For years we've thought of doing a registry, but we know you decide what to buy for your baby by texting your friends for their Google Doc — you know the one. You trust those recommendations because someone you actually know tried them and loved them, or because they tried one and didn't and wish they'd used this instead. And yet here we are.
This isn't a Google Doc (if it were, our design team would have no job), but these are the products that worked for our editors when we had new babies, or the products we wish we'd had and are very excited about. We're sharing them with you like we have over time with all of our pregnant friends. Just pretend you're receiving it as one long text — "I'M SO EXCITED FOR YOU!!! AHHHHHH!!! OK, HERE'S WHAT YOU BUY:"
OK, here are our gear essentials, for home and on-the-go. We've got two bouncers to cater to both minimalist and ... maximalist tastes. There are two baby wraps, too, one for if you were born to wrap your baby and plan to wear them forever, and one if you want a pre-sized, "for dummies" option. Why do you need a carrier, too? Frankly, because your partner is not going to put up with any form of wrapping, and it's good for strapping your baby on through the toddler years. We like the Bjorn travel crib because it's so much lighter than other options. What else? You think you don't need a portable play mat until you're at your aunt's house and there is no surface you feel comfortable putting baby down on. And while it's not a sleep product, the DockATot is a dream for propping your awake baby on the couch, next to you on the bed, wherever (while you're keeping an eye on them the whole entire time, of course). Even a 7-pound newborn can start to feel heavy.
Get ready to change a lot of diapers over the next few years. You'll set yourself up for success by having everything you need in one place — yes, even two different types of diaper cream because some rashes are more extreme than others. We chose Water Wipes because wipes don't get any gentler. There's some ~disagreement~ in our ranks on whether you actually need a wipe dispenser/warmer, but if you go for it, the Ubbi one below has a weighted plate that ensures you will only pull one wipe at a time. It's non-heating because we're afraid to find out how our baby will react to a non-heated wipe once they get used to warm ones. The Leader diaper bag is the chicest version we've ever seen. And those Sassy bags are great to stash everywhere, from the changing station to the diaper bag because you never know when you'll meet a stinky load that you need to dispose of immediately.
You really don’t need to stock up on dozens of bath-time products until your baby is a toddler, but here are a few you’ll need during the first months. We like the California Baby shampoo and body wash over the competition because the ingredient list is the cleanest. Splish splash.
The amount of time you spend doing laundry is about to go into overdrive. Stock up on baby wardrobe basics so that you have some time to breathe between loads.
Even nursing requires a lot of gear — yes, two different types of breast leak pads (disposable for when you're on-the-go; velvety soft, washable bamboo for home) and two different types of breast soothing pads. Store the gel ones in the fridge to soothe your shredded nipples and keep the purple Lansinoh "doughnuts" handy to microwave when you're working out a clogged duct. We like Amazon's best-selling Hofish nursing bras because they're affordable & practical, Storq's super-soft nursing tank, and Medela's strapless nursing bra that doesn't require you to take your entire shirt off and holds bottles (even ones that are filled with milk) in place. We chose Baby Chan's milk storage bags because they hold up to 7 ounces of fluid (that's an ounce more than other leading brands), have a convenient pouring spout, and are priced competitively.
Bottles are subjective — different babies like different models — but you'll read why the Comotomo is our favorite. Then of course you'll have to keep those bottles clean, a task so tedious it can only marginally be offset by a great bottle brush that has a built-in nipple cleaner and is dishwasher safe (the brush itself will get grimey, too). The Boon Lawn (also available in white) is basically the cutest bottle drying rack that exists.
We can’t promise your baby will sleep when you want them to, but while you're getting there, having one of the most high-tech monitors on the market and a unique mattress that allows for optimum airflow will give you some peace of mind — the latter is made out of food-grade polymer (yes, plastic) loosely woven together so that there is ample air flowing through the mattress, and you can even rinse it under the shower. So when baby has an unexpected messy bodily function, you can still salvage your mattress. When shopping for a crib, there's no reason not to get a convertible option that will take you well into the toddler years.
You may feel like your body hates you during those first postpartum weeks, so be as nice to it as you possibly can — paging ridiculously comfortable mesh undies, a peri bottle even better than the ones you get in the hospital, and soothing witch hazel pads that’ll help with everything from stitches to ‘roids.
These are some great firsts for baby: easy-to-grasp toys, high contrast books for developing eyes, and literally indestructible books you can throw in the washing machine (and trust us, you will).
No, your baby’s not sick yet (and hopefully won’t be for a long, long time), but the last thing you want is not to have everything the pediatrician recommends when you call them in the middle of the night.
Because everyone’s lifestyle is different, there is no one perfect stroller for everyone. Here are some solid options whether you live in the city, suburbs, are on a strict budget, or are ready to shell out big bucks. Make sure the car seat you want is compatible with the stroller you’re eyeing.
These miscellaneous goods may not necessarily be keeping your baby alive, but you’ll be so glad you had them when you look back at photos of your little one years from now.
The contents of this story, such as text, comments, graphics, images and other content are for informational purposes only. Romper and BDG Media, Inc. make no warranty, representation or guarantee regarding the information contained herein or the suitability of the products for any particular purposes, nor does Romper or BDG Media, Inc. assume any liability whatsoever arising out of the application or use of any product herein. The contents of this story are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advise, diagnosis, or treatment, nor does it replace the need for services or counsel provided by medical professionals. No information on this site should be relied upon to make a medical diagnosis, or determine treatment for a medical condition. It is the reader's responsibility to independently determine suitability of any products and to test and verify the same.