Bringing Home Baby: The 20 Essentials You Actually Need
When I was pregnant with my first child, friends offered a heap of advice on all the baby gear I absolutely had to have. I ended up creating not one, not two, not three, but five different registries to account for all those necessary items.
Of course, no one ever sets out to be that excessive. But with the wave of parenthood approaching, I wanted to cover all my bases. When it comes to our kids, even the most rational and levelheaded among us can succumb to that nagging fear: If I just buy X, then Ill win at parenting . . . or at least not mess up so badly.
It doesnt have to be like that. Before you go wandering glassy-eyed through the aisles of Babies R Us, check out this list of 20 must-haves built from hard-won wisdom and experience in the child-rearing trenches.
1. Car seat: Car seats are mandatory by federal law, and the hospital wont let you take baby home without one. Baby car seats, or infant buckets, snap into a base and have a carry handle. There are numerous brands available to fit your budget and style.
2. Soft carrier: When you cant put your newborn down but want to move around with your hands free, soft carriers are lifesavers. Styles range from sling to wrap to front-to-back convertible, so talk to a friend, try a few out and keep your receipts!
6. Nursing wear: A nursing mom should have two good nursing bras or tank tops, plus nursing pads so you dont leak through all your shirts.
Buying Less Clothes Keeps More Money In Your Pocket
Who cares if your baby wears the same outfit each week or same sleeper at night. They wont remember and people dont see your baby everyday. Buying less clothes is more money in your pocket. Remember, you will likely get baby clothes as gifts when your baby is born.
Here is the thing. If your 3 week old does not have enough clothes or you feel like you are doing laundry every other day, you can order some clothes online or take your baby on a little shopping trip and pick some up. On the other hand, if you are like me, buy clothes before the baby is born, but keep tags on and return ones you dont use later. Just make sure you check the return policy and return in time.
Babies grow out of clothes so fast. Personally it pained me to have an outfit my baby only wore once or twice or worse yet not at all. Plus, I wanted my favorite outfits to last forever and see them on my baby often. For this reason, I didnt buy lots of baby clothes.
Summer Contoured Changing Pad
Sure, you can get a changing table or you can put a simple pad on top of a dresser. The budget-friendly Summer Contoured Changing Pad can be wiped clean, comes with a safety belt, is contoured to help prevent baby from rolling, and has crazy-good reviews. Just be sure that you thoroughly secure it to the surface you choose , and NEVER leave your LO on it unattended.
Read Also: What Kind Of Toys Do Newborns Need
Graco Everyway Baby Swing
Keeping baby quiet and content? Yep, definitely essential, and babies who constantly like to be swayed will love lounging in a baby swing or rocker. The Graco EveryWay will keep your little one on the move with 16 motions from rocking to swinging . A mobile and built-in tunes provide even more entertainment to keep Baby happy. And you know who else will be happy? You, because youll have both hands free.
Tips From A Mom On Necessary And Unnecessary Items For Your Baby
Kierstin is a mom to two little girls and host of the satirical podcast Really Good Advice for New Moms.
I had two little girls, one right after the other. The first time I had a baby, it seemed like each morning of my last trimester was welcomed by another package at the door from a far-off friend or relative sending well wishes in the form of baby goods that had either been purchased off of my shower registry or picked with care by the sender.
After months of tossing my cookies every ten minutes or so, it was so exciting to finally be sporting a real, obvious baby bump that garnered celebration from every stranger I encountered and all I could think about were all of the things that bump was going to need once she was on the outside.
Then my second baby came soon after, and save for a few random congrats, everyone was over me, my vomiting and my ability to conceive at a pace that puts rabbits to shame. While I still had all of the stuff from my first baby tucked into corner closets and folded under the bed, I found myself pulling out just a fraction of it the second time around.
Also Check: What Is Hlhs In Newborns
How Many Diapers Should You Really Buy
Start with just a box in each size from Newborn through size 2. My reasoning for this is that with my own kids, I noticed they were only in the newborn size for a couple of weeks before they transitioned to size 1 which they were in for only a couple of months and some babies never even fit into newborn. With Amazon Prime, WalMart and like every other store offering 2-day delivery on diapers, save money and space by just buying as you need.
I’ve personally found the best deal on our preferred brand and the most convenience with an Amazon diaper subscription.
Final Verdict: Buy just enough diapers to get you through 2-3 weeks at a time, that way if your baby grows out of a size before you’ve finished your stockpile you don’t have to hassle with returns.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the authorâs knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Baby Products That Didnt Work For You
1. KariMe baby sling. If you have a squirmy, active baby with a large head then dont bother with this sling! My baby was very uncomfortable and we only managed a few minutes. Also my smaller body shape means it easily comes loose.
2. Johnsons baby bath. I found this gave him very dry skin.
3. Lamaze play mat. I wish Id got a padded material one as while its bright its very hard and Huxley doesnt really relax on it.
4. Babygros that do up at the back/have loads of poppers. Who can flip a baby in the night? Why spend hours trying to popper up a baby when you can buy babygrows with a zip?! I love the ones in Gap.
5. Merino swaddle wrap. It cost almost £40 and a simple blanket does just as good a job.
You May Like: How Often Do Formula Fed Newborns Eat
What Do Babies Need
Do babies need passports? by: Anonymous Question: We are taking a Cruise from Orlando/Canaveral to Nassau, Bahamas and Turks and Caicos back to Canaveral. Does our 8 month old need a passport or just a birth certificate? Answer: The babys birth certificate should suffice. Please bring the original and a photocopy.
Huggies Natural Care Sensitive Baby Wipes
Again, we cant stress *enough* how important wipes are. Huggies Natural Care Sensitive Wipes are fragrance-free and plant-based, making them perfect for delicate baby skin. Theyre also super affordable and you can save even more when you Subscribe & Save and you might as well, because trust us, you dont want to run out.
You May Like: How Often Can I Bathe My Newborn
Baby Mattress And Bedding
There are some rules to follow when it comes to buying a mattress for your little one. It needs to be the right size and fit into your chosen cot or crib well with no more than a 4cm gap between the mattress and cot. It needs to be at least 10cm thick too and needs to be firm so it doesnt sag or mould to your babys shape.
All mattresses should conform to the BSS and be marked somewhere with this number: BS 1877-10:1997.
When it comes to cot bedding, keep in mind that you need to buy the right size bedding for the cot mattress. For babies under a year old, its best to use a fitted flat sheet and a cellular blanket or a specially designed baby sleeping bag instead of blankets dont use duvets, quilts or pillows.
New Baby Necessities What Do You Really Need For A Baby
I hate clutter, we lived in a small house, and I was determined to gather only the new baby necessities when my first was born and yet I STILL ended up with a bunch of stuff we didnt use!
Im going to sort of blame this on the internet. If you google what do I need for a baby youre gonna get ALL KINDS OF LISTS that insist you need changing pads, carriers, bottle warmers, pacifier clips and on and on.
I am here to tell you that a newborn actually needs VERY LITTLE.
This is good news for parents on a budget and also those who just dont want to fill their homes with stuff they wont ever use!
I also want to encourage you to WAIT to buy baby stuff until the third trimester, for the most part!
Even though I was 100% committed to not collecting too much stuff, its really hard not to! You didnt honestly know what a new baby really needs until youve had one.
You feel like you truly need it all for the baby.
Looking back, now that Ive done the newborn thing twice, I know what really needs to be on the list of things you need for a new baby and what doesnt.
These are things that still make my newborn necessities list a couple of them might seem frivolous to the most hardcore minimalists, but these are the things I would buy again, or tell my daughter to buy for her new baby.
These things are also the absolute best gift ideas for a new baby, in my opinion, because buying mom things she will actually use/need is always a good idea.
Read Also: How To Console A Crying Newborn
What To Put On A Baby Registry
This fail-safe baby registry checklist will help keep you focused as you gear up. It includes every product youll actually use when your little one comes home and none of the extras youll never need. Want more personalized recommendations for what to put on your registry? Check out What to Expect’s Baby Registry Builder.
Diaper Rash Cream Or Ointment
Not all babies develop diaper rash, but the treatment is nice to have on hand. This is on the list of things youll need a constant supply of when the baby is still in diapers. I especially loved this brand > > Boudreauxs Butt Paste
Experienced mom tip: the quicker you can change your babys diaper after a poop, the less diaper rash cream youll need. The poop contact with skin is highly irritating and the cause of most diaper rashes, in my experience.
You May Like: How Many Newborn Diapers Do I Need To Buy
A Car Seat If You Own A Car
You cant even leave the hospital in a car without a car seat, so in our present ear, a car seat is a baby necessity if you own a car.
Make sure you have it properly installed in the weeks leading up to your due date, so trying to figure out how to do that isnt something youre working on at the hospital the morning after baby arrives.
Honestly, thats about it for what a new baby actually needs. I told you it wasnt very much!
Skip Hop Pronto Signature Portable Changing Mat
Becoming a new parent means there are plenty of diaper changes in your future. To tackle a dirty diaper near or far from home, there’s the Skip Hop Pronto portable changing pad. You can fit wipes and up to four diapers in the pockets, and the on-the-go pad can easily be wiped clean.
Size: 23.5 x 21.75 inches 11.75 x 4 x 8.25 inches
You May Like: How Often To Feed Newborn Puppies
Best Muslin: Aden + Anais Cotton Muslin Wearable Blanket
Like other options on our list, this sleep sack is suitable for warmer months. It has two layers of cotton muslin that helps create nice airflow and eliminate overheating. It has a zipper for easy pre-bedtime diaper changes and a sleeveless silhouette for optional layering. You can shop sizes 0-36 months and colors and prints, including animals, stars, and flowers.
To buy: $20
Boppy Original Nursing Pillow And Positioner
If you breastfeed, youre going to want a nursing pillow. Is it *essential*? I guess not, the job will get done either way. Is it super helpful and make you and Baby more comfortable during feedings? Hell yes. Just get a good nursing pillow so that while your baby is eating for the 20th time, you can also get some rest . This one from Boppy truly gives your arms and back the support they need by helping you lift your little one more ergonomically. Its machine-washable, too, so no need to worry about cleanup.
Also Check: What To Teach A Newborn
A Safe Place To Sleep
But hold on dont run out and start buying baby beds!
If I was going to do it again, knowing what I know now, I would purchase a playpen only. This is the one we have, and I LOVE it.
The playpen gives the baby a safe place to sleep but does double duty as a safe place to play once their mobile and mom needs to make dinner or just go pee.
We ended up co-sleeping with both our kids and all five baby beds just hang out empty.
Essential Items A Baby Actually Needs
Rachel Gurevich is a fertility advocate, author, and recipient of The Hope Award for Achievement, from Resolve: The National Infertility Association. She is a professional member of the Association of Health Care Journalists and has been writing about womens health since 2001. Rachel uses her own experiences with infertility to write compassionate, practical, and supportive articles.
Baby needsthere are so many things, but what do you really need? Do you need a bassinet? Do you need a diaper pail? Two? When you are about ready to have a baby, everyone has advice for things you have to have. As a mother of eight, here is my list of important baby items for new babies.
Recommended Reading: How Much Formula Needed For Newborn