| |

Top 10 Newborn Must-Haves

Many moons ago, I had a newborn. Now my little baby is all grown up and will be a toddler in a matter of weeks. Excuse me while I start hyperventilating.


Okay, I’m back. Seriously, they grow up so freaking fast. In fact, I made this shortly after she was born, saved it and kept it in my drafts folder, thinking I’d post it later. Then, before I knew it, “later” became now, while I’m here planning her first birthday party. Whoops. But I’m sharing it with you now, which seems like perfect timing based on the amount of pregnancy announcements I’ve seen pop up in the past week or so. Hopefully it’ll help someone as much as these things helped me.

And now, for my top 10 newborn must-haves!

1. Diaper Bag.

You need one to hold allllll the crap stuff a baby needs when you’re not at home. If I could’ve, I probably would’ve tried to pack the kitchen sink in there. During those first few months you aren’t really sure what you’ll need when you’re out, so you’ll probably pack a couple of everything just in case you need it. Technically, I didn’t get a traditional diaper bag, but got this perfect stand-in from Kohl’s.

2. Yoga ball.

(This could possibly be eliminated if you have a one-story house, but if you have two-story home and don’t want to lug the swing/bouncer up/down every night, read on.) This was the only way my husband could eventually get our little one to sleep at night. He would hold her, whisper yell “SSSSHHHHHH” in her ear, and bounce. Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, alllllll. night. long. It made her feel like she was still in my belly and eventually got her to sleep.

3. A Swing.

Oh, thank heavens our daughter liked the swing. It was sometimes the only way we could get her to nap during those early days. This is similar to the one we had—I loved that the seat turned into a detachable bouncer that vibrated. It also had a built-in white noise machine with multiple sounds.

4. Nipple Cream.

I must’ve tried a half-dozen different nipple creams and I hated all but. Motherlove was my absolute favorite because it wasn’t sticky, didn’t stink, and actually worked. They also have a diaper rash cream that worked like a charm. If you try this brand you won’t be sorry.

5. Pacifier Holders.

It’s amazing how quickly a pacifier can disappear! Buy stock in these if your little one uses a paci.

6. Ziploc bags.

Seriously, don’t leave home without at least one Ziploc in your diaper bag. You never know when a blowout will happen, and unless you want to throw away poopy clothes, you won’t have a place to put them. While you’re at it, make sure you get the kind that actually zips closed, because it’ll help keep things cleaner in the long run. Ziploc bags will be your best friend, promise.

7. White Noise Machine.

We use this one and love it. When Julia was little she’d only calm down when we’d practically yell “SSSSHHHH” in her little ear. They like loud noises during that “fourth trimester,” so opt for a white noise machine that has consistent noise and doesn’t shut off after a certain amount of time. This one has several noise options, but we always use the “rain” mode. It’s also great, because you can plug it into the wall, or use it with batteries for traveling.

8. Change of clothes.

While we’re on the subject of blowouts (see number 6), always keep a spare onesie with you. It doesn’t need to be super cute, it just needs to cover them up. There’s something about a naked baby (while absolutely adorable), makes them seem so much more fragile, not to mention, cold. So if there’s a blowout situation, get some clothes on that baby!

9. Swaddles by aden + anais.

I scoffed when I saw the price of these things and then swooned over them for the first several months. They’re technically blankets, but they make the best swaddles, amazing breastfeeding covers, a handy burp cloth, car seat coverup, and of course, the comfiest blanket around. I’m sure I’m missing several other duties for these guys, so feel free to chime in below. (Heh…I said “dooty”.)

10. A carrier.

This is a tricky one, because you need to find what works for you. My husband’s always loved the Ergo, but I’ve had a love/hate relationship with the Moby. What I do know is that having a carrier is a must-have, so shop around until you find one that works for both of you. (Moby was great when she was little, but as she got older I started using the Ergo more, and that’s the one I like now.)

Okay, your turn! Did I miss anything? What are your top newborn must-haves?
If you liked this post, you may like reading these:


  1. I'm going to have to comment on all of these 🙂 Haha.
    1 – absolutely, though as you have more kids, you find you might actually need more than one, especially if your kids will ever be in separate places where they'll need a bag left with them (daycare, etc). I now use my purse as a diaper bag and the kids have their own backpacks/bags that stay at their schools.
    2 – Meh – I didn't see the need for it, but we have a portable swing (folds up and easy to move around – great for road trips, too!)
    3 – Swing and bouncer – you never know which the baby will prefer!
    4 – Amen!!! I love lansinoh lanolin, though, it was the only thing that healed cracks/bleeding. Otherwise I do love Earth Mama Angel Baby nipple butter, too – it just didn't work as nicely as the lanolin.
    5 – We used these a lot with our son, not so much with our daughter… we just have 20 pacis floating around for her now 😉
    6 – We have a reusable wet bag (can get from any cloth diaper store) – actually had 2, one for dirty clothes and one that stayed with my breast pump to carry all the accessories.
    7 – I wouldn't spend the money on a special white noise machine, we just used box fans, and the kids still sleep with box fans on year round. Also great for air circulation since we keep their doors shut.
    8 – I still carry a change of clothes with us wherever we go 😉
    9 – These are awesome, but HUGE! I never used them for that reason. We used regular blankets (two) for my son who was smaller, and with my daughter we loved the fleece swaddle-me wraps. They worked really really well. Then we switched her to a sleep sack as she got older. These wraps were a LIFESAVER!
    10 – Yes yes yes! The Ergo is my favorite – unlike the Boba 3G, I liked being able to adjust from baby to toddler just by removing the insert and not having to flip the buckles on the straps.

    I would also add a boppy – I didn't use it for nursing, but it was a nice place to let baby catch a quick nap on the couch or the floor. Soothie pacis (or the gumdrop ones that look the same) – best ones we've found, we love them, and we only use the newborn ones bc they're softer (our daughter even went back to using them when she weaned at 15 months after having previously given them up at 7 months!).

    Can't believe I'm going to have a newborn again in 6 months!

  2. Everything in our little guys caper bag is in zip locks bags. Changes of clothes are key. I realized very quickly our diaper bag was not big enough and bought an XL canvas bag from Land's End. It is hug but there are a bunch of compartments for momma stuff too. It even fits my Medela pump and a cooler for milk! It's been a life saver!

  3. My son did NOT like the swing! 🙁 It was a bit sad because everyone kept telling me how much he would love it, so we finally took the plunge and thought it was going to be amazing. It was disappointing, but whatever. Anyway, we loved, loved, loved our Sakura Bloom sling when he was a newborn. It was the best. But when he got bigger and we started hiking, we switched to the Ergo Baby and it's great too!

    1. I'm soooo happy the swing doubled as a bouncer, because I didn't want to buy two things, and it turned out that my daughter didn't really care for the bouncer all that much. Who knew babies could be so picky?!

  4. The swing and white noise machine! Yes! Although our white noise machine is the Gentle Giraffe from Cloud B, doubles as a stuffie. 🙂

  5. I loved our Summer Infant swaddleme blankets — my son was big at birth, and strong already it seems. I was grateful for the strong velcro tabs that held the blanket closed through the night. And with the little panel at the bottom, I could change his diaper at nighttime feedings without unswaddling his arms! It was great. The two other loves in our house were the boppy and our rock n play sleeper!!

  6. Oh my gosh… Just discovered your blog… I THOUGHT I WAS ALONE with the yoga ball… I literally spend 4-6 hours of my day bouncing and shhhhh-ing…. Thank you for making this new-mamas night, and hooray for yoga balls!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.