Products You Need to Buy When Having a Baby

Nursery with Baby Gear
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Right after you learn that you're having a baby, you learn that babies seem to need a lot of stuff! If you're feeling overwhelmed, don't worry. This list will help you figure out what to buy for baby. Of course, there are millions of baby products available for your shopping pleasure, but the following products are the most common needs or wants for newborns.

Basic Layette and Clothing

Baby clothes are cuter than ever, and you could easily blow your entire baby budget on sweet little socks and tiny rompers alone. Control yourself though—there are lots of other practical items you're going to need. Here are the basics you'll want to have on hand before you go to the hospital.

  • Special going-home outfit
  • Basic clothing layette. There's no rule about what this consists of, but you'll want to have a good supply of onesies (babies can go through four or five of these bodysuits a day!), half shirts, rompers, undershirts, pull-on pants, one-piece pajamas and gowns (easier for late-night diaper changes). Other wardrobe musts include sweaters, socks or booties (shoes aren't necessary until baby walks), as well as blanket sleepers.
  • Winter coat or snowsuit, if the season is right for it
  • Infant swimsuit, if the season is right for it
  • Broad-brimmed sun hat or warm winter hat
  • Mittens
  • Baby sunglasses
  • Gentle or scent-free detergent for baby's laundry

Nursery Basics

You can find cute mobiles, wall decor, lamps, rugs, and more to coordinate with your baby's nursery. Below are the items found in most nurseries, to give you a starting point for your baby's special room.

  • Crib, cradle, or bassinet
  • Crib mattress
  • Crib bedding
  • Waterproof mattress pad, if the mattress has a cloth cover
  • Diaper changing table
  • Dresser or bins for clothing storage
  • Glider or rocking chair
  • Diaper pail
  • Baby monitor
  • Laundry bag or basket
  • Toy bin

Bathing and Baby Care

That amazing baby smell doesn't last very long unless you're ready to wash off the myriad messes babies make. Before you buy many baby bath supplies, consider whether you want to bathe your newborn in a regular tub, a sink, or in a special baby tub.

  • Baby bathtub or insert for your regular tub
  • Baby shampoo and body wash
  • Baby lotion
  • Hooded baby towels or soft regular towels
  • Baby washcloths or soft regular washcloths
  • Baby nail clippers
  • Nasal aspirator
  • Digital rectal thermometer
  • Infant acetaminophen drops
  • Infant-safe sunscreen

Feeding Your Newborn

Because babies grow so fast in their first few months, they need to eat really often. Before the baby arrives, you'll need to decide whether you will breastfeed or bottle-feed. Some of these product purchases will depend on which feeding method you choose.


Not long after baby eats, you'll need to be ready for a diaper change. Before you buy any diapering supplies, decide whether you want to use cloth diapers or disposable diapers. Not only are the diapers different, but you may need different diaper pails or other supplies for each type, as well.

Baby Soothing and Entertaining Gear

OK, secret time. Sometimes babies cry. If you think your baby may cry at some point, the following products are tried-and-true baby soothers that may help return a smile to every face in the household. As for newborn fun, your baby's attempts to smile and coordinate arm movements may be amusing enough for everyone, but it won't hurt to have a few toys available to stimulate baby's growing brain.

Baby Travel Gear

When it's time to show off your precious new cargo, you'll need a whole other set of products to get out of the house with safety and style. Car seats are now required by every state in the U.S., in some states to age 8. So, it's a good idea to spend some extra time learning about this important purchase.

If you have the items above, you'll be well-prepared for your new baby. But don't let this list hold you back—there are plenty of additional baby products to explore that will make your life with baby more convenient, fun, or safe. Happy shopping.

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  1. American Automobile Association. Child passenger safety: digest of motor laws. Updated 2019.