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51 baby essentials – a checklist of products they really need

51 baby essentials – a checklist of products they really need

When it comes to material needs, babies are the divas of their households — always in need of more things, and sometimes the latest things too. Clothes, pricey equipment, daily supplies…new parents stock up, friends bring gifts — but is it all necessary? We asked our community of parents and influencers to reveal the top baby essentials that new parents and babies really need (and those they don’t need too!). We’ve compiled them into a this newborn baby checklist.

When you go shopping, take along this list from in-the-know parent bloggers of what babies really need:

What baby essentials to buy while pregnant

  1. Buy wipes, baby soap, shampoo while pregnant. You’ll be glad you did. @missielizzieb
  2. Make sure that you have plenty of washing powder/fabric conditioner and have enough baby clothes for accidents! @charliechinuk
  3. Stockpile toilet roll and toothpaste too. I HATE being without those products. @Maris_world
  4. Invest in a nightlight so you don’t have to turn on lights during nighttime feeds & can keep little ones settled. @mummy_blogger
  5. Really nice hand lotion is a great gift for new parents, because they’re washing hands so often. @jhowze
  6. Cotton wool balls, especially if you don’t like wipes. @kateonthinice
  7. You can never, ever have enough bibs. @VBinCatalunya
  8. Scratch mittens are a must. Babies’ nails grow so quickly and they can easily scratch you or themselves @BritMums
  9. If recovering from C-section, a C-section belt can give good support in the early days. Buy AHEAD of time & pack in hospital bag. @cafebebe
  10. Get a steriliser and bottles – you may not be able to breastfeed and when you’re exhausted they will be there for you. @maris_world
  11. A quality breast pump is not only helpful for feeding baby. It also means you can leave someone else in charge of feedings at night or if you need to leave baby with someone else.
baby getting temperature taken with a digital ear thermometer on BritMums

Baby travel essentials list

  1. A huge baby essential when out & about is the right changing bag FOR YOU, the design that works for you. @feistytapas
  2. Muslin squares are a must, especially if you’re breastfeeding in public and want to be discreet. @MrsSmidge
  3. I think I bought about 18 strollers before I figured out which one was the best! @AModernMother (Pssst – check out our guide on How to buy the best lightweight stroller.)
  4. When choosing a buggy, rear facing is REALLY important, helps with your baby’s communication development. @GKMummy
  5. Insulated bottle bags. I was keeping myself tied to the house until I found how useful these are! @MrMrsReed
  6. A travel steriliser for your baby’s dummy means you don’t have to carry half a dozen in case they drop them @JHowze (We reviewed the Munchkin 59s Mini Steriliser. Read the review to see how it works on the go!)
  7. Invest in a well-designed sling, comfortable for baby and YOU @EmmaLouisePhoto

Essential kit for the nursery

  1. My babies all loved a cot mobile. They don’t have to be expensive. @Mummiafelice
  2. Buy a bedside lamp with a dimmer switch. @kirsty22xx
  3. Our digital thermometer was a godsend! @SPDinPregnancy
  4. Teething toys, soft blankets, sleep & smiles @JenniferTheBook
  5. Baby gro bags, sleep suits or sleeping bags are great for nighttime. Stops covers from being kicked off and keeps baby snuggly. Get good quality to withstand high washing temps. @hbee78
  6. We have a GroEgg thermometer [room thermometer and nightlight], which is fantastic @Bobbity666
  7. Those soft baby books that have textures, crinkly bits and things to feel. Babies also love to teeth on them and you just throw them in the wash! @AModernMother
  8. Babies & tots get *really snotty* so a nasal aspirator is a godsend @HousewivesInc
  9. Lots of spare sheets and bedding nearby. 3am nappy leaks are no fun but worse if you have to search out essentials to remake the bed or cot. @MrMrsReed
  10. If you bottle feed, don’t bother with bottle warmers, which take a decade to warm up. All you need is a jug and kettle. @Mummiafelice

Things baby will love

  1. Baby bouncers are great. Doesn’t have to be expensive, you can bounce it with your foot! @petitmew
  2. Vests and sleepsuits! Don’t worry about dressing a newborn in fancy mini outfits! @rachelgully
  3. We used a bath sponge for baby to lie on in the big bath, it was brilliant! @mummymummymum
  4. Best thing I bought was a teddy bear foam float for baby to lay on in the bath. Made bath time much easier @MrsSmidge
  5. A play mat, especially one with overhead mobile or toys that dangle from an arch are big fun! @BritMums
  6. Mine loved her sit-in walker (on wheels) when big enough, she was upright to see & free to whizz about @emymc
  7. My baby loved her ‘foot finders’ — those socks with little rattles on them that helps them learn where their feet are (and are cute besides!) @JHowze
  8. Clothes with poppers are essential. Don’t want to be messing with buttons with newborn @esthermate

Essentials for parents of newborns

  1. My Kindle has proved most useful in passing the time feeding in the small hours. @VBinCatalunya
  2. My slow cooker came into its own in the first few months. Throw it all in and dinner cooks itself in time. @Maris_world
  3. Don’t bother with expensive blender. Get a handheld blender to mush baby’s food @mummy_blogger
  4. Get a good set of storage containers to freeze baby food in advance @bumpPR

Essential tips for parents with new babies

  1. Get out everyday; even just a 20 min walk does both of you wonders. @sebsmummy
  2. Create a network of friends with slightly older children — very helpful for hand-me-down clothing. @liveotherwise
  3. Do not allow your other half to pack your hospital bag; you may end up with a Sainsburys carrier bag like I did with no baby essentials in! @mummy_blogger
  4. Keep spare nappies & wipes in car for those ‘forgot bag’ moments! @rachelgully
  5. Always put a spare outfit in your changing bagfor you and baby. You WILL end up needing it, lol. @emmajones84
  6. Make sure you think about seasons when buying baby clothes. @ChelseaMamma
  7. Remember that cheap isn’t always cheaper! We bought a high-end pram/buggy and cot. It lasted to toddlerhood, now passed on. @missielizzieb
  8. Get a white noise machine or app! Helps tired babies to settle & sleep @mrs_brewster
  9. Cook double meals on the lead up to due date and freeze half to use during first weeks. @Maris_world
  10. Have a freezer. Or actually, a filled freezer. It’s good to be prepared for when baby arrives! @Michelloui
  11. Olive oil is really brilliant for moisturising a baby’s skin. @pantswithnames

More advice for new parents


BritMums is the UK’s original collective of lifestyle bloggers and digital influencers, fueling the country’s most influential social content. We lead the online conversation with members who are parent social influencers creating content on topics ranging from food, parenting, travel, politics, style and more.


Tuesday 17th of January 2012

Brilliant tips, thank you for reminding me of them :)

Danny Maddocks

Tuesday 17th of January 2012

52. Record all your baby's big milestones throughout their first year with baby's First Calendar :)

watch a video demo at

A few people recommended it in the ##babyessentials Twitter party!!