So I thought I would take the opportunity of a slow day to post a follow up to my previous Newborn Essentials post (for clothing). This time I thought I would share what stuff/gear/gadgets/doowikkis have been absolute musts in our home for the last five months of baby time. I’m sure in another 5 months I will have an entire new list of essentials, but for the early infancy/newborn stage these have been key. I would recommend the following items whole heartedly for any mom to be out there!
-Diapers-have used Pampers, Huggies, and Honest. I am a peds RN and we do use Pampers in the hospital. But I have to say Huggies out of all 3 of these brands have been my favorite. They leak the least. They’re the cheapest. And they’re available at Costco in bulk!
-Wipes-literally does not matter. I think we buy Huggies brand also because they’re available in bulk. But out of all the things you could waste money on with a baby, wipes would be like #1. You are literally using them to wipe away pee and poop. They do not need to be designer! They also do not need to be organic. I’m sorry, but your baby’s bottom won’t care. Again, as a peds RN, I will say that we do not use “organic” wipes at the hospital. Ryley’s skin is super sensitive and Huggies brand wipes have been totally fine.
-Diaper cream-Boudreaux’s Butt Paste-my favorite and we’ve used a few. Love the smell. Love the consistency. And it works really well.
-Lotion-Johnson and Johnson Purple Lotion. You will literally want to eat your baby.
-Shampoo/Body Wash-have used Johnson and Johson, Aveeno, and Cetaphil-all smell and work great and like I said Ryley has pretty sensitive skin
-Other misc things I would recommend are:
– Some solid nail clippers (they make ones with little magnifying glasses, which seems silly, but really helps when your baby has microscopic little nails)
-A basic thermometer that can take underarm and rectal temps (don’t waste money on the infrared/forehead/pacifier/ear/magical ones, please as an RN I beg you, you need a basic thermometer that you can put up your baby’s butt, a pediatrician will request a rectal temperature if you think your baby has a fever or if they have a fever using one of the other fancy thermometers because rectal is most accurate, you cannot put the ear thermometer up your baby’s butt, get a basic one!)
-Children’s tylenol (after 3 months, before then make sure to ask a doc first!)
-A bulb suction and saline drops if your baby gets a stuffy nose (they actually usually sell these together)
-Aquaphor (works great for anywhere your baby’s skin is irritated, face, bottom, arms, you name it, Ryley had an awful rash on her chin early on from nursing and this cleared it up in like 2 days), get a giant tub of it and put it next to your changing table
-Humidifier (we didn’t get one, but I know some people swear by them, and babies do tend to get stuffy/dry nasal passages)
-A cheap plastic comb/hairbrush
As far as bottles/feeding I’m not even going to get into that, because it’s really trial and error to find what your baby likes. And if your baby is like mine you will spend a small fortune on every type of bottle/nipple in existence and she will refuse all of them until one day magically she takes a bottle like no big deal and then after that will take literally any kind of bottle without a care in the world.
Don’t buy formula in advance unless you are exclusively formula feeding. If you are breastfeeding and just need some for supplementation down the road wait and get samples from your pediatrician’s office (you never know what kind your baby will tolerate and it’s better not to waste money on formula you won’t end up using)! Whatever you do don’t listen to Kristen Cavillari and make your own “artisan” formula from goat’s milk. There are rigorous health and safety standards for baby formula out there for a reason.
And that’s that. Like I said, in five months I’m sure we will have a whole new laundry list of necessary items. Babies change and grow. What is absolutely essential one day will literally be rendered useless the next. Which is why for the most part my recommendation is don’t go for the most expensive option, no matter how trendy or fashionable it is. Cheaper brands like Fisher Price or Graco or Chico have been doing their thing for a long time. They know babies pretty well. Research some but don’t go too crazy. If it is sold through a legitimate retailer then it’s been safety tested, probably exhaustively so. Really you’re buying for style/ease of use/personal preference so no matter what you get it will be okay. Keep your receipts. Ask for hand me downs/lenders if at all possible.
You and your baby will do fine 🙂