Making a baby registry can be overwhelming. There are so many baby products out there, it can be tough to know what’s really necessary. The good news is you already know everything your baby truly needs: to be fed, warm, and safe. Let’s talk about the true must-have items you don’t want to leave off your registry. That way, anything else you decide to add is just a bonus!
- Feeding support
- Bottles and maybe a bottle warmer (if bottle feeding)
- Sanitizing system or pouches
- High chair/feeding chair
- Changing pad
- 3+ changing pad covers and liners
- So many diapers in so many sizes, wipes, diaper cream
- Diaper Pail/disposal plan
ON THE GO:
CLEANING and BATH TIME:
- Baby bathtub or small basin
- Brush/comb, baby soap, baby lotion, nail clippers
- Gentle laundry detergent
- Thermometer and nasal aspirator
- Soft towels and washcloths
- Crib and bassinet
- Wearable blankets
- 3+ Crib/bassinet Sheets
- Clothing (about 5 items each category, i.e. onesies, pants, socks, etc.)
- 6+ Burp cloths
Tips By Topic
Feeding your baby is literally a full-time job! It has been estimated that new parents spend over 30 hours a week feeding their baby. Make sure you and baby are comfortable whether you are nursing or bottle feeding with the feeding support that is right for you!
Even if you plan on exclusively breastfeeding, it’s good to have at least one bottle on hand just in case. There are plenty of bottle brands claiming to be the best, but every baby is different. Pick one that is easy to clean and go from there. Don’t heat bottles in the microwave. It can burn baby. A bottle warmer is easy to use, however, you can also run the bottle under hot water and swirl until warm.
If you have a dishwasher, put a top-rack caddy on your registry for nipple, pacifier, or pump parts. If not, sanitizing pouches or devices are great. You can also boil most items for 5 minutes or so to sanitize if you’re short on space.
You’ll want a portable changing pad for changing diapers in public. A stationary pad can be placed in the room baby sleeps to make nighttime changing easier. Changing pad liners are a great way to cut down on laundry if things get messy.
Stock up on diapers and wipes at your shower. All sizes. Your baby should go through at least 6 diapers/day! Diapers build up quickly and stink. You’ll need a plan to dispose of them.
ON THE GO:
Before you leave the hospital with baby, you will need a properly installed car seat.* Convertible car seats can be reconfigured to grow with your baby, but they are not portable. Infant car seats can be removed from the vehicle to make transport easy, but they will not grow with your child. You will be using some sort of car seat for about 5-6 years.
*Car seats are not for sleep. Always remove a sleeping baby from the car seat and place them in a safe sleeping space as soon as possible.
A carrier allows you to do what you need to do hands-free while caring for your baby. It is great for bonding in and out of the home as well. Get a carrier where baby feels secure and that is recognized as hip healthy by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute when used as directed.
For larger trips, a stroller may be what you are looking for. You may want to find a stroller that attaches to your car seat and has a seat as they grow. It’s faster and easier to transfer newborns from the car to the stroller in a car seat.
HYGIENE and BATH TIME:
Baby skin is very delicate. Find products that are gentle. A baby brush can also be used to remove cradle cap (a common skin condition in babies). Your baby’s nails will need to be trimmed.
A baby tub is less slippery than a sink, and you don’t have to sanitize your sink first. If you have scratchy towels, ask for some super soft ones made especially for babies.
Your baby will need help removing mucus. Find an aspirator that will be easy to clean.
Make sure your crib and bassinet are sleep safe by clicking here. It is not safe to wrap your baby in a blanket or have anything in the crib or bassinet. A properly fitted sheet (with a few extras on hand for messes) and a wearable blanket are all you need.
Aim for different sizes of clothing (baby will not be in newborn size for very long) and have at least 5 of each category in each size you want to store. If your baby will be born in colder months, they’ll need one additional piece of clothing than you would normally wear in the same weather. Keep that in mind when thinking about coats, gloves, and hats.