Today I’m going to talk about my top 10 newborn essentials and must-haves. It’s baby shopping guide for first-time parents. These things aren’t in any particular order. They’re just the top things I automatically think of, when I think of things that I need to take care of my baby girl, especially over the last couple of weeks.
The first two things I’m going to mention are actually things for me. I am a breastfeeding Mama. If you’ve ever breastfed before, you know that your nipples get really sensitive. Sometimes they can even become cracked and bleeding, which is what happened to me in my first pregnancy. But fortunately that did not happen with this baby. And I have a feeling that it’s because of this stuff “Motherlove Nipple Cream” (Click here to view on amazon). This is the first time that I’ve ever used this. And it’s got different ingredients in it than like your traditional lanolin nipple cream. The ingredients are extra virgin olive oil, beeswax, shea butter, marshmallow root and calendula flower. When you open it up, it looks kind of like olive oil. And it looks like it would be super greasy but it’s not. It soaks right into your skin. It doesn’t leave any nasty greasy spots all over your bra, which is awesome. And I have not had a single problem breastfeeding this entire time. I really think that this stuff had something to do with it. I’m so glad that I tried it.
The other Mama item that I absolutely could not live without right now is something that I just discovered is silicone breast pump (Click here to view on amazon). It’s made of silicone so it’s really like squishy basically. What I use for and what I think most people use it for is: when you’re nursing, generally you leak on the other side especially in those first couple of weeks. When you’re super engorged and instead of just letting all that milk go to waste like in a burp cloth or a towel or something. You suction this thing on to the other boob and it literally sucks the milk out of your boob. It’s incredible how much milk this thing gets out. It gets the milk out really fast to this thing, actually stores up to four ounces of milk. I would say that even on a day when I’m not super engorged, if I hook this thing up to the other side while she’s nursing, I can guarantee it get out at least two to three ounces of milk every single time. Whoever invented this thing is an absolute genius. I wish I had this with my first pregnancy. I have a couple of pregnant Mama friends. And I am constantly recommending this thing to them because I love it that much. It comes with a little silicone stopper thing that you put right in the hole. It prevents it from spilling any breast milk after you’re done.
Then the next item on my list is a nursing cover (Click here to view on amazon). But I love this one because it also doubles as a car seat cover. I also have this nursing cover because it’s very thin and stretchy. You can actually see how stretchy it is, because you can see my fingers through it really easily. But it’s very easy to get on and off. It’s very breathable. I love how soft it is. This is literally the only nursing cover I’ve ever used. I do have other ones. This one just happens to be my favorite. I also use it as a car seat cover pretty much every single time I go out.
4. Baby Wrap & Baby Carrier
The next item is a baby wrap (Click here to view on amazon) or a baby carrier (Click here to view on amazon). I wanted to show you guys both because I have been using both of them with my daughter since she was born. I started out with the softer fabric one when it’s called a “Baby K’tan”. I use the original one. This is really great when they’re super tiny newborns they can get really snuggled up nice and close to you. The fabric is really soft. Therefore you don’t have to worry about it being uncomfortable for baby. But once she basically hit the one-month mark, I felt like this was too tight even though you’re supposed to be able to use this even with older babies. I just felt like I was like squishing her to death every time I tried to put her in it. And she also doesn’t like her head being inside of it. So I had to switch over to my more structured carrier which is what she’s in right now. And this is the only one that I use now with her. The one that I have is not an expensive one, which is why I love it so much. You could easily spend a couple hundred dollars on a really nice baby carrier. I’m sure that they are very great for your back and your shoulders and have all kinds of crazy features. But to be totally honest the one that I have is incredible. It was the cheapest one on the market that I could find at the time that I purchased it. I believe this one’s called the Infantino Flip. It has totally served all the purposes that I have ever needed it for from newborn all the way up through too big to be in it. I used it with my first baby and I’m now using it again with my second baby. And I absolutely love it.
The next item is cradle cap shampoo (Click here to view on amazon). My first baby didn’t have cradle cap very badly. She had like a couple of flakes. So I was easily able to get off with coconut oil. But this poor little baby has it so bad on the top of her head. I actually heard about this product on Youtube. I didn’t even know they made shampoo for stuff like that. So I went ahead and ordered some. Then I’ve tried it. I think we’ve given her head to washes so far. And I can already tell a difference. I honestly thought that it was going to be like a too good to be true kind of a product. But it really does exactly what it says it does. Her head is already starting to heal. So I would definitely recommend this to any Mamas who have a newborn that is suffering from cradle cap.
The last couple of items that I’m going to mention, all of them have to do with baby sleep. Newborns are notorious for not giving you a whole lot of sleep, unless you are one of those lucky Mamas whose baby starts sleeping through the night like on day 2. I have never met a baby that did that. But if your baby does that, tell me what your secrets are, because I’d like to know them. In the meantime though, I have to have an arsenal of products to help make sure that sleep is happening.
The first one is a Velcro sleep swaddle sack (Click here to view on amazon). It’s newborn essential or must haves for sleepless parents. To be totally honest, when I had my first baby I tried regular swaddle blankets. I still have all of them. When I used the swaddle blanket, she would constantly get out of them. Then I was up half the night, not really getting the sleep I should have been getting, because I was so worried that the blanket was going to go over her face and suffocate her. Therefore, I wasn’t getting much sleep at night. Then I’m getting one of those Velcro swaddle sacs. And we were going to try that thing and see if it works better. And oh man, I am so glad these things are incredible. When I used the swaddle sleepsack, there is no way she could ever bust out as thing if she tried. But my favorite part about this and I know a lot of babies are like this: she doesn’t like her arms being swaddled in. I know that some people will say “well their startle reflex will actually wake them up”. And that’s kind of the point of swaddling. But honestly it doesn’t really seem to bother her. So she likes to be swaddled with her arms out. She just likes to feel the confinement. I guess the tightness of the swaddle around her body and that really settles her down and helps her go to sleep. The one from Halo that I got gives you that option. You can either swaddle them with their arms in or out because it’s kind of like shirt. You can let their little arms stick out and you can swaddle it underneath their arms, which is what I do with her every single night. I also love that it zips up from the bottom. So if I have to do a diaper change in the middle of the night I don’t have to completely undress her and unspotted her. I just have to let the zipper go up far enough just to reach her diaper and then I can zipper right back up when I’m done.
Along with the swaddle sack, the bed that I’ve been having my baby sleep in is actually the Halo Bassinet (Click here to view on amazon). It slides up right next to the side of my bed. I don’t even have to get out of bed to nurse her in the middle of the night unless she needs a diaper change. Of course, but for the most part I’m in bed all night. I can nurse her really quick. I can put her back in the bassinet and move her away from the edge of the bed if I need to so that my blankets don’t wrestle against the side of it and wake her up. It swivels completely around 360’ so that I can make it change positions if I need to. I love this thing. With my first daughter, i didn’t have this Bassinet. And it really hurts my back to bend over to get the baby. And now, i have the Halo Bassinet, this thing is literally at my bed height and the fact that I don’t even have to get up is incredible.
Right next to my daughter’s bassinet on my nightstand I have her noise machine (Click here to view on amazon). This is something that again I use with my daughter. To be honest, my daughter she is two years old now. She still uses it for every single nap and nighttime. A noise machine was one of the best investments we ever made, because it just drowns out all of the sounds that could happen and wake her up like dogs barking in the middle of the night or a door slamming or something falling. You don’t realize the number of random noises that happen in your house or even outside of your house until you have a sleeping baby that you don’t want to wake up. So to have a sound machine going to provide that white noise and like a little sound buffer to prevent them from waking up. If something like that happens is absolutely invaluable. Therefore when I found out that I was pregnant with this one, I also bought another noise machine, the same exact kind. And if we’re being technical, the reason that we got the one that we have as opposed to all the other ones that are out on the market, is because it’s the only one that has an actual mechanical thing and inside to create the white noise that it does. A lot of the other ones that you see are electronic noises. It’ll play like rainforest noises and thunderstorms and chirping frogs and whatever, it is that you want it to play. Those are great too. But I really just wanted something simple and static, literally just white noise. That’s exactly what this thing does. I love this thing so much that even after my kids don’t need them anymore, I think I’m going to steal one of theirs and keep it in our room.
9. Infant Nest
The next item on my list is an infant nest (Click here to view on Etsy). This is just a cheaper version that I found on Etsy. I do not let my daughter sleep in it or take naps in it. I know some people do that with their DockATot. However it makes me a little bit nervous from a SIDS perspective so I don’t really let her do that. But what I do use it for is a place to set her down throughout the day. I do have a toddler that I have to take care of as well. So having a place to quickly set the baby down and know that she’s safe that really helps give me some peace of mind. So I’m super glad that we bought one of those for this baby.
10. Glow Baby App
The very last item on my list of newborn essentials is something that is not an item. It is actually a free App that you can download on your phone. It’s called the Glow Baby App. This App has some really cool tools in it, especially for recording nursing or bottle feeding sessions, diaper changes and sleep. I think the one thing that I use it for the most is recording her feeding sessions because in the very beginning after your baby is born, you want to know exactly how long they’re feeding for if you’re breastfeeding, or how much they’re drinking if you’re bottle feeding. You also want to know how many wet and dirty diapers they have every day. This App does all of that. And I am so excited that it is free. It totally beats out having a little notebook which was my original plan. I did start using a notebook actually at first for like the first week or two. Then I got tired of carrying the notebook around with me. I need to find something that I can do on my phone that does the same thing. As soon as I found this App, the notebook definitely gone.
So that is the baby shopping guide: top ten newborn essentials. I will be so happy if it helps you parents to take care of your infant. If there is any other questions, you can ask in the comment below, thanks.