Taking The First Steps: 5 Must-Haves To Welcome Your Newborn
For new parents, walking into a baby store is pretty much like walking into uncharted territory. Every product that your eyes fall upon feels like something that your baby might love now or, if not, in the near future.
It’s understandable that every budding parent wants the very best for their young ones and sometimes cannot fight the impulse to get everything that appears adorable and useful! But, the result? You’d probably be walking out of the store with a cart full of items but without a need or use for many of them. As such, to help you prioritise your spending and navigate baby shopping, here is a list of the truly essential items to hunt for when expecting.
1. Baby clothing
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From cute little onesies to the tiniest mittens, the large array of newborn clothing can even surpass your current wardrobe! On first thought, you might be hesitant to spend much on clothing, as your growing child might outgrow them in a matter of months. However, sufficient clothes are essential to keep your little one warm and comfortable at all times. So then, how do you make the right choice in finding the comfiest and versatile baby clothes?
A good tip is to pick out items that can be worn for different occasions or can still be donned when your child is older. For instance, seek out a charming dress that can double up as a lovely top as your baby girl gets taller – it's time to get creative and think of as many uses as you can for every piece!
At the same time, it’s common to get caught up with getting the more adorable first outfits for your baby. But, it’s good to bear in mind this mantra: your baby wouldn’t need fancy outfits because they will soon outgrow them in no time! Well, yes, babies are so irresistible when fitted into those cute outfits for picture-perfect moments; remember that their wardrobe will have to undergo an overhaul within a mere couple of weeks. It’s best to go for the budget-friendly option – basic pieces are perfect as your young one is likely to make a mess as they experiment with the world around them for the first time. As such, plain and darker cotton pieces are probably smarter options when it comes to cleaning.
2. Sleeping needs
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Let's face it: while we all love to hear the 'ah-ah' and 'ooh-ooh' of infants, most of the early part of their lives is spent sleeping! With that, sleeping needs are a definite must-have as you prepare for the arrival of your dearest. At the top of your list would be a cot or a bassinet, coupled with a swaddle blanket to wrap your baby snuggly and soothe them to sleep.
Between the first six and twelve months, it’s likely for you to share the same room as your newborn, so that you can tend to all of their needs. With that, remember to do a spatial check to ensure that your ideal cot or bassinet fits into your bedroom.
While it can be highly tempting to purchase intricate crib mobiles or line the crib with multiple soft toys, remember to let your baby have ample space to move as they sleep! A greater priority would be seeking out a stable and durable crib that fulfils your safety standards. Another key item to look out for is a waterproof mattress that you can place in the crib. That’s because even with diapers, your little one might soil the bedding as they sleep soundly.
3. Feeding supplies
Typically, most mothers choose to breastfeed their newborn for at least the first six months – this is to offer your growing child maximum nutrients they will need at this delicate stage! On this note, you will probably need a couple of burp cloths to clean any spits or drools. When shopping for this essential, a quick guide is to look for cloths made of soft, breathable materials that are highly absorbent, yet you can still wash stains off easily (like cotton chenille or flannel).
A couple of other items you would require if you move on to bottle-feeding include a breast pump, baby formula, various bottles with nozzles or bottle nipples of different sizes and a bottlebrush. Remember to keep the fancy items to a minimum while you secure the essential feeding supplies.
When talking about baby clothing and outfits, you most definitely can’t leave out having a steady supply of diapers. Newborns are known to need at least eight to ten diaper changes in a day, so you’d want to ensure that you carry a sufficient supply wherever you go. At the same time, it can be tricky and stocking up too many diapers might not be wise as infants can outgrow their diaper sizes pretty quickly.
Selecting your baby’s preferred diaper can also pose a challenge: some babies might have more sensitive skin and respond better to disposable diapers than cloth ones. At this juncture, it’s best to prioritise hygiene to keep your growing child well-protected. More than diapers, look into diaper bags that might even come with handy built-in diaper changing mats!
5. Other health and hygiene products
Last but not least, it’s crucial to look for other essentials to maintain good newborn hygiene! Some of these items include nail clippers, medicine droppers and thermometers to check on your baby’s condition regularly. Also, remember to keep a handy stash of child-friendly medication for common ailments or paediatric medication conditions.
Shopping for your lovely newborn is a novel experience that new parents will bask in. While it can be overwhelming with the array of baby products and not knowing what is ‘essential’, use this guide to elevate your hunt! Also, one last tip: always read up and note your wishlist in a comprehensive shopping list. Once you categorise and prioritise the items, you’ll be shopping for what you really need, and with ease.