Almost two years ago I shared this post about newborn must-haves– what to buy, what to borrow and what to skip. Having just gone through the newborn phase for a second time with Teddy, I figured I would update the list with the items I found the most useful in months zero to six and explain why/how we used each one. Whether you’re working on your registry or just trying to survive those first few months with baby, I hope this list comes in handy! I’m including shoppable links and a carrousels with all the items throughout the post- if you use my links to shop I will get a (VERY) small commission at no extra charge to you..😅 If you enjoy LTL’s content please consider clicking through to your purchase. I will be eternally grateful as it would go a long way into turning this side hustle into a full time job. Happy shopping, loves!
Both my kids LOVED these ComoTomo Natural Feel bottles. I’ve been able to very easily transition both kiddos from breast to bottle and back using these bottles! They really do look and feel like as boob 😂 The ComoTomo bottles are also made of really soft silicone, which allows babies to hold their own bottles a lot sooner than they would otherwise! For the first couple of months I got these slow flow caps so the milk flowed at the same (slow) pace as when breastfeeding- last thing you want is baby getting annoyed when you put them to the breast after realizing it’s more work than a bottle.
As I said in this post though- even though both my kids LOVED the ComoTomo bottles, I don’t suggest you buy a ton of them right away. Each baby is different and there’s no way for you to be completely sure the ComoTomos will work for your babe. I’d buy a pack or two for now. Once you’re sure baby is into them, I suggest having 6-8 bottles.
A good nursing pillow is a must in my opinion, particularly when you’re a first time mom trying to figure out how to breastfeed. My recommendation is My Breast Friend and not just because I love a good pun 😂 My Breast Friend is much better than the Boppy which doesn’t really help with positioning and we basically only used for support whenever Chickie asked to hold Teddy. I’ve also heard great things about the Nook Niche– it’s apparently very soft, comfortable and great for tummy time but I’ve never tried it.
I love our Munchkin sterilizer– we bought when Chickie was born and used it NON STOP for about 11 months. When Teddy was born we pulled it out of storage and were surprised to find it still looked and worked as good as we remembered. There’s about a million sterilizers out there, I like ours because its large enough to fit all my pumping supplies, a couple of bottles and the haakaa in a single load and its SUPER easy to use- just pour water in and press a button. Also- you don’t need a microwave for this sterilizer, it just plugs into the regular outlet 🙌🏽
Our bottle warmer is also from Munchkin, it’s also been with us since Chickie was born and it also still works like a charm. The Speed Steam Bottle Warmer is small, easy to use and wide enough to fit the ComoTomo bottles– an all around win! I’ve tried two other bottle warmers from Munchkin and HATED them both! They all look pretty similar so make sure you’re purchasing the correct one, the Speed Steam Bottle Warmer.
When nursing Chickie, I used two Medela pumps- the freestyle for on-the-go pumping and the Pump In Style at home. This time around the nurses in the hospital suggested I give Spectra a try- if you’re in the US, thanks to ObamaCare your insurance MUST cover one pump per child- and I’m SO GLAD they did! The Spectra S2 is MUCH quieter than the Medela pumps (something working moms will appreciate!) and most importantly MUCH FASTER. What took me 20-25 minutes with the Medela pumps takes me 10 with the Spectra S2! Another benefit of the Spectra S2 is how easy it is to clean because of its closed system meaning no milk can get into the tubes (Medela has an open system- I had to replace the tubes twice).
The only thing I didn’t like about the Spectra S2 were the HUGE pumping bottles. I already had about a million of the Medela ones, so I bought this attachment and used it to pump directly into the Medela bottles using the Spectra S2 pump. I recommend you buy a second set of attachments for the pump so you’re not running to wash with each use. The Spectra s2 comes with an extra set of flanges, so all you need is this.
Haakaa Silicone Manual Breast Pump
The Haakaa has been SUCH a game changer for me! It’s allowed me to have a freezer full of milk without having to pump like crazy. If you’re interested in how the Haakaa works and why I love it so much- I have a whole video on IGTV about it! Basically, when Teddy is eating off of my right breast I put the Haakaa on my left and it captures any letdown and some extra milk. Typically for every two times Teddy eats, I get to put one feed in the freezer using the Haakaa. Game changer I tell you!
Make sure you get the kind with a top and suction at the bottom. The Haakaa tips VERY easily and you don’t want to be crying over spilled milk. Trust me, I’ve been there.
Lansinoh Freezer Milk Bags + Nursing Pads
I tried about a million freezer bags with Chickie, NONE compared to the Lansinoh ones. NONE! They are super sturdy and have enough room at the top to mark the date and quantity of the milk inside it. I’ve literally NEVER had an issue with these and I’ve had PLENTY of issues with the rest- from broken bags to contaminated milk, you name it! Lansinoh also makes the GREATEST Disposable Nursing Pads! They are super soft and stick to your bra, so they’re not moving around in there. They also come in individual plastic wrappers inside the box- think maxi pads style- so you can just pop some in your bag and go. They are my favorite!
There’s no way around it, breastfeeding SUCKS for a WHILE.. No matter how great your journey breastfeeding your child will be, the first couple of weeks are going to hurt. Please know it gets better. If breastfeeding is something that’s important to you hire a lactation consultant, keep going and I promise it gets better. Until it does, Lanolin cream is your friend. Maybe even your best friend. Bring it to the hospital! Start using it ASAP. It will make a difference.
Lanolin is safe for baby, so don’t feel like you have to wipe it off before baby eats. Coat your nipples with it as much as you can in between feeds. You know what else will help a lot? Breastmilk! After babe is done eating, squeeze a little out and rub it on to your nipple. It sounds really gross.. but I promise it works! If you are having severe nipple bleeding, pain, scabbing, or the dreaded trush (I had it, it’s the WORST) ask your doctor about APNO cream. You need a prescription for it and should use it in moderation, but it works insanely well.
Nursing bras fit into two categories as far I’m concerned- lounging at home ones and going out and about while wearing actual clothes ones. I have favorites for both! I pretty much lived in these nursing bras from Motherhood Maternity (via Amazon) for both of my pregnancies. They are comparable to the popular Bravado nursing bras for half the price! If you are big busted prior to being pregnant, Motherhood makes the same nursing bras for “full busted” Mamas too. For out and about these Natori bras are my fave! I’ve found that most going out nursing bras are super old lady looking and make your boobs look weird. Not these! They are 💯 on how your boobs look but ALSO comfortable enough to open and get to business.
For sleeping, these are my favorite. Yes, you will need to sleep with a bra while you’re nursing and its BRUTAL 😅 buuuut, it’s definitely an upgrade from not being able to sleep on your stomach for 9 months! 😆
Bottle Brush + Soap
My favorite bottle soap is this one by Babyganics. Call me crazy but I need my soap to foam up so I know it’s working 😂 The Babyganics soap foams up really nicely! They also sell refills, so you can just buy a couple small dispensers and a big jug to refill them. For brushes- this one by Dr. Browns’s is my fave because it has suction at the bottom so it stays up!
Bottle Drying Rack
Burp Cloths + Bibs
A MUST with newborns- before three months their digestive systems are so young that they spit up SO MUCH. I would say buy at least six burp cloths and bibs. These from Aden + Anais are BOTH bibs and burp clothes- they are super soft, thick and easy to wash. You also can’t go wrong with Copper Pearl, their bibs and burb cloths are amazing!
NOTE: since these are newborn essentials I will keep my recommendations for feeding solids (which starts at 6 months) to a separate post- stay tuned! 🤪
Both of our kiddos slept in a bassinet in our bedroom from birth until 2.5 months old. I put it on my side of the bed and it made night feedings SO much easier! We have the Uppababy Vista stroller (more on this below) which comes with this bassinet. I thought it was dumb to get two considering the VERY limited timeframe we’d actually use it, so I bought this bassinet stand and it did the trick! Having the kids in the bassinet by my side made those first those first two months when I was still feeding them in the middle of the night much easier. The stand randomly transforms into a laundry hamper after you’re done with it 😂 If you don’t have a stroller that comes with a basinet (a lot do!) my recommendation is the Halo Basinet, great for C-section mamas since you don’t have to lift baby out of it, just lower the sides. Also, the Halo Basinet gets suuuuper close to your bed- the only annoying part of the the Uppa one which thanks to the wooden stand was farther away.
I’m a BIG fan of swaddling babies until their moro reflex is done with or they begin to roll over, around 3-4 months. We had a SIGNIFICANTLY easier time swaddling Teddy than we did Chickie thanks to The Ollie Swaddle. The Ollie is unbelievably soft and has a row of three BIG velcro strips which make wrapping baby up super easy and fast, something that I definitely appreciated in the middle of the night. I really can’t recommend it enough! Once it was time to transition Teddy out of the swaddle, we used the Ollie to do it since it lets you swaddle with one (or both) arms out.
It’s worth mentioning that the Ollie Swaddle is pricey ($60) but comes in a really pretty package, which makes it a great shower gift. We only had one of them and even though we used it every single time Bear slept, we were able to make it work! You only use the Ollie for the first three months, so one or two will be plenty.
I suggest also getting a couple traditional swaddles – Little Unicorn makes cute prints!– to use when baby is awake to swaddle and as receiving blankets. I have some from Aden + Anais left over from Chickie days and they work fine but my MOST favorites are from Copper Pearl. Their swaddles have GORGEOUS prints, they are seriously soft and SUPER long and stretchy. I also love that Copper Pearl swaddles are offered in sets! I really wish I had discovered these when Chickie was little!
Baby Merlin’s Magic Sleepsuit
Once Teddy began to roll over, it was time to transition him out the Ollie Swaddle. We tried using these Halo arms out swaddle blankets (which Chickie LOVED from months 3-6) but poor Bear kept getting stuck after rolling over onto his belly in the middle of the night! Our friend recommended we use Baby Merlin’s Magic Sleepsuit and it did the trick! Teddy has been sleeping in the Magic Sleepsuit for the past two or so months and he has been sleeping AMAZING. Seriously! Like 12 hours.. Did I just jinx myself for putting that in writing? Please say it aint so.. If you decide to go for the Magic Sleepsuit, one of them is plenty.
Once baby is older and ready for some more freedom while he/she sleeps, a good sleep sack or wearable blanket will come in handy. Gunapods are my absolute favorites! Chickie is obsessed with her “mantita” to this day! [update: she wore it until well into age 3! They have been inherited by Bear and he’s just as obsessed! ] They have a zipper all around in case you need to change diapers overnight and they are SO incredibly soft! This time around we will probably skip the Halo arms out swaddle blankets and go straight from the Magic Sleep Suit to the Gunapod. With Chickie we got three Gunapods and it was plenty!
I have run through the gambit of fancy/cute looking humidifiers. I have bought every. single. one. Guess what? NONE have worked as well for us as this $20 Vicks one! The Dyson, which was the most expensive, was the first one to break, k? SAVE YO’ MONEY girlfriend and buy the Vicks humidifier. Seriously! When the kids are reeeally stuffed up, I pop in one of these scented VapoPads in the humidifier before they go to bed; the eucalyptus mist it puts out seems to help my tiny humans!
Having a sound machine has been a BIG help in cementing the bedtime routine for both kids and in getting them to sleep through the night. Every single night and for each nap right before putting baby down in his/her crib we turn on the sound machine to the same sound. I swear to THIS day once we turn on Chickie’s sound machine it’s like a switch goes off in her head and she is immediately super sleepy! 🙌🏽 Same with Teddy Bear! I love it because it makes traveling easier- you pack the sound machine and suddenly they’re transported back to their comfy rooms and not an unknown hotel room. It works!
For both kids we initially used the Baby Shusher. If you’ve read The Happiest Baby on the Block you know tiny babies respond really well to shushing, so well that your throat will soon be hurting from shushing ALL DAY LONG. Enter the Baby Shusher. It literally just shusshes the baby for you 😂 The Shusher works on batteries so you can carry it around the house. For the first three months, The Baby Shusher is a lifesaver!
Once our babes were a little older and giving us longer stretches of sleep, we switched to the HoMedics Sound Spa. It’s the BEST! Super loud for when you need it to be (never put it up higher than 85 decibels for long periods of time) and you can put batteries in it 🙌🏽 It has a ton of different sounds, Chickie likes the ocean sound and Teddy the white noise 🤷🏽♀️ Initially for Teddy we tried the famous Marpac Dohm and HATED it- way too quiet and more for adults. We ended up getting a second one of the HoMedics Sound Spa and have been super happy with it ever since! [Update, Chickie has now graduated to the Hatch and we love it! It has a time to rise feature that has been a lifesaver– it changes colors to let Chick know it’s OK to get up.]
Make sure whatever monitor you get has night vision. I also like to be able to control the camera from the monitor- babies (especially when older) move around a LOT, last thing you want is to have to go in their room to adjust the camera after they move out of frame. Our monitor is this one by Summer Infant but in my opinion, all monitors are comparable and they all have a 6 month shelf life. Maybe we just go through them quicker than most?
Even if you have home security-type cameras (we have Nest), I recommend you also get an old-school monitor for peace of mind. You can’t really leave the feed from the security cameras running all night like you can a monitor.
Baby Gear Essentials
Another gadget I wish I had with Chickie is the Keekaroo Peanut Changing Pad. Unlike traditional changing pads, the Keekaroo is made of an impermeable solid shell which allows you to wipe clean any mess instead of having to do laundry! Total game-changer. The Keekaroo can also go on top of any dresser which meant I could carry it around the house for first month of C-Section recovery and have a comfortable, cushioned surface in which to change diapers without having to go up or down the stairs to Teddy’s room.
I love the Ubbi Diaper Pail– it contains odors really well and it’s not overly bulky. I also like that if you run out of diaper pail bags, you can use traditional trash bags with the Ubbi and you can’t even see them. The Ubbi comes in a ton of colors which makes it less of an eye sore. I got a pink one for Chickie’s nursery and now it looks AWFUL in Teddy’s… if you’re planning on having more kids, learn from my mistakes and buy your Ubbi in a neutral color! 😅
There’s a couple of options for a baby lounger out there but if you follow me on Instagram you KNOW my pick is the Dock a Tot. The best way to think of the Dock is as little crib you can take anywhere and everywhere, around your house and beyond. If you don’t have full time help, the Dock is a lifesaver- I lay Teddy’s Dock on the floor of the bathroom when I take a shower, I use it to blow dry my hair too! During the newborn days Teddy spent HOURS napping in his Dock on the kitchen counter while I chugged coffee and tried to get stuff done around the house. The Dock is also approved for co-sleeping which means you can just lay baby next to you in bed using making nursing in the middle of the night a breeze.
It’s worth mentioning that I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the Dock’s durability. Teddy is the third baby to use our Dock a Tot. We got the Dock a Tot when Chickie was about 2 weeks old and used it NON STOP until she outgrew it around 7 months. My bestie then used it with her baby boy until he was around 7 months also. When it was Teddy’s turn to use our trusty Dock a Tot the bottom part of it felt a little lumpy so we bought a new “mattress” insert ($40) and it feels like new again!
A playmat is a must, particularly from around month one to just before baby starts full on crawling. It provides a soft CLEAN surface in which baby can lay and practice rolling over. A playmat is a must, yes- but an ugly one is ENTIRELY optional 😂 I recently discovered Little Nomad playmats after my bestie tagged me in a. giveaway and we each won one! The Little Nomad prints are gorgeous, they look like a real life rug! They are not the softest in the market but considering how much better looking their are than the fluorescent traditional playmats, I’ll take it!
Baby’s spend so much time laying down that a baby chair is a good tool to have in your arsenal. When dealing with a fussy baby, changing up his perspective can definitely help. Lots of people swear by the BabyBjorn bouncer chair. We used the Stokke Tripp Trapp chair with the newborn attachments- I love it because it can be used from DAY ONE and when in it, baby is at table height making interacting with him much more natural. Also, the Tripp Trapp chair grows with them- Chickie still uses her on the daily. We also have this Phil + Ted Lobster High Chair which Teddy started using at month 4 before he was able to fully sit up. It’s SO PORTABLE I love it for traveling! When Chickie was older, we brought the lobster chair with us to every restaurant we went to!
My favorite laundry detergent for newborn skin is this one from Babyganics. No fragrance because that newborn smell is aaaaall you need 😍 Their stain remover (also smell free!) also works WONDERS on even the biggest mess but somehow doesn’t irritate baby’s skin- a win, win.
Newborns are VERY easily over-stimulated and mostly just sleep all day- enjoy, this won’t last very long 😇 During the first few months babies don’t need any bells or whistles in their toys, just a simple (non breakable!) mirror will do the trick. My mother in law got Teddy some soft cars and we really liked them. In my experience babies also love rattles and by month 3-4 they’ll even be able to hold them! Once a little older, around 2 months, I LOVE the Lamaze toys- they have a ring so you can put then in the carseat or stroller too!
A baby gym is a great way to keep your little entertained. It’s also a good place for baby to practice tummy time- the best way to get its neck nice and strong. You probably won’t use the baby gym until baby turns 1 month to so. Its ok, before that, putting baby on your chest can count as tummy time too! I tried to find a cute baby gym and just couldn’t do it.. this might be the first time adult astethics are sacrificed in your house for baby’s sake but it sure won’t be the last… #momlife 😂💯
Babies can start teething around six months, but some start earlier. It won’t hurt to gram some early- they won’t go bad 😂 Some of our favorites include this one by ComoTomo and this octopus with a different texture in each tentacle! There’s about a MILLION cute ones out there- there’s a donut, a cactus, old school Nintendo remotes even a lama!
Bath time Essentials
Baby Bath Tub
With Chickie we used a HUGE baby bathtub and didn’t like it one bit. It was big, clunky and there was nowhere to put it when we weren’t using it! This time around we borrowed this Skip Hop tubby from my bestie and we’ve been LOVING it. It’s small enough to fit inside our regular tub so we’ve managed to bathe both kids together-huge time saver! The Skip Hop tubby also has a hook to hang up when not using it. Oh! It also grows with babe and can be used until baby is ready for the big tub!
All hooded towels are NOT created equal. Most, in fact are terrible- way too small and too flimsy to actually dry baby. Not these Pottery Barn ones though, they are the best! Chickie still fits in hers perfectly and she’s about to turn three! These babies dry really well but while still being soft enough for newborn skin. Pottery Barn hooded towels can also be personalized 😍 Three hooded towels are more than enough- remember, once baby comes you’ll be doing laundry ON THE REG.
A weird thing to include? Maybe.. but I’m OBSESSED with our natural sponge. My cousin recommended it when I was pregnant with Chickie and we’ve been hooked ever since. These natural sponges absorb enough water that you can actually rinse baby really well using them! They also dry fast and don’t get moldy. I seriously can’t say enough good things about them! I would buy two, since misplacing them is a common occurrence in #casarice. I don;’t recumbent getting washcloths (a common recommendation for registry lists)- the natural sponge is really all you need.
Bath + Post-Bath Products
My favorite store for this is Tubby Todd. I’ve been using their shampoo and body wash, conditioner, and all over ointment for YEARS. The smell is AMAZING and all their products are gentle enough for newborn skin without yucky chemicals. Tubby Todd’s conditioner does a good job detangling- we’ve never needed detangling spray and my girl’s curls get TANGLED. We also love Tubby Todd’s bubble bath (the only one that is gentle AND gets you major bubbles!) and all over ointment. I COVER both kids with Tubby Todd’s all over ointment after bathtime- I am a big believer in giving BOTH babies and toddlers a bath every single night (once umbilical chord stump falls out) so the ointment help manage skin dryness. Tubby Todd’s All Over Ointment is the only thing that has consistency worked on the kiddos eczema. Their Newborn Gift Set is a great way to familiarize yourself with the brand before going all out on the BIG tubs.
On The Road Essentials
I have a big diaper bag that I use when I travel with the kids. If I’m not traveling or leaving the house for huge amounts of time, I just use the this guy- a diaper bag INSERT that fits into your existing cute bags and can fit all of baby’s stuff! You know that feeling of having a purse so full you can’t find anything inside it? That NEVER happens with the Tote Savvy insert, there’s a pocket for everything! I love that whenever I’m leaving the house without baby I can VERY easily take it out and just take my regular purse, no big switch required. It even has a changing pad!
With I was pregnant with Chickie we registered for the Uppababy Vista. All my girlfriends had the Vista, it came with the basinet and I thought it was a smooth ride; getting it made sense! The Vista is a great stroller for one baby, for two.. it gets to be VERY heavy and impossible to manouver. We’ve been able to work around it by buying this PiggyBack Ride Along Board and still use the stroller as a single. If I could do it all over again (don’t worry #handsomehubbs I won’t) I would buy the Bugaboo Donkey.. It’s SUCH a smooth ride, even with two!! You live and you learn..
We also have the Baby Zen Yoyo+ stroller for traveling and we love it! We haven’t used it since Teddy was born though since when you attach the newborn attachment and/or the carseat, it looses it’s foldable/travel aspect. [Update, the Baby Zen Yoyo+ with the Ride Along Board is AMAZING!!! It truly is all you need!!!]
I’m a big fan of newborn carseats especially for the first couple of months. It’s a great way to keep baby protected from the world (and its germs!) those first two vaccine-less months! If you live somewhere cold, newborn carseats are a great way to keep baby warm. We have Uppababy’s Mesa since it clips in to the Vista stroller. Again, if I could do it over again- I could probably get the Nuna Pipa Lite just because its SOOOO light! When your baby is 7 pounds its not a big deal if your car seat is a little heavy but as they get older you get MUCH more bang for your newborn carseat buck if you have a light one and you’re still able to carry baby in it.
Baby will be rear-facing in your car for a while; the longer you keep them facing the back of the car the better safety-wise. A car mirror is an absolute necessity that first year- it’s the only way you can see baby when you drive. If your car has leather seats, I suggest you get a seat protector or the carseat will mess the leather up QUICK. If you have cloth seats, it’s less of an issue.
Cold Weather Stroller Gear
The easiest way to keep baby comfy during the colder months is to bundle up his stroller or carseat. My favorite brand for cold weather stroller gear is 7am Enfant, their stuff is GREAT. I have a full post on how we survive winter with baby– you can check it out here.
For the first couple of months of baby’s life, a soft carrier like the Solly Wrap is a must in my opinion. Nothing soothes a fussy newborn like being snuggled up tight in Mama’s chest. Babywearing was the only way I could get anything done around the house at the beginning. Once Chickie’s neck was more sturdy, I added a babybjorn carrier into the mix because it was easier on my back if wearing babe for long periods of time. The BabyBjorn is also easier to put on while out and about. With Chickie, I still used the wrap carrier until she was about one! If I’m leaving the house with baby alone, I often pre-wrap the Solly so it’s ready to go when I arrive.
On the Go Play and Lounge
Have you heard of Gathre mats? They are incredible! Made out of leather, they fold up small and wipe clean. We use them for lounging outside, for diaper changes and to have a surface in which baby can lay and do tummy time no matter where we are. I usually pop the mat in my diaper bag when I know I’ll be anywhere for more than a couple of hours with baby. Gathre’s mini mat is GREAT for diaper changes!
That’s it! I think… I’m sure I forgot about a million things, I tend to do that a lot 😅 Please let me know if you think of anything I should add and I will make sure to do it! I will do a separate post for months 6 and beyond since things really change once solid food is involved.
I purposely didn’t include clothes or diapering in this post. There’s SO MIUCH out there on that already that I thought it would be overkill. Happy to do one with our recommendations if you’re interested- just let me know! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts.
Thanks for stopping by,