I’m not calling this list ‘Newborn Essentials’ because all babies are different and not having these items will have no detrimental effect on your baby, but they will probably make your life easier . I have owned all the products on this list and either used them for both of my babies or bought for my second and wish I had first time around.
I never swaddled my firstborn so it hadn’t occurred to me to get one for my second. It quickly became clear she wasn’t going to settle as easily as her brother and liked to be held tight as she fell asleep. She also waved her arms about a lot which would wake her up or knock her dummy out. The love to dream Swaddle Up is designed to be ‘hip-healthy’ and allows an arms up sleeping position which is preferred by most babies. it’s also much easier to put on than using a swaddle blanket and won’t come loose.
I didn’t use a breathing monitor for my first baby but with our second having reflux I was a little more on edge. I looked at various monitors and the Snuza Hero seemed like the best option for our budget. I have heard the matt style breathing monitors can give false alarms so I like that the Snuza Hero is always attached to your baby. You can spend hundreds on techy monitors but I preferred a low tech option where there is less to go wrong (have heard of signal dropping out on some Bluetooth models). I was initially concerned it would be too bulky and disturb her sleep but she never seemed to notice it. There is a light on the front which flashes every time they breathe. This is great for those times in the middle of the night when you can’t hear them breathing and end up needlessly waking them.
The side sleeping Next 2 Me Crib by Chicco allows you sleep next to your baby without bed sharing. I loved being able to see my babies and have them close enough to comfort without having to get out of bed. The crib tilting function was useful for our second baby who suffers with reflux.
I used this sleeping pod for both babies and actually bought ours second hand for £30 as I wasn’t sure if our son would take to it and couldn’t justify the £130 price tag. This has been one of my favourite baby items both times around, it has multiple uses and I believe both babies have slept better being in it. The Sleepyhead fits inside the next 2 me crib at night and is portable so can be used around the house for daytime napping. I also use it on the floor when we go away rather than taking a travel cot for the baby.
These bottles are ideal for combination feeding and self sterilise in the microwave, doing away with the need for a huge sterilising machine. The bottom comes off for easy cleaning and the parts can then be stacked with the teat inside and popped in the microwave for 3 minutes. According to their website these bottles have a 94% acceptance rate. I have also used the MAM dummies for both babies.
I have owned 3 baby carriers including a fabric sling and this has been by far the best. Can be used from birth up to 20kg in 4 different positions. We used it with our first baby until about 15 months! It is really supportive on your back and easy to get on and off on your own (with a little practice). I found it especially useful when looking after a newborn and toddler on my own as I can pop her in the sling and have my hands free to chase after him!
I actually use the knock off Aldi version of this which I picked up for £4.99 but I can see the benefit of buying the real thing. I used it all the time in the first few weeks to ease engorgement and avoid wasting milk. I like that this one has a suction base and stopper as I had a few incidents where mine got knocked over and milk spilt everywhere.
More space efficient than a baby bath, the Angelcare Bath support has been especially useful when bathing our newborn and toddler together.