Do you feel overwhelmed by the number of things you need to buy before your baby’s arrival? Shopping for everything you need to buy for a new baby feels daunting!
You find yourself pondering how many socks a baby needs and if a changing table is really necessary. Searching Pinterest late at night for nursery decor ideas becomes a regular hobby. Where do you really start and what does a baby actually need? Take a look at this new baby checklist to make sure you didn’t forget something important!
New Baby Checklist
If you spend time talking to your mom friends, everyone will have different baby items they use more than others. Each parent has a baby essential that they can’t live without. Here is a checklist with all of the basics. Some lists are overwhelming and have items you never will need, or the numbers are insane.
No, you don’t need 50 burp cloths, unless you don’t have a washing machine! Our list is realistic and appropriate. So, let’s jump in and check out the things you REALLY need.
1. Baby Clothes
Spend any time wandering through the baby aisle, and you will find yourself staring at the utter cuteness! Who knew jeans could look SO adorable. Despite the cuteness, you want to make sure you have all of the practical items first that will keep your baby cozy. Here are some must-haves when it comes to baby clothing.
- 5 to 10 one-piece pajamas
- 10 to 15 onesies
- 1 to 3 sweaters or jackets
- 1 to 3 rompers or nice outfits
- 4 to 7 socks or booties – babies DON’T need shoes!
- 1 to 3 hats
- Fleece suit if wintertime
- Laundry detergent for babies
2. Somewhere to Sleep
Babies need a safe place to sleep. That might be a nursery or a separate sleeping surface in your room. Remember that the American Academy for Pediatrics recommends that parents room-share for a minimum of six months to reduce the risks of SIDS.
Parents have a few choices! You might want a crib; this is a wise choice because you will need one when your baby gets older. Other options include bassinets, cradles, and co-sleepers that attach to the side of your bed.
3. Crib Mattress
Picking a crib mattress for your baby is a hard task. There are certain criteria that a mattress must meet to be a good selection for your infant.
To reduce the risk of SIDS, experts recommend that parents use a hard mattress and avoid a soft mattress until their child is older. Don’t use a crib that is meant for older kids or adults because they won’t be the appropriate size for cribs, and the mattress won’t be firm enough.
4. Baby Bedding
Comfortable sleep is important for you and the baby. You are going to need to ensure you have the appropriate baby bedding to keep your baby safe and cozy.
Remember that crib bumpers are NOT recommended anymore. In fact, some state banned the sale of crib bumpers due to the death of infants. A safe sleeping environment for your baby means a crib with fitted sheets and nothing else, including blankets.
However, you’ll still want some blankets for times when your baby is with you in a room or in their car seat. Just remember to never put blankets in the crib with your infant.
- 1-3 washable crib mattress pads
- 2-4 fitted crib sheets
- 2-3 fitted bassinet or co-sleeper sheets
- 4-6 receiving blankets
- 1-2 heavier blankets for cold climates
5. Sleep Sacks or Swaddlers
Swaddling keeps baby snug and cozy. You can use blankets to swaddle, but some parents prefer the sleep swaddlers that you just Velcro or zip up.
Sleep sacks are great because blankets aren’t recommended for crib usage. Instead, sleep sacks keep their feet covered and warmer.
HALO SleepSack is our pick for the best sleep sack on the market!
6. Car Seat
A car seat is one of the most important things you’ll purchase for your baby. Thousands of children each year are harmed or killed because of vehicle accidents, and proper car seats are one way to keep your child safe.
Many parents pick to first use an infant car seat, which has a handle because it is easy to carry and allows baby to stay asleep when you move them out of the car. However, infant car seats are outgrown sooner.
You can go with a convertible car seat immediately, as long as your baby meets the minimum weight requirement. As your baby gets bigger, you will need to switch to a convertible car seat. A convertible car seat lets you rear-face for as long as you want – a minimum of two years. Then, you can forward face until your child is ready for a high-back booster, around the age of four to five years old.
When you go out and about, a stroller is a handy item to have. Most babies love to sit in their stroller and look around. Plus, it gives you somewhere to put the diaper bag and shopping bags if you head to the mall.
Some moms like strollers that let them set the infant car seat on top. If that’s what you want, make sure to put a stroller that is designed for this feature. Many don’t accept car seats.
Parents have to decide whether or not they want to use disposable or cloth diapers. No matter your selection, there are a few things you will want to have on hand.
- Diaper cream
- Baby Wipes
- Changing table or a place to change the baby. You might plan to change your baby on the couch or the floor! If so, make sure you have a pad to place under the baby.
If you decide to use cloth diapers, you will want to have around 24 to 36 diapers, allowing you to wash diapers every two to three days. Some other items you will want to have if you use cloth diapers are:
- Cloth diaper safe cream
- Diaper pail or liners
- Wet bag for going out of the house with cloth diapers
9. Baby Swing or Bouncer
While not totally necessary, it is nice to have somewhere to put your baby when not in arms. You don’t need both a bouncer and a swing. Many swings vibrate anyway! Think about the space you have available to put an swing or bouncer. Swings take up more foot space.
10. Diaper Bag
If you ever want to leave your house, a diaper bag is a true necessity! There are many styles from over-the-shoulder bags to backpack-style bags. No matter the design, make sure it offers enough space for all of your items. Compartments are nice for storing little items; a diaper bag can quickly become a black hole!
11. Burp Cloths
No matter if you bottle feed or breastfeed, burp cloths are important. You don’t have to get fancy! Burp cloths can be prefold cloth diapers! Ideally, you want to have around 10-12 burp cloths, especially if your baby has reflux problems!
Moms love the Burt’s Bees Baby 5-Pack Burp Cloths – They’re so soft!
12. Safety Related Items
Babies may not move just yet, but older infants and toddlers do! Here are some items to consider purchasing.
- Baby Gate – Once your baby is mobile and crawling, you will want a baby gate, especially near stairs. Stairs are dangerous for babies. You also might want to gate off the kitchen or bathroom.
- Power Outlet Covers – A mobile baby is curious, and you want to make sure you cover all the exposed power outlets. Babies love to stick things inside of the outlets!
- Cabinet and Drawer Locks – Curious toddlers love cabinets and drawers, but they aren’t always safe for exploration. Cabinet locks are a necessity to keep your baby away from dangerous cleaning products or knives in a drawer!
13. Baby Carrier
Babies want to close to mom and dad, so a baby carrier lets you carry your baby around while still getting things done. They’re also convenient for trips when strollers aren’t ideal, like festivals or hiking. Baby carriers keep baby snug and cozy, and many let mom breastfeed discreetly.
14. Health Related Items
Unfortunately, your baby is going to get sick at some point. When that happens, you want to have the essentials on hand instead of needing to drag your sick baby to the store.
- First-aid Kit
- Petroleum Jelly and sterile gauze – circumcision care
- Baby Thermometer – Fevers are dangerous in infants, so you want to keep a close eye on your child’s temperature. A digital rectal thermometer is the most accurate choice.
- Nasal Aspirator – If your baby gets sick, an aspirator clears their nasal passages. It literally is a lifesaver sometimes! Check out the Fridababy NoseFrida Nasal Aspirator – Moms rave about it!
- Gas Drops
- Gripe Water
- Fever Reducers – only use under the care and instruction of your pediatrician!
15. Nursery Gear
The nursery is your baby’s special room. There are a few things you might want to include in your nursery to make it a more pleasant experience.
- Rocking Chair – it’s nice to have a spot in their nursery where you can rock your baby to sleep!
- Toy Basket
- Baby Monitor – You’ll want to keep an eye and an ear on your new baby at all times. A monitor lets you lay your baby down and enjoy time outside. Take a peek at which lets you see the baby.
- Noise Machine – A noise machine isn’t a necessity, but it is nice to have! These little machines produce soothing sounds, like rainfall, that help lull your baby to sleep. Some babies enjoy these more than others.
- Cool Mist Humidifier – Babies can easily get sick, especailly during dry winter months. A cool mist humidifier puts moisture into the air, making it an environment that viruses don’t enjoy
16. Bath Supplies
Bath time can be a lot of fun for some babies. Other babies act as if bathtime is equal to torture time. No matter if your baby loves bath time or not, you will need a few items to make it go as smooth as possible. A squeaky clean baby smells delicious. Those babies can smell strange, especially when their chubby rolls trap milk!
- Baby Bathtub
- Baby Soap
- 2-4 Soft baby towels or hooded towels
- Soft washcloths
- Baby hairbrush
- Baby nail clippers
17. Bottlefeeding Supplies
If you plan to use bottles, you need to make sure that you have the right supplies on hand. Breastfeeding mothers who use bottles tend to use fewer bottles unless you’re exclusively pumping. Here are some supplies that you will need to feed your baby with bottles.
- 10 to 16 baby bottles and nipples – a variety of 4oz and 8oz bottles
- Dishwasher basket for smaller parts of the bottle
- 2 to 4 pacifiers
18. Breastfeeding Supplies
Mothers who breastfeed will need some of the supplies listed above, such as the bottles and bottle brush! You might decide to use pacifiers as well, once your milk supply is established. Other items you might want to include on your list include:
- Pump – this is typically provided by your insurance company. Make sure to contact your insurance to see if they provide one for free!
- Nipple Cream
- Nursing Bras
- Nursing Pillow
- Nursing Pads
Eventually, your baby is going to be ready to sit at the table with the family and have meals. A highchair isn’t necessary immediately, but you will want one from about six months old and above.
Our Top Pick: Graco DuoDiner LX Baby Highchair
20. Feeding Supplies
You have a ways to go before introducing your baby to solids. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends starting solids at six months. That is such an exciting time for parents and babies! Here are a few things you’ll need to feed your baby solid foods.
- 4 to 6 Baby Spoons
- 2 to 4 Baby Forks
- 4 to 8 Bibs
- 2 to 4 Baby Plates
- Baby Food Maker – While not a necessity, homemade baby food is cheaper and higher quality than store-bought baby food. A baby food maker makes it a breeze to make your baby food at home.
- Food Storage – If you do want to make your baby food, food storage trays let you store small portions of food for your baby.
Shopping for your new baby doesn’t have to be complicated. Start with the essential items – like a car seat and clothes – then work your way down to feeding supplies and items that aren’t a necessity. Happy shopping!