newborn must haves, newborn shopping list, newborn gear

Ahhh the newborn phase, while arguably one of the most exhausting phases of babyhood it’s filled with snuggles, sleepy milk drunk babes, days at home and that delicious newborn smell that makes mamas everywhere crave another baby even just for a moment. At the time that I’m writing this my babes are 2 (He’ll be 3 in May) and 11 months…I have a boy and a girl and while they have very similar temperaments, and habits they also had their favorites when it came to baby gear, swaddles, sleep etc.

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. If you do decide to use these links, thank you so much for your support! I recommend these products only because I have purchased them and have had experience with them and use them for my own family. If you need more info on any of these items, feel free to drop me a note.

If you’re a new mama and you’re wondering what the heck to register for I feel ya. (I laid awake many nights while preggo wondering if I registered for the right stuff or not) Below are my top 10 baby items (newborn addition) – I’ll be rolling out additions for various ages – but first let’s focus on the things that will help through these early stages!

Newborn must haves, baby swing, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag

Swing – My son loveddd the swing. I. mean. Loved. My daughter would chill in it and it served as a safe place to “set” her for a bit but she wasn’t IN LOVE with the swing like Tate was. We dont have the fanciest of swings (some people have the amazing mamaroo) But our Fisher Price swing did the job and honestly, we let Tate swing away until he maxed out the weight limit at like 13 months ( No joke!!) Newborns love to simulate the womb which is why so many baby items rock, vibrate, make soothing sounds so if this swing provides even 20 min/ day of your arms being free so you can nap then I’ll call that a win.

Newborn must haves, swaddle, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag

Swaddle me Swaddlers – One major Pro of these is baby looks like a legit baby burrito…and who doesnt love that? Both my kiddos slept amazingly when wrapped up in these.

Pros: Easy to use velcro, difficult for baby to bust out of, baby feels nice and snug!
* pro tip pack one in your hospital bag. These were a life saver rather than trying to use the somewhat stiff hospital blankets to swaddle

We also had great success with the woombie swaddle up ( for babies who like to sleep with their arms up)

One thing I didn’t like about similar products was the multiple steps, putting babies arms through the arm holes, zipping, then wrapping with the velcro. I also wasn’t a fan of how much velcro was on there because when removing it the sound was so loud it startled baby.

Newborn must haves, carseat cover, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag

Covered goods cover So, first of all, I’m obsessed with these covers purely because of how stinking cute they are. Full disclosure I wasn’t able to really get the hang of nursing with this until Tate was a little older and I felt more confident nursing. That being said, I struggled using any cover with ease in those early days… I also wasn’t super motivated to cover up because  #normalizebreastfeeding …. Anywho… Initially, I only used it as a carseat cover, and I’d buy 10 more of these JUST for that. Not only does it shade your babe, but it also keeps nosey randos from trying to reach in and touch your baby at the grocery store. #ew.
Once I did start nursing with it ( Tate was about 3-4 months and had more head control ) it became my go-to cover and same for Kennedy!

Newborn must haves, solly wrap, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag,

Solly – #WearAllTheBabies… If you’re interested in reading about all my favorite baby wearing methods check out my post on that here. For each season of babyhood, I think the style of carrier varies. For newborns I love wearing them in a wrap, the Solly is Oh-so-soft, comes in gorgeous colors and patterns, and allows you to snuggle your babe super close without a ton of buckles etc. You can wear babies well past newborn stage in a Solly as well. Bonus – these wraps maintain fabulous retail value for when you want to sell or trade them down the road.

* Baby wearing can feel a tad overwhelming especially if you’re trying to figure out a wrap or sling with a needy newborn around. I’d recommend bustin’ the solly out while you’re still waiting for baby & practice getting it on, heck use a stuffed animal as your stand in babe.

Newborn must haves, swaddle, knotted gown, cozys, matching babies, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag

Knotted gowns – I wish I knew about these with my first. #gamechanger. Picture your sleep deprived husband who is a first time dad trying to change the diaper of your hungry, crying, fragile little newborn in the middle of the night. Even 5 seconds of him bumbling around pjs full of snaps feels like an eternity. Do your man (and yourself) a favor and get some knotted gowns. Easy peasy, comfy and so cute.

My absolutle favorite place to get these is Cozys worth the price tag, Kennedy LIVED in these and they fit her well past the newborn phase.

Owelet Can you put a price on peace of mind? I dont think so. I’ve hear many-a-mama ask if checking to make sure their little one is breathing goes away after the newborn phase. Well my son is almost 3 and I stilllll worry about if he is breathing. Must be a life long mom thing.

With so much information out there about safe sleep we are so well educated but with that education also comes worry. No matter how many guidelines we follow that fear will always be there. With our first we bought a little monitor that clipped to his diaper and would buzz/alarm if he didnt breath in a certain amount of time. There were a lot of cons to this little device. 1 starting with clipping it to the diaper of a newborn…lots of logistical issues. It often slipped off setting off a false alarm, and it making noise was my only way to check on my baby. This isnt super useful if your baby sleeps in his or her own room.

For our second we decided to invest in the Owelet, while it has a hefty price tag I am so glad we did. The grow with me sock fits on babys foot and the technoloy is like that of having a monitor on your finger when at the hospital. I love that I can check babys heart rate, and oxygen levels from the smartphone app. Should babys vitals drop out of the normal range, or the sock slips off the docking sation which we kept in our room will sound, and the app will alert you as well. Hello peace of mind.

Nose FridaNothing pops the blissful new motherhood bubble like sucking snot from a babies nose… but alas it must be done. We’ve all seen the traditonal bulb for removing boogers and such from little noses…While that option seems a lot less errr…. Gross, trust me when I say the Nose Frida is MUCH more effective. When your newborn is congested a little snot sucking is completely worth their comfort (and ability to breathe) – This is a tool you dont want to be without!

Newborn must haves, halo bassinet , newborn sleep tips, hospital bag
Newborn must haves, swaddle, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag, dockatot, halo bassinet

Halo Bassinet – Both my babes loved this thing, I pretty much grieved when each of them outgrew it because it was such a staple of newborn life. Major PRO – the Dock A Tot fits inside of this! (Insert happy dance here)

I love how close I was able to be to baby while still feeling like they were safe in their own space. The swivel feature allowed for me to get in and out of bed easily, the adjustable height feature was so convenient. Another feature that I had no idea would be SO HANDY until after I had my first was the side rail that pushed down to easily allow you to scoop baby out or set baby back down. Its hard to explain how clutch this is and you won’t realllly know until you’re trying to gracefully plop a snoozing newborn back into their bassinet while turning your body in bed.

I also liked the sound, vibrate and light buttons included, along with the pockets on the sides, I filled those with everything from chapstick to nipple cream, nursing pads and more.

Newborn must haves, swaddle, newborn sleep tips, hospital bag, dockatot, sleeping girl, bloom headwraps

Dock A TotHere is another mama fave that I wish I had with my first! We have traveled quite a few places with our babies and one of the biggest stressors that comes along with taking little ones on a trip is changing their sleep routine. We kept her Doc-a-tot inside her Halo bassinet and when we needed her to sleep in the living room, or in another state she didnt know the difference because her bed was the same! The fabric is breathable, the covers can be completely taken off and washed, and once again its portable! YAS.

We used her Doc to transition her to her crib, and she loved it so much that we sized up when she out grew it.

Breast friend nursing pillowNow this isnt the first pillow you think of when you think nursing pillows, that popular little guy is actually under my list of things I could have done without. But let’s chat about why the Breast Friend Nursing Pillow truly is a new moms BFF. One thing I had not thought about when it comes to nursing is how floppy, and fragile newborns are, it takes about 7 arms to successfully accomplish nursing a squishy new babe, yet we are only given 2 arms. I think of this pillow as an extra arm seriously.
1) It buckles around your waist. Having it snap around your waist means you dont have to use one of your arms to keep it from sliding or readjust it constantly.

2) The back pillow is super helpful especially when you spend so many hours (yes hours) in those first few weeks nursing non stop, comfort is KEY

3) The flat surface…. This ‘pillow’ is more like a tray, it’s large,flat, surface area just really worked for us.

4) It has a pocket…now pre-babe I imagined this pocket as a Mary Poppins bag that would hold everything I needed in life, and while its far from that, its useful having my phone, or the baby nail clippers right there was so helpful

Honorable mentions since I want to keep this list to 10 would be Rock n Play + a Sound Machine!!

What newborn items are you most excited for / could you not live without? Let me know in the comments