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Labour essentials for parents-to-be, from maternity clothes for hospital to nursing bras, newborn sleepsuits and post-birth knickers

A maternity bra

If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need a nursing bra that offers gentle support with cups that unclip for speedy access. Pack some breast pads and nipple cream, too.

Shop Hotmilk lingerie

Woman wearing Hotmilk ivory flexi-wired maternity and nursing bra

Muslin squares

If there’s one thing you definitely need with a newborn baby, it’s a never-ending supply of muslins to mop up various bodily fluids. Don’t say we didn’t warn you…

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Pack of five pure cotton muslin squares

A dressing gown

Wearing a dressing gown means you won’t feel as exposed when you have visitors. Choose natural, breathable fabrics, as hospitals are often very warm. Bonus points for comfy slippers.

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Woman wearing grey pure cotton waffle dressing gown

Newborn baby clothes

Alongside nappies and wipes, you’ll need clothes for your new arrival. As a rule of thumb, one pack of sleepsuits with a pack of vests should do – plus a cute little hat!

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Three-pack pure cotton geometric-print sleepsuits

A non-wired bra

Ideally, you should wear a non-wired bra – or one with specially designed flexi-wiring – during pregnancy and if you’re breastfeeding. This gorgeous option is designed to be worn while using a breast pump, too.

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Woman wearing Hotmilk non-wired breast pump and nursing bra

Big knickers

With post-birth knickers, it really is a case of the bigger, the better. You’re likely to bleed, so pack maternity pads. Period knickers are also a good option.

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Woman wearing high-absorbency period full briefs

Post-birth toiletries

Pack a washbag with essentials: toothbrush, toothpaste, a gentle shower gel, dry shampoo and moisturiser. A cooling spray is also handy during labour.

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Nuxe refreshing toning mist spray

A going-home outfit

Your bump won’t go down for a week or so after birth, so bring loose, comfy clothes (with buttons if you’re planning to breastfeed) to wear on the journey home. See our maternity style guide.

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Woman wearing Per Una floral short-sleeved button-front blouse

Comfy nightwear

Most new mums will stay in hospital for at least one night, so cosy nightwear is a must. Choose between comfy PJs or a button-down nightshirt (both are perfect if you’re breastfeeding, too).

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Cream cotton modal short nightshirt

The flexible sleep bra

Keep things simple with this comfortable, barely there bralette. With no padding or wires, it’s perfect for keeping you gently supported in the first few days (and nights) post-birth.

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Woman wearing Hotmilk pale pink lace non-wired nursing bra


How to have a stylish pregnancy

Words: Sophie Hines and Sarah Lafarge




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