Want to know the secret to finding all your Baby Registry essentials? It’s simple: Just ask your mom friends.
Registry lists can seem so overwhelming, with gadgets and gizmos aplenty! How do you figure out what you need, what you don’t, and what is worth splurging vs saving on?
But spend a few minutes chatting with a new mom, and they will tell you without holding back what they use, what they don’t and what they wish they had registered for. And what better way to get that advice than asking The Mom Friend community to find out what their *Must Haves* are for creating a registry?
I reached out to the fabulous readers and asked for their Baby Registry Essential & Lifesavers (items that, while not absolutely necessary, are total lifesavers). And they responded in force!
So without further ado, here are the top recommendations from fellow Mom Friends on the must have items for your baby registry, and some lifesavers that you will want to include as well.
Remember, each family is different, so everything may not apply to you, but these basics will give you a good foundation!
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Baby Registry Essentials
Portable Bassinet For the first 6 months Charlie slept in a pack n’ play in our room. While it worked, it took up a great deal of space.
Next time around I plan on getting a smaller bassinet, like this one. I like that it can be easily moved around the house, and even has bluetooth technology for music! This one is also really popular.
Sound Machine | This is probably one of the TOP items on my must-have list. White noise is soothing to a baby, and to parents! I can hardly sleep without it and it drowns out exterior noise from my noisy neighbors.
I have this one (love that it will stay on all night), and think this Skip Hop Moonlight & Melodies Soother Owl is perfect for adding an extra level of cuteness to a nursery.
Velcro Swaddles | Swaddles are essential for helping babies sleep and feel secure. The Mom Friend Community’s hands down favorites were from SwaddleMe.
These are perfect for keeping newborns snug and cozy, and the velcro makes them SO EASY for first-time parents!
Related: How to Keep Babies Warm (Safely) for Sleep, Car & Home
Functional Sleepsack Swaddle | As infants start to grow and move more, sleepsack style swaddles adjust with them and gives more room at the end for leg movement. A Halo Sleepsack Swaddle can used with arms in or out, and are a great option for transitioning from a swaddle as well.
Video Monitor | The Mom Friend community agrees: video is a must for any nursery monitor. They like to be able to see their babies in addition to being able to hear them, and think that video monitors are insanely useful when trying to teach babies how to fall asleep on their own.
For me, once I stopped going in there for every cry right away, I was able to watch her on the screen and identify if I needed to go in or if she was just stirring and trying to go back to sleep. Now that she can walk, I watch it to make sure she isn’t trying to climb out!
IMPORTANT TO NOTE: You may see registry lists or old pins (including from this site) with a Rock N’ Play or similar incline sleeping item. Please note these are outdated and these items have been recalled due to infant deaths. Rock N’ Plays and other similar devices should not be used for sleep and are no longer recommended.
Diapers/Wipes – A BIG “Obviously”, but you are definitely going to want to put diapers on your registry. Whether you use disposables or are planning to cloth diaper, be sure to add in the brand(s) you want. People love bringing diapers to baby showers, and the cost of diapers adds up quick! Help them gift you the ones you need.
Changing Pad While the bed may work for quick changes, a home base for diaper changes helps keep everything handy & clean when those really messy blowouts occur! They are also a back-saver when placed on top of a dresser. Bending over a bed every time leads to lots of aches and pains!
Diaper Pail | A trash can works, but a diaper pail like this one by Playtex or this one is designed to keep the extra stink in, plus is hands free. Definitely something to be grateful for!
Diaper Clutch / Portable Changing Pad | Sometimes you just don’t want to lug around a full diaper bag. A Diaper Clutch is a great alternative, holds just the necessities and provides a clean space to change a baby.
Swing/Bouncer | Having a safe place to put baby down means a break for mom, and entertainment for your baby!
The 4Moms Mamaroo is a popular choice amongst the Mom Friends because of its many different functions (it acts as a swing, soother and bouncer all in one).
I would also recommend buying a cheap floor bouncer if going with the Mamaroo however, to make bathroom trips, showers, or hanging out in different rooms easy. Those can be found cheap on FB resale sites or at stores for less than $20. This style by Graco, however, is a swing and detachable bouncer all in one!
Boppy | I agree with the reader’s choice- we love the Boppy! Our Boppy was used almost every single day. From helping with breastfeeding, to tummy time and acting as a support when she was learning how to sit independently, our boppy was definitely one of the most used items in the house.
Pacifiers | We love the Wubbanub pacifiers– they are not only adorable, but the stuffed animal is slightly weighted in the feet to hold it in place, and makes it so much easier to find when it is dropped in the car! These were my other favorite for the newborn stage (and are so inexpensive!).
Muslin Blankets | Sure, any blankets will do just fine, but muslin blankets like these from Aden & Anais are popular for a reason. They are extremely lightweight and versatile, hold up well in the wash, and pack up small.
I have used them for everything from swaddling to travel and keep them stashed just about everywhere. I hardly ever used other blankets.
Floor Mat | Tummy time and floor play are great for baby’s development. A soft activity mat will keep them entertained (and let mom finish that cup of coffee!).
Activity Center | Once they hit about 4 months old, babies like to be upright and interact with the world. Activity centers like exersaucers and bouncers are great entertainment. This 3-in-1 center will grow with them from infant to toddlerhood.
Getting Out & About
Stroller | A good stroller is a must. There are lots of factors in choosing the best one for you (travel system vs. stroller frame, versatility, weight, and overall functions).
The City Mini is a popular choice for being a mid-range, fully functional stroller, and a good place to start your search. For a glimpse at its lightweight younger sister, check out my review of the Baby Jogger City Lite.
Car Seat | By far the most important piece of equipment you will own, take time to research the options and find one that meets safety test requirements and works for your car & stroller. I have a model similar to this one and have been very happy with it.
Baby Carrier | Babywearing is great for so many reasons, and there are many types to choose from. The Mom Friends love Lillebaby carriers because they can be used from birth through toddler years, and have lots of bonus features. We love the Airflow Complete (check out the full review here!)
Snuggly Wrap/Carrier | Newborns love to held and moms are happy to oblige. But sometimes Mama needs a free hand. A soft & snuggly carrier like the Baby K’tan keeps you both close and happy. Great for on the go, but especially nice at home when you don’t have to have the bulk of a larger carrier.
Bath & Health
Bath Tub | There are lots of options out there, so find one that works for you. You’ll want one that can be used in both the sink and the tub (bathing a newborn is much easier done standing!). This one converts as your baby gets older.
NoseFrida | It might seem gross initially, but every mom (myself included) that listed the NoseFrida wish we had registered for it or bought it earlier. Babies need lots of nasal aspiration (aka snot removal) and this makes it easy (and no, it’s not actually gross, nothing gets through!).
Nail Clippers | While biting newborn nails is easy, you’ll want nail clippers or a file for backup (and for when they start getting their hands into things!). These have a magnifying lens to make it a little less scary (for you!).
Infrared Thermometer | Newborn fevers are serious business. Keep on top of them with this dual-mode Thermometer. It is designed for both ear and forehead use (perfect for a sleeping baby).
Other Lifesavers to Add to your Baby Registry
These items were praised by Mom Friends as lifesavers (and sanity savers!)
DockATot | The DockATot answers the need for a comfortable place for baby to lounge and play. There are two sizes, but the Deluxe is the first one you’ll need! Check out this post for ideas on how to travel with a DockATot and tips for using it on a plane.
Love to Dream SwaddleUP | We tried multiple different swaddles with Charlie, and she seemed to like different ones at different stages. The Love to Dream SwaddleUP was a favorite for quite awhile, once we realized she liked to have her hands near her face.
I also highly recommend the Love to Dream 50/50 for when it comes time to transition out of swaddling.
Owlet | For the ultimate reassurance, lots of parents swear by items that monitor a baby’s breathing or movment at night. And for good reason! Peace of mind when it comes to a newborn is something that is hard to put a price on, and can mean the difference in a good night sleep for all.
The Owlet Smart Sock 2 slips on like a sock and also monitors oxygen levels (and alerts when there is an issue)—making this genius device a literal lifesaver in situations of medical distress.
My BrestFriend Nursing Pillow | This popular alternative to the Boppy makes breastfeeding MUCH more comfortable. It is firmer and wraps around the waist with a velcro closure, and is shaped to support a baby in perfect nursing position.
So there you have it: The top baby registry essentials & lifesavers, chosen by moms, for moms!
Is there anything else you would add to this list? Share your advice to new moms below
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