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Newborn Essentials Checklist

There’s nothing like the excitement of a new baby coming into your world. However, right along with the excitement comes the anxiety of making a mistake. While no parent can be perfect, it always helps to be prepared with the correct tools, even if the list may seem never-ending and expensive. We’re here to tell you that you don’t have to get every little thing at once. With time, you’ll acquire all the fun decorations, clothes, and gadgets to make your life easier. At first, give yourself a break by only focusing on the essentials to care for your precious newly born bundle of joy. To make the process a little easier, we put together a checklist of newborn essentials for you.


Although all the cute outfits are tempting to get right away, it’s helpful to remember that your newborn doesn’t need anything fancy the first few weeks. (Plus, if you have a baby shower, you can count on other people buying all the over-the-top newborn stuff!) When your little one is an infant, simple, comfortable, easy-to-change pieces of clothing are the way to go. Keep in mind that your newborn will outgrow clothes at lightning speed, so you may want to wait to splurge on cute outfits for at least a few months. Here are a few of the items you’ll want to keep in stock at all times.

  • 5-8 onesies/soft outfits that wash easily, as there will be plenty of messes!
  • 3-4 sleepers
  • 5-7 pairs of baby socks
  • 1-2 newborn hats depending on the climate

Another key factor to keep in mind is the weather patterns when your baby will be born and the months that follow. First, consider your climate’s weather and stock up on comfy, wash-and-wear outfits for six months post due date. Then, focus on purchasing the simplest, most comfortable clothing for your newborn based on average seasonal temperatures.

Nursery Essentials

While there are numerous fancy gadgets to make nursery life easier, there are essentials that every parent should carry. So here are some basics for a safe, welcoming, and nurturing nursery.

  • A safe, comfortable crib
  • Storage for clothes, blankets, and other essentials
  • Diaper changing station
  • Rocking/feeding chair
  • Hamper
  • Humidifier/noise machine
  • Baby monitor

Bath Items

The first couple of weeks will consist of gentle and careful sponge baths. After that, you’ll only need to bathe your baby a few times a week. There will be plenty of unexpected messes every day, which will call for “spot cleaning.” Here are some essential bath items for all the chaotic moments.

  • 1 bottle of gentle baby lotion
  • 3-5 baby washcloths
  • 1 baby sponge
  • 1-2 hooded towels
  • 1 bottle of gentle baby wash
  • 1 baby bathtub

Diapering Essentials

It’s impossible to properly prepare for the arrival of a new baby without the purchase and planning of diaper essentials. As far as the actual diapers go, there are various options these days. Some choices include cloth diapers, disposable diapers, or hybrid diapers. Depending on your schedule and budget, you can select which diapers are the best fit for your newborn and your lifestyle. In the meantime, make sure you have the other diapering essentials in your shopping cart.

  • Diaper bag: a waterproof, washable diaper bag is ideal
  • 2 or more changing table pads (Hint: keep one in the car for day trips!)
  • 2-4 changing pad covers
  • Diaper rash ointment
  • Wipes or cotton cloths
  • Plastic wipes holder
  • 2-4 packages of newborn diapers

Feeding Essentials

This checklist wouldn’t be complete without mentioning some fundamental feeding essentials. There are many things to consider when it comes to feeding your newborn. Before the arrival of your baby, make sure you consult with your doctor to come up with a plan for optimal nutrition. The main question that parents ask themselves is whether to use formula or breastfeed — the choice is very personal, but there is no right or wrong method as long as your baby is well nourished. Regardless of which feeding method you choose, these are some essentials you can’t skip.

  • 10 burp cloths (the more, the merrier)
  • 5-8 bottles
  • A bottle brush
  • Variety of bottle nipple sizes
  • Nursing pads
  • Nipple cream
  • Breast pump
  • Breastfeeding pillow

This list could go on for several pages, but we don’t want to overwhelm you more than you probably already are, so we stuck to the essentials. There are many gray areas and questions up in the air before the due date, so please keep those regular appointments with your doctor as you prepare to give birth. For those with a high-risk pregnancy, please schedule a consultation with us here at Unity Maternal Fetal Medicine. We have an incredible team of experts who are devoted, knowledgable, and experienced. Just by reading this article, you’re already demonstrating that you’re an excellent parent. The key is to take it one day at a time and to go easy on yourself. After ticking all of these items off, you’ll be parenting like a pro in no time!