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Compensation was provided by Quidsi for this No-Stress No-Fluff guide to New Baby Essentials. All opinions are my honest thoughts.
Have you ever come across those lists that tell you everything you NEED/MUST HAVE/CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT for baby? The ones that have moms panicking that they don’t have the right tools to take care of their precious child, and perhaps add more anxiety than any new mom needs.
Toss those lists out Moms, because this is the REAL list of items you need before bringing your precious new baby home. I asked my real mom friends for the basic items they needed for their babies, added that to my list of basics, and have for you this comprehensive NO-Stress list of baby items.
Now admittedly there is a lot a baby actually needs, that will make both your life more pleasant, and your baby happier. There are also a lot of extras or “fluff” items that are pretty awesome to have. I’ll list those out as well, but give you my alternatives that you most likely already have. Finally, the last part of this list will be everything you as a new mom will find useful and comforting.
New Baby Essentials
- Diapers and Wipes – whether you choose to go disposable or cloth, you’ll want diapers on hand before bringing your bundle of joy home. One friend suggested having a lot of small packs of diapers in different sizes. Some babies are big, and won’t ever fit in the Newborn size. Others are smaller and will remain in newborn for longer stretches.
- A Place to Sleep – Most people use a crib. There’s also a bassinet, a cosleeper, a pack and play. Or you could even use a box if you so choose. I remember my mom telling me she used a dresser drawer for one of us – though that may have just been while on vacation.
- Car Seat – You won’t be able to leave the hospital (if that’s where you choose to give birth) without a carseat. If you want to go anywhere in a car with your new baby you will need a car seat. It’s the law.
- Clothing – Another fairly obvious one. You’ll want clothes for your child. It’s a basic human need. Similar to the diapers, don’t stock up all in one size. Baby’s grow fast! Keep Newborn, 0-3month and 3-6month sizes out and accessible. The time will fly.
- Blankets – Many moms, including myself, recommend the Aden and Anais Muslin swaddle blankets. They truly are fabulous! However, you don’t need them. You will want blankets of some sort. Receiving, flannel, muslin. They come in handy for a number of activities with your baby. See how I turned our receiving blankets into a quilt!
- Bottles – Even if you plan on breastfeeding, having at least one or two bottles on hand will be helpful. This allows you to take a little time for yourself and let your spouse, a grandparent, even a friend bond with the baby.
- A Large Bag – You do not, let me repeat, you do not need a “diaper bag”. What you do need is a good sized bag/purse to carry some of these essentials. Unless you plan on never leaving home. I like my zippered tote bags. I can toss in my wallet, diapers, wipes, and a small blanket.
- A way to Bathe Baby – Babies get dirty. They poop, and pee, and spit up. You can buy a baby tub, but you can also use your kitchen sink or a large bucket. For the first month you may even just sponge bathe your new baby, so all you’ll need is a washcloth and towel.
- Rash Cream – This. Every baby is different, but having some sort of rash cream on hand just in case will save you and baby many tears should you need it. When baby’s bum develops a rash, the last place you want to be is in the store comparing rash creams.
New Baby “Fluff”
- Carseat Cover – Some moms told me this was a need. I rarely used one. It is nice to have, though, especially if you are out and about a lot during cold and flu season with the new baby.
- Sling – Baby wearing is actually very good and soothing for you and baby. If you can afford one, some type of sling/carrier will benefit you immensely. Especially if you have more than one child.
- Swaddler – This is an item I’ve never used. The hospital will teach you how to swaddle your baby in a blanket. Baby’s like tight spaces to mimic the womb, so if you’d rather not use a blanket, give a swaddler a try.
- Happiest Baby on the Block Book – Never read this book, because every time it was mentioned I was already in the throes of crying children, and reading a book was not going to help me. So, read this book before you bring home baby, or you will never find the time to read it.
- White Noise App – Baby’s will get used to the noise around them. If they do have a hard time sleeping, a white noise app or machine will come in handy for you. It wouldn’t hurt to have this downloaded on your phone just in case.
- Pacifiers and Clips – Another fluff item, because every baby is different. My first 3 gave their pacifiers up at 6months all on their own. My 4th refused to ever take one. If your baby does like his pacifier, having a clip to keep it from constantly dropping to the floor will be a lifesaver.
- Stroller – I consider a stroller a fluff item because you have two arms, and can carry the baby around. Life is easier with a stroller, though – it really is.
- Nursing App – If keeping a good schedule is important to you, a nursing app will come in handy. Record every time you nurse, which side, and for how long. I’m sure I would have used this had I been using a smartphone more frequently with my last babies. Don’t stress though if it’s one more thing you just can’t handle tracking. You’ll know when your baby is hungry.
- Formula Container – For whatever your reason is to formula feed, a container that pre-portions the formula for you can be extremely handy. Trying to measure it out while on the go is messy, and frustrating.
- Nose Frida – OK I just can’t get behind this one. However, I have one friend who absolutely loves it. To each their own.
- Dirty Diaper Bags – I’m going to stop you right now! You DO NOT NEED a diaper pail. If you want one, and think it makes your life easier – go for it! However, as most of my mom friends have told me, all you really need is some type of bag to put dirty diapers in. I personally use grocery sacks. Others use ziplock bags. There are cheaper alternatives to a diaper pail and the refillable bags you have to buy with them.
- Burp Cloths – This one jumps back and forth. Truly, you don’t need a burp cloth, but you will want something to cover your shoulder/lap while burping baby. I found most burp cloths to be too small for the amount of spit up by babies produced and chose instead to use the receiving blankets. You can also designate a few towels you already own as the “burp” rags. So yes, this is needed, but I’m sure you have something you can already use at home.
- Pillows – Some people may tell you to buy a boppy. You don’t need one. If anything I found the boppy more frustrating than helpful. It might work better for you, though. All you really need are pillows – especially if nursing. Pillows will help prop your arms and back and you can adjust to find the right position for your body.
New Mom Comforts
- Nursing Cover – I strongly encourage moms everywhere to nurse. I also encourage moms to do it with respect to those around you, and for your own privacy. A nursing cover will be your best friend. Even if it’s just a blanket you throw over your shoulders.
- Lanolin – nipple cream – for the love mothers! You will want this those first few days/weeks of nursing. They hurt and get sore, and cream will bring comfort you will definitely be looking for.
- Stretchy comfort pants – Giving birth is no joke. No matter how that baby comes out, your body has gone through a lot the last 9 months. Do yourself a favor and buy some comfortable stretchy pants – or 2 or 3.
- Nursing Bras – If you plan on nursing, you will want these. Life is just easier without having to completely undress to feed your new baby.
- Nursing Pads – Nursing or not, your body will produce milk. I’ve been the mom who goes out and then realizes she forgot to replace her pad and found her shirt conspicuously soaked through. Don’t be like me.
- Water Bottle – You will be so thirsty! Find the largest water bottle you can, and buy 2 of them. Keep them filled and in the 2 locations you think you’ll be spending most of your time. I go for the couch and my bed.
- Snacks – Momma, you deserve some treats. Stock up on your favorite before the baby comes, and keep some near your water bottles.
- Netflix/Book – Sometimes, the constant nursing can get a little boring. I mean I LOVE staring into my babies precious face, but there comes a time where I feel less productive and my mind starts guilting me for everything else I’m not getting done while nursing baby. So pop up Netflix – or Amazon – or grab your favorite book. Keep these handy in your go to nursing spots as well.
What New Baby essential or fluff item would you add to this list? Let me know in a comment!
Hopefully you aren’t feeling overwhelmed! With my due date looming in less then 2 months, I just went through the essential list myself. I have everything I need! So I moved on to the “fluff” list – I have most everything on that list, and the few things I don’t aren’t essentials so I’m not going to stress. Last I went through the New Mom comforts. I definitely need to stock up on some snacks, and buy new bras and the other nippe care items. Otherwise I’m good!
The great thing right now is that I can order it all from Diapers.com! With Free shipping on orders over $49, 24/7 customer care, and free 365-day returns -I know I’ll be in good hands. Plus, I just really don’t feel like going to the store, and once our new baby is here, I will definitely be avoiding the store for awhile! What better option than to have everything I need shipped directly to me?