Our Favorite Baby Gear: Newborn Edition

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Our Favorite Newborn Baby Gear

baby clothes

Wading through the “must have” lists when making a baby registry is a pregnancy rite of passage. There are so many baby accoutrements that it can feel crazy overwhelming. And new parents will pretty much take any advice they can get on what is really a necessity and what can stay on the Babies R Us store shelves.

Now that I’m a seasoned parent (ha!), I thought I might share a few of the items that we have absolutely loved over the past three months. You really have no idea what you’re going to need/like/use until you’re in the thick of things, so this list actually includes lots of items that were never on our registry, and we purchased when we realized we had a need. My recommendation? Get Amazon Prime now and download the app to your phone—you’ll thank me later when you’re ordering something you didn’t know you desperately needed at 3am.

The crazy thing about babies is they’re all different (go figure), so what’s been a must for us might be something to skip for the next set of parents. But hopefully this list will still help!

Note: this post contains affiliate links—meaning I get a small kick-back from any purchases you make after clicking on my links at no additional cost to you. All of these items are things that we use and love every single day. Thanks for your support!

[one_third]LifeFactory Bottles[/one_third]

LifeFactory Glass Bottles

Honestly, we ended up registering for these bottles mostly because the come in pretty colors! I’m so glad we picked these though because they are so solid and strong. I’ve dropped them multiple times on our hardwood floors without breaking. They also sell caps to make them into sippy cups and water bottles later. The one caveat is the nipples are way too fast of a flow for most breastfed babies, so we use Dr. Brown’s Preemie Nipples with our LifeFactory bottles and rings. Works perfectly!

[one_third]My Brest Friend Pillow[/one_third]

My Brest Friend Pillow

I didn’t originally own one of these, but my Lactation Consultant taught me how to get positioned and comfortable using a MBF nursing pillow, and from that moment on, I was sold. It was the best $35 we’ve ever spent. I still use the pillow for many nursing sessions, but don’t rely on it anymore—I can nurse pretty much anywhere—but in those first few weeks, it was a life saver. I love it because if you position it right, you can do totally hands-free nursing with this pillow.

[one_third]Me Carrier[/one_third]

Olives & Applesauce Carrier

We’re a babywearing family, and I’m a bit of a baby carrier collector. I have seven different carriers, and they all have their merits, but the O&A carrier is my absolute favorite! Not only is it adorable and comfortable, but it’s also the only one of my carriers that I can easily and discreetly nurse in. I’ve been told that as JuneBug gets older, nursing will become easier in some of my other carriers (like my ring sling), but for now, I love my O&A!

[one_third]Boba 3G Carrier[/one_third]

Boba Carrier

This is Craig’s favorite carrier. It’s comfortable, and very easy to put on and take off. It so easy to use, that we often will transfer a sleeping baby from the car seat or my arms into the carrier without her noticing. Craig absolutely loves this carrier, but I have one major issue with it—it’s difficult for me to nurse in. It requires the adjustment of four different straps to get her into nursing position, and even then, it isn’t very comfortable. Obviously, this isn’t a problem for Daddy!

[one_third]Munchkin Warm Glow Wipe Warmer[/one_third]

Munchkin Warm Glow Wipe Warmer

When I was putting together our registry, I thought people who bought wipe warmers were crazy. My girl didn’t need warm bum cleaners! And then she made her arrival, and we found out that cold wipes make for a seriously unhappy JuneBug. They would turn middle of the night diapers changes from a minor inconvenience to an all-out scream fest. The wipe warmer solved all of our diaper change issues. We love it! And I’ll never ever judge a wipe warming mother again.

[one_third]Diapers[/one_third]

BumGenius Freetime Diapers

A lot of cloth diapering families have an extensive stash of various types of diapers, but we chanced it and bought 24 BumGenius Freetime all-in-one diapers while I was pregnant, and I’m so thankful they’ve worked out beautifully for us. I’ve heard horror stories about newborn poopsplosions, and we’ve never had an issue with that! We’ve had a few leaks if she sleeps in late and hasn’t had a diaper change all night, but other than that, we’ve never had any issues.

[one_third]PlanetWise Hanging Wet Bag[/one_third]

PlanetWise Wet Bags

We skipped the diaper pail and instead just installed a hook onto the side of our changing table to hold a hanging wet bag, and it’s been working perfectly. We really like our PlanetWise wet bags! We have two of the hanging ones, one medium one for the diaper bag, and one small one to hold wipes in the diaper bag.

[one_third]June Bug[/one_third]

Boppy Newborn Lounger

Baby Girl hates this thing now because it’s so reclined, and she’s a big girl who wants to sit up, but during the first two months or so, we used it constantly! It really was nice to have a soft, cozy, and safe place to put her that was easily portable. She loved lounging around on it outside on the front porch. My one issue with it: the fabric attracts pet fur like CRAZY. We tried to keep it clean, but eventually resigned that it was a losing battle.

[one_third]The Pout Pout Fish[/one_third]

The Pout-Pout Fish

Best. Book. Ever. This book is just so darn fun. We love reading this one! Other books we love: Giraffes Can’t Dance, The Little Blue Truck, and The Pokey Little Puppy. Admittedly, Baby Girl is going through a “reading strike” right now (she cries when we read to her!), but hopefully that’ll end soon and we can get back to our favorites.

[one_third]Mortimer the Moose[/one_third]

Mortimer the Moose

Baby Girl is just starting to get really interested in toys, and she started off showing her interest with this guy. She loves the fun patterns on the bottom of his feet. She also loves just staring at his face and feeling all the different textures with her fingers. (Edit to add: I JUST saw that Moritmer is on sale on Zulily today! His sister Muffin is also there.)

[one_third]Boobease Nipple Balm[/one_third]

Boobease Nipple Balm

“They” say breastfeeding shouldn’t hurt. But the truth is, it’s a learned skill (for both you and your baby), and it does hurt until you learn how to do it properly. Eventually, you’ll get the hang of it and it won’t hurt anymore, but at the beginning? Yowzers. Buy two pots of this stuff. Put one next to your nursing station and one in your diaper bag. Slather it on after every feeding. It’s not sticky, it’s all natural, and it’s super healing and moisturizing.

[one_third]Zebi Blanket[/one_third]

Zebi Organic Muslin Swaddle Blankets

We don’t swaddle, but we do use this blanket all the time! We have one muslin blanket by Zebi, and a whole pack of the Aden & Anais blankets that show up on every “must register for” list, and I have to say, we prefer the Zebi blanket. The Zebi blankets are more pricey, but they are also a ton softer and a lot bigger. I wish we had more than just one!

[one_third]Bravado Nursing Bra[/one_third]

Bravado Seamless Nursing Bra

A good nursing bra is a must, and I’m so happy I went with these from Bravado. They are honestly more expensive than any bra I’ve ever owned before, but they are worth the cash. They are supportive, but have no underwire (vital for avoiding plugged milk ducts), and are nice and smooth and seamless, and the do a good job of flexing with an ever-changing cup-size. Highly recommended!

[one_third]Brica Carseat Mirror[/one_third]

Brica Baby In-Sight Mirror

We originally didn’t have a mirror in the car, but the first time I tried riding in the front seat, I quickly realized we couldn’t see Baby Girl because she was rear-facing, and I kinda freaked out! We immediately ran out and bought this mirror, and attached it to the headrest. It’s nice because the mirror is fish-eye and large enough that you can see her whole body from both the driver’s and passenger’s seats. She also loves looking at her pretty little face in it!

[one_third]Boon Lawn[/one_third]

Boon Lawn Bottle Drying Rack

I originally thought I’d just wash bottles in the dishwasher, but after our first bottle load, we realized there were tiny specs of food on the bottles—even though we didn’t wash any other dishes with them. And that was the end of that! We immediately ordered this bottle rack, plus the tree and flower accessories so we could hand-wash bottles, and it’s worked perfectly for us. And it’s adorable! I love adorable things.

[one_third]OXO Tot Bottle Brush[/one_third]

OXO Tot Bottle Brush

I spent an embarrassing amount of time reading bottle brush reviews and asking for recommendations on social media. In the end I took a chance and ordered this one, and it works perfectly. It cleans well, without damaging our bottles or my pump parts, and I love that it has a nipple cleaner and a stand.

Seasoned parents: chime in in the comments with your must-have baby gear items! Help other parents-to-be create their registries.

Cassie is the founder and CEO of Wholefully. She's a home cook and wellness junkie with a love of all things healthy living. She lives on a small hobby farm in Southern Indiana with her husband, daughter, two dogs, two cats, and 15 chickens.

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21 Responses
  1. Wetbags a great, even for non-cloth diapering parents! We have used one for the past 4 years, and never cloth diapered. They are great for wet clothes (or poop-splosion clothes) and tossing into your diaper bag, or after swimming, to put wet clothes in. We currently use one because we are post-diaper bag stage but still need something to carry diapers, wipes and a change of clothes/undies for the potty-trained kid. It’s easy to toss what I need in that bag and put it in my purse.

    Now you’re going to be heading into the next stage of baby items! Exciting!

  2. Lo the Phoenix (@LoPhoenix)

    I don’t have kids, but after a glowing rec from one mom, the boppy lounger is my go-to baby shower gift. Everyone I’ve given one to has loved it and said it was a life saver in the beginning.

  3. Sarah

    So glad the diapers/wet bags are working out for you! We kept one wet bag for ourselves and we use it for swimming – I can stuff all our swimsuits in it and keep them separate from everything else.

    One of the best things we have is the Dohm white noise machine. Not that J needs it, but it’s nice to have that in her room and let us continue the rest of our evening at a regular volume. It’s also easily portable and we have taken it to hotels to put by her crib and it helps to block out all kinds of noises.

    We handwashed our bottles too and have the grass/flower setup. It’s continued to work now that we’ve moved on to sippy cups!

    1. Jen in SC

      YES to the Dohm white noise machines! We have 2 of them in our house (grown ups like them too, ha) and should get more. They are great and you can customize the sound/volume (to a degree). Love them!

  4. TeresaM

    Totally agree with so many of these! My two year old still uses the Freetimes, except at night. We loved our boppy lounger too – so helpful for the first few months!

  5. Jillian

    oh my gosh, the boon lawn (and assorted other parts) is our favorite, too! we bought it because it was so cute but it has been a lifesaver! plus we get so many comments on it when people come to visit — who doesn’t like a whole lawn on their kitchen counter? 🙂

  6. We had a boppy lounger when our daughter was an infant but we sold all of our baby things when we moved cross country so we didn’t have anything when my son was born. I debated getting the lounger again and almost settled on not getting it until my husband convinced me we needed to and I have to say he was right it has been a life saver.

  7. Great list! Sitting here nursing our second and wearing that same bra, reminds me I need another, but yes, expensive, ack. Happily, it seems to be lasting well. 🙂 I also love the baby mirror for the car(need another, since they’re both rear-facing still). I have my fingers tightly crossed to find a Boba or similar for a good price at our local baby consignment sale next month, since I know others who love them.
    One thing we really like having is a big exercise/birth ball to bounce babies on – it’s a tiny bit less exhausting to bounce on the ball with a wailing baby than to be pacing the floor(burps suck!).
    Looks like you’re getting a good hang of your parenting skills, yay you! 🙂

  8. Tara

    The same thing happened to us with the wipe warmer! I thought it was the silliest thing, until my baby cried like crazy. We learned our lesson quick and still use it today. I love the MBF too! It was with me everywhere I went in the house.

  9. Anita

    I’m on the other side of parenting–my youngest just turned 20–but honestly, this post was overwhelming to me–SO MUCH STUFF!!! My daughter just spent a yr in Kenya and when she came back, kept commenting on all the things parents in the U S buy for their babies!! She thinks when she has a baby- she will just need a kanga–a big scarf rectangle of fabric that is used as a baby carrier, blanket, wipe cloth, laundry holder and much more. It will be interesting to see if she changes her mind when the time comes

  10. Rashada

    As a parent of 3 I love your list. We have so much unnecessary stuff including a number of large things like swings and such. I think however, if I had really learned about babywearing I would have completely skipped those things.

    I have found that wearing has been a life saver for me with 3 kids and it’s exciting to see you’ve already found the love. You’ve got time yet, but I think the 3 of you might really enjoy wearing her on your back (in your buckle carriers she needs to be sitting on her own for safety concerns).
    If you’re interested I can give you some tutorial/safety links and see if I can help you find a babywearing group in your area for some experienced assistance.

    I also wanted to cloth diaper, but my husband is a bit of a germaphobe and didn’t want diapers in our washing machine. Which means it didn’t happen. Alas.

    The boppy/brestfriend pillow thing is really funny to me. With my first I loved the boppy, with my second my brestfriend was what I used, and come the third I hated them both.

    I’m going to look into the Bravado bra. I’m almost 17 months into nursing my son, he shows no signs of selfweaning anytime soon, and my current bras are all starting to die. I’m hoping that perhaps adding one new one will help the others survive until we’re done.

    1. Cassie

      I can’t wait until she’s big enough to do back carries! And I’m a member of our local babywearing group. It’s an awesome resource! 🙂 Thanks.

      1. Rashada

        Yay! I’m glad you’ve got a local group!
        I’m a Volunteer Babywearing Educator with Babywearing International (which is why I’m practically rabid about sharing info about wearing) so I’m all about safe and educated wearing.
        What is the name of your local group? I like learning about other active babywearing groups.

  11. Sherry

    Love your blog, even though my ‘baby’ is 30. My kids and my grandchildren’s favorite author was Sandra Boynton. Her stories read like poetry. The pictures are simple and bright. Do check her out.

  12. After having 4 children I have a number of ‘must haves’ (I’m working on a master list for my blog right now!). A bouncy chair, Sleepy wrap, Ergo, Phil & Teds stroller, Sandy’s Cloth Diapers and Thirsties covers, Car Seat Baby CD (by Baby Bunny) and Kushies burb pads are a few of the items I always recommend.

  13. Stephani

    As a 2 time momma, I just have to say most of these things are completely uneccesary! And very expensive. A cold wipe is easily warmed your hand in seconds. I do agree, though, that mortimer the moose is awesome and a baby carrier really is helpful-especially the second time around!

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