LDS Missionary Clothing List

By on June 3, 2013

Summary: This article discusses the LDS missionary clothing list and other items to bring on your Mormon mission.

Mormon Missionary Suitcase

The General Instructions Checklist that you get in your mission call letter will tell you in more detail the clothing, luggage, and other items you will need to bring with you on your mission. There are slight variations between missions, and the letter from your mission president will advise you if that is that case. For the most part, though, the clothing, toiletries, and other items each missionary will need to bring on your mission is relatively standard. Also be advised to follow the missionary dress and grooming standards (which were updated in July 2013 to allow greater flexibility and more modern styles) when buying clothes for your mission.

Mission Clothing List: Elders Mission Clothing List: Sisters
  • 10 – 12 White shirts (some short sleeve and some long sleeve)
  • 2 Dark colored, Conservative Suits
  • 5 – 6 Pair of dress slacks
  • 5 – 6 Conservative ties
  • 8 – 10 Solid, dark colored socks
  • 2 Pairs of thick-soled, comfortable, conservative shoes.
  • 8 – 10 Pairs of temple garments
  • Waterproof, winter boots, as needed
  • Dark overcoat with liner, as needed
  • Pajamas, robe, and slippers, as needed
  • Dark raincoat, lightweight plastic or nylon
  • Cold-weather gear (gloves, scarf, ear-muffs, winter hat, thermals) as needed
  • Sweater(s), solid dark color, as needed
  • Umbrella
  • Pair of flip-flops/shower shoes
  • Shaving equipment
  • Deodorant and other toiletries
  • Set of work clothes and gym clothes (jeans, t-shirt, shorts, athletic shoes, etc.)
  • Small first-aid kit, and sewing kit
  • Alarm clock (wind-up or battery)
  • 2 Towels, washcloths
  • Twin-size bed sheets with pillowcase
  • Shoulder bag (no backpacks)
  • Sunscreen and lip balm, as needed
  • 4 – 5 Outfits of modest design: blouses, skirts, dresses, jackets, vests, jumpers, suits. Mid-calf length. Nothing tight-fitting, or baggy; no wrap-around skirts, t-shirts, polo-shirts, denims, or leathers.
  • 12 Pairs of nylons or knee-highs
  • 2 – 3 Pairs of shoes that are conservative and comfortable
  • 1 Pair of dress shoes
  • 1 Pair of winter boots
  • 8 – 10 Pairs of temple garments
  • Personal toiletries
  • Underclothing, modest and durable.
  • Dark winter coat
  • Pajamas, robe, and slippers, as needed
  • Dark raincoat, lightweight plastic or nylon
  • Cold-weather gear (gloves, scarf, ear-muffs, winter hat, thermals) as needed
  • Sweater(s), as needed
  • Umbrella
  • Pair of flip-flops/shower shoes
  • Set of work clothes and gym clothes (jeans, t-shirt, shorts, athletic shoes, etc.)
  • Small first-aid kit, and sewing kit
  • Alarm clock (wind-up or battery)
  • 2 Towels, washcloths
  • Twin-size bed sheets with pillowcase
  • Shoulder bag or purse (no backpacks)
  • Sunscreen and lip balm, as needed

Missionary Luggage

Of course you will need luggage to carry your clothes and personal belongings.  Mormon missionaries are suggested to bring 3 pieces of luggage that follow these guidelines: Two large suitcases (that you could check at the airport) and one smaller bag (a carry-on). The first, larger, checked suitcase should be no larger than 62 dimensional inches (height plus width plus depth), and no heavier than 70 pounds. The second piece should be no larger than 55 dimensional inches and no heavier than 70 pounds. The smaller, carry-on bag should be no larger than 45 dimensional inches. For more information, see missionary clothing needs and what should I bring to the MTC?.

Missionary Books

Missionaries should bring their scriptures and they are also allowed to bring the following books, if they desire:

  • True to the Faith
  • Jesus the Christ, by James E. Talmage
  • Our Heritage: A Brief History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • Our Search for Happiness, By M. Russell Ballard
  • See the approved Missionary Reading List for more detail

What NOT to Bring on Your Mission

Do not bring the following items to the MTC or to the mission field:

  • Briefcases
  • Any books not listed above
  • Daily planners, including electronic planners
  • Laptop or other computers
  • Any video recording devices, or any video or DVD players
  • Cellular phones, pagers, e-mail devices, or unauthorized electronic equipment
  • Radios or clock radios
  • Musical instruments
  • Playing cards, games, footballs, soccer balls, or any other kind of sports or hobby equipment
  • Packages for other missionaries in the MTC or in the mission field
  • Weapons of any kind

For information on how much you can expect to spend on clothing and other items, see my related article: Cost To Get Ready To Go On A Mission.


About Jimmy

I served a Mission in Rosario Argentina from 1995 to 1997. An amazing experience! I work for the LDS Church managing websites, doing web analytics, and SEO. I am married to the lovely Heather, and we have six wonderful children. Read more about Jimmy Smith here.


  1. Candace

    August 26, 2010 at 12:07 am

    If you are having a hard time finding sister missionary clothing, check out Sorella Bella – the online store for sister missionaries.

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  4. Claire

    December 24, 2012 at 6:25 pm

    Is pepper spray considered a weapon?

    • Jimmy


      December 26, 2012 at 12:07 pm

      I personally don’t see anything wrong with pepper spray. I think it would be a good idea for missionaries, especially sisters in dangerous areas, to carry it. But you should probably talk to your mission president about it.

      • Cason H

        June 8, 2016 at 2:10 pm

        Why can’t we bring backpacks on our mission

        • Jimmy


          June 8, 2016 at 2:38 pm

          I’ve heard, but this is only a rumor and I don’t know for sure, that it is because they don’t want missionaries to look like students wearing backpacks. They prefer missionaries to use the shoulder bags as shown here:

          • Kameron

            November 8, 2016 at 8:50 pm

            the reason is because the motion of taking off a backpack is considered threatening enough to warrant the use of deadly force in some countries due to the motions similarity to that used by terrorist bombers

    • Ken S

      September 4, 2013 at 11:03 am

      Pepper spray is an illegal weapon in many countries, and bringing it into a country is considered “an importation of arms and an offensive weapon” which could lead to a conviction for the importation of an illegal weapon , a spell in prison, a criminal record, a fine and the early end to a mission. I know arrested a person for that at the border (thankfully not a missionary just a girl who did not know the law).So think safe, but think inside the law.

  5. jason kulesza

    May 4, 2013 at 8:26 pm

    God commanded us not to fear man Jesus was going to be pushed off of a cliff and it says that he walked through the crowd because it was not his time I don’t think pepper spray is needed seeing that Jesus commanded us not to resist evil.

  6. Maya

    June 24, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    So helpful! Thank you!

  7. Jake

    July 15, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    How do you guys get your dress clothes staying so nice and white? I wear white dress shirts all the time and they’re grungy and dirty by the end of the day when I come home from work, and my dress pants tend to fade a lot after a bunch of washings.

  8. Steve

    July 18, 2013 at 6:20 am

    You might want to reconsider your advertising on this website. The seductive blond for “Twin Peaks” (really?) may be a bit of a distraction for the hundreds of young men who are getting ready to embark on their missions for the Lord.

    • Jimmy


      July 18, 2013 at 7:39 am

      Thanks for bringing this up. You, and everyone in the audience, should know that the ads are served up by Google and are different for every visitor that comes to the site. Google tries to customize the ads with those it thinks you will have the highest likelihood of clicking. If you ever see an inappropriate ad, you can get rid of it by clicking the “x” in the corner of the ad. Or, if there is no “x” to click, there should be a link to Google Ad Choices, which tells you how to set your preferences for the types of ads you will and will not see. When I’ve done this, I never see the inappropriate ads again. I hope this helps.

    • Jacob

      December 30, 2014 at 1:09 am

      In most cases (including mine) Google curtails your ads to your search history. For instance, I shop on Amazon very often so Amazon always takes my top spots. Be careful, the internet a’int your grandmas bookshelf!

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  10. Ryan

    August 13, 2013 at 2:36 pm

    This is a great site. I recommend all the new missionaries I meet with to check this place out. I work for MissionShoe and anyone who comes to this site can use coupon code: MS13GO to get 15% off all of our inventory.

  11. Bevan

    September 26, 2013 at 7:16 am

    Another potential missionary shoe is the Rossi Chef 351, 321 and 324 made in Australia. It is designed for those who work in the hospitality industry, and are on their feet all day. I have two pairs of the Chef 351, and are really comfortable and very durable, when looked after. The only thing to remember is to get the right shoe size. The Rossi shoe range follow the UK sizing system. To make the leather last longer, smear a liberal amount of Dubbin (Kiwi polish) all over the uppers, and into the seams and welts. Place the shoes in a warm place like outside in the sun for about 10 to 15 minutes to allow the Dubbin to absorbed into the leather. Then wipe and buff with a clean soft cloth. Repeat for second time. The Dubbin will waterproof the shoes, and will make the leather more supple and less likely to crack or split. Regular polishing will keep the shoes in good order.

  12. Krista

    November 8, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Evidently, it is now showing on the LDS official website under the missionary clothing list that backpacks are no longer acceptable. The examples shown are satchels. Just so that you can check it out and update your list. I am not sure if there are exceptions for each mission to this rule, but just thought it might save some money in the long run.

    • Jimmy


      November 8, 2013 at 3:56 pm

      Thank you. I have made the change. Current Church guidelines say “backpacks are not professional or appropriate.”

  13. Emily

    November 27, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    I’m doing a project on Missionary work and I was wondering if you could give me a list of things that the average Missionary carries in their backpack. Or should I say satchels rather than backpacks.

    • Jimmy


      November 27, 2013 at 4:31 pm

      Well, I can’t speak for everyone, but when I was a missionary, I carried my personal set up scriptures, a couple of copies of the Book of Mormon to give away, and the flip chart of pictures that went along with the discussions.

  14. Mitch

    December 31, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    I need you to answer this question like right now. I leave on my mission tomorrow (Jan 1st, 2014) and I am wondering if I am allowed to bring work out equipment. Like a pull up bar and things like that?

    • Jimmy


      December 31, 2013 at 9:27 pm

      Yes, I think it is allowed, but you will want to keep it limited. Missionaries don’t have a lot of extra space in their suitcases. You are not allowed to bring sports equipment like footballs and Frisbees, but a small amount of exercise equipment is ok. Just remember, everything you bring with you, you will have to transport from city to city, area to area, throughout your mission as you are transferred from one place to another. Many missionaries, soon into their missions, get rid of anything excess in order to lighten their suitcases. So be sure the exercise equipment is something you will use regularly. Otherwise, you might just want to leave it behind and just plan on doing push ups and jogging and other things that don’t require equipment. Good luck, and God bless you on your mission.

  15. Anna

    January 6, 2014 at 2:27 pm

    I have short term memory, so does the rules apply if you take a ipod to write down and remember stuff on it?

    • Jimmy


      January 6, 2014 at 2:41 pm

      Electronic devices, such as an iPad or cell phone, are not allowed. iPods can be brought on the mission to use for listening to music appropriate for a missionary (Mormon Tabernacle Choir, etc.). If you need a special exemption due to your memory issue, you’ll have to talk to your mission president.

  16. Nicholas Parker

    January 25, 2014 at 12:32 am

    I often see a lot of Missionaries come into the library where I work, and I applaud them dressing respectfully. I am Methodist but have talked with some of the Sisters and a few other friends in the church and really like the message they share. Keep up the good work! God Bless!

    • Jimmy


      January 25, 2014 at 8:23 am

      Thanks Nicholas. We appreciate your kind words. May God bless you.

  17. kevin

    April 8, 2014 at 2:17 am

    Are all musical instruments forbidden? any exception? small ones, like flutes or travel guitars or mandolins?

  18. Julia

    April 10, 2014 at 5:10 am

    I’m planning for my mission early my papers are almost ready to be handed in but i was just wondering if anyone knew a good trustworthy site that has suitable clothing for sister missionaries?
    would be greatful if you all good help me out thanks

    • Aubrey P.

      December 19, 2016 at 11:07 am

      Mikarose is fantastic! And they give a discount for women who are shopping for their mission.

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  20. Alvin

    August 23, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    Today we sadly had 2 missionaries die of CO poisoning. I hope that a simple CO and Smoke detector device is not banned. These are easy to buy and can be plugged into power or battery operated. If they are not on the “approved” list of items, they should be. In fact, they should be mandatory.

  21. Jason

    October 10, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Hi Jimmy, I have a quick question. I recently received my call the Barcelona Spain (report March 3, 2015), and I was curious if you have a clarification on what “hobby” equipment is meant to include. I tap dance for exercise (cardio) and I’m curious if tap shoes would be considered inappropriate for an elder to bring.

    • Jimmy


      October 11, 2014 at 7:43 am

      I don’t think there would be anything wrong with you bringing your tap shoes, but you may want to ask your mission president to make sure. Also, you’ll need to take into consideration suit case space. Missionaries are limited on what they can bring. You have to prioritize in order to fit everything that is the most important. Good luck, and God bless you on your mission.

  22. Colleen

    November 25, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    I have a friend on his mission right now, and I wanted to send him a package for the holidays. I was wondering what was appropriate to send (i.e. holiday ties/socks). What did you enjoy getting most on your mission? Thanks in advance

  23. john

    March 22, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    Are You Allowed To Bring A Digital Watch??

    • Jimmy


      March 22, 2015 at 9:05 pm

      Yes, a digital watch is ok.

      • G

        October 24, 2016 at 8:04 pm

        What about a fitbit?

        • Jimmy


          October 24, 2016 at 8:41 pm

          Personally, I would think that a FitBit is okay to bring on your mission. I’ve never seen any Church guidelines for or against it. I would check with your mission president to see what he thinks. Good luck and God be with you on your mission.

  24. Jacob

    March 22, 2015 at 10:37 pm

    What if the watch tracks your steps/ health and time is that allowed in the mission field??

    • Jimmy


      March 22, 2015 at 10:41 pm

      You’d better consult with your mission president. An Apple Watch, for example, would probably not be allowed. I don’t see a big problem with a watch that tracks your steps, so long as it’s not a distraction from the missionary work. But your mission president would have the final say.

      • Brady

        July 12, 2015 at 7:17 pm

        Why wouldn’t an apple watch work? If my mission is a mission with an iPad when I connect it to that it will have all the same restrictions on it and it could give me alerts for various reminders and calander appointments I have throughout the day

        • Jimmy


          July 13, 2015 at 1:31 pm

          If you’re in an iPad mission, the Apple Watch very well may be allowed. You’ll just want to check with your mission president.

        • Al Kimball

          July 13, 2015 at 1:56 pm

          Double check your facts on an apple watch. I have one and it requires an iPhone 5x or higher. No worky with iPad. I have iPhone and iPad. Pretty sure about this.

    • Al Kimball

      July 13, 2015 at 2:02 pm

      I recommend a withings pulse O2 or a Fitbit. I have the withings.

  25. Michael Nixon

    April 21, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    My son just got called to Puerto Rico San Juan. Since this is very humid and tropical should we adjust the clothing to more short sleeved shirts and maybe one suit as I assume they wouldn’t wear suits as often there?

  26. Kevin

    July 12, 2015 at 10:06 pm

    I am preparing my things to bring to my mission (though I just submitted my paper to my stake president). One of the things that I am planning to bring is my camera. I bought a camera (a point and shoot) but I sold it to be able to buy a better one. I bought a good camera a DSLR-ish camera. ( I am a photography enthusiast btw) It’s model is SOny H200. It is quite bigger but not as big as DSLR. However, the missionary in my ward told me that that camera will not be allowed in mission.
    This confuses me because according to the materials that I have read, there is no specific rule in bringing a camera (except that it shouldnt be fancy).
    What do you think?

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  28. Kylee

    February 18, 2016 at 9:41 am

    Hi I leave in March for my mission and I was wanting to purchase a Fitbit flex before I leave. Would those be allowed or not?

  29. Justin

    March 5, 2016 at 10:17 pm

    Check out for great no-hole leather belts that adjust well with missionary’s fluctuating weight.

  30. Rylee Hargis

    May 29, 2016 at 5:49 pm

    So I have a Fitbit and I am wondering if I can take it with my on my mission I can’t do anything on it other then look at my steps and stuff and it doses show phone calles but that can be fixed

    • Jimmy


      May 31, 2016 at 12:19 pm

      Personally, I would think that a FitBit is okay to bring on your mission. I’ve never seen any Church guidelines for or against it. I would check with your mission president to see what he thinks. Good luck and God be with you on your mission.

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  32. Aaron

    September 7, 2016 at 11:01 pm

    Hi, I’m Preparing to serve a mission and was wondering how long before your availability date and when you can send your papers in? I’ve heard 90 day, 120 days, and six months.

    • Jimmy


      September 8, 2016 at 6:33 am

      My understanding is that it is 120 days. A few year ago, it was 90, but when they lowered the age in 2012, there was a large influx of applications and the church needed more time to process them, so they increased it to 120 days. Check out my article about the mission application timeline for more details. Good luck, and God bless you on your mission.

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