Everyone has an opinion when it comes to what you actually need when you have a baby. From cots to Moses Baskets to co-sleeper cots and beyond, not only are there several interpretations of almost every possible 'essential' there's hundreds of products on the market all promising to be best for your baby. So where do you start?
We've spoken to mums, midwives and maternity nurses to put together the ultimate essentials list for newborns. Split into clothing, travelling, sleeping and feeding (and more) these are the things you need to make those first few weeks as easy as possible.
Don't forget that once you've done your own edit of our list (every mum is different!) it could be worth giving your essentials list to friends and family to help out with some of the cost.
Michelle Kyles from The Baby Show says: "Don’t buy everything you need. You will be given so much in terms of gifts but also friends and family will be willing to give you their old baby clothes, especially new born sizes to the first 6 months, as babies wear clothes for such little time they will often be as good as new."
So whether you're gathering, shopping, borrowing or bargaining, these are the newborn essentials you should have on your radar.
*We've bolded the ones that Michelle says you absolutely cannot live without!
6 Baby socks
2 Cotton hats
1 Pack of scratch mitts
1 Bodysuit for outdoors
Tip: Go for short sleeved, 100% cotton vests for newborns and always wash all clothes with non-bio washing powder before the first wear.
First Aid essentials
1 Moses Basket
1 Cot with new mattress
2 Mattress savers
4 Fitted cotton sheets
4 Swaddling blankets or a Grobag
24-30 Muslin squares
1 Wool blanket
4 Cellular Blankets
8 Bottles (2 small and 6 big)
Formula measurer containers
Black out blinds
Out & About
1 Changing bag containing:
Change of clothing
1 Padded changing mat
Changing bag (see above)
Lightweight Travel Cot
4 Hooded bath towels
1 plastic moulded baby seat for the bath
Newborn bath liquid (Weleda and Simple and Mustela do good ones)
4 Wash cloths
Non Bio Washing Powder (for baby's clothes)
Tip: It's not necessary to get a baby bath so save yourself some pennies!
Nice Extras You Might Want To Splash Out On
Play mat or baby gym
Mobile for cot
Things Mum Will Need
Disposable maternity knickers
Check out our gallery of baby essentials
Michelle Kyle Top Tips For New Mums To Be
1. Make a list of the baby essentials you need, then ask advice or do your research. There will be items you simply don’t need or use for such a short period of time that it is worth trying to borrow them or finding them second hand in charity shops.
2. Find fabulous free clubs and activities – there are many free activities such as mummy meet ups, baby massage and baby rhyme time singing groups- ask at the local church, children’s centre or check out your local council for options in your area. The park and playground is free and babies and children alike love the swings!
3. Think about childcare early – hiring your own Mary Poppins can do serious damage to your bank balance but sharing is all the rage and Nanny shares are on the rise. Websites like Nannyshare.co.uk allows you to share the cost of a nanny by finding a match with a local family.
4. Find out about discounts – there are discount vouchers to be found online or visit events and local fairs for exclusive offers, for example at The Baby Show we have over 200 exhibitors where you can compare before you buy and get your hands on lots of exclusive money saving offers. The next show is in Birmingham in May from 15th-17th and is well worth a visit.
5. Have a clear out and de-clutter your home before baby arrives – throw out or sell unwanted items and create space for your new baby, also think about baby items that are clever multi use or space saving.
6. Have a working parents ‘SOS' stored in your mobile - family friendly' resources that can help such as a nationwide emergency childcare service emergencychildcare.co.uk which finds a nanny, mother's help or place at a local nursery in as little as an hour's notice.
You might also like: