Essential products for newborn babies

Dearest BusiChic,

Apologies for the length between posts – we had our baby!

Baby Charlotte was born beautifully with the great work and support of our amazing team of obstetrician, anaesthetist, midwife and nurses.  Things were a bit of blur afterwards – the survival mode of the first few weeks, visits from our families who helped me get rest as Mr BusiChic returned to work…then we packed up our lives and moved countries!

While we originally had not planned to return home to Australia so soon, moving was made easier by our trying to take a minimal approach to baby products. We did lots of research! We visited stores who provided us lists of baby essentials, I collected baby magazines that recommended the same, I devoured blog posts where bloggers recommended their own. If you are heading down this same path, I highly recommend starting a Pinterest board and referring to new baby magazines (upto 12-24 months old), blog posts and instagram accounts because the market is constantly evolving and there’s always a new product to try!

I will write a post soon on my tips for buying baby clothes – I adopted a “uniform” approach for the first nine weeks before branching out into outfits and accessories (who knew it could be so fun!?) – but for the time being here is our list of essentials for baby, mum and dad/non-birthing parent!

Essential newborn baby products 

Our girl was born in winter so I researched heavily how we could keep bub warm in our cold house. The secret? Lots of merino wool and footed onesies; winter babies don’t have time to lose socks or shoes!

  1. Halo Baby Bassinest. Not the prettiest of cots but SO practical!! It slides in right next to our bed, and swivels which allowed me to pick baby up for feeds without having to get out of bed: WINNER. Also I loved that I could swivel the cot so I could safely sleep face-to-face with bub or easily check on her as the sides are pretty see-through.
  2. Once we brought her home, our baby simply refused to be swaddled in what I thought were super cute muslin cloths- she was not happy! Thank goodness we had a  Miracle blanket in our our arsenal! to make swaddling easy and help young babies (<12 weeks) sleep through their startle reflex which means more sleep for parents or time to get things done! Before we picked up a miracle blanket we had bought sleeping bags but once bub was born, we realised that you don’t really use these until bub is around three-to-four months old.
  3. Merino wool bodysuits and footed leggings. The Sleepstore stocks a tidy range of merino wool underclothes and we also love Babu’s range of silky soft merino wool body suits.
  4. Sleeping gowns or all-in-one onesies for the first three months when babe spends most of their time sleeping or feeding. For sleeping, merino gowns from Nature Baby are a real treat for all year-round comfort making nighttime changes so much easier and feature a drawstring bottom to keep little feet cosy. For our winter baby we loved growsuits from Purebaby – they are footed so you don’t have to worry about socks; have optional turn-over mittens to keep bubs hands warm and are double-zipped so you can easily unzip the bottom half for nappy changes and I reckon they get softer with each delicate-cycle wash. 
  5. Sweet almond oil was recommended by our midwife for soothing dry skin and keeping baby’s skin soft, our friends gifted us product from Nature Baby. We also love the Botany Natural Baby pack which we were also generously gifted by friends- bath bubbles, shampoo and lotion in particular are made using natural ingredients that keep babe’s skin soft and hydrated. 
  6. Aden and Anais dribble bibs. Gosh it seems extravagant to buy something simply to catch voms and dribbles but your clothes will thank you for it! These ones are contoured so they are easy to throw over your shoulder and fit around carer’s neck when burping baby. Plus they have a button so that when baby is bigger, you can use these as dribble bibs.

Essentials and gifts for new mamas

  1. Breastpads. If you are planning to breastfeed, reusable breastpads by Breastmates are wonderful and the softest I have come across. If you are gifting, pretty patterned ones from Eversweet are a fun option. Also add Lanisoh (the skinny-tubed Purelan by medela might be easier for winter mamas!) and hydrating gel discs (or this healing manuka version) to your booby first-aid kit!
  2.  Haakaa breast pump to “naturally” capture let down from your non-feeding breast. Prior to my initiation, I had no idea that both boobs can lactate simultaneously. Oh the things you learn!
  3.  In an earlier post I recommended maternity camisoles to wear during pregnancy, unlike some of my other maternity-specific clothing (more on that in a future post) they are also great now that I am nursing. When at home I throw over a dressing gown/kimono that launders easily and dries quickly – no drycleaning required! Bonus points for cosy numbers which make padding about a comfortable affair. There was lots of padding about in the first few hazy weeks so add in some nice slippers too!
  4. Nice shower products. Nicely scented shower oils got me through the early weeks of parenthood when it was a treat to smell and feel clean and soothe temperamental fourth-trimester skin!
  5. Vouchers to get a treat like a blow wave or mani and pedi PLUS an offer to baby sit as it’s often difficult to (1) leave the house with bub and (2) relax.
  6. Daily sweet treat and your favourite tea/beverage. We stayed in a post-birth care facility and loved not only being delivered every meal in bed, we were served a slice of cake and cup of tea/coffee, three times a day. Heaven. Once we went home, Mr BusiChic kept up the habit by bringing me boxes of desserts to have each day. So on days when I didn’t feel like I’d achieved very much, I got joy by snuggling with my baby and having a comforting bit of cake and tea. So good!

Essentials and gifts for new Dads/ Non-birthing parent

The non-birthing parent often gets forgotten but it doesn’t mean they are any less excited for the birth of their bub! Here are some of the things that Mr BusiChic bought/was gifted which helped support our new wee family.

  1. Face wash bundles. So handy for catching voms, dribbles or cleaning babe! Our favourites are the Babu gauze muslin cloths. We have three sets and they dry quickly and get softer with every wash. 
  2. Changing station. Mr BusiChic did all of the research on nappy bags and we ended up using our regular favourite bags with a Skip Hop Pronto changing station (in NZ we picked ours up from department store Farmers, in Australia the Skip Hop line is available through David Jones) thrown in for nappy changes on the go. 
  3. A favourite tipple to “wet the baby’s head”. Our friends at Urbanaut gifted their Red IPA to do just that.

Wondering what to gift a new family?

Prior to having a bub of my own, I generally gifted both parents to celebrate their new arrival: stacks of magazines accompanied with their favourite treats. So many people gift the baby (and it can be so difficult to get the right sizes/season/style!) that sometimes it’s nice to spoil the new parents instead!

Other really useful gifts include favourite books (check with the parents before writing inscriptions to make sure they don’t already have the book!) and gift vouchers for stores like Nature Baby and Pure Baby.

Phew this was a lengthy post but it goes to show that there are so many products to be bought when a new baby comes along! What do you think of the list above? Anything else that you would add?

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