I’ve been wanting to put together a list of my newborn must haves because some other mamas have been asking what we used!
When you have a newborn it is SO hard to navigate through all the different products! Now that we’ve had two little guys, we’ve really honed in on what you ACTUALLY need when you have a new baby!!
Here is my list of newborn must haves!
1. THE BOOK
If you’ve read my post on the 14 Musts When Bringing Home Baby you’ll know I can’t speak highly enough about Tracy Hogg’s book “The Baby Whisperer Solves All Your Problems”!!! This book is a newborn must have for sure!
This book is a total game changer for new mamas! I love that it gives you an actual strategy and plan for you and your baby as well as ways to not create problems!
It gives parents the tools to establish good habits and routines (read my post on Establishing Routines if you haven’t!) before making easy choices that actually lead to bad habits in the long run.
Since having Jaden, I’ve heard so many moms share how hard things are going at home since they’ve had their baby or how they just can’t figure out how to keep their little one happy.
Tracy’s book covers all of that and gives such amazing insight as to what your baby probably needs!
If we ever have a friend who is expecting, we always tell them about this book!
2. MIRACLE BLANKET SWADDLE
Once again, like I said in my other post, newborns have a startle that gets triggered very easily. They don’t even know what their arms and legs are (or that they’re even attached to them!).
It can be very surprising when their hand touches their face or their leg kicks when they weren’t expecting it. This makes sleeping tricky since their startle obviously would wake them!
Startles bother some babies more than others, but all babies have them.
This is why a swaddle helps so much. Being wrapped so tightly not only keeps their arms and legs from flailing during the night, but also keeps them feeling secure and snug.
If you’ve taken a birthing class, you probably learned how to swaddle a baby with a receiving blanket. However, they make much easier swaddles now!
We LOVE our Miracle Blanket Swaddle! It’s easy to get your little one all wrapped up tight in these swaddles!
There are swaddles out there that zip instead of wrap. We did have a few of those but honestly, we liked the wrapping style more.
The miracle swaddles make it feel like the baby is wrapped in a blanket rather than a jacket with no arms. I will say it took some trial and error to learn how to wrap the baby. Don’t be afraid to really tug and tuck!
Both our boys loved these miracle swaddles! They are definitely a newborn must have!
3. BEDSIDE BASSINET
Having a crib in our bedroom was a SUPER helpful thing for us! There’s nothing worse than being a new mom trying to heal from labor and delivery. You’re SO exhausted- like more exhausted than anyone will ever be again in their life.
And this sweet tiny human needs to eat round the clock. Keep that sweet baby in your room and close by! I know most moms are already doing this, but just in case you were on the fence!
We used this Chico bassinet with both boys and loved it! It was super lightweight so set up was easy. We loved that it could travel around the house or on trips if need be too.
Also, the mattress isn’t connected to the legs so you can easily rock the baby by pushing on the mattress. The fabric holding the mattress sways gently and is so soothing for you little one! Definitely a newborn must have!
4. BABY SWING & BOUNCER COMBO
I seriously don’t know what I would’ve done with either baby without our Graco swing! Both boys took most of their naps in the swing their first few weeks.
We always kept it out in the living room so it acted as a “living area bassinet” too. The swing had some awesome features too that made it an obvious choice when we were shopping for baby items.
This Graco swing can swing two different directions. It can either rock side to side, or you can spin the seat and it can rock long ways. One of my favorite features is that the bassinet can actually come off of the swing and act as a baby bouncer seat or just a spot to keep your babe strapped in safely.
We often buckled our boys in the swing and removed it from the base to have them safe and close by.
The seat also comes with a vibration mode to soothe the baby as well as classical music and soothing sounds. We used ALL these features SO much! Definitely a newborn baby must!
5. WHITE NOISE MACHINE
If you read my 14 Musts When Bringing Home Baby post, you’ll already know how helpful noise machines are! It can be so hard putting a baby down with a noisy household.
Also, babies are soothed by the sound of white noise. Many people think babies want to sleep in silence. However, in the womb, they were used to a loud vacuum sound so having white noise helps them sleep so much better!
This is also why “shhhing” the baby helps and soothes. This particular white noise machine has many different sounds to choose from. We actually have several and love them all!
They’re easy to travel with since they’re so small! This white noise machine is definitely a newborn must have!
6. JOGGING STROLLER
When we were pregnant with Jaden back in 2014, I took a “stroller quiz” to see what type of stroller would be best for our needs. At the time, we were living in a city neighborhood with old, narrow sidewalks that were pretty bumpy.
Because of this, we decided to go with a Jogger stroller that had nice wheels for an easy glide. This Graco stroller also had the option to come with a “click connect” car seat.
We LOVED this feature because I could just snap the baby’s car seat in the stroller! This came in handy especially when the baby had fallen asleep in the car and we wanted him to continue napping.
We’d just grab the stroller from the back of the van, and snap him in while he was still sleeping. It was SO helpful.
The Graco stroller is also very easy to collapse and set up! It is definitely a newborn must have for sure!
7. DOUBLE STROLLER
Along with the Graco Jogger stroller, we also have the Graco Ready2Grow Double stroller. When we had Parker James, we knew there would be times both boys would need a seat in the stroller.
This double stroller works so well for us because our infant car seat was able to snap on to it as well!
We used the double stroller a TON at Disneyland on my 30th birthday. (Don’t mind my completely overwhelmed and exhausted face… Parker James was only 10 weeks old when we took the whole crew to Cali for our cousin’s wedding. If you read Parker James’ birth story you’ll know I was a bit of a wreck!
The BEST thing about this stroller is how many different positions it has! The stroller can be set in 12 different positions! It comes ready to have two pumpkin seats, two toddler/regular stroller seats, or one of each. The stroller also has a platform for an older kiddo to stand on while riding.
Like the jogger stroller, even though it’s a bit larger, it is still very easy to set up and collapse!
The Graco Ready2Grow stroller has been so helpful for our family! If you’re having your second (or know you will someday) it’s a newborn must have for sure!
8. MUNCHKIN LATCH BOTTLES
If you’re a breastfeeding mama, you know that it can be very difficult for some babies to find a bottle they will take!
With our first baby, he pretty much took whatever gave him. However, with our second born, he was super picky! We had purchased a few sets of bottles before he was born from a few different brands.
After a few tries with each, I finally realized we needed to go back and try the kind we used with Jaden. (Our dog chewed up all of his when he was a toddler and left them everywhere!)
As soon as we tried the Munchkin Latch style bottles, Parker James was all about them! This was a game changer for my mom and other babysitters we had!
Now that Parker James is 1, I’ve started to give him a bottle throughout the day rather than nurse him so much. Even now that he’s older (and can drink from a straw and sippy cup) he STILL prefers the Latch bottles!
The Munchkin Latch bottles, I’ve found, are the closest thing to a natural breast. There’s no flat side to the nipple like some bottles have. They come in several different “flows” and sizes so whatever stage your little one is in they’re a perfect fit!
These bottles are definitely a newborn must have!
9. BABY WRAP
OK mamas…. Who’s been there… You have a list a mile long (literally!) and your sweet, sweet baby won’t let you put him down!
Don’t get me wrong! It’s not that you don’t want to hold him. It’s just that you really need to go switch the laundry to the dryer before those clothes start to smell and you have to rewash them for the third time this week (We’ve all done this… right?!)
Baby wearing has definitely come back into the mama scene these days! There are so many different types out there. It can be hard to choose from.
Basically, I’ve found there are two different types. A strap and buckle style or a fabric wrap.
I actually have both but I definitely prefer a wrap and here’s why! When I’ve worn the strap and buckle style baby carrier, the weight pulls in just one or two focused areas. Wearing the baby for too long gets tiresome.
With a wrap, the baby’s weight is distributed evenly across your shoulders and back so the straps don’t dig in! I find I can wear my babies longer in a wrap.
Now all wraps are not the same. With Jaden, we had a very thick, very stretchy (too stretchy!) sweatshirt material wrap. Although it did the job of holding our sweet baby close to us, it was SO HOT. The thing didn’t breathe at all.
Also, it was way too stretchy. I felt like I could never get the thing tight enough to not have him sagging to the floor when I took 5 steps.
When Parker James came along, I found these adorable, lightweight wraps from Tuck & Bundle that are such a life saver! It has just enough give to stretch it around the baby but still hold tight.
I don’t know what I would’ve done without this wrap! Having an older little guy to help and chase felt impossible for a while! So glad I had this Tuck & Bundle wrap so I could help Jaden while still helping Parker James!
It’s a newborn must have for sure!
10. DIAPER BAG BACKPACK
Obviously, every mama needs a diaper bag! There are a million different types out there so it can be super hard to choose! Well, you’re in luck because we actually tried almost every style and landed on a favorite!
When Jaden was born, we used a large tote bag that did the job but it was so hard on my shoulder. It was also very difficult to keep organized and I had to basically empty it every time I needed something.
When Jaden was about 18 months old, I caved and ordered a cute backpack diaper bag since we were going on a trip to California to see family. I knew I didn’t want to lug that heavy shoulder diaper back through the airport and all around the OC!
The backpack was MUCH easier to use! However, after a year or so we realized the backpack we chose wasn’t designed the best either. Luckily by that point, Jaden was almost 3 and he didn’t really need us to carry a “real deal” diaper bag.
When Parker James came along, we did a bit more research and knew we didn’t want a shoulder or messenger bag style diaper bag. We knew we wanted a backpack diaper bag but we weren’t sure which kind.
After searching a bit, we found this Land Backpack Diaper Bag. It has so many different features that we loved! I loved how the mouth of the bag unzips into such a large, square opening. It has framing in the mouth to make it keep it’s shape while the bag is open.
The bag also has a great side pouch for wipes that you can just open right from the back rather than digging the entire pack of wipes out each time.
The front of the bag also has an isolated compartment for bottles which is super helpful for keeping things warm/cold.
One of my favorite features is the back zipper at the bottom of the bag. How many times have you needed something on the bottom of your diaper bag and you have to take everything out or dig through it forever!?
The back zipper opens up right at the bottom so you can grab whatever you need at the bottom of the back! Genius design there, mamas!
This Land Diaper Bag is a newborn must have for sure!
11. SPECTRA BREAST PUMP
When Jaden was born, my insurance gave me several choices of breast pumps. We just selected the first option because, to be honest, it was overwhelming to choose!
The Ameda pump did the job fine enough, but I was ready to try a different brand when Parker James came along 5 years later.
Man oh MAN! I can’t tell you the difference between the two! The Spectra C2 Breastpump has such a different style “suck” than a normal breast pump.
Other breast pumps just have a vacuum setting and a speed setting. The Spectra pump is designed to “suckle” like a baby. It kind of has a pulsing or pumping vacuum affect.
(Here’s a post about why it’s so different if you’re interested in knowing more!)
All I have to say is, this Spectra pump is definitely one of my newborn must haves!
This one is also for all you breastfeeding mamas! I’ve told you before in other posts about my engorgement woes when my milk comes in. With my first baby I had SO many complications with nursing.
My nursing pads were never dry because I was so engorged, which lead to many thrush (fungal) infections. (SO PAINFUL!) I also lost so much milk on the opposite side whenever I would actually nurse.
I would always try to have a cloth or something but it was just always a big mess.
Right before I got pregnant with Parker James, my friend had a baby and told me about a silicone breast pump called a Haaka….. FRIENDS!!! IF YOU BREASTFEED YOU NEED THIS IN YOUR LIFE!
The Haaka latches onto your breast with suction and CATCHES all the let down milk!!! GAME. CHANGER!!
When my milk came in while we were still in the hospital with Parker James, (read his birth story here if you haven’t…) I thankfully had a Haaka. I used it every time I nursed and could actually see how much my let down was!
Every time I would nurse, just one side would fill the entire Haaka! The nurses could not believe how much milk I was producing just in my let down. Their breast milk fridge was FULL of my bottles of milk by the time we left.
All of that milk would have been in my breast pads, bras, shirts, burp cloths etc. without the Haaka!
The Haaka also can help be a manual breast pump too if you latch it with the stronger suction position. I didn’t dare do that since it would just tell my body to produce more breastmilk!
It can also help heal blocked milk ducts! With some hot water and epsom salt in the bottom of the pump, it sucks it right out! The Haaka is DEFINITELY a newborn must have for breastfeeding mamas!
13. CARSET & NURSING COVER COMBO
Once again, this was one of those items where I learned from my first baby which design I liked better!
When Jaden was born, I had a nursing cover that was basically a very large apron. You put it around your neck and a large piece of cloth covered you and the baby.
However, the design was flawed… If your baby wiggled or pulled the cover even slightly… let’s just say you became the show! It wasn’t much different from pushing a blanket or small sheet off of you! Too easy to do.
This carseat and nursing cover combo is a MUCH better design as it goes around your body fully rather than just a portion. This way the baby can’t kick or pull it off.
The design makes it much harder for the baby to move out from under. I also love how lightweight and stretchy it is! The cover is made out of a soft, T-shirt like material. There are SO many different designs to choose from too!
I also love how it stretches over the carseat. It’s easy to stretch at different angles so the baby can partially see or be blocked by the sun if need be. So helpful!
This nursing cover is a newborn must have for sure!
14. WIPES WARMER
I’ll be honest… this one was “iffy” for me. I wasn’t sure if it was really worth it… Well, I’m here to tell you, mama. It’s worth it!
There’s nothing worse than having a newborn squalling on your diaper table and then wiping a freezing cold wipe on their bottom only to have them cry even harder.
Those late night dream feeds (read my post about baby routines for more on that) when I was trying to keep the baby so sleepy. I would HATE using a wipe on the baby because I knew it would just wake him up more!
This wipes warmer is definitely a newborn must have! The baby hardly even feels that you’re using a wipe.
This particular wipe warmer comes with a small water compartment to mist the wipes when they’ve dried out. We love that feature! Believe me! You need this!
There you have it, mamas! My list of newborn must haves! What we ACTUALLY used!
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