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Becoming a new parent is a very exciting time. We all want to give the best to our precious newborn baby, and the trend of millennial parents buying baby essentials that you don’t actually need is becoming quite apparent…
Does this sound like you? Months before the due date, you start to decorate the nursery room like featured pages in a baby magazine, stocking up on the cutest beanies, socks, mittens, and filling the house with newborn baby furniture.
I’ve been there, splurged on expensive furniture and baby products that I didn’t even get to use. Then reselling them at a fraction of the purchase price, ouch.
In this post, I will share 5 newborn baby ‘essentials’ you don’t need, as well as shedding some lights on what it’s really like to be a new parent.
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Newborn clothes you do not need
Most new mums spend the first 6-8 weeks at home recovering from childbirth and breastfeed their newborns round the clock. Chances are, your newborn baby won’t be going anywhere for the first couple of months. So sleepsuits or muslin wraps will do just fine.
Should I buy newborn size clothes?
Newborn babies sleep about 8 hours during the day, so for the first month, you can pretty much get away with a couple of muslin wraps. I recommend skipping prem-000 size clothes altogether and always buy one size up.
What are the best newborn baby clothes to buy?
Soft, stretchy and comfortable sleepsuits are the best clothes to buy for your newborn. 100% organic cotton clothes are our favourites. Easy to wear double zipper jumpsuits, onesies and growsuits will make your life so much easier.
Buy baby sleeping bags or onesies with double zippers for quick and easy nappy change.
Avoid sleepsuits with snaps. It’s a pain trying to match all the snaps in the middle of the night when you’re already sleep-deprived. Babies kick and wriggle a lot, and I mean non-stop! So be kind to yourself and buy clothes that take less than 3 seconds to zip up.
How many outfits do you need for a newborn baby?
As cute as those baby clothes are, you don’t really need more than 4 sets of comfortable cotton sleepwear and 2 sets of going-out clothes in the first few months. Laundry days will increase regardless and you may need an extra set in case they don’t dry on time.
As a mother of two, I swear by newborn clothes from Love to Dream (not sponsored, by the way). Their products are so soft, comfortable, durable and cleverly designed to adapt to an infant’s growth.
We used their Swaddle Up series for our baby. They’ve made my life so much easier, and my only regret was not using them earlier and buying more!
- Sleeping bags
- Muslin wraps
- Sleeping suits
- Beanie (depending on weather)
- Clothes with snaps
- Clothes with lots of velcro
- Small and tight clothes
- Over the head shirts
- Newborn shoes
- Baby shorts (unless you live in a tropical country)
- Cloth nappies (unless you have parents to help with washing)
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You do not need an expensive cot
…unless you plan to sleep-train your baby.
I wish someone had told me this when I was pregnant with my first. Newborn babies need to be trained to sleep independently, and that process usually involves a LOT of crying that literally breaks your heart. On top of that, it’s really hard to be consistent, especially if you don’t have parents or live-in nannies to rotate the night shifts.
If you plan to breastfeed your baby, this gets even harder as infants need to be on your breasts
every 2 hours all the time! Baby cots are tough on your back, and chances are, your baby won’t even sleep in it for the first 6 months or… in my case, ever.
Instead, buy a bedside bassinet where the baby is sleeping separately but within arm’s reach. Transition your baby into a cot or a toddler bed later when he can sleep through the night.
Beside Me Dreamer Bassinet
How about getting a pram where you can use as a portable bassinet? Our favourite baby stroller/pram brand is Bugaboo Australia because its products are thoughtfully designed, and the versatility makes mums’ lives so much easier. You can take a look at their world-class quality prams here.
You can buy a bassinet mattress for under $30, and infants can sleep in there day and night comfortably for the first 2 months!
© Photos by Kida
Baby sling, wrap or carrier?
If you’re deciding between a baby sling, wrap or a carrier, go with a carrier with an infant insert.
Newborns weigh around 3kg on average, and they grow rapidly every day. It may not sound like a lot of weight to carry at first, but having a 3kg baby glued to you breastfeeding on demand… it gets tough.
Slings or wraps don’t have the ergonomic support that you need for a growing baby. They usually have a life span of only a month or two, whereas a quality baby carrier can last for a year or more.
Ergobaby Omni 360 All-Position Baby Carrier
Be sure to buy a carrier with the infant insert so the baby’s neck is supported during the early days.
Alternatively, you can use a summer sarong to carry your newborn baby and upgrade to a carrier when they grow out of it! I used a baby carrier with a booster seat (Ergobaby 360), which lasted for 14 months until my toddler started walking.
If you’re from Australia, you can purchase Ergobaby from its official website here.
Which toys to buy?
Many new parents want to shower their baby with toys as soon as they meet the world. But hang on, your infants don’t need a lot of toys yet. I recommend limiting your toys in the first 3 months, as babies of this age are not ready to play.
You could prepare a lovey – a blanket toy your baby can hold to sleep. A lovey could potentially relieve you in the future as your baby learns to attach to the lovey instead of you. But not every baby develops that attachment. Mine never did, but we can only try.
Lovey Soft Toy
Baby Cloth books or Board books are great for babies of all ages, you can never start too early as their favourite sound in the whole wide world is the voice of their parents. Make reading a bedtime routine and set a good habit for them early in life.
Peek-A-Boo Forest Baby Book
Another good toy to buy is a squeaky teether that has bright contrasting colours. Not every baby uses teethers, but every baby likes black and white or big colourful toys that make funny noises. Why not combine the two? You might just save on buying teethers in a few months time.
Sofie The Giraffe Teether Toy
Don’t forget, our outdoor environment is the best natural playground for kids.
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Do you really need a breast pump?
Breast milk may come naturally for some ladies right after birth. But for a lot of us, we may experience delayed lactation and other difficulties. Birthing centres and hospitals usually have electric breast pumps for new mothers to borrow for the first few days. If you’re planning to return to work or still needing a breast pump after returning home, consider hiring one instead.
If you still prefer to buy a breast pump, go with an electric breast pump. I had sore fingers from using a manual pump. It took a lot longer to get the milk out compared to an electric pump. The suction was pretty tough on my breasts, and it was bloody hard work. I was literally counting drops of milk.
Electric Breast Feeding Pumps
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In the meantime…
What do you think? What are some of the newborn baby ‘essentials’ you do not need?