Ultimate Baby Essentials Checklist
Newborn Baby Essentials Checklist
With a new baby on the way, trying to anticipate everything you’ll need for the first few months of their life can be overwhelming. There’s a lot to stock up on when it comes to baby essentials – the first 3 months especially – but don’t worry, we’ve got you sorted!
Here’s our list of all the most important new baby essentials for the first 3 to 6 months – now get started on ticking off your newborn baby checklist, stat!
Whether you choose breast or bottle, there are a few feeding new baby essentials you’re going to want to stock up on before your newest family member arrives. Add any that apply to your newborn baby checklist and leave the rest.
These circles of absorbent material are placed between your breast and your bra to soak up any milk leaks, which new mums often experience (whether you’re breastfeeding or pumping. Choose from washable nursing pads and regular or ultra-thin disposable pads (or add both to your baby essentials list and have both on hand until you decide what works best for you).
If you plan to breastfeed or need to pump, a breast pump is an absolute must. An electric breast pump (either single breast pump or double breast pump) is the most efficient option, and you may also like to add a manual breast pump (great for on-the-go) to your shopping list.
Milk storage bags/bottles
Another of the new baby essentials for breastfeeding mamas is somewhere to keep your milk after expressing. Milk storage bags are an easy single-use way to store, freeze and reheat breast milk, or milk storage bottles are an eco-friendly reusable option.
Bottles & teats
Even if you plan to breastfeed, it’s a great idea to have both 180ml bottles and 250ml bottles on hand should you decide to supplement with formula or if you’re planning to pump and feed later. Grab around eight to 10 bottles, with small teats for newborns (up to three months).
It’s important to properly sterilise your bub’s feeding bottles hygienically to keep them healthy and safe. While there are several ways to do this, using a UV steriliser is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get the job done well. You can also use handy microwave steriliser bags (great for when you’re on the go).
Make sure you choose formula designed for newborns – the formula will change as they get older.
Bibs & burp cloths
Babies are not known for being tidy eaters! Add four to eight bibs to your baby essentials shopping list and the same number of burp cloths.
The bras you bought for pregnancy will probably serve you well, but if not, pick up three maternity bras (one to wear, one in the wash, one for tomorrow!) to make nursing easier.
You might be tempted to stock up on millions of nappies to prepare for your new bub’s arrival but hold up. Your newborn will grow – fast! – so you don’t want to overdo it too early on and be left with boxes of nappies that don’t fit. If you’re planning to use disposable nappies, go for one or two boxes max to start. Using cloth nappies? Get yourself two dozen.
It might take a couple of tries before you find the one that’s right for your baby’s delicate skin – add a couple of tubes to your newborn baby checklist.
Decking out your little one’s room can be a lot of fun. But it’s not all wall decals and pastel furnishings! There are a few items that fall under the ‘need’ rather than ‘want’ category, but once they’re ticked off your list, it’s time to get decorating!
This is the ultimate of baby essentials! (After all, your little one will spend 65 per cent of their time sleeping.) The safest place for baby to sleep from day one is in a cot. You’ll want to get one that complies with AS/NZA mandatory standards. While bassinets and Moses baskets look great, they don’t have to adhere to any safety regulations.
Another of your new baby essentials, the mattress you choose should be clean, firm and flat (not raised or at an angle) and ought to fit snugly inside the cot.
Fitted cot sheets
It’s a good idea to have three fitted sheets – one in use, one in the wash and one spare in case of accidents during the night.
Baby sleeping bags and sleepsuits are a must to keep your little one safe and snuggly as they nod off to dreamland. They can help babies feel comforted, stop newborns from accidentally scratching themselves as they snooze and keep them warm without additional potentially hazardous blankets and bedding. Add two to three to your newborn baby checklist.
This one’s for you, mama! Whether you choose a traditional rocking chair or just something plush and super comfortable, get yourself a cosy space to sit while nursing.
Far more than the walkie-talkie-esque baby monitors of days past, the modern-day baby monitors make keeping tabs on your sleeping babe a breeze thanks to video capabilities. Before you purchase yours, check the range is large enough for your home and that the frequency is different to any electrical appliances (eg. cordless phones) to avoid a dodgy connection.
Nappy changing table
If you’re not keen on a purpose-built nappy changing table, a changing pad atop a sturdy dresser or chest of drawers works just as well. Contoured changing pads help keep baby safe during nappy changes by stopping them from rolling – vital for your newborn baby checklist.
Okay, so while you can technically just chuck dirty nappies out with the regular rubbish, a nappy bin is a great idea for making clean-up quick, easy and – dare we say it – less stinky. An optional but advised addition to your newborn baby checklist!
Add at least three baby wraps to your baby essentials list. Not just for swaddling, they also come in handy for breastfeeding, throwing over a shoulder during burping, covering bub’s face from the sun in the pram and much more.
Baby gym, swing or bouncer
Choose a portable option so you can move it to whichever room of the house you’re in (and can easily take it with you if you go out).
Okay, this is the fun part – filling up baby’s new wardrobe! But while cute fits and tiny versions of your favourite Nike sneakers might top your shopping list, they technically aren’t newborn baby essentials… sorry! It doesn’t mean you can’t buy them – just be sure to pick up the items on this baby essentials list first!
We recommend starting with six to eight onesies (also known as bodysuits) and choosing styles that clip together at the crotch – they’re easier to deal with during nappy changes!
These baby essentials are great for layering in the colder months and can be worn solo as a comfy, cute top when it’s warmer. Add six to your cart for a start – you’ll need to pick up more as bub gets bigger, of course.
Like a onesie with long arms and legs, these all-in-ones are great for daytime or to wear as pyjamas. Pick up four to eight of these new baby essentials and go for options with press studs that go all the way down the inside of the legs to make nappy changing easier.
These will stop bub accidentally scratching themselves while they get used to their hands (and also keep their little hands warm). Grab one to two pairs.
Beanies & hats
Choose a soft, washable broad-brimmed hat for a summer baby or a couple of soft cotton beanie-style hats that cover the ears for a winter baby.
Socks & booties
Add seven pairs of socks or cotton booties to your newborn baby checklist – one for each day of the week – to keep their tiny tootsies warm. (Tip: pick one colour so you can pair up odd socks as you lose some. And you will lose some!)
Buttons and press studs are your friends here – much easier than pulling jumpers you’re your new baby’s head. Pick cardigans, jackets and jumpers that can comfortably fit an additional layer or two underneath, and avoid anything with ties, which are a choking hazard. Grab two or three cold-day options.
We’re not done yet! Bath time with baby can be a beautiful bonding experience, but there are a few things you’ll need to get them clean safely and effectively.
A baby bathtub will help safely support your newborn as you give them a wash. There are options that set up in the kitchen sink or can be sat on the kitchen counter so you don’t need to bend over an adult-sized tub.
Choose unscented natural shampoo, conditioner and body lotion (if desired) that’s specially designed for bubs’ sensitive skin.
Hooded baby towels
Consider getting at least two, one in use and one in the wash.
Again, have at least two on your baby essentials shopping list so that while one’s in use, the other can be in the wash.
Whether you’re taking your newborn home from the hospital, out to meet the grandparents or for their first trip to a café, there are a few new baby essentials to pick up.
When choosing your baby capsule or car seat, be sure it meets Australian safety standards and legislation and have it professionally fitted. Safety is at the very top of your newborn baby checklist!
There are so many prams on the market it can be hard to know just which one is right for you. Head to a baby store, if you can, to test out a few different options before putting down money for what can be an expensive item on your baby essentials list. Above all, make sure it’s easy to open and fold away – and that it will fit in your car boot.
Pockets, pockets, pockets! Choose a bag that has plenty of internal pockets, is big enough to hold everything you need but small enough for you to carry comfortably. Bonus points for a bag with a foldable change mat included.
Portable changing mat
If your nappy bag doesn’t have one included, this is a very handy thing to take with you when you head out in case your little one needs a change on the go.
Of course, there are a few additional baby essentials to put on your shopping list in case of emergencies.
Baby first aid kit
You can buy these ready to go or build your own. You’ll want to include baby paracetamol, a digital thermometer, cotton wool balls and tips, baby nail clippers and a nasal aspirator.