Every mom needs to have her hospital bag packed and ready for the big day. So, what's in your bag? Think comfort. Think essentials. And think stress-free as possible. Check out our list of must-have products.
Everything in this slideshow
Don't like the idea of wearing the hospital-issued gown? No worries, there are plenty of stylish choices from which to choose. Many designers and brands offer attractive designs and fabrics to make your hospital stay as comfortable and unique as possible.
Most are sewn with snaps above your chest to help you breastfeed discretely and comfortably right after giving birth. No need to have your entire upper half exposed when visitors arrive. They're also designed with the hospital in mind, so there's no need to disrobe when the doctor or nurse needs to check on your postpartum parts.
Nursing Nightgown and Robe
You might want to consider a different gown if you want a change after labor or if you're staying longer because of a C-section. A nursing gown with a matching robe offers you the versatility of keeping you stylishly covered for visitors plus clips that make it easier for you to nurse your newborn.
Striped Nursing Nightgown and Robe, $89.50, from A Pea in the Pod.
Make sure you've packed your nursing bra and nursing pads. When your little one arrives, she's going to start breastfeeding right away. So, believe it or not, you're going to need those nursing pads. Don't forget the nipple cream!
Our experts say to choose bras made of cotton because it's breathable. As a new mom, your nipples are sensitive and your body temperature is higher, making cotton the ideal fabric for a nursing bra.
Bravado Body SIlk Seamless Bra, available in four standard colors and various seasonal colors; $49.
Hospital floors are cold (and rooms tend to be, too!), so this is no time to get cold feet. The socks will help you stay comfy and the slippers are ideal for when you get up to go to the bathroom postpartum or for the long stays after a Cesarean section when you're encouraged to take short walks.
Terry Ballerina Slippers in gray, $22, from Isotoner.
Toiletries And Extras
OK, so it may not be time to glam it up, but you should at least have some beauty basics on hand. (Remember, photos will be taken!) Bring a lip balm or some colored lip gloss. A hair brush and hair bands will do the trick for a quick ponytail or bun. You may not be able to get up and brush your teeth constantly, so breath mints will be handy when visitors come knocking.
Extras are phone charger, laptop or tablet charger and any necessary paperwork.
Altoids breath mints, $3.49 for 2-pack; Nars The Multiple makeup stick can be use on eyes, lips and cheeks and available in various shades, $39; Bare Escentuals mineral powder, $27; Burt's Bees lip balm, $3-$10; Goody Ouchless Hair Elastics, $2.50 for 29-count package; Conair Hair Brush, $5.
Baby's Going-Home Outfit
Mark your baby's welcome with a special onesie or gown featuring his or her own monogrammed initials. This layette line uses 100 percent pima Peruvian cotton. Each outfit comes with a personalized hat and fold-over mittens to protect your little one from scratching himself or herself.
As for mom's going-home outfit, think stretchy.
Monogramme Maison going-home outfit for boy, $39.95; for girl, $49.95.
Running out of prep time? How about a prepacked bag!
Babytime Bags offers prepacked overnight carry-alls for your hospital stay. Each bag contains practical and organic items based on the experiences of real-life moms. According to the brand, the cost of one of its bags is nearly half of what you would pay if you purchased the included goods yourself.
A basic bag features mommy basics, such as Lansinoh nursing bra and nursing pads, while a premium bag goes all-out with such luxurious items as a labor ball, two hospital gowns, a hand massager and much, much more. Multiple print and color choices available for each bag option.
BBBasic bag, $135; BBLuxe bag, $195; and BBPreme, $385, from Babytime Bags.