7 Must Have Baby Essentials

My Must Haves For Baby

I remember while pregnant with my first and second baby I read every single list of must have items. Probably like you’re doing now! Lol each list I’ve personally read seemed to be longer and longer. I would get overwhelmed thinking of how to squeeze all of those things into our budget. SAHM of 3 here, hello. I’m going to budget where I can. I always want to help you to the same because I get it. In this post I’m going to share with you my top rated must have baby items for the first few months.

Because let’s face it, they’re only using these things for 4-8 months max and then they’re off into the dog food never sitting still again.

While pregnant with my third I had a pretty good idea of what was actually necessary. I’ve put together a short and sweet list telling you exactly what baby items you’ll really need.

Besides the obvious ones – like diapers. And all that other $tuff you don’t really need.

Baby in an avocodo print diaper laying on a bed between two legs in avocado socks

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The baby items you really need

  1. Swaddle Blankets for newborns

Your baby has been swaddled up in the womb for 9 months now. Once they’re Earth-side, they’ll still want that security. Wrapping your baby keeps them calm, warm, and feeling safe. 

Grayscale photo of a newborn wrapped in a blanket laying in a bassinet

I recommend having a good stash of swaddle blankets built up. Not only for the comfort, but for a quick clean up of messes. Baby’s have blow outs, spit up, leak through diapers, and other mess after mess. 

One is always close by and of course an actual burp rag is never to be found when you need it.

You can find swaddle blanket packs on Amazon with tons of cute prints.

After 3 kids, I definitely prefer the Muslin style blankets. These tend to be more “breathable” which is great for hot natured babies. I also think they’re softer because they’re not as “stiff” I guess you’d say. They also come in baby wash rags!

Once baby is around a month or two old, they’ll start wiggling more so you may want to transition these Velcro ones

2. Night gowns 

Besides being totally adorable, these are really are handy. Those late night diaper changes take even longer when you have to button or zip up pjs. Save yourself some struggle and check these gowns out. 

Infant night gowns fit tight and stretchy around the bottom. Their feet stay tucked all nice and warm inside. I’ve used these with all of my kids and I highly, highly recommend having a few! I typically use these up until around 3 months old but they’re great for up to 6!

3. A swing or bouncer chair

I recommend having one or the other. It is nice to have both, but when you’re on a budget or have limited space, just choose one! 

My first baby preferred a Graco swing, but my third baby has always been a bouncer boy. My third baby preferred this Fisher Price seat and I have no complaints with it! I really love the style and look of it. A Sit Me Up seat is also great for babies who like to see what’s going on around them.

With a swing, make sure you get one that can be used with batteries and a power cord. You definitely don’t want battery operated only because those can be pricy. But it’s nice to still have the option in case of power outages or travel.

My middle child preferred to not be put down at all. I had a Mamaroo swing for her but she was not a fan. I think this is an item that really just depends on the child. It has lots of neat and nifty settings, but my girl just did not do well not being held. I have friends who highly recommend it though so I’ll let you make the call on that one. 

At 5-6 months old is usually when I see babies transition out of the swing or chair stage. This is when babies start moving around and wanting to crawl. Some babies do use them longer though.

4. A baby carrier 

Not everyone is big into baby wearing and that’s ok, but I AM. I love it and can’t believe I didn’t know more about it with my oldest. My middle child was very, very clingy and I literally wouldn’t of ever got anything done had it not been for my Lillebaby carrier. I still wear her sometimes now even at 4 years old.

Tandem Wearing both littles using a Lillebaby carrier and a Moby Wrap

I don’t wear my youngest near as much as I did/do my middle, but I love having one handy. It’s especially great for those days when he doesn’t want to be sat down. The great thing is I’m still using the same Lillebaby carrier! So they’re very durable, last a good while, and transition as baby grows.

For newborns I really recommend a Moby Wrap. They’re made of a soft cloth material and wrap baby close to you versus straps and buckles. I use these up until around 3-4 months old. Once baby is looking around more with better neck strength, I transition to the Lillebaby.

Baby wearing may seem like it’d be uncomfortable, or maybe it has been uncomfortable for you in the past, but there is a proper way to it. Once you learn the technique, it’s a lifesaver. YouTube tutorials are great. I recommend doing a bit of research to learn more about the proper way to baby wear.

5. DIY Baby Aid Kit

You never know when you might need something and it’s not fun to be scrambling around for it. Create a little kit before baby even arrives to save on the scrambling!

The baby items I add include :

6. The amazing Haakaa

Now this one may only be useful if you are planning to breastfeed, but it is a TOP item of mine. It honestly should’ve been #1 on the list lol. 

What this little silicone bad boy does is attaches to the breast that your baby isn’t nursing on and catches all of the leaking milk! 

Haakaa breast pump

If you’ve breastfed before you know how much milk gets wasted from the other breast. If you haven’t, yes milk leaks everywhere while nursing! That’s because while baby is on one side, the opposite breast has a letdown too. I share more breastfeeding facts and tips in this post here

Nursing pads help with that. But why let all that go to waste when you can pop on The Haakaa and save it all?! Who knows when that little bit of stash milk will come in handy.

It’s so easy to use and very convenient. You will be surprised at how much you can save. It works really well even when you don’t typically respond to a pump. (I’m one of those!)

7. Teething toys

One or two is fine, but you definitely need some. Teething typically starts around 4 months old. Your baby most likely won’t be grasping things yet, but will start by five or six months old.

Anything that they can hold and chew on is great. There are lots of great toys that you can freeze for extra comfort, but honestly I don’t like them. The baby doesn’t want to hold it because it’s too cold, so you end up having to.

I like these bandana bibs because they catch all the drool that’s comes with teething. Baby’s always seem to have an easier time chewing on bibs and clothing anyways. So adding a toy to the bottom of a bib was a great idea!

What you don’t need

Manicured hands holding a newborn baby’s feet

You don’t need to spend a ton of money on baby gear. Especially if you’re still pregnant and baby isn’t here yet. Some kids don’t want to be sat down. They don’t like pacis or certain bottles and are just plain picky. I know in your head you’re thinking, “oh well that’s not how my kid is gonna be.”

Bahaha ok mama, come back and talk to me in a year or so. (Because I said the same thing!) Lol but seriously, you just never know what baby will or won’t like so don’t go broke getting it all. Start with a small stash of baby items and don’t buy into the hype of “gotta have it all”. Trust me on this one!

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