Preparing for Baby: What You (REALLY) Need For Your Newborn

Shopping for your new baby can be rather overwhelming can't it?! - There's just SO much stuff out there to choose from! Where do you start? Well, as much as the catalogues and shop windows may make you think that you need to start planting and growing your own money tree - it just isn't true. Here's what you newborn will REALLY need for the first few weeks of their life..

newborn checklist

Newborn essentials checklist:

  • A cot, moses basket or a crib (plus a mattress for whichever is your chosen place of rest for your baby), sheets and blankets (or a grow bag if your prefer! Which we did!). Most people opt for a crib or moses basket as it's recommended that your baby sleeps in your room for the first six months and a crib/moses basket takes up a lot less room!
  •  A car seat that's suitable for a newborn. You can find a good guide to newborn car seat buying here.
  • Bottles/teats/bottle brush (if not breastfeeding)
  • Lots of bibs and muslin squares - for any baby sick or dribbles.
  • Cotton wool for bath time.
  • A hat and scratch mittens will come in useful if your baby is born during the colder months.
  • Baby nail scissors for those sharp little nails that grow very quickly!
  • A pram/buggy/travel system - you don't need more than one, just make sure you choose one that's suitable from birth and can lay flat.
  • 6-8 sleepsuits/long sleeved suits
  • 6-8 vests/short sleeved suits
  • A cardigan or jacket (it might be nice to have two of this, in case baby has a little reflux/accident on the first).
  • A changing mat, newborn sized nappies and nappy bags (plus wipes if you want to use them from birth, although cotton wool and warm water is recommended initially. If you do choose wipes water wipes are highly rated as best from birth.

Optional extras for your newborn:

  • Baby bath and bath thermometer - some people skip purchasing a specific baby bath altogether and use the sink or the normal bath. A bath thermometer will come in very handy (though it's not an essential) as it will give you an indication of what is the right temperature for your baby is. 
  • Brush and comb - optional  - particularly if your newborn is born without much hair! 
  • Sling - This is personal preference, I personally didn't get on very well using a sling with Ethan but a lot of other parents highly rate them. 
  • Changing bag - Very handy as you might find that your handbag isn't large enough to carry around the extra items you'll need now you have a baby.
  • Steam steriliser - Saves on time and work!
  • Baby lotion - Baby may have dry skin so it's worth getting some lotion if you can. 
  • Dummies - This one is a total personal choice.
  • Bouncy chair/swing and/or play mat - We used both of these with Ethan and they were fab as it meant we had somewhere to put him down. But a clean rug perhaps with a blanket underneath your baby will work just as well as a play mat (we had laminate floors at the time and no rug).
  • Baby monitor - This again is not an essential whatsoever as baby generally will sleep in the same room as you for the first few months and will likely be with you during the day too.
  • If you have an older child who is still using a pushchair, I'd recommend looking into a double stroller. There's a great list of the best double strollers over on babieslounge.com that can help you pick one. 


  1. Such a helpful post, thanks Alex. I need baby nail scissors - hadn't even thought of those yet! xx

  2. Love this post I found I brought a lot of things that we didn't need in the end such as a bottle warmer.

  3. Love this post, it's so hard not to go over the top especially when it's your first.

  4. Sooo appreciate posts like this! Love it.... honestly the baby check-lists you find advertised everywhere are so overwhelming and make it seem like you need SO much stuff!
    I find it really helpful when people list how many of each item of clothing they bought in advance - we have gone ridiculously overboard with bub being our first! haha


  5. love it! Yup i have everything except my buggy does not lie flat :(

  6. Great list - so much stuff isn't needed at all so great to get a list of essentials x

  7. Fab list!! And I`m relieved to have checked it all off...I was scared you were going to remind me of some massively important essential I`d forgotten about!! lol! I can't shake that feeling that I'm forgetting something vital....last minute panic! xx

  8. This is so helpful! I'm currently 21 weeks pregnant with my first child, so I keep this is a great list for me. So far I have nothing checked off this list just yet!

  9. I'm glad I stumbled upon this blog post, you thought about every essential! I will definitely recommend this to a work colleague who's expecting a baby.

  10. This is really helpful! Good checklist.
    I thought both of my girls would have dummies as it really helped us when my first daughter was younger, BUT my youngest daughter hated a dummy and never had one!