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The Best Hospital Bags to Use for Labor, Delivery, and Beyond
June 21, 2024

The Best Hospital Bags to Use for Labor, Delivery, and Beyond

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The Best Hospital Bags to Use for Labor, Delivery, and Beyond

There’s something extra exciting about packing your hospital bag as you wait for your due date to arrive. Whether you’re Team Pack Everything I Own or you prefer a more minimalist approach, you’ll definitely need a bag to hold all your essentials (by the way, we have a printable checklist for what to pack in your hospital bag).

While you could just use your diaper bag to pack what you’ll need at the hospital, a separate one is just for you to house your necessities and hang on to. And the best part of choosing a bag you love is that you’ll find new ways to use it in the future (I now use mine as a carry-on when I travel).

When you’re browsing hospital bags and deciding what you’ll need, keep in mind how much you want to pack, what exactly you want to take with you (like a toiletry bag, a fluffy robe, a few changes of clothes, etc.) and the season you’ll be delivering in. If your due date is in the middle of the winter months, you’ll probably need space for a warm blanket and postpartum cozy clothes—which tend to be bulkier than airy summer options.

Here are our favorite hospital bags.

Babylist’s Top Picks for the Best Hospital Bags

Babylist’s Picks for the Best Hospital Bags

Best Overall Hospital Bag

Perfectly sized to fit all of your postpartum must-haves, the Béis Weekender has a sleek exterior design and a 49-liter interior capacity. Don’t worry about having to rummage through the bag to find your chapstick or that handy labor fan that you packed—there are plenty of pockets, and even a key strap, to keep your bag and belongings organized. If you want to bring along any extra things that you don’t want to mingle with your clothes, like shoes or a blow dryer, you can pop it in the zippered bottom compartment. The bag comes in a variety of colors and two sizes, a regular and a mini size. Oh, and once you’ve retired this as a hospital bag, you can use it as a carry-on when you travel.

Best Diaper Bag Hospital Bag Combo

While we aren’t rounding up the best diaper bags here, using a diaper bag as your hospital bag to minimize extra bags floating around is a smart approach. I am obsessed with the Dagne Dover Indi diaper bag (I’m usually tripping over myself to recommend it anytime the conversation about diaper bags comes up). It’s very roomy inside, has a sleek ‘is this even a diaper bag?!’ look that modern parents adore, and the neoprene is super easy to keep clean.

The inside is lined with small and large pockets, a key rope and a laptop sleeve and it comes with a wet bag to store spilled-on clothes and a changing pad. Available in three sizes and a dozen colors, the larger version can hold a change of clothes, toiletries and some labor essentials. FYI: if you prefer to pack a bunch of “just in case” items, this one might be too small.

Best Pre-Packed Hospital Bag

Calling all Frida Mom fanatics: this pre-packed hospital bag is full of postpartum essentials like their famed angled peri bottle, nipple balm, hospital gown and a bunch more. You seriously would just need to pack an outfit to go home in and a separate bag for your baby, and your most important items are covered.

Since this is pre-packed with labor and delivery needs, you’ll need an extra bag for other odds and ends that you want to bring for yourself like a sound machine, a water bottle or a nursing pillow. You can also add this one to your Babylist registry (but if you feel unsure about adding things for yourself to your registry, we can help!).

Best Hospital Bag On Wheels

If you’re one of those people who end up taking things out of their suitcase at the airport because you’ve exceeded the 50-pound weight limit, this pick is for you. This scaled-down, wheeled suitcase has more than enough space for you to pack back-ups to your back-ups. Available in a host of fun colors, you can feel good about choosing this one since you can use it on your first family vacation too!

Best Hospital Bag for Minimalist

This is for the parents-to-be who lean into a less-is-more mindset. And if we’re being honest, if you plan on delivering at a hospital, many of the postpartum products for you and baby will be provided (think diapers for you and baby, pads, nipple cream). If packing products on top of that is stressing you out and you’d rather lean on what is provided, a tote bag can get the job done. With enough space to pack a change of clothes and some personal items, the LL Bean Boat and Tote is durable (it can hold up to 500 pounds) and a minimalist’s dream. Four sizes are available to fit your needs (small to extra-large), and you can monogram it, too.

Best Budget Hospital Bag

A hefty price tag isn’t a prerequisite for a quality hospital bag. In fact, I packed all of my personal items in this one, which is under $25 from Amazon. The travel size (also available in extra-large) fit my clothes, bras and undies, the extra gown I brought, my toiletries and my postpartum comfort items like a robe and cozy socks. The inside has four compartments to make separating and organizing stuff in your bag easy.

Best Hospital Bag with Shoe Compartment

Similar to our best overall pick, the Calpak Stevyn Duffy Bag has a generous capacity of 47 liters and a separate shoe compartment that can be used for dirty clothes, shoes or whatever else you can think up. Here’s where they differ: the shoe compartment on this one is slightly bigger, with the ability to hold three pairs of sneakers instead of two. Also, the Calpak bag has a flat, half-circle zipper closure that some say is easier to use (versus the more rigid, fold-to-close style of the Béis bag). The interior is lined with pockets and the floor of the main compartment is hard, so when it’s fully packed, the weight of your items won’t bugle into the shoe compartment.

Best Stylish Hospital Bag

Another pick for the light packer, this vegan leather backpack will likely fit just your personal items, like toiletries and a change of clothes. But, since it’s also a diaper bag, you can continue to use it post-delivery with baby. It’s got a stylish design that really doesn’t look like a bag that lugs around diapers and teething biscuits so once your baby has outgrown the diaper bag years, you can just wear it as a backpack.

Latifah Miles

Senior Commerce Editor

Latifah Miles is the Senior Commerce Editor at Babylist.

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