Your pregnancy test just flashed a plus-sign and suddenly your mind is abuzz thinking about everything you’ll need for the baby. You’ll instinctively want to buy two of everything, but keep in mind that your family and friends will also want to gift you some things at the baby shower or after the delivery.
A few friendly reminders
- Before spending a fortune on all kinds of products, ask your family and friends if they have things they can give you, lend you or sell you at a reasonable price.
- Don’t buy too many newborn clothes—your baby might already be too big for them. During the last few weeks of your pregnancy, your doctor will be able to give you an idea of your baby’s approximate weight, leaving you enough time to go shopping.
- Avoid clothes with lace collars. Or any collar for that matter. For the first six months, your baby’s chin will rest directly on top of his or her chest, meaning any collar will just end up in your baby’s mouth. When he or she spits up—look out, collar!
- Buy laundry detergent for sensitive skin, such as Ivory or La Souris Verte, and wash all your baby’s clothes with it until you’re confident he or she won’t have an allergic reaction to regular detergent.
- Use natural textiles and choose the softest fabric you can find for your baby’s delicate skin.
- Kids’ sizes have nothing to do with age. If you’re shopping for a three-month-old baby, pretend he or she is six months; if your baby is six months, shop for 12. Of course, everything depends on your baby's size and growth rate, so this is just a general rule. Before buying all of next summer’s clothes, wait and see how your baby grows.
- During your baby’s first few months, go with pyjamas over pants or dresses. Between frequent spills and diaper changes, you’ll soon discover how practical pyjamas can be. Besides, there’s nothing cuter than a baby in pj’s.
- 6 soft bibs: In the beginning, before you switch to plastic bibs, fabric ones are useful because you can wipe the baby’s mouth if he or she drools or throws up a little.
- 6-8 cotton pyjamas: Snap buttons help with diaper changes. Avoid pyjamas with buttons or zippers in the back; they’re not very practical when you want to change your baby in the middle of the night. Velvet fabrics work well in winter too
- 2-3 sleep sacks that zip at the bottom. They’re especially great for nighttime diaper changes. Your baby stays warm and you’ll be glad you won’t need to disturb him or her too much during feedings. Some babies don’t like being confined in a garment, however, so wait for your baby’s reaction before buying a bunch.
- 8 cotton camisoles: Again, the ones with snap buttons are very useful during diaper changes.
- Lots and lots of little socks: Have to keep those tiny toes warm to prevent the loss of body heat.
- A cotton bonnet: In the first few days of his or her life, your baby will be rocking a bonnet at all times.
- Baby bunting bag: It’s like an envelope with sleeves and a zipper that you put your baby in to keep him or her warm during cool days. Not cold ones though…
- Snowsuit for newborns:… For cold days, this is what you’ll want to keep your baby warm.
- A crib: Beware of used cribs because security regulations have changed drastically in the past few years and using them is not recommended. The mattress must be firm and, obviously, the right size. Your baby also shouldn’t be able to fit through the crib’s bars. If possible, look for rounded edges to avoid injuries when the child gets older. It might even be a good idea to buy a crib that turns into a kid’s bed—it’s a bit more expensive at first, but it’ll save you from making another big purchase in two years.
- 5 fitted and 12 quilted sheets: To be placed under your baby’s head. The quilted one will be useful for diaper changes during family outings. (Also: never ever ever put a pillow in the crib because the baby could suffocate.)
- A changing table: Everything will depend on the room’s layout. If there's enough space, choose a table with edges as high as your waist and storage space to put diapers, creams, powders and baby wipes.
- A bathtub: Plastic all the way.
- A stroller: If you’re the active type, consider investing in an all-terrain stroller to carry your baby wherever you go. Umbrella strollers often have wheels that jam and can be harder to steer.
- A sling or baby-carrier
- A car seat: For newborns especially. Some seats have a detachable baby carrier, others don’t. It’s up to you to figure out exactly how you’ll use it.
- A rocker: It allows your baby to sit in a semi-lying position.
- A breastfeeding pillow: That, or even an ordinary pillow could be useful if you’re thinking about breastfeeding.
- A bottle: If you decide to go the bottle route, you’ll need a cleaning brush, a dozen little bottles, nipple replacements, etc.
- Monitors: To hear the baby throughout the house and know when he or she wakes up.
- A diaper bag: Get one with lots of storage space. You’ll thank us later.
- A few big, soft towels
- 2-in-1 liquid soap for babies: For hair and body, and preferably one with a neutral pH.
- Hydrating cream
- Bum cream
- A baby hairbrush
- Newborn-sized diapers: As with clothes, don’t buy too many until you know the actual size of your baby. (As a rough guide, newborn-sized diapers are really tiny.)
- Baby wipes or little towels: Use these only for cleaning the baby.
Any questions or recommendations? Share your experiences by writing us!