Verywell Family's Must-Have Registry List

The baby gear you didn't know you needed

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After the joy of finding out you are pregnant sets in, you might start thinking about creating your registry. Starting a baby registry can be an overwhelming task, with lots of opinions from family, friends, and co-workers.

To help you sift through all of the baby gear out there, we compiled a list of all of our personal favorites here at Verywell Family and our sister companies at Dotdash. From the best strollers to baby bottles, and stuff you didn't even know existed—these are the products that made our lives just a little easier.

Remember, one size does not fit all when creating a registry, and you don't need everything from the get-go. Let this be one of your first lessons in trusting your Mama gut on what you need. Plus, thankfully there is always overnight shipping!

Our Top Picks


Keekaroo Peanut Changer

While traditional changing pads can be pretty, they can often get soiled with accidents and cleaning the liners can be cumbersome for tired new parents. The Keekaroo takes away the burden of cleaning because you can just wipe it off when messes happen. It also has a non-slip bottom so it can go on the top of any dresser without the need for changing pad attachments.

"This is one of my most-used registry products. When my kids were baby's I laid down a swaddle cloth or a disposable changing pad because the Kekaroo can be a little cold."—Dwyer Frame, Senior Editorial Director Commerce


Summer Infant Comfy Bath Sponge

It's amazing how much baby gear you need. Sadly, they grow out of this stuff quickly. When it comes to bathing your newborn, don't go too overboard with bathing gear. A sponge like this is an affordable option and can be used anywhere (even on-the-go).

"We love these for bath time because they don't take up room."—Meredith Worsham, SVP, Communications


OXO Tot Space Saving Drying Rack


 Courtesy of OXO

Cleaning bottles is no joke. With your baby eating on average 8 to 12 times a day that can leave a big mess. This space-saving drying rack can hold up to nine bottles and takes up less counter space.

When your baby is past the bottle phase this works great for sippy cups, and some parents even say this is an excellent wine glass drying rack!

"Most bottle dryers are counter-space hogs, which makes this OXO Tot rack perfect for families with small kitchens. It's tall enough to hold several bottles, but fits neatly underneath cabinets—plus the entire thing is dishwasher safe!"—Patty Lee, Senior Editor, The Spruce Eats


Dr. Brown's Bottles

When choosing a bottle for your baby just be aware that there is some trial and error, and every baby is different. Our best advice is to buy a few single bottles and see which one your baby likes first, and then buy a complete set.

Some babies have no problems switching between bottle brands, while others are super picky and might have issues like reflux or gas.

"We chose Dr. Brown's bottles because the vent system helped my baby's reflux."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Ubbi Diaper Pail

With some diaper pails, you have to buy special trash bags that can cost a pretty penny. The genius of the Ubbi is any trash bag will work, plus the steel construction keeps odors in the bin and prevents them from leaking into the plastic, like many other diaper pails.

Besides keeping rooms stink-free, it also has a sleek design and comes in many decor-friendly colors so it isn't an eyesore. Another plus is its lock feature that keeps curious toddlers from opening it.

"Believe it or not, I didn't think I needed a diaper pail - thank goodness my mom talked me into it. This one works perfectly."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


10 ft phone charger

You'll be spending a lot of time on your phone once the baby arrives. Whether it is googling how much spit up is normal in the middle of the night or tracking baby feeds, being able to charge your phone numerous times a day will be key.

"A must-pack for the hospital as well as a needed charger for when you are pumping, a 10-foot phone charger is one of my go-to's"—Leah Wyar, Byrdie and Brides General Manager


Colgate Crib Mattress

The crib is one of the first things people buy, but often forget to purchase the mattress. Before you fall down a rabbit hole of researching the best crib mattress for your baby, take a look at this pick.

Colgate crib mattresses just received a JPMA certification seal (the first full-sized crib mattress to do so). They're firm—providing a safe sleep environment for your baby—breathable, natural, and eco-friendly. While the price is a little higher than most, your baby will spend a lot of time sleeping on this making it a worthy investment.

"I did a lot of research before buying a crib mattress for my son. I wanted something that was both comfortable and non-toxic. The price is a bit higher than other comparable products, but we didn't want to cheap out on something that would be used regularly."—Andrea Rafferty, Senior Director, Growth and Strategy


Iron Flask Sports Water Bottle

Planning on breastfeeding? One weird side effect many mother's come across is extreme thirst at your milk let-down. When your let-down occurs you are usually sitting with your baby so you don't have the ability to get a cup of water when you really need it.

A handy water bottle that holds a lot of water is a must to keep you hydrated during the long days ahead.

"I remember every time I sat down to nurse, I was overwhelmed with sudden thirst. I was desperate for a gigantic cold drink. A cold water flask with a top and straw is a must-have for new thirsty moms."—Tory Brangham, VP, Commerce


Ergo Omni 360

Baby-wearing lets you go about your business with two hands. Whether you are taking a stroll or washing the dishes the Ergo 360 gets many rave reviews because it can be used from the newborn stage (some models need an insert) well into age 2+, depending on your child's size.

The Ergo 360 is easy enough to put on and it can be machine washed which will be sure to come in handy after spit up, drool, and blowouts.

"Babywearing is great for bonding but it puts a lot of stress on your neck, back, and hips. After a lot of research and purchasing other carriers, this one was the easiest to change in all the different carrying positions available (Babies get bored too!).

Quick to adjust from person-to-person when handing off the babywearing. Most importantly, it’s “hip-healthy” for your baby and breathable! The mesh feature on the Omni 360 model is great for Summer!"—Jamie Abarca, Editorial Project Coordinator, The Spruce


Nose Freda Snotsucker

We bet you never imagined motherhood would include sucking out snot, but this handy gadget can help clear out stuffy noses easily and safely. This is one of the gadgets you are sure to want to have your hands on from day one. Just be sure to check with your pediatrician on how often you should use it. You'll also want to pair this with a saline spray to prevent dry nasal passages.

"The Frida helped both of my girls breathe and sleep soundly, so I guess it allowed me to sleep as well!"—Sara Badler, SVP Progomatic Revenue and Strategy


Baby Bjorn Bouncer

One piece of baby gear that is a must is a baby bouncer. Bouncers keep baby entertained while you wash the dishes and are a great thing to plop them in the bathroom while you take a shower.

The Baby Bjorn is one of the best out there. It is suitable for baby's that are 8 pounds and up, and it can hold toddlers up to 29 pounds as a seat. You'll be sure to get a kick out of watching them kick their legs and bounce themselves around. while you get some hands-free time

"This lightweight chair is worth the higher price tag. It's easy to move around, the cover is removable and machine washable, and folds up neatly for storage. Its sleek design and muted color options are an added bonus for parents who want something that doesn't scream "baby.""—Patty Lee, Senior Editor, The Spruce Eats


Babyzen YOYO+ Stroller

Once your baby is past the age of 6 months you might be able to start using an umbrella or travel stroller. These are great options for travel, quick trips to the store and beyond. Some parents find they move completely to an umbrella stroller once their kid gets older because they are lighter to carry around.

This stroller gets rave reviews from many moms at Verywell. While the price is a little high it has all of the bells and whistles you need on an umbrella stroller. It is recommended for children ages 6 months to 33 pounds.

"When I was pregnant, I didn't really understand why a baby would need more than one stroller. But a lightweight stroller like this is so great for traveling on planes and for trips on subways and buses in the city."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Aden + Anais Swaddles


Courtesy of Amazon

Every registry should have a set of these. They come in the sweetest patterns and can be used for everything—including swaddling, shielding the baby from the sun in the stroller, as a breastfeeding cover, and so much more. What we love best about these is they will last way past the first year.

"They are lightweight and simple to fold and tuck your baby into a little baby burrito so she feels secure and safe!"—Sara Goth, VP


Skip Hop Changing Pad

When you are on-the-go, changing your baby on the public restroom changing table is not always ideal. This changing pad can be the barrier between your child and any surface, and it is also washable for when accidents happen.

This pad also folds up nicely and can store stuff like a few spare diapers and wipes.

"This pad is a must for any growing household. When your baby gets older you no longer need a comprehensive diaper bag, and this changing pad does double duty of holding some spare diapers and also being a place to change the baby wherever you go."—Dwyer Frame, Senior Editorial Director Commerce


Uppababy Vista

For urban dwellers, the Uppababy Vista is an all-time favorite. While this stroller comes at a steep price—for those who live in a city it is a must, because you will use this more than a car seat.

The large wheels make it easy to tackle bumpy terrain and snowy days. This has additional attachments for your car seat and you also have the option to add another seat, and a ride-on board when the time comes. It also comes with a bassinet that can be used indoors for sleeping in a stand.

This isn't the smartest option for those who need to put it in their car daily, so you might want to look at some of our other best stroller options.

"I really like how big the under stroller compartment is for a diaper bag, groceries, and anything else you might want to transport along with your baby."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Ikea Rasokig cart


Courtesy of Ikea 

One thing many parents forget on their registry is a diaper caddy. While a diaper caddy that sits on the changing table or dresser can be handy, this rolling cart is multi-purpose and can be used way passed the baby years.

"Perfect for all the breastfeeding stuff (think storing pads, creams, and such) and then this can later transition into a kids toy or art cart."–Leah Wyar, Byrdie and Brides General Manager


Skip Hop Stroll & Go Plush Fleece Winter Car Seat Cover

If you're having a baby in the winter this is a must-buy. Wearing a coat or anything bulky is a major no when it comes to car seat safety. This handy cover keeps them nice and cozy in a safe way. You just slip this over your car seat to keep them warm while you are out and about or driving in the car.

It has a handy flap that keeps the air coming in and it is easy to remove baby without taking off the whole cover.

"My second kid was born in November and this was the best purchase I ever made. This kept my little guy nice and warm when we ran from our home and into the car. It also worked great when we used the car seat in the stroller. I have passed this along to many moms and they all agree it is a must."–Dwyer Frame, Senior Editorial Director Commerce


Mattress Protector

From your water breaking, postpartum night sweats, and stomach bugs, these mattress protectors come in handy over the years. While only 8 to 10 percent of women experience their water breaking, it is not a bad idea to lay these on your bed before your due date.

After your baby is born, many women experience night sweats which can leave you drenched. These pads are a great option to remove after this happens to reveal clean sheets.

These also work great for your baby. Playing in bed with baby? Lay one of these down so your baby doesn't spit up or have a blowout on your sheets. They also make a handy changing pad. And when your child gets older these come in handy for potty training, and nighttime potty training.

"My aunt gave me a bunch of these before my baby came and I thought she was nuts. But, they are the gift that keeps on giving. My 3-year-old just had a stomach bug and we laid these all over our sofa so he could vomit without ruining our family couch. We just tossed them in the wash and they were good as new."—Dwyer Frame, Senior Editorial Director Commerce


Hatch Sound Machine

No joke, a sound machine is a must. White noise machines mimic the sound in your womb, helping lull your baby to sleep. As your little one gets older they can help tune out household noises during naptime and such.

The Hatch Sound machine is a favorite because, besides providing lulling noise, it is also a nightlight for middle-of-the-night feedings and can be used as a toddler wake-up clock when they get older.

"My son is almost two years old and we still use this every day for naps and nighttime—vital since my kitchen backs up against my son's room and he needs the white noise to stay asleep."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Munchkin Arm & Hammer Changing Pad Liners


 Courtesy of Target

Blowouts and pee happen. If you don't want to have to do laundry all the time these disposable pads are great to put over your changing pad to help cut down on laundry. We also love these liners for travel, since you can use them on a changing pad in a public restroom and throw out when you are all done.

"I use them to capture any blowouts to avoid changing the actual changing pad cover all the time."—Vicki Johnston, Director of Brand Partnerships


Kiinde Breastmilk Storage

If you plan on breastfeeding you might also want to see if you can get a free breast pump through your insurance. You'll also want to stock up on storage bags and bottles, or both before you have the baby.

Bottles need to be sanitized before use so you'll want to get this done before your little one comes home.

"I had these and Lasinoh storage bags and always preferred Kiinde. The shape allows it to stand up straight while you are pouring or pumping breastmilk directly into the bag and the top felt much more secure to me."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Foot Muff

If you live in a climate with seasons you don't want to forget a footmuff. While you might think any old blanket will do, a footmuff prevents your baby from kicking a blanket off in the middle of the street and ensures they stay extra warm.

The best footmuffs can be cleaned and can provide many levels of comfort, depending on the season.

"I wish I could be strolled around in this in the winter! You really don't need any other blanket than this one."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager


Nanit Baby Monitor

True story, you rarely hear a parent rave about their baby monitor. They all seem to have some limitations. When considering a baby monitor you should think about whether you want to be able to watch your baby while you are at the office through a Wi-fi connection, or maybe you just want a simple audio monitor.

With so many new smart devices out there the Nanit is a top pick because it mounts on the wall giving you a perfect view of your little one. It also tracks sleep, is Alexa-enabled, and can tell the temperature and humidity in their room.

"I never used any of the additional sleep monitoring capabilities that were offered but love the Nanit because of the connection to Wifi anywhere and the ability to keep the audio on in the background of my phone."—Rachel Berman, RD, Verywell General Manager

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Verywell Family uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Caughey AB, Robinson JN, Norwitz ER. Contemporary diagnosis and management of preterm premature rupture of membranes. Rev Obstetrics Gynecologists. 2008 Winter;1(1):11-22.