Creating your registry and shopping for your baby is so exciting...until your friends and family start telling you everything they think you need! Trust us, we’ve been there, and it’s overwhelming, so let us help guide you and ease your mind a little. It's not just about WHAT to buy for your baby, but more about WHEN to buy. Here's a quick list of what to buy now and what can wait until baby arrives!
What you should Buy for your Newborn
It's easy to find yourself wanting to have everything ready for your baby before he arrives, but it's not always the best (or most affordable) option. Take it from us when we say there are a few big purchases you can hold off on for a few months. Waiting to buy some baby products has a few perks:
- Reduces the financial burden that comes with buying everything at the same time
- Allows you to shop around, get good deals from sales, find some second-hand scores and spend more time comparing brands and prices
- Streamlines your baby registry so you have a better chance of receiving what you truly need immediately
- Helps you determine which items you really need and which you can do without
As moms, we’ve been through the registry game a few times, so let us help you narrow down your list to the essentials! Happy shopping!
You can't travel by car anywhere without a carseat for your baby! To keep things affordable, find one that can grow with your baby. We love Clek not only because they're a small, family owned business like us but also because they're carseats are built to last. Another favorite is the Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 seat. Whichever works best for you, a carseat is a must-have before baby is born. And if you find yourself lost on how to properly install the carseat, you can always take it to your local fire department or use this helpful guide on proper carseat safety guidelines!
2. Crib Mattress
Babies spend at least 18-20 hours per day sleeping and do the majority of their growing during the first year. With all this time in their cribs, finding a crib mattress that will keep your baby cool, comfortable and, most importantly, safe, is critical. Not only does it ensure the best night sleep for your baby's developing brain, but it also means a better night’s sleep for you! If you're going to invest in something for your baby, invest in the crib mattress. Nook crib mattresses are all GREENGUARD Gold Certified safe, which means they meet the highest standards of air quality. They all come with your choice of supremely soft, antimicrobial, hypoallergenic, water-resistant and machine washable covers!
3. Crib, Bassinet or Co-Sleeper
Now that you’ve found the right crib mattress, it’s time to decide where your baby will sleep: crib, bassinet or co-sleeper? Some new parents prefer to use the crib from night one, while others start with a bassinet or co-sleeper next to their bed and slowly make the transition to the crib in the nursery. Whichever path you choose, the investment should be on the crib mattress itself. Outfitting your nursery with beautiful furniture can get pretty pricey, and, while cribs might look nice (we've seen some gorgeous ones), they're only the vessel for the mattress. And a bad crib mattress can equal an unhappy, crying baby and an even more exhausted mom or dad.
4. Changing Pad
Trust us when we say there will be a LOT of diapers. You might even be mid- diaper change when your baby has an accident, which means one more diaper to the rescue! Choose a changing pad that's safe, non-toxic and, most importantly, water- and stain-resistant with a removable cover that can be thrown in the wash. Nook baby changing pads come with your choice of Pebble or Dimple cover in 11 stylish colors or textures. Pro tip: Get a backup cover for when those blowouts happen...because they will 😉.
5. Nursing/Feeding Pillow
We're firm believers that a supportive nursing pillow can make the world of a difference—whether breastfeeding or bottle feeding! We're partial to the Niche because it was designed by both breastfeeding and bottle feeding moms to support both journeys. With a wider base and flexible arms, the Niche Nursing Pillow is designed to support babies of all sizes and weights as well as different feeding positions, not to mention its uses for supported sitting or even as a pillow for mom or dad. Filled with organic kapok, the Niche is one of the few organic nursing pillows on the market. Choose from 8 different machine washable covers!
6. Diaper Bag/Backpack
Honestly? There are soooooo many options out there and almost any backpack will do. We recommend test driving a few options in the store and asking other moms which ones they love. With my first child, I took EVERYTHING wherever I went. By the time my third child was on the scene, I'd grab a few diapers and wipes, and call it a day. As a first time parent, you’ll eventually figure out what works best for you, so find a really great backpack with lots of compartments and pockets and make sure you have space for an insulated bag to keep your milk or formula fresh.
What to Wait to Buy Later
And because we promised, here’s a short list of what you can wait to buy later:
- Jogging Strollers - Getting back in shape is important for many new moms, but you shouldn’t jog with your baby until he’s reached a certain age as their developing neck and spine muscles tend to be more susceptible to injury. You can still walk with your baby in any stroller fitted with an infant carseat attachment as soon as you want, though!
- Swings/Bouncers - As moms, we all wish we had another set of arms. We know baby needs to be put down somewhere safe and comfortable while we can get things done. While swings and bouncers are a great option, you don’t know which your baby will like more, so this is a great one to wait and test out before buying. And if you ask me, all of my babies loved hanging out on their super soft and plush LilyPad baby play mats!
- Loud Noise-Making Toys - Trust us, once your baby is here, you’ll yearn for those quiet moments again, so do yourself a favor and start with quiet toys. White noise machines are often great at easing babies out of the constant whooshing sounds of the womb into the quiet world outside. Many other toys might just drive you nuts, so try some things like the radio or your own singing voice (no matter how it might sound to you).
- Newborn Clothes - It’s so hard to predict how fast your newborn will grow. As a short woman, I thought my babies would definitely be small, but two of my three were over 8 lbs and quickly outgrew their newborn clothes. Start with some open-footed layettes to start. Not only will it make middle of the night diaper changes easier (blast those darn snap footie pajamas) but it will also give you a chance to get clothes that actually fit your baby.
- Clothes Intended for Bigger Kids - Those clothing sales are tempting, but try limiting buying clothes too far in advance. Babies are growing machines and you never know how big (or small) they’ll actually be when the next season rolls around.
- Diapers - While we’re on it - hold off on getting too many diapers. Wait and see how big your baby is and then get some. If you have friends and family who really want to get you some, ask them to give you a certificate you can cash in on instead! Or try your hand at cloth diapers. We used some pretty awesome All-in-One diapers.
- Educational Toys - Babies learn best by communicating with you and exploring the world around them. With the exception of reading books aloud, your newborn could really get away without a single toy. A cardboard box or banging a wooden spoon on a saucepan are cliches for a reason—babies and kids love them!
- One type of Bottle or Pacifier - Any seasoned parent will tell you that each baby likes different bottles and pacifiers, so wait until your baby is born to buy one of a few options and see which one works best for you and your baby!
Being a first-time mom or even a veteran mom can feel overwhelming with all the decisions you have to make. We encourage you to take things slowly, enjoy your new baby, and invest in the bigger items before you dive into the world of baby stuff! No mama is expected to know it all from day one, so talk to your mom friends and get tips from the experts to help you along the way!