With a long list of baby items to choose from when you’re expecting a new baby, it’s hard to know what is essential, helpful and worth spending the money on. We talked to Mykidstime mums to find out what they would recommend to other mums as their most useful baby items – and what they wouldn’t.
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When it comes to shopping for your new arrival, it is incredibly easy to get carried away with all the teeny tiny adorable clothes, the pretty nursery decor items and the latest gadgets and products. Many of these items, however, have a short lifespan or have just one very specific use that then takes up space when not in use.
Don’t miss this list of most useful baby items recommended by mums that are sure to make life easier, and take a look at our essential new baby checklist to help you get ready for your new arrival.
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Mums’ Most Useful Baby Items
Grobag baby sleeping bags are very popular with parents of babies and toddlers. No more dealing with blankets and swaddles that get stripped off, as the Grobag stays on and regulates your child’s temperature. Different tog warmth ratings mean you can have varied weights for the changing seasons.
“Grobags were definitely worth the investment, we couldn’t do without them.”
Pumping allows mums some flexibility when it comes to feeding and can also help with supply issues.
Several breast pumps in particular were mentioned by parents, including Haakaa, Medela and Elvie.
There are many baby monitors to choose from, ranging from basic noise/sound monitors to video monitors you can check via an app on your phone.
Most parents commented that they had chosen a video monitor for the added peace of mind that they could see their baby, without going in to possibly disturb him/her.
Chicco Next2Me Crib
The Chicco Next2Me side-sleeper crib received several votes from mums who found it invaluable for night feeds and middle of the night cries.
“The Next2Me Crib was definitely the best thing I ever got when breastfeeding, because I didn’t have to move to get the baby.”
Undoubtedly, nipple cream was a popular response from mums who had experience of breastfeeding.
“My Expert Midwife nipple cream was amazing for the first two weeks of breastfeeding. Lansinoh was recommended to me, but I couldn’t use it for the first weeks because it dragged on my skin.”
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Feeding pillows are great for supporting baby during feeding or just during cuddle time, particularly for C-section mums.
These firm cushions come in a C shape and fit around your body to raise baby up for feeding. Breastfeeding mums, in particular, find this useful as it can be moved to either the front or side to support various feeding positions.
“I could not do without the horseshoe feeding cushion that I received as a gift. It was key to establishing a comfortable breastfeeding journey for myself and my daughter.”
Fisher-Price Rainforest Jumperoo
The Fisher-Price Rainforest Jumperoo received multiple votes from parents, thanks to all the built-in sensory activities to keep babies busy. There’s lots to look at, touch and explore while they bounce and spin around to check out their environment.
Gentle Skincare Products
Product ranges from Weleda, Burt’s Bees and Aveeno were some of those mentioned by mums as being the most gentle for newborns.
Breastfeeding mums find nipple shields to be a real lifesaver, particularly in the early days as you and your baby get used to feeding.
These soft, thin silicone shields fit over the nipple during feeding to help minimise the discomfort caused by cracked or sore nipples.
The Groegg changes colour to let you know at a glance whether the temperature of a room is too low, too high or just right, helping you maintain a safe sleeping environment for your baby. As an added bonus it even works well as a gentle night light.
“I got one as a gift. I thought it was unnecessary at first, but the constant worry if baby is too hot or cold was gone with the Groegg.”
Baby Sling or Carrier
Many mums recommend a baby sling or carrier for when you want baby near you, but also want to have your hands free.
There are many choices here, including ring slings, stretchy wraps, Mei Tai slings and soft structured carriers. Check online for a Sling Meet near you, where there is often a Sling Library to try out different styles and what works best for you.
Changing Table with Bath
A changing station with a built-in bath was popular amongst parents, who valued the all-in-one aspect. With everything in arm’s reach, it makes changing and cleaning baby much easier.
“We use ours everyday. I would be lost without it!”
A reliable thermometer, such as the Braun in-ear thermometer which received several mentions from parents, is an essential part of your toolkit as a parent.
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Full body pregnancy pillows, like the ClevaMama maternity pillow, are a great sleep aid for expectant mothers as they offer support for boobs, bump and back.
“I recommend a pregnancy pillow to everyone as an essential purchase!”
You can never have enough muslin cloths! They are so useful for everything from cleaning spit ups to swaddling or even as a light blanket when out and about.
Tripp Trapp High Chair
The Stokke Tripp Trapp is an investment piece, and much more than a high-chair for those who have it. It can be used from birth through to adulthood, and is made to fit right in at your kitchen table (there is the option of adding a tray if needed).
Microwave Steam Steriliser
A steriliser kills the bacteria that can be found on bottles, teats and soothers that come into contact with milk (formula or breast) and your baby’s mouth. Sterilising these items is recommended until your baby is at least 12 months old.
There are several types of steriliser to choose from, mainly electrical or microwave. Mums mainly recommended the microwave steam sterilisers – they do less bottles at a time, but are quick and easy to use. Also, very easy to transport to take with you when needed.
A Notebook and a Pen
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, but a notebook and pen was essential for mums. It is a great way to keep track of feeds (times and quantity), sleep times, and more.
“A notebook and pen to keep track of feeds was always with me.”
White Noise Machine
White noise is low intensity background noise that you can’t really identify – the washing machine, the vacuum, the hairdryer. This can be relaxing for any of us to fall asleep to, and is particularly popular with babies and young children.
“We used the Marpac Hussh white noise machine for all naps and bedtime. I bought one for the childminder too. Would make a great present and we’re still using it 15 months later.”
A bouncer or baby chair was a popular choice with parents as it was somewhere safe to put baby down when needed. The lightweight and portable aspect was key, making it a really useful baby item to have around the house.
Bandana bibs work in just the same way as a traditional cloth bib, but have become increasingly popular with parents. Many of these bibs have a rubber tip to the point of the bandana, giving baby something to chew on when teething.
“We loved bandana bibs, particularly with the rubber bit at the end for chewing.”
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What Baby Items Did They Use the Least?
There were several items that repeatedly came up as things mum really never used, had a very short life-span, or that were used but could easily have gone without. These included:
- Moses basket
- Bumbo seat
- Swaddle wrap/blanket
- Travel cot
- Nappy bins
- Bottle warmer
- Baby bath
- Top and tail bowl
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Have your say! What were your most useful baby items? Leave a comment below and let us know – we’d love to hear from you!