10 Newborn Essentials We Needed After the Baby Arrived

Before Anna was born, newborn essentials meant finding the most beautiful-yet-comfortable-welcome home outfit for our little baby.

It also meant countless hours of finding the safest-yet-affordable-yet-stylish baby gear.

While I'm happy to say all of our baby gear selections turned out to be great for us, I still had no idea what daily life was going to be like. Once we got home from the hospital and lived a week or two with our little baby, there were definitely a few key items we were scrambling to acquire after we brought the baby home.

If you're looking for a beautifully curated collection of perfectly matching items, this isn't the place to find them.  If you're looking for a post providing a million research-backed analysis on baby items, this isn't the place for that either. The following items were purchased out of exhaustion and desperation. These items are no-fuss and served us well in our need to problem solve on a whim.

Here's a list of 10 newborn essentials we bought after we brought Anna home

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases through some of the links in this post. Thank you so much for supporting me!

1. Seventh Generation Diapers

We started out with Pampers Swaddlers for sensitive skin, but around 1 month, we noticed a heavy duty rash appear no matter how clean we kept her. By accident, we ended up with a huge supply of Seventh Generation diapers which we didn't like at first as the newborn size was huge on her, but they turned out to be the only diapers that didn't irritate her as we fought night and day to get the diaper rash to go away. These diapers were also the most affordable disposable option in terms of bleach-free, all natural materials.

2. Aquaphor Baby Healing Ointment

To help ease the diaper rash, we use Aquaphor. No fuss ingredients and it keeps moisture at bay without drying her skin. One tub got us through 2 months and for at least one month, we were applying it at every diaper change.

3. Breast Feeding Pillow

This was a God-send after having a c-section. I'm not sure why, but just using a pillow never worked for me to keep the baby off my stomach. All of our pillows would slip and slide out from under her. Once Matt went back to work and our moms went home, I also had a hard time sitting, with baby in arms, and trying to position a pillow. My sister-in-law sent me the My Breast Friend breastfeeding pillow and I loved one that it clipped around my waist. It also has two "pillow" bumps on each side for baby to rest their head. Another great feature was the side pocket - I often kept my phone, breast pads and nipple cream in it. I felt absolutely ridiculous walking around with that thing around my waist at times, but it offered SO much relief and made breastfeeding a little bit easier.

4. Burp Cloths

I never thought burp cloths would be something I would swear by, but we were so glad we had them. A lot of people said to use receiving blankets or wash cloths, but they fell off so easily. We bought the Green Sprout Burp Cloths and they curved to fit over our shoulders and it covered front and back because baby spit up can go anywhere.

Green sprouts burp cloths - must have for newborns

5. Bouncy Chair

Some people have rocking babies, and some people have swinging babies, but we have a bouncing baby. From the day she was born until now, she loves to be bounced when she needs to be soothed. However, even the strongest of daddies gets tired of pacing and bouncing and singing for so long. We were gifted the rock n' play before she was born, but she cried every time we put her in it. Some babies love the rock n' play, but ours didn't. This Fisher Price bouncy chair was extremely affordable and simple.

Please keep in mind that we never let Anna sleep for long periods in this chair. We only used it to soothe her or have a safe place to put her when we needed both hands. This was a great device when I need to take a shower. I would turn the chair music on, strap Anna in, and dim the bathroom lights. The steam and sound of the shower, combined with the movement of the chair and the music really relaxed her.

6. Wearable Carrier

We were gifted the Ergo Carrier and the Ergo infant insert. Matt LOVED carrying Anna in it. The only issue is it didn't sit right on my short torso. I ended up getting the baby k'tan and it worked so well for me. I was nervous it would irritate my back since I always have back problems, but it was perfect for what I needed. I loved that it wasn't complicated to put on.

7. Cradle Cap Shampoo

Anna had cradle cap and our normal baby shampoo didn't help. Our pediatrician recommended normal dandruff shampoo, but I wasn't comfortable using something so strong, even though I'm sure it would have been fine. I picked up a bottle of Mustela Newborn Shampoo at Target and it knocked her cradle cap out in just a few days.

Mustela - cradle cap shampoo for newborns

8. Baby Socks

A lot of people will tell you to skip baby socks because they never stay on, but that isn't really an option when you have a newborn during the colder seasons. These newborn socks by Nurses Choice never fell off and lasted so long. I loved the classic look of them!

9. Halo Sleep Sack Swaddle

When Anna was born, she had a hip click and we had to go through a series of ultrasounds and x-rays to check for hip dysplasia. I was so nervous about doing anything to make her hips worse and while using swaddle blankets worked well for us, I was nervous about not aligning her legs correctly. The Halo Sleep Sack allowed us to swaddle tightly while ensuring healthy hips.

10. Lovevery Play Gym

Ok, so we didn't actually buy this, but I won it on Instagram! We loved it so much that I ordered one for my sister-in-law who is expecting. We had a simple and amazing tummy time mat, but I really wanted something she could also look up at and reach for while we played during the day. The Lovevery Play Gym really focuses on the developmental needs of babies without being overstimulating. I only wish I had it from the start!

Newborn Essentials - Lovevery Play Gym

So there you have it: all the hard-working newborn essentials we WISH we had when we got home from the hospital.

Questions for the Mamas:

If you're expecting, don't hesitate to leave a comment with any questions about the items we used!

Already a mama? Let me know in the comments what items you ended up needing after you brought baby home!

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