This post includes a long list of Baby Registry Must-Haves based on the many recommendations I have received from good friends and current moms. Keep in mind that I am writing this *BEFORE* baby arrives (around 29-30 weeks) and I will most likely update after baby arrives with the things that we have/haven’t used or loved, or additional items that we found to be essential, etc.
I am not saying that any of these items are the “best” or what YOU need, but a lot of them are things I chose specifically because someone I trusted recommended them to me. For items we have already purchased, I’m not really looking for advice or having people talk me out of them LOL. Thank you in advance for letting us figure it out as we go. ; )
There are SOOOO many options out there for baby items, and the prices vary significantly, so ultimately you have to do what you feel is best for you and what is realistic for your budget as well. I hope this post at least helps provide direction for different items you may have been considering for your babe on the way.
advice for first-time-moms
It can be very overwhelming to be pregnant with your first baby. Everyone has a LOT of opinions and advice to give, mostly well-meaning, but that doesn’t make it feel any less overwhelming. All I know is this: my baby was made for us, and us for him. We will figure it ALL out together, and it’s going to be okay. We don’t need all of the fanciest items in the world in order to have a happy and healthy baby. (Hopefully this is a helpful reminder to some of my fellow first-time-mommas out there, too.)
Also, from what I hear, literally every baby is different. Some love certain swaddles and swings, while others may hate those same things. I’m trying to go in without a lot of specific expectations (regarding the birth process, breastfeeding, postpartum, etc.), because I know a lot of it will be out of my control and subject to change. You can only “plan” for these things to an extent.
No matter what, it’s going to be great. It’s going to be exhausting, and challenging, and defeating at times. But I have no doubt it will be 1000% worth it. Ethan and I are so excited to begin this next chapter together.
Okay, let’s get to the reason you’re here. These are listed in no particular order, and I have provided direct links to each item.
Disclosure: these are commissionable links. Thanks for supporting my small biz & using my links!
HALO BASSINEST + EXTRA BASSINET SHEETS
The Halo Bassinet was highly recommended to us by several friends and we actually had some sweet friends pitch in together to gift it to us. Rhett will be sleeping in our room for the first several months in the bassinet and we needed something that was fairly compact, as we don’t have a ton of extra space in our master bedroom.
My brother and SIL also just had my nephew and recommended having SEVERAL extra bassinet sheets on hand, as they went through their only 2 sets the first night. ; ) So planning to have at least like, five extras on hand – haha!
HALO BASSINET LINKED HERE — there are several different kinds/versions so you can browse through and see which option you want. Some swivel/have other setting options.
This was a major recommendation as well. Some people like it for breastfeeding, while most people just use it as a place to set the baby when they need hands-free for a second (but not leaving unsupervised of course). I’m including what others have suggested for breastfeeding later.
BOPPY LOUNGER COVERS — several different options linked under “baby items”
There are a lot of opinions on these as well. Some people say they have just used their Boppy Lounger and not needed anything else. Some use these other loungers as well and enjoy them for different purposes like tummy time, etc.
I’ve heard pros & cons of both, and thought DockATot was more popular, but I recently did a poll on my stories and a lot of people actually said they preferred the Snuggle Me Organic and it’s about half the price! However some said the DockATot “grows with them” more and then Snuggle Me doesn’t last as long. Of course this totally depends on the size of your babe and which size you buy. Linking both if you want to check them out. Snuggle Me apparently does “Imperfect” sales every Thursday where you can get them for amazing prices.
Again, this is highly individual. A lot of people have their own preferences and I’ve heard about 100 times that “every baby is different”. Some like their arms free, some don’t. Some hate being swaddled at all. You truly never know what your baby is going to prefer until they are Earth side lol. But here are the most popular ones that have been recommended to me, with Ollie probably being the #1, as well as the most expensive — go figure.
HALO SLEEP SACK — arms free option
ADEN + ANAIS SWADDLES — won’t keep them as tightly wrapped as other options, but I’ve heard a lot of great things about this brand and got some of these as gifts
ZIPPER FOOTIE PAJAMAS — you can obviously find these anywhere and they are super affordable, but most people suggest zipper footie pajamas because they are so quick and easy to take on and off for diaper changes, etc.
PACK AND PLAY / PLAYARD ORGANIZER
Again, tons of options here, but this is the one we went with. It is quick and easy to set up and break down, has a bassinet option, will grow with him and also isn’t a major eye sore, since it will likely be in our living room for the rest of time LOL.
We didn’t get one that has a little changing station on top because nursery is on our main level and we have a changing table in there, so we can easily take him there for changes if needed. If yours is on a different floor it might be nice to have that option for easier access.
HAAKAA SILICONE BREAST PUMP
This was probably the #1 most recommended thing since I am planning/hoping to be able to breastfeed! It’s also super affordable which is also a win. A lot of people suggested packing this in my hospital bag also to help catch let down so it’s already packed up!
There are lots of breast bumps out there but after doing lots of research, talking with friends and weighing out my options, I went with the Elvie. It is definitely on the pricier side, but my employer does cover a good chunk of it, so definitely look into your insurance and what is covered for you. I thought the convenience of it would be worth it, so we will see! My SIL is using this also with my newborn nephew and she has loved it already. It does go on sale occasionally so keep your eyes peeled for that.
Otherwise I have heard good things about the Spectra.
MY BREST FRIEND
I know several people who love this for breastfeeding because it wraps behind your back and provides a little more support.
I hear that you need about 1 million burp cloths so… here ya go. 😉 These have been recommended by several of my friends and they are super cheap too. I will probably get like 6 packs of these since I know we will go through them quickly and be doing laundry a lot. : )
This is another thing that will probably depend on your baby, but I’ve had a ton of people suggest Dr. Brown’s bottles above all others, so that’s what we are going to try! We will see if he likes them or not. : ) They have several different nipple sizes/options so that is helpful too.
BOTTLE DRYING RACK / “GRASS”
Countertop drying rack that holds all of your freshly washed bottles, pacifiers and other accessories. They have them in bright green but I got a gray one, and they also have white! If you want it to blend in with your kitchen a little more. ; )
This is obviously thinking ahead, but once you start feeding the babe and they can sit up, I know this is a great option that a lot of people love. My SIL and brother used this for my niece and loved it. Unfortunately I don’t think it’ll work for my kitchen table, which I’m bummed about, but wanted to share it in case it’ll work for yours!
Again… thinking ahead, but will be getting these for sure when it’s time to start feeding.
We didn’t want a baby monitor that used WiFi because a) our internet is unfortunately unreliable, and b) some people say that people can hack into your WiFi and look at your monitor which I’m sure is rare BUT, anyway. We went with a non-WiFi option. We were debating between the Infant Optics and Vava and ultimately chose Vava. They both have amazing reviews and are very similar. Vava has a slightly bigger screen and I had multiple people message me saying they really loved theirs and preferred it, so I just made the executive decision and chose it!
I know this hasn’t been everyone’s experience, but it took us about 7 weeks to get our recliner in, so I would suggest looking into this early and ordering early. Once I got to the third trimester I was very anxious to have things done and was annoyed this took so long haha. But I love the one we chose! Super comfy and I have a friend who has had hers over a year and said so far it has held up great. We chose the fabric color “cloud” and also got their Guardian furniture protection spray which has a 3 year warranty just for peace of mind.
We went with the Ubbi diaper pail based on recommendations from friends. I like the look of it and it has good reviews.
We got our furniture set from Target and are really happy with it. I’ve heard from many of my IG followers that they have the same crib/dresser and have loved them and they’ve been durable! They are also pretty affordable so that’s always a win, too.
HATCH NOISE MACHINE
This was highly recommended so it was one of the first items on my registry! It connects to an app on your phone and seems pretty nifty! It is a noise machine and also a night light.
I saw a lot of things suggesting getting a humidifier so I put it on the registry, and honestly we have been using it in our bedroom lately and I feel like it has been helping me, haha. So either way, you need a humidifier apparently! Lol. Linking the one we got here which also doubles as a night light and a diffuser.
DIAPERING / HEALTH ESSENTIALS
owlet smart sock
Full disclosure — I definitely don’t think this is “essential” and it is something that we haven’t even decided if we want ourselves yet. I’ve heard a lot of pros and cons about it and just don’t know if it would cause more or less stress for me. But either way, it’s on sale right now, so I wanted to throw it in here for anyone who has had their eye on it.
So far we have just gotten this more affordable Amazon diaper bag option, although I am still eyeing some cute leather bags that are way more expensive. I’ve actually had several girls tell me that they prefer this Amazon bag over their expensive bag because it’s way more functional with all the different compartments! And you can’t beat the price.
DIAPER CADDY / ORGANIZERS FOR VARIOUS ROOMS IN HOUSE
Saw my friend @hillarymichelleblog with this diaper organizer and added it to my registry! It’s cute but also very functional. I hear that we will basically want a diaper station in every room of the house, and this one is portable, so that’s a win!
DIAPERS AND WIPES – TBD ON OUR PREFERRED KINDS
BABY BATH TUB
Nose and ear cleaner
I know there are syringes and multiple options to use here. One of my friends suggested this and said she found it to work better, so I’m going to give it a try!
GAS PRODUCTS, etc.
Linking a few products below that friends have said have been life savers for their babies. Not sure if they are things we will need or not, but I’m not mad about having them on hand in case!!
STROLLER AND CAR SEAT
We wrestled with this for a while but ultimately landed on Baby Jogger because we have multiple family members who have and LOVE them and say they have been so incredibly durable over the years. I heard the same from many of my followers and after talking to the very knowledgeable stroller guy at Buy Buy Baby, I was sold! I am pleased with this decision.
Keep in mind that you will have to buy a second base if you want one in your spouse’s car also.
PORTABLE NOISE MACHINE
Another VERY popular recommendation. Many also recommended packing this in the hospital bag, but also great for traveling/using on the stroller, etc. This one doesn’t require batteries — it charges with a USB.
PORTABLE FAN FOR STROLLER
Another big recommendation. Since our babe is coming in January, probably won’t need it the first few months. ; )
CAR SEAT COVERS
These were also big recommendations. The Milk Snob ones recommended for anytime, but a ton of people suggested these fleece ones for winter babies.
TOYS / DEVELOPMENT
LOVEVERY PLAY GYM
The Lovevery play gym is a “stage-based play gym for baby’s developing brain”. It’s award-winning and includes different components and activities to help with their development in many ways. I can’t wait to see Rhett use it!!! I know a ton of people who have this play gym and their little ones love it.
This piano gym has also come highly recommended from multiple people! We got this at one of our showers and I think it’ll be nice to have this as an option too and get him excited about the different sounds and music, etc.!
ALL OF THE BOOKS
I’m not even going to link books because there are hundreds out there! But books are so important for their development and I can’t wait to start reading to Rhett from day one!
I hope this list of Baby Registry Must-Haves + some tips sprinkled in was helpful for any other mamas-to-be out there! Like I said, I will definitely be sure to update it as needed after baby is here and we have learned a little more about what we do and do not need! : )
Thank you for reading!