of this perfect piece. I am actually so excited to have this with me for something pretty to spruce up the room.

Kyle has been so helpful in buying things and reminding me of what needs to go into the hospital bag. We both looked at The Bump for a good, standard checklist of essentials and as you'll see above, here's my checklist of everything I'm actually packing.

I am the most comfortable in a soft robe, so I'm bringing my favorite one from Oddbird Co. from home, but I also bought an extra robe that was inexpensive just in case it's actually a bit messier than expected with the baby and recovery. Again, not knowing the exact environment and mood of my postpartum recovery, I packed a slip dress that I usually wear at home and that I can easily pull down for nursing and washable lounge pants and nursing tank for an outfit that might be more practical and warm.  These little clothing pieces don't take up much room in my suitcase, so I'm happy to bring all of them along for options. Some women loved wearing the mesh underwear and some women hated it, so I'm bringing 2 pairs of my own cotton underwear just in case. More than a handful of my new mom friends swore by wearing a postpartum girdle as early as the next day after birth (depending on your recovery) for promoted healing of the midsection and uterus. For toiletries, I made sure to get travel-sized versions and samples of the things I love, like my May Lindstrom Blue Cocoon for keeping my skin moisturized and balanced through the ordeal and some Le Labo shower products for that first, rewarding shower post-labor.  Aromatherapy really helps my mood and since Cedars-Sinai does not allow diffusers, I'm bringing this lavender spray that I love for its concentration and effectiveness. The Kjaer Weis Collector's Kit is a perfect makeup kit to-go that conveniently carries all of my essentials like my foundation/concealer, blush, and lip color. Along with a brow pencil, I don't need much else to look and feel alive if we have visitors or photos taken. I'm also packing my Summer Fridays Jet Lag mask, in the case I can put effort towards feeling like my normal human self. I seriously love wearing this mask to protect my skin from airplane dryness, so I this will be the only mask I'll take for the hospital setting that I can leave on my skin as a thick moisturizer. The hospital has all of the baby essentials (except for baby nail clippers and nail file, pack that!), but we're taking just one of our favorite swaddles for any photos with him and his going-home outfit and blanket for his drive home. It's been so hard to choose what his first outfit will be! Lastly, we heard that it's nice decorum to bring gift baskets for the nurses, one for the Labor & Delivery department and one for the Postpartum team. I've seen a ton of examples of baskets that included tea and coffee, nutrition bars, chocolate, etc., but I wanted to do something a little different and give back some self-care to the nurses who work so hard for you and your baby. I bought a couple of variety packs of sheet masks, under-eye masks, and tea for them to enjoy on their breaks or easily take home to indulge after a long shift. I'm not sure if this beauty-centric care package will be a hit or a miss, but I'm hoping they'll love it!

I'd love to hear from you as a mom on what you brought to the hospital that you loved using or didn't end up needing at all. Feel free to leave any and all suggestions in the comments!


Outfit details:


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