As a new mum, or a mummy that already has children and they’re newborn years now seem a distant memory, buying for a newborn is hard. Are lotions and potions necessary and how many sleepsuits will they need?!
You need to cover every aspect of their tiny little life and quite frankly, for something that eats, sleeps and poos all day they need a lot of stuff!
I have put together a list of the things I bought for Evie that really were must have items for us whilst we were coming to grips with our new titles of mum and dad.
We started off using the Tommee Tippee bottles as we got a starter pack as a present. Evie was spitting up a lot after using these and seemed to suffer with trapped wind, so I decided to try MAM anti colic. We then switched to Dr Brown’s and although she has now been diagnosed with reflux (something we would never have known about at the start), she doesn’t suffer from as much wind or gas, so Dr Brown’s, although a complete faff to wash & sterilise, have been brilliant for us.
On the subject of sterilising, you’ll definitely need a steriliser, even if you plan to breastfeed/express! You can buy a cold water one, where you just pop a sterilising tablet into clean water and away you go, or you can buy an electric one. You can even buy microwave ones, but I couldn’t bear the thought of my microwave suddenly giving up with the amount of use it would get so we just went with your bog standard Tommee Tippee electric one.
“Of course my baby will need nappies, I already have it covered!” I hear you say?! This might be a bit obvious, but we really underestimated just how many nappies these little poo machines can go through in their first weeks of life. We made an effort to buy a pack of each brand of nappy we were willing to try/buy, just in case Evie had a reaction to any. Luckily, the Mamia ones at Aldi worked briliantly and they’re the cheapest, so we didn’t complain! Always buy more than you think you will need. Evie went 6 times in an hour at 5 days old and apparently that can be normal! We also found that we’d change her as she looked ‘done’ but then she’d start up again, so we were going through 3 or 4 nappies each time. So again, buy more nappies! You can always sell them on facebook etc if you have some left over.
I have no experience with cloth nappies, I was seriously considering and getting excited about (yes, I know….!) cloth nappying Evie at one point, but we have no tumble dryer and the thought of being nappy-less in the middle of winter because our fire hadn’t been able to dry the nappies quick enough put me off.
There was a time when hospitals would frown at you if you whipped out some baby wipes so you had to clean baby using the cotton balls and warm water trick. Times have changed a little now and hospitals aren’t as strict. I took water wipes in my bag along with some cotton etc just in case, and the midwives even asked me if they could use my water wipes to change Evie! We’ve since stayed on water wipes as I find them amazing.
I haven’t really needed this yet as Evie has never had a nappy rash, but nappy cream is a must. You can use it for spots, redness, cuts etc so it really is worth getting. I bought Metanium, but I actually mainly use a cream called Thovaline. It is hands down the best cream. My mum used it on me as a baby and I have continued to use it for everything throughout my life. Ps ignore the mess of the tub of it…. its worse than Sudacreme so everything sticks to it!
My mum bought us a changing/bathing unit as a gift at the end of my pregnancy. It is brilliant but we didn’t use it as a bath for long. I will do a review of this in the coming weeks to explain how and why we used it at first. We then transferred to using nothing and just plonked her into our normal bath. This meant one of us had to be in the bath and the other had to wash her- totally impractical! So we bought a baby bath. Best invention ever! No more kicking the sponge back up the bath with you feet because both your arms are holding baby 🙂
We quickly learned that Evie reacted to Johnsons products with dry skin, so we bought different, more sensitive brands. Moisturising after every bath is a must do for us as it keeps her skin nice and soft.
These have been my absolute saviour. I know Evie is a little different as she spits up much more than a ‘normal’ baby, but muslins are a must must MUST have. You can swaddle (especially great in summer months when other swaddles are too warm), you can wipe up possets, you can cover yourself whilst you nurse if you are breastfeeding, you can use over your shoulder while burping, you can put them behind baby’s head on the bed so no sick end ups on your covers. Seriously grab yourself plenty of them! We got ours from Amazon and Evie has attached to them to sleep with.
There are 3 types of thermometer we need to make our lives easier in this house. A room thermometer to make sure the room shes sleeping/playing in in warm/cold enough. A water thermometer (a complete life saver when running a bath to make sure it’s the correct temperature), Then finally the usual ear/forehead, underarm thermometer for checking baby’s temperature.I may or may not have lost ours so there’s only 2 in this picture. In the first 3 months, it is usually recommended that you use an underarm thermometer to check their temperature as it’s the most accurate, but I was using underarm and ear/forehead and they were coming up around the same temp.
This may cause a little contraversy, but when I was pregnant I stocked up on things like Nurofen, Calpol, Gripe Water & Dentinox because the last thing I wanted was to have a screaming baby and then have to make a trip with her down to the chemist who may or may not have some in stock. Turns out I needed Calpol for her injections and dentinox I used for what I thought was colic, then I used Gripe Water for the wind! All came in handy.
Sleepsuits & Sleepsuits with Mittens
I bought & got gifted a few newborn outfits and I rarely put her in them! Because of the ease of popping her in and out of them, she practically lived in sleepsuits until she was about 2 months old. Don’t get me wrong she wore a couple of outfits, but she outgrew them quicker than her sleepsuits so they became redundant.
Sleepsuits with mittens- best invention! I’ll go into more detail in my ‘Newborn items I regret buying’ post, but normal mittens were useless. Sleepsuits with mittens kept Evie’s hands covered, clean and warm.
In terms of how many, don’t buy too many “small baby” or “newborn” sleepsuits as a lot of them only go up to 7.5-9lbs (depending on where you shop). You’ll likely only get about a month’s use out of them, if that, so you’re better off buying 0-1 month clothes as they still had give in them for us when she was 1 month. I only bought about 2 small baby, about 5 newborn sleepsuits as I knew she was likely to be between 7-8lb according to our scan, and then I bought about 9 0-1 month sleepsuits too which seemed to fit her legs better as she started to grow a little. No Idea where she got her long legs from! If you have a sicky baby, or a baby with reflux/allergies, you can use 7+ sleepsuits a DAY, so in my opinion you can never really have enough of them!
We have the Sleepyhead (review coming soon) set up inside the Chicco Next2me. Both have been godsends. With my C Section I couldn’t pull myself up out of bed for a few weeks. I can’t imagine what it would have been like if Evie didn’t sleep in the Next2Me! Absolute torture. She still sleeps in it now at 3 months so it’s money very well spent.
Buy 2! One for downstairs and one for upstairs. It saves carrying a big mat upstairs along with baby at bath time.
Because I just don’t have time for boiling the kettle and cooling for 20 minutes when my baby is screaming! I pour a flask of freshly boiled water in the morning and it stays hot for a good 6 hours at least. I measure out some water from the flask, add formula, shake, then use some water I boiled and chilled in the fridge to top up so the water is at room temp! Job done. No wobbling downstairs at 3am and no stressed out mummy and daddy trying to console a hungry baby.
This won’t be for everyone. I was adament that my daughter wasn’t going to have a dummy, but when her jaundice subsided and her reflux was kicking in the crying after bottle time really wore me down. I gave in & gave her a dummy but only when she slept or imediately after her bottle (which was when she slept anyway), and she seemed much calmer for it. She still only has her dummy when she’s going to sleep and it still helps with her reflux. Win win! She uses the MAM dummies and won’t really take any others.
And last but not least….
Whether you prefer breathing monitors, non-video, video or wifi monitors I really think that it is a must have item. We live in a tiny 2 bedroom house but if we have any fans on, water running, washing machine on etc we cannot hear Evie if she’s moaning upstairs. We have a video monitor and although it’s a faf to prop up on my pillow every day, it’s worth it.
So those are the items I felt (and still feel!) I couldn’t live without in the first months of having Evie. This list will surely grow as she starts weaning etc, so i’ll be doing an update in a few months time when we have properly start weaning her.