Here's the complete list of what I packed in my labor bag for the birth center - including what I did and didn't end up using.
I started with an awesome pre-packed labor bag by Duffle Your Bag. It was a wonderful luxury and provided me with a fantastic place to pack all of my labor/recover essentials.
Inside the sturdy and spacious canvas bag were these items:
I also added a few things of my own to the bag:
Overall, I felt super happy with my packed bag. The Duffle Your Bag provided a great starting place...and then I supplemented with other items I knew I would want.
My recommendation to Duffle Your Bag would be to swap out the shower cap, baby blanket, and/or address book for nursing pads or lanolin instead. Also, itty bitty baby mittens would be more useful than a stuffed bunny (though he was cute!).
If I ever give birth again (we'll see!), I recommend to myself to also pack a pair of super stretchy yoga/sweat pants and...more mints!
What did YOU pack in your labor bag? What would you consider to be essential/non-essential?
WIN IT! One winner will receive a Standard Labor Bag ($59.95) by Duffle Your Bag! To enter, leave any topic-related comment on this post prior to Wednesday, May 16 at 11:59 p.m. All generic comments like “Enter me!” or “Love it” will be disqualified. Winner must provide a US mailing address.
* Thanks to Duffle Your Bag for providing two bags – one for review and one for this giveaway.
*UPDATE* The winner is #26 Ashley. Congratulations!
This is such a wonderful idea, to have the "essentials" ready to go - and for them to be new, such a treat when you are in a hospital.
I like the fact that a fleece robe comes with it. That's something not everyone thinks to bring with them! Also, it's so cute that baby's first toy comes with it!
What did I pack in my bag? Wow, everything!! I packed clothes for me, clothes for baby, cloth diapers, chapstick, camera, extra memory cards, computer, shower stuff and other toiletries, baby book. I can't remember what else. The first time around I packed lots of stuff I never used like relaxation cds and stuff.
I love the idea of a pre-packed labor bag! That's so clever
My labor bag (thats basically been packed the last 4 years, (im 8months pregnant and have a 1,2, & 3yr old) Always had to have my computer so i could see pictures of my other babies, a hairbrush & hairbows because i hate getting those huge bed head knots in my hair so i put it in braids. camera (because my husband didnt even make it to the hospital with my last, i had to have the doctor take pictures of my daughter because i was there all alone!) & a Baggy dress with flip flops for the way home.
Thanks for the chance to win. I would definitely pack extra batteries!
I would add my chapstick and a disposable camera to the bag.
I would also add chapstick and the mints are a great idea also.
I would LOVE to feel better prepared for going to the hospital !!
what a great Idea! I either pack too much stuff or not enough so the prepacked bag is a terrific idea so I don't need to think what I will need when the time comes for me to travel
In my labor bag I packed a robe, slippers, outfit to bring baby home in, outfit for hospital pics, hairbrush, toothpaste/brush, phone, camera, lotion and shampoo. My sister is expecting, She could use this. Thank you for the chance to win.
My partner is due in just over two months and this information is very helpful. We haven't packed the bag yet, but need to get on it!
Oh this would be perfect for my daughter! Wonderful items!
my friend toni is having her first baby girl in a few months. she def needs this!
Working on my first, so I haven't packed a bag yet. This would make one thing easier!
I stressed over what to pack for my first baby. This bag would make it so easy for a second birth. I'd add a bath towel to my bag too since having your own soft towel is a luxury compared to some industrial ones at a hospital/birthcenter
I brought a change of clothes for myself and the baby and that was pretty much it.
I wish I would have packed a book or a magazine. My son was in the NICU and couldn't be brought to my room. I packed nothing to do while I was alone in the room. I also wished I would have had some snacks!
I just had my baby, so I don't need this for myself, but at least FIVE of my close friends are pregnant right now - can we say baby shower gift?? I like that it takes a lot of the guess work out of what to pack. Serenity is our first, and we had no clue. So many things packed that never saw the outside of the bag at the hospital, and several things NOT packed that I desperately wanted before we got home (like pants - I had to wear my husband's jammie bottoms home from the hospital because I forgot to pack some of my own, thinking I'd wear the same ones I came in, except, well, I didn't count on my water breaking in them - yah).
candy and snacks is so important to me when I went the vending machines were really expensive.
One thing I am glad I packed was a few small notecards and little thank you gifts for the nursing/hospital staff who took good care of me while I was in labor & delivery. I really appreciated their support in this time of need, and was so glad I could do a little more than just say, "Thanks!"
A wonderful idea! What did you pack for the "thank you gifts"?
Thanks, Stephanie! Along with the notecards, I brought fancy soaps and a few purse sized hand lotions. Just a little something that was sturdy enough to survive being stuffed in the L&D bag, but a little token that would be appreciated!
I packed too much I know but it is hard to know what you should pack . I packed a baby blanket my grandmother knitted with a pretty hat to match. Diapers, nightgown, nursing pads, a robe, a camera, a mini bag to put rings in when they have to come off, a teddy bear to focus on, a infant pacifier and all my toiletries.
lauraemerson17 at yahoo dot com
Currently pregnant and haven't packed a bag. This is a great post to help weed out items. Thanks!
I didn't have anything packed when I went into labor with my first child. She was a month early and I was at the doctor getting a checkup and just went into labor. My Mom had to go to Walmart and buy a robe, slippers, underwear, blanket, baby outfit, nursing pads etc. Believe me when I say next time I am going to better prepared because you just never know.
This is such a great idea and I know someone who would be so grateful to receive this!
I plan on packing my labor bag with a pretty hospital gown that I got online, cell phone, newborn diapers, coming home outfit for the baby, hair brush, comb, floss, toothpaste, toothbrush, sanitary napkins, 2 pairs of undies, outfit, flat iron, headband, make-up, camera, rose essential oil (great for preparing for birth), jasmine essential oil (good for dulling uterine pain), clary sage essential oil (helps with the third stage of labor), and frankincense essential oil (great for pain relief after birth).
I packed flip flops, three mumu style night gowns, under wear, a good book (not that i read much) baby clothes and outfit, toiletries, a camera and I think that was it.
I wore flip flops too!
this is such a fabulous idea!! I am due in August and could really use one of these. When i was pregnant with my first 10 years ago, i just thew the bag together at the last second and didnt really have much. This time I'm gonna try to plan a little better lol!
I'm not due until the end of the summer, so I don't have my hospital bag packed yet. But this looks fantastic. And there's a bunch of stuff that I wouldn't have thought about packing. Time to start making a list!
This would be great to say you deserve relaxation!
vmkids3 at msn dot com
This is great swag!
I would love to win this to give to my sister. I think she would appreciate having a bad already made up for her.
I plan on taking my mp3 player to (hopefully) distract me from the labor pain when I deliver in October! This bag would be helpful, too.
Great article! I love this and was glad you shared what else you decided to pack!
I plan on doing this again and soon! So I could really use this! Such a great idea and I never thought to bring hard candies or mints!
jessicaahays at hotmail dot com
id donate this to a charity that helps low income families
I packed my phone charger and my laptop and a nursing bra
What a great idea! I especially love that it includes the robe. A new robe is a nice treat when you are a new mom. This would be the perfect baby shower gift & you could add a few extra things to it such as nursing pads, lanolin cream, & a cute nursing gown:)
Love this idea! Having a robe and your own gown feels more like home. After all, this is not your typical hospital visit, it is a life changing visit.
Thank you for the entry,
Essentials I needed were lipbalm, eyedrops, hard candy, toothbrush & change of clothes. All other toiletries were provided (I knew this because I've been a patient before).
I think this is a great idea for 2 reasons...everything is already packed up for labor so you just grab it and go. I also love it because it can be completely separate from your post labor belongings.
I didn't have a bag packed. Both my boys came early catching me by surprise. I would say some essentials are toiletries, slipper socks, a camera, book, comfy but pretty clothes to come home in.
my phone extra clothing contact lens stuff
This is a brilliant idea! I could not agree more in regards to the hospital gowns. After my first child; I realized bringing something you find comfortable is essential, as are socks, chapstick and a hair band. Thanks so much for the fantastic giveaway!
My sister in law is due in August and this would be great for her. Very nice set.
I'm due in August, with my first child and have absolutely no clue about what I'll need to pack in my labor bag. . This will be very useful!
Oh gosh I really overpacked..I had a ton of everything you could think of including more outfits for my little one then days we spent in the hospital!
bakergurl02 (aT) yahoo(dot) com
I would love this! I'm due in August with my second. With my first I way overpacked. Don't even remember what I took, but didn't really use much of any of it.
My best girlfriend is due in two weeks and I would love to gift this to her- what a great gift idea!
This is a great idea. My grandaughter is due with her second in September so this would be wonderful to have.
I over packed. i really love this idea as a shower gift
I'm due with a (suprise!) fifth baby in June, so this would be great.
We are expecting our first and its a boy! I have not started packing yet but intend to very soon. This is a great idea and I plan to pack my hospital bag, robe, slippers and yoga pants. Also, I plan to have my hair french braided close to my delivery date on July 25th so that I will look nice. For the baby I will pack an outfit or sleeper, blanket, and don't forget the car seat.
This is SUCH a great idea!! It's not easy to remember everything when you're packing for the biggest day of your life.
I was in labor 4 days ago. I still need all of this stuff with my little one.
Thanks for the giveaway :)
This wold be so perfect for my daughter, she would love this! She still needs most of the stuff for when she gets closer to her due date!
ptavernie at yahoo dot com
were expecting our first TWO...WERE SO EXCITED. trying to plan everything but these two babies may come before were ready. thats why i would love to win an already packed labor bag.
We're expecting our first this fall and I've made up a list of what to pack in the hospital bags but it'd be great to win one- thanks for the giveaway.
I was just thinking of what an awesome shower gift this would be. You could leave a little extra room for personal items of their choice, but how neat it would be to get a "to go bag" mostly packed and strike one more thing off of the to-do list.
What a wonderful gift for any mom getting ready to deliver. I know it always stressed me out what to bring. This would make mom feel awfully special.
What a lovely bag and possible gift.
I packed way too much in my bag with my first (who knows what I thought I would be doing!), and then didn't have it when I wound up unexpectedly being induced:( It was brought to me later but- seriously- I just remember I over-packed.
With my second, I went way minimal, although I know I had cheap slippers and my i-pod.
I think lip-balm and favorite snacks are handy. Lanolin and pads are essential- especially since a lot of hospitals (including mine) don't supply lanolin anymore.
I would personally add in Tums because I had brutal heartburn during labor with my girls!
I've started taking a few of these essentials in a gift bag to new/expecting moms and they love it! Everybody forgets something, right? Also, I love those matching mom and baby gowns. Totally unnecessary, but really cute.
I packed some of the cutest outfits for myself for after and didn't even realize I would only want to wear sweats! I really don't know who I was kidding. But I definitely could not forget my makeup bag!
I packed the most useless things the first time around. This seems
Wonderful to make sure to have the essentials :)
Looks like a great bag to give my sister in law who is expecting her first in September. Thanks for the opportunity to win this.
The plan is to stay home with this one like I did with the last, but I still pack stuff away for the delivery day. That way everything I'll need is clean and ready, and no one has to go hunting for it while I'm in labor!
This is a clever gift idea! So hard to think of something for Mom
I am packing for my third time around now, and always feel I never pack enough. "Duffle your bag" is such an practical idea. It is almost like you are bringing a "new baby mama" pampering bag with you to the hospital. Awesome and very girly. Love it!
When I had my first baby I look back and think what was I thinking I packed the jeans I fit in before my pregnancy and a dress to come home in. Bad thing I was nursing so how was I going to wear it? Then I forgot shampoo or anything for my husband. I figured my baby would be big cause I was but I was pregnant so Duh? He was 7lbs but do to advice of others I bought all 3-6mth items? By my 5th I was a pro-sweat pants forget the hairdryer cause who has time, And I made sure this time to take all the "free" items the the hospital had! Love it so 6th time the charm and loving it!
I think this is a great idea for a product and would make an awesome baby shower gift. I know when I had my daughter I had no idea what to pack even though I looked at list after list on blogs.
I am terrified that I will forget something important on our hurry to the hospital in the near future! This bag has it all and requires little effort to put together because everything you can think of is already there! This would be something great to have for the birth of our baby boy in October!
I love the idea of a pre-packed bag. One thing I was so glad I packed was snacks. I lived off rice krispie treats the whole time I was in the hospital!
This looks like so much fun! Such a great "pamper" item for the Mom-to-be. I stressed with the first baby on what to pack, i think the idea of labor just overwhelmed me. I'm planning to be more prepared this time...I cannot believe i only have seven weeks to go!
the bag looks awesome. DSLR is something I did not have at the time, but so wish I did. But I did remember the video camera :)
I ended up going into labor weeks early with my first two babies, and I didn't have a pre packed bag ready. This time around I want to make sure I have a bag packed and ready so I'm not scrambling around at the last minute to gather things and stuff them in a bag.
Hey, just found your blog through a friend! She recommended your site and I'm glad she did! My hubby and I are pregnant with our first! Almost halfway through, at 18 weeks! I would love to win this bag of goodies!. I'm looking forward to checking back at this blog in the future!
Congratulations, Laura! You're about to begin the most wonderful journey. Motherhood is magical.
Lip balm is great. Also, snacks and a picture to focus on during labor
This is a great giveaway! I didn't prepare enough for the first pregnancy and it would have made things so much nicer.
this is so very helpful...I haven't gotten to this planning stage yet, but I know that it was going to come up on my google browser soon enough!
I always pack too much. Had to have robe and slippers and a cute outfit for the baby. We live really close to the hospital, so if I did forget anything we can just run home and get it.
I'd love to win this for my sister. It would be perfect. Thanks for the chance.
Our third (and final) babe is due in July and its our first girl!
I have honestly been dreading the process of packing a bag!
This duffle is a great idea. I love aden&anais blankets. That would be an awesome upgrade.
I over packed. :-) I had my baby 1 1/2 hours from home so I wanted to be sure I had everything. Camera was essential, car seat, clothes to go home in, laptop to Skype my family with, a few snacks. I just brought clothes for me and baby to wear home next time I might bring something to wear sooner.
Funny you asked, what I packed, I didn't pack anything as my babies were all early. Think I stuffed a pair of underwear in my purse thinking it wasn't the real thing.
I have packed and used the same night gown and neon green fuzzy socks for all 3 kids! I also like to bring honey sticks as well as the usual baby clothes, clothes for me, etc.
If I win I will probably give this away since I don't know if I'll be having any more kids.
That's awesome! I've never heard of a labor bag already packed for you! I always struggle over what to put in mine!
I just told my husband last night that I better start packing my hospital bag some time soon. This would give me a great start!
In my hospital bag I packed a zip up, thin robe and slippers. I brought nursing pads, but didn't need as it took about 5 (!) days for my milk to come in. And some shampoo and body wash to help me feel normal! For the baby I packed a tiny outfit and baby blanket for the car seat. I find our hospital gives so much. Sends you on your way with diapers, wipes, pacifiers, etc. so no need to bring my own. And of course a roomy outfit for me to wear home.
A zip-up robe is a good idea! Modest, but also convenient for breastfeeding.
My milk didn't come in for a few days either, but I wore nursing pads to prevent the lanolin cream from staining my shirts.
We are going into have baby #3 for us within the next 8 weeks. However, it has been a few years in between children. Thank you for the suggestions and reminders of what we will need. The yoga pants are a must!!! But, I love the idea of this bag already having so many essentials ready to go. Thank you for this post! I needed it.
I definitely wish I would have purchased 2-4 pairs of yoga/pajama pants for postpartum use. One size up from my pre-pregnancy size would have been perfect!
I also way over-packed for my first - almost felt like we were moving in when my husband lugged all the stuff in, lol. What a great gift for a mom-to-be, too. Thanks for the review, and the chance to win.
I added a camera but we didn't use it until after the birth! It truly got forgotten!
I would also add chapstick and a baby blanket for brining the baby home in. I don't like that scratchy hospital blankets. What a great duffel!
Oh man, I'd love to win this for my good friend who is having a baby this month! She would love love love it!
I've heard that a pair of REAL underwear is really after giving birth. Those weird hospital undies are the worst!
Also: Lip Balm!
I had no idea something like this exsisted! I think I would have liked that very much. To me a good nursing gown was essential and some hair ties to pull my hair back during labor. For me non-essentials, would have been "normal" clothes. Honestly with all the post partum bleeding, stuff, I did not want to even put on a pair of athletic pants, thus the nursing gowns came in handy!
I have yet to pack my bags and am actuually about to get it ready. Being 36 weeks baby can come at any time so this is really helpful. I love the idea of bringing slippers since those hospital socks are no fun and neither are the floors. I'll remember the lip balm and undies!
This looks like a great bag. Before I had my son 2 years ago I searched online for what items I should take with us to the hospital. It was so hard to know for sure what I would need. Then we did a tour of the new maternity ward at my local hospital and they handed out a suggested list of things to bring and things to leave at home that provided some guidance. I gotta agree on the lip balm! I also found having my own comfy slippers was nice. If we have a 2nd baby I will be pack more newborn clothes and cloth diapers to use instead of disposables :)
I wish I would have packed more snacks for when I delivered at the birth center. I am always so hungry after I deliver. :-)
How fun would this be?! As we inch closer to the arrival of our second, packing my hospital bag is one of very few things I dread!
I way over-packed for my first and got it down to just what I really needed for my second. While I don't plan on having a third, my bestest, bestie girlfriend is pregnant with her first. I love being able to share my experiences with a first-timer....and this is one topic we haven't talked about yet.
I packed a ton for the first baby, then very little for the second. There isn't much the hospital doesn't provide. The first outfit for coming home is always special though!
This is true. Most hospitals/birth centers provide quite a few mom + baby necessities at no additional cost - pads, mesh underwear, spray bottle, ibuprofen, ice packs, even diapers for the newborn babe!
This is such a great idea! As I near my first pregnancy, this would be an awesome thing to not have to think about :) I like the idea of a few extras, like the mints...I would never think to pack that!
Hard candy! It helped with my dry mouth
I'd love this! As a first-time birther, I'm saving posts like these for when I need to pack my bag. I never would've thought of the peppermints, for instance, but I could see how refreshing those would be.
Also, has anyone used one of these: http://www.etsy.com/listing/79918993/the-birthingown-in-four-new-colors?ref=sr_gallery_1&ga_search_query=birthingown&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_search_type=handmade I loathe hospital gowns, so I'm hoping something like this will be less annoying to me. Thoughts?
I agree with you regarding hospital gowns and definitely recommend bringing something you find comfortable to wear. That said, also keep in mind that the birthing process isn't always clean, and you may find yourself less modest than you otherwise would be...
I would recommend not using a hospital gown at all. Wearing "normal" clothes will help you feel less like a patient and more like a woman giving birth (not an illness or sickness at all!). :)
I wore regular clothes for early labor and then ended up in nothing but my bra for transition/pushing/delivery. Post-delivery, I changed into a nursing tank and some stretchy bottoms, but the gown you highlighted above would be an excellent option as well. So pretty...and comfortable/functional too!
Thinking of you as your day approaches!
I do NOT need to enter because I never plan to do this again! ;) However, I packed way too much as usual...
I just didn't know if we'd be there awhile, depending on when we went in. The thing I needed most? My lip balm! Don't leave home without it!
I didn't use lip balm during any of my three labor experiences, but apparently MANY women use it liberally through their contractions (and postpartum too!). Good thing Duffle Your Bag thought to include it!
I love this idea! Not having to pack all of that stuff that I know I needed for my first two boys would be great! I read a great article on what to pack for the hospital before my first son.( By the way, this is our third boy coming in October!) I really just hope I don't forget something simple like lip balm...I did use it for sure! I also brought a cotton dress- very loose and comfy, like a beach dress for after labor when I did not want to wear the hospital gown. I was so glad I did.