Shopping for newborns can be overwhelming. With so many products available, how are you supposed to know what you need in order to make your newborn happy and keep the baby healthy?
When I was pregnant with our son almost four years ago, I remember feeling lost, confused, and overwhelmed as I tried to figure out what to add to our baby registry. I asked friends who already had babies and found out that I had a lot to learn when it came to babies.
So, what did I do? I added tons and tons of items to our baby registry. We had so many items on our list and I felt confident that my husband and I were headed in the right direction. I’m forever grateful for all of the items that were purchased for us in celebration of our baby. In addition to the items that were purchased for us, I also went on shopping spree after shopping spree to make sure we had everything we absolutely needed for our baby.
Fast forward a few years later and I found myself pregnant with our second baby. When it came to shopping for baby #2, I kept it simple. Why? Because I realized that we didn’t need so much stuff. Yes, we could reuse a lot of the big ticket items (e.g., swing, bouncer, crib, bassinet, etc.). But, I also realized that the items I ended up reusing or buying more of were the items that were most important to have on hand for baby #2.
15 Must-Have Items for Newborns
Here are some of my favorite must-have items for newborns. Yes, there are additional items to consider. For example, if you’re a breastfeeing mom, then you’ll need a pump, nipple cream, breastmilk storage bags, etc. But, for the most part, here are the items that I discovered are must-haves … and this is coming from a mama of two.
1.) Sound Machine
We are huge fans of the Dohm sound machine by Marpac. Dohm creates the soothing sound of rushing air naturally, without digital loops or recordings. Its unique sound lulls baby to sleep, and its noise-buffering functionality means neighbors outside, parents watching TV, or siblings playing in the next room won’t disturb baby. Adjustable tone and volume make it possible to create the perfect sound environment – especially helpful for the nap and bedtime needs of newborns, toddlers, and children. And the Dohm’s compact size makes it portable, too, so your family’s familiar sleep setting comes along—any time, any place.
You can never have too many blankets when it comes to newborns. Most newborns love to be wrapped and swaddled. And, if they don’t like to be swaddled, then they certainly like to be kept warm and cozy. In our living room, we have an entire basket dedicated to holding our newborn’s blankets. Once the blankets are washed, we fold them and place them in the basket. We are constantly going through the blankets in the basket. We have so many blankets and I always feel the need to buy more.
From spit ups to blow outs to dribbles and drools, babies go through outfits like you wouldn’t believe. Make sure you have plenty of onesies on hand. I prefer to have the onesies with the foldable attached mittens. Instead of having to buy mitten separately (babies have a tendency to scratch themselves with their nails), you can simply dress the baby in a onesie and fold over the mitten part to cover the baby’s hands. I opt for plain white onesies because they come in packs and are easy to wash.
When it comes to nighttime, we like to dress our baby in a footed, long-sleeve onesie to keep the baby comfortable during the nighttime hours.
Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle feeding, bottles are key. We are a Tommee Tippee family—we love their products. Our son was only breastfed for three days. Our daughter was breastfed for two and a half weeks. We make sure we have five bottles available on the drying rack so that we can quickly and easily prepare bottles. Even when I was breastfeeding, it was important to have bottles on hand so that we could dump the pumped milk into the bottles, warm it up, and keep the baby fed.
5.) Bottle Warmer
Cold milk in cereal is good. Cold milk for the baby is not preferred. When you buy bottles, make sure you purchase the bottle brand’s bottle warmer so that you can quickly warm up the bottles and keep you baby fed … happily.
6.) Bottle Drying Rack
I feel like we’re always washing bottles in our household. Our baby is ravenous when it comes to eating. She loves to eat. So, to keep bottles clean and easy to reach, we have a bottle drying rack on our counter. When we wash bottles, we place them immediately on the drying rack and leave them there until we use them again.
7.) Changing Pad and Covers
A baby needs its diaper changed a lot. I mean, like a lot a lot. So, placing the baby on a changing table is the way to go. Also, because accidents are bound to happen, having multiple changing pad covers is always nice. That way, if an accident does happen, you can toss the cover in the wash and use the extra changing pad cover.
Tip: Since the baby isn’t using her nursery yet, we moved the changing pad into the living room and placed it on the coffee table. The coffee table is right under the ceiling fan. So, when we want the baby to lay back and relax, we place her on the changing pad and turn on the fan. She loves to watch the fan. And, since the changing pad has edges to it, we’re not fearful of her rolling off the changing pad.
I’m all about the Puj bathtub. For our son, I had another bathtub that had all sorts of gimmicks. I was not a fan of it at all. And then I bought the Puj bathtub for our baby girl. I’m so in love with this tub. The tub can easily fit in a sink and it’s super comfortable for our baby. In my opinion, it’s great tub for newborns and babies. Here she is chilling in her Puj tub … one of my all-time favorite baby products.
9.) Rock and Play Bassinet
Having a Rock and Play bassinet next to our bed allows me to reach over and rock our baby to sleep if she whimpers during the night. Plus, the elevation and the way she is snuggled into the bassinet gives me the peace of mind of knowing that she is safely positioned throughout the night so that her airway won’t be restricted.
Our son loved his baby swing. We could’ve put him in the swing for hours (don’t worry, we didn’t) and he would’ve been so happy. The swing pictured above is great because it plays music and/or white noise and has various settings for how high you want it to swing. Plus, you can detach the swing part and easily bring the baby into any room with you.
Our daughter, on the other hand, does not like the swing. So, we tried out the bouncer and she loves it. Be sure to find a bouncer that vibrates. Since our daughter loves to be held, we realized that the bouncer kind of acts like she’s being held.
12.) Cloth Diapers
We don’t use cloth diapers in our house. But, if you decide to go that route, then have plenty of cloth diapers on hand. In our house, we use cloth diapers as burp cloths. You can buy a huge package of cloth diapers and always have clean ones on hand for burping time and spit ups.
Our son wasn’t a fan of pacifiers but our daughter loves them. We tried multiple brands and varieties of pacifiers and our son just wasn’t having it at all. Then our daughter came along and we realized that she loved pacifiers. It was nice to have them on hand to keep her soothed and happy.
14.) Car Seat Cover
They make these really neat car seat covers that also serve as nursing cover ups too. We never leave the house without our car seat cover. We don’t keep the cover on the car seat while in the car. But, we always put the cover on when the baby is out of the car. The cover shields the baby from the outdoor elements, as well as keeps the baby warm and protected. Plus, if you get the car seat cover that also serves as a nursing cover up, then you have the best of both worlds.
When we had our son, I added a diaper bag to our registry. The bag was awesome and had all of the bells and whistles. But, I quickly learned that it was too big and bulky to take with me everywhere I went. Plus, I realized that I don’t need sooo much stuff on our outings. So, I swapped out my everyday small crossbody bag that I used to take everywhere with me (pre-baby) and opted for a larger, stylish bag that could still fit all of the necessary baby outing essentials (diapers, blankies, change of cloths, wipes, pacifiers, portable changing pad, and travel bottles). The diaper bag is now used for larger getaways like days out on the boat. For everyday outings, I grab my regular bag and head out the door feeling fully equipped yet still stylish.
What are your must-have items for newborns?
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