What do you actually need on your registry for a new baby? The pressure to have a complete, Pinterest worthy nursery is insane. The truth is my daughter is 2 months old and hasn’t even been in her nursery yet. Partly because it’s a room that shared with her brothers’ playroom (third child problems!) and partly because your baby sleeps in your room for the first bit anyway.
For moms like myself who are pregnant again after a long gap the early days with a baby were a blur. It had been 6 years since I had a baby. While I had an idea of what I would need, the baby gear market had changed and was full of new, fancier items.
If you are a first time mom the baby registry checklists can be a bit overwhelming and you start to feel like you need all the thing.
Expenses of a new baby can add up quickly and not to mention trying to store everything!
(This post contains affiliate links that are helpful to us both with no extra cost to you. Our full disclosure policy is really boring, but you can find it here.)
So what do you really need for your baby? I’ve put together a list of the things that we have actually used and loved in our baby girl’s first two months.
This list has been created during life with a newborn. Our youngest recently turned two months old and we looked back at the things we actually used versus the things we haven’t had a need for yet, but will in the coming months.
Whether you are wanting to buy a baby shower gift that is useful or are a first time mom looking to have the essential baby items on hand, we’ve got you covered with a list of newborn must haves.
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE FULL CHECKLIST ON AMAZON (OR KEEP SCROLLING FOR ALL THE INFORMATION)!
Baby Essentials for the First Two Months
There are three main things that babies do for the first two months of life. They eat, sleep, and have their diaper changed. Ok they get baths too, but the other three things are pretty much what your everyday will be filled with for the first 8 weeks.
With that in mind, I have divided this list into the baby essentials for each of these categories.
Baby Feeding Items for your Registry
If you are an exclusively breastfeeding mama, then you can skip this section of our must have list since it’s for the bottle feeding crew!
All of my kids have been formula babies. No shame, no guilt. Breast-feeding was not for me. What was important is all of my kids are good eaters. When they first came home from the hospital, the little 2 ounce bottles of pre-made formula were so helpful. We even purchased more to have when we were on the go at the very beginning.
If you are formula feeding your baby, you should be sure to add the Boon Tripod Formula Container to your baby registry. Like most others on the market, this little storage container holds formula for three eight ounce bottles. What really sets this container apart is the easy screw-on caps and three narrow legs that fit perfectly into bottles for spotless transfer of formula every time. We’ve had hardly any mess in our bottle making when we switched to using this amazing little container!
There are a lot of bottles on the market. Baby bottles come in a wide variety of shapes, colors, sizes and materials. Some bottles are simple while others come with quite a few pieces.
Finding the bottles that are right for your baby tends to be a game of guess and check and may change as they grow.
Dr. Brown’s bottles are a popular choice to start with and are really good to use, but they have so many pieces. We quickly learned with our first son that it was just too much for us to keep up with when it came to washing all of the bottles and pieces. We switched him over to the Pura Stainless Steel baby bottles easily. The Pura were easy to wash and were great quality, but due to their price and how many bottles you need at the beginning (if you are bottle feeding), I wouldn’t start out with them.
With our second son we went straight to Nuk brand bottles which were easy and on the low end of the budget. They were simple and effective.
With our third baby we’ve had more of a guessing game on the bottles. She didn’t love the newer style of bottles that have a more natural tip. The only bottle that worked with her at first was the super cheap Evenflo Feeding Classic. We we got around the one month mark, she started liking the Como Tomo or Boon Nursh type of bottles. This was helpful for us because these wider bottles are so much easier to shake formula into.
There are some fancy burp cloths out there, but truthfully they just get spit up on. What you want in a burp cloth is something that washes and dries well. These muslin burp cloths have been some of our absolute favorite this time around!
Cleaning Brushes for Baby Bottles
While bottle cleaning isn’t on the list of fun things to do with a new baby, it is a frequent task for new parents. This set of bottle brushes isn’t only handy, its also super cute! Might as well have something that brings you joy to look at while washing all those bottles!
Baby Sleep Items for your Registry
While sleep may seem elusive at first, hang in there mama! The truth is that some babies have a harder time adjusting than others, but the good news is that sleep will eventually happen. These must have items on our list may help your baby get more sleep, faster.
Sleep is always at the top of my must-have list when it comes to babies. There is such a push for cribs to be set up and a nursery to be complete, but I don’t know anyone who brings their baby home and puts them alone in the crib in the nursery. So while of the Instaworthy nursery is a dream, it is definitely not a must.
Truthfully your baby is likely going to be sleeping in a bassinet at the beginning.
Both of our boys were colicky babies. They needed an incline to help them sleep well and keep the reflux down. When preparing for our third child, we knew we wanted to have something at home for baby to sleep in with an incline as well.
After some research, I had decided I wanted a bassinet that could also have movement to help soothe baby during the night. There are some great options on the market like the SNOO, which is amazing but it was too expensive to justify for me at that time. So I debated between the Fisher-Price Soothing Motions Bassinet the the Graco Duo Glider.
I decided the Graco Duo Glider was perfect! Not only is it a bassinet shape providing close comfort for a baby, it doubles as a gliding swing. A big win for this swing/bassinet combo is that you can move it from a seated position to a resting position without waking your sleeping baby.
And it’s all about getting sleep at the beginning!
With our first two kids we sadly never found the perfect sleep sack. We had swaddles and wearable blankets that got us through the long newborn nights, but nothing was a win.
When I was pregnant with our third baby a friend shared with me the awesomeness of the Love to Dream Swaddle Up. This swaddle is designed so that baby can sleep in an arms up position so she can easily self soothe and with a snug fit to calm the startle reflex. It has been perfection and I’m fairly certain it has played a big part in our little girl starting sleep through the night so quickly.
A sound machine definitely needs to be on your baby registry checklist to help with baby sleeping. We have loved the Hatch Baby Rest that is a nightlight, sound machine, and time-to-rise alert in one easy-to-use device that you can control from your phone!
Confession, neither of my first two kids use pacifiers. I don’t think they were an interested, I think it is partly because of the baby friendly movement that was in the two hospitals where they were born. The staff strongly encourage that babies not be given pacifiers. This time around my baby loves pacifiers and so do I. The Itzy Ritzy pacifier has been a lifesaver for us. And baby girl is cute with her little llamas everywhere.
Baby Diaper Changing items for your registry
With my first two kids, we used a diaper genie. I don’t think I even knew about the Ubbi at that point in time or maybe it didn’t exist.
My husband hated the diaper genie! He called the waste bags poop tubes. And they were so heavy! We probably didn’t change them often enough to be honest, which is why they ended up like long, heavy snakes, but no worries we all survived.
Third baby we are smarter.
Welcome Ubbi diaper pail! This metal canister contains so much more of the smell, but that’s not even the best part. What’s fabulous about this diaper pail is that you do not need to buy special refill bags for it. All you need is regular garbage bags!
Mom’s all have their favorite brands of diapers. Not sure what yours is yet, don’t worry! Buy some small packages to start with and see what you like. He will only be in the newborn size diapers for a short time, so don’t stock up on too many bulk packages of newborn size. It’s the perfect time to try out different brands. Whether name brand or discount, you will soon find there is one that works best for you and your baby. Our family favorite is Huggies, followed closely by the Target’s Up and Up brand or Costco‘s Kirkland brand.
Having a soft space to change your baby is helpful. Rather than purchasing a separate changing table, we have always just used a changing pad on top of the dresser. You are able to secure the changing pad to the back of the dresser with screws to ensure it does not slide off.
While baby is in our bedroom, the changing pad is on our dresser. When she moves to her room, the changing pad can easily be unscrewed and attached to her dresser.
Our baby loves the soft foam inside her changing pad and has even fallen asleep on this changing pad a few times! I love that this changing pad is waterproof and easy to wipe down in case of accidents that will surely happen!
Changing Pad Liners
So are these changing pad liners may not be a must have for baby but they sure make life easier! They simply go on top of your changing pad and if your baby decides she wants to go to the bathroom while you are reaching for a new diaper, you only have to remove this liner quickly to still have a dry spot on the changing pad. (It will happen…more than once!) These are amazingly soft and wash so well.
Wipes are kind of like diapers in that parents tend to find a brand they love and then stick with them.
The hospital loaded us up with wipes as we were leaving which is helpful to start off. The samples that you receive in registry welcome gifts, like when you create your baby registry on Amazon, are great to use to see if you prefer one brand over another.
Our personal favorite are the Pampers sensitive wipes but with our third baby we aren’t loyalists as we tend to shop bargains. If the Pampers wipes are on sale we grab them. If not, Costco Kirkland brand or Target Up and Up brand are totally find when we don’t want to spend as much on wipes.
(Also, save yourself some money by taking the wipes warmer off your registry.)
You need some booty cream. Whether it’s Desitin or Boudreaux’s, or somebody else truth is you’re gonna need something so make sure you’ve got it and are stocked up!
Three Tier Rolling Cart
I had purchased one of these rolling carts on a whim at Michael’s a while back. It has been an awesome tool with a newborn. Since I don’t have a changing table, I just use the dresser top for changing area with a changing pad, I needed a place for all of the baby supplies.
My rolling cart has been perfect.
I can easily store diapers wipesAnd all the baby necessities that you need to have at your fingertips. Currently it is located by our dresser in the master bedroom sent our baby is sleeping in her bassinet in our room.
As she transitions to her bedroom, the wheelie rolling cart can easily be moved to be relocated to her dresser.
Baby Bath & Skin Care items for your registry
We were gifted this baby bath support for our third baby as a hand me down from a friend who was PCSing. We absolutely love it. It’s easy to place in the tub and baby girl has always seemed comfortable in it. I like that the water drains through it and it dries so quickly.
There are many tubs on the market so pick what fits your space. While an infant tub is a newborn must have, there’s not one I would specifically deem as a must have on your baby registry.
Infant towels make a great baby shower gift because they are cute and functional. The hooded towels are so handy for snuggling baby after a bath.
Don’t forget a couple baby wash clothes as well!
You can research yourself to death on which shampoo or lotion is best for your baby. Whichever brand you decide on, bath essentials are a must have for a new baby. Most companies offer “starter kits” that are a great way to go.
Brush & Nail Clippers
If you’ve not been around babies much, then you likely are unaware that babies come with razor sharp talons. We were trimming nails within the first 10 days of birth for for each of our kids. That being said, trimming baby nails can be a daunting task. Don’t be afraid to use a nail file instead at first to reduce the length without having to cut baby’s nails.
Brushing hair is relaxing and also helps stimulate the follicles. Our babies all love their hair gently brushed after bath time.
Double check your Amazon Baby Registry to make sure you have a brush & nail clippers set!
On The Go Essentials for Baby
I don’t know why, but diaper bag is always the hardest for me to pick. The first child I think I struggled so much because I had no clue what I really needed. They were too many options and none felt like me.
With my first son I ended up with a baby Mel bag that I loved. I considered buying a new baby bag with the second son, and even purchased two bags that were returned and decided to stick with the one that I used for my first son. I became really creative on packing for two under two in one bag.
This time around, almost all the baby bags diaper bags seem to be backpack form. Makes sense because then you have your hands free. There are a lot of huge diaper bags on the market. Huge diaper bags make you feel like you need to have All the things, all the time. Don’t do that to your back. You can totally store stuff in your car, or if you are taking a trip, use a suitcase.
I absolutely love my Itzy Ritzy Mini. It’s a perfect size for short outings with my child. I love that it can completely unzip so I can reach anything inside.
We have loved the Britax infant carriers for each of our kids. If your family drives more than one car frequently, buying an extra base makes life easier since the car seat clicks into the base.
If you want to make your life super easy and have extra money lying around, then spring for the Doona for the first year! It’s a stroller car seat combo that is phenomenal. If you can score one of these on FB Marketplace you will definitely be winning!
With our first son we bought a Britax B-Ready stroller thinking it was a smart idea because you could accessorize it to add a seat for a second child. Little did we know just how quickly we would need to add that second seat! (Our boys are just 13 months apart.) Unfortunately I did not anticipate having any more children, so our stroller was long gone before our little girl came along this year.
Since I knew I was only purchasing a stroller for one, I went with the Baby Jogger City Mini GT because I loved that it is foldable with one hand and is fairly lightweight compared to other strollers of similar size. We are a family that loves trips to Disney so we wanted a stroller that would be easy on the go. The height adjustable handle was also important as my husband is a bit of a giant.
If you aren’t wanting to invest in a full size stroller just yet, a Snap n Go is a great option to pair with an infant car seat. Its perfect for short shopping trips!
Baby Wearing Carrier
After hearing so much about Tula carriers from friends and in mom groups, I decided to try a Tula with our little girl. I bought one new because my husband liked a specific pattern, but you can definitely save some money and get one second hand. I love the Tula Explore because you can start using it from 7 lbs without an insert of any kid.
One weekend when our daughter was a month old, we had nothing planned but needed to get out of the house. So we looked up a park about an hour away that had paved paths for our boys to ride their scooters and enjoy the outdoors. In our parents-of-newborn fatigue we loaded up the car and halfway to our destination realized we didn’t have our Tula or Stroller. I researched carrier options from the passenger seat and we quickly picked up a Lillebaby Complete. My husband immediately decided this is his personal carrier for our daughter and she loves it! Now when she’s fussy with him, he goes and grabs his Lillebaby and scoops her into it. She calms and usually falls asleep!
We had an ErgoBaby with an infant insert for our boys which was just ok for us. The boys didn’t hate it, but they didn’t ever seem hugely comfortable in it unless I was vacuuming. It was helpful at times, but didn’t get as much use as I hoped because they wouldn’t stay happy for long in the Ergo.
I figured they just didn’t like being worn. I probably should have tried some other soft carriers with them, but as a new mom, and then as a mom of two in 13 months, I was too tired for logical thinking about baby wearing.
As a mom trying to keep up with two kids and a new baby, it has been so helpful to be able to have hands free.
Other Important Items for Your Baby Registry
Clothing & Socks
Clothing is always the fun part of a new baby. While its hard, try to remember you want both cute and functional things. Clothing that is easy to change is key when it comes to babies.
If you have a rich aunt or a wealthy friend who loves you and wants to buy amazing things for your baby, definitely throw out the idea of Magnetic Me Baby Footies because these are awesome! They have magnetic closures which make changing a baby ridiculously easy.
When it comes to socks, you may think that all baby socks are pretty much the same. This is not correct. Baby socks love to fall off. Finding socks that stay on your baby’s feet is a feat in itself. Save yourself some time and heartache and go with the Luvable Friends sock sets. They are super cute in designs with socks that look like sneakers or mary janes, but even more important, they actually stay on your baby!
Swing or Momaroo
The momaRoo isn’t a must have, but something that rocks, swings, or moves your baby should definitely be on your list. We had a swing with our boys and it went through so many D cell batteries that we seriously considered by stock in Duracell or Energizer. That said, whatever moving device you buy to help soothe baby with movement, make sure it plugs in!
The momaRoo has been a good choice for us this time around, but definitely check FB marketplace before you buy one new, because you can save yourself 50% or more!
Pack n Play
Many people opt for a pack n play instead of a bassinet – and many pack n plays come with a bassinet accessory. We did this with our first two boys initially and it worked great.
While we have this a pack n play with a bassinet accessory for our daughter, the pack n play didn’t fit well in our current master bedroom, so we used the Graco DuoGlider in our bedroom. What we have loved about this pack n play is that the bassinet accessory detaches. So even though we don’t have the pack n play set up in our home, I use the vibrating bassinet for our little girl to nap in the office while I am working. (She is actually napping in it at this very moment while I type!)
Our actual pack n play will get plenty of use as we visit grandparents and go on trips in the months to come.
Did we miss anything?
There are probably some things I’ve left off this list because let’s be honest… I’m a tired mom of three in the trench’s of life with a little one!
If there’s something you think is a newborn must have, I’d love to hear about it!
Amazon Baby Registry
I created this list on Amazon for you to make your life easier. Hopefully, if you are an expecting mama, you’ve already created your Amazon baby registry account. If you haven’t, definitely take the time to do so now!
As a military spouse an Amazon baby registry has been so helpful because friends and family from far away can easily purchase items on the list I’ve made. Oftentimes stores like Buy Buy Baby or Pottery Barn Kids aren’t in the areas we have been stationed, so Amazon has always been a winner for us.
Plus the Amazon baby registry has some great benefits like a 10% completion discount (15% if you are an Amazon Prime member!) and they send you a free welcome box of baby items!