What are Baby Essentials?
Baby essentials are the basic items you need to properly care for your newborn. Baby essentials include necessities like nursery furniture, baby bedding, and other baby gear that provide a safe and comfortable environment for a newborn. This guide will highlight some of the most common and popular baby essentials, so you can know what baby items you’ll need before you bring your infant home.
Parents of newborns will find they spend most of their time in the nursery to feeding the baby, rocking the baby to sleep, changing diapers, and dressing their little one. It’s important to make the room cozy not only for baby, but for mom or dad, too! These baby nursery essentials will make those early months easier and more comfortable.
Baby Nursery Essentials
Your newborn will need a safe place to sleep. You can choose a baby crib, cradle, or bassinet for the newborn stage. Choose a high quality crib mattress and make sure that your crib meets certified safety standards.
A changing table can perform double duty as both changing station and storage. You will want items such as diapers, wipes, and freshly cleaned clothes within arm’s reach.
Rocking chairs have been a nursery necessity for decades because babies and parents find the back-and-forth motion to be soothing and sleep inducing. A glider or rocking chair will provide a comfortable place to feed and cuddle your child.
A baby monitor puts your mind at ease when you have to be out of range and can’t hear your baby’s cries. There is a wide variety of monitors, from a basic audio handset, to monitors with live video feeds and wi-fi connectivity. No matter what solution you choose, it will bring you a sense of comfort to know you can always keep your baby within range.
Newborns sleep about 16-20 hours a day. You will want to make sure their sleeping environnment is safe and comfortable. While some newborn bedding sets come with a cute comforter and pillow, they should only be used as decorative items when your baby isn’t occupying the crib. The real baby bedding essentials are listed below.
Baby Bedding Essentials
Fitted Crib Sheets
A fitted crib sheet has elastic around the corner edges to secure the sheet to the crib mattress. Keep a minimum of two fitted crib sheets so you always have a clean spare ready to go. Use cotton fiber in the warmer months and flannel in the cooler months.
Using a protective waterproof sheet under your fitted crib sheet will extend the life of your mattress. Between spit up and diaper accidents this is a must-have newborn bedding essential.
Keep your little one safe and snug in a sleep sack. Sleep sacks are wearable blankets that replace loose blankets in the crib. Unlike a blanket, the sleep sack can’t be kicked off which helps to keep your baby warm throughout the night.
Receiving blankets are the perfect size for swaddling your newborn. They also come in handy when you are in a pinch and need a temporary changing mat, burp cloth, or nursing cover.
The first few weeks require a lot of clothing, so make sure you have enough on hand. For a quick cozy outfit, dress baby in a onesie, pants, and socks. We recommend buying clothing in similar colors so that outfits are easy to mix and match.
Baby Clothing Essentials
Separates allow you to change one piece of dirty clothing without putting together a whole new outfit. Depending on the weather, you will want a handful of baby pants, shorts, or leggings. Look for stretchy waistbands and items made from breathable materials, like cotton.
Onesies are a must-have wardrobe staple. When buying onesies, look for brands that offer a wide neck opening, slits or buttons around the neck. This will make dressing your baby much easier.
When picking pajamas for a newborn, you want to think about comfort, safety, and accessibility for changing diapers in the middle of the night. We recommend a layette gown that has mitten cuffs to keep baby’s fingernails tucked away and a gown-like bottom for easy diaper changing.
Newborn hats, booties, socks, and mittens are all great accessories to have on hand. A baby can lose large amounts of heat through her head and feet. Keep your little one warm with a hat, booties, or socks. Keep scratches off baby’s face with newborn hand mittens.
Congratulations! You now have a hungry newborn in your arms. Not sure what gear will come in handy? Be prepared and ready for mealtime with these four baby feeding essentials. Even if you decide to breastfeed, it’s a good idea to keep bottles and a pump on hand so you can take a break if necessary.
Baby Feeding Essentials
Whether you decide to bottle feed with breast milk or use formula, baby bottles are a must-have item. It’s a good idea to purchase small four-ounce bottles for a newborn and transition to larger nine-ounce bottles when baby’s appetite grows.
Burp cloths may be small, but they are a big help. Not only do these tiny absorbent cloths keep spit-up off your shoulder, they also work well at cleaning up all kinds of messes from baby. You’ll want at least a dozen.
Believe it or not, feeding a baby can be strenuous. Using a nursing pillow to prop up your baby while feeding can help ease the strain on your muscles. Holding your baby at a 45-degree angle during feedings will also help her swallow less air, minimizing uncomfortable air bubbles and gas.
Even if your plan is to breastfeed exclusively, you may find that letting other family members feed your baby a bottle of pumped breast milk is a win-win. An electric pump is a popular choice for moms who are frequently away from their babies and can’t nurse regularly. A manual pump is best for short-term separations.
Once life settles with baby, you’ll soon be itching to get out of the house, even if it’s just for a stroll around the block. Prepping for your first outing with baby can feel a bit daunting, but if you are prepared with these baby travel essentials, you’ll be strolling around town like a pro. Keep baby safe by using a car seat, stroller, or baby carrier. Dress baby in a comfortable outfit. Don’t forget to pack essentials in your diaper bag!
Baby Travel Essentials
Infant Car Seat
If you plan to put your baby in any kind of motorized vehicle, you will need to purchase an infant car seat. These car seats are a smart choice because they have detachable bases that stay in the car, allowing them to be clicked in or out as needed. This gives you the freedom to remove the carrier to keep baby safely restrained or to keep baby fast asleep.
Diaper changes away from home can be tricky. A great bag will make things easier by assuring you have everything you need in one place. When searching for a diaper bag, consider a bag with organization compartments; this makes items easy to find and access.
A baby stroller is a must-have item for most parents. You’ll need this piece of gear for the first few years of your child’s life. A stroller travel system allows you to attach the infant car seat to the stroller. Even when baby outgrows the car seat, you can still use the stroller.
As life gets busy and your “to do” list grows, you won’t have to give up the bliss of keeping baby close. Accomplish tasks and enjoy baby’s companionship by “wearing” her in a carrier or wrap. Wearing your baby can help strengthen the parent-child bond.
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