Buying the baby essentials
It’s so easy to get carried away with the amount of things you can buy for your baby. From toys for the nursery, to the latest gadgets it’s easy to lose track of how much you’ve spent. It’s easier said than done but don’t get carried away, you’ll have plenty of time to spoil your baby. Follow our tips and you won’t leave your baby wanting or have the bank manager at your door!
With so many cute things in the shops it's easy to get carried away with buying outfits. Trouble is, your baby won't stay the same size for long and there's only so much they can wear!
Baby clothing essentials probably include a minimum of 6 one-piece outfits (bodysuits/rompers) and vests, some socks, a couple of cardigans, a little hat, some mittens (in case they have scratchy nails) , bibs and tops with poppers – a must for quick changes. You might also find a pack of muslin squares useful for saving your own clothes from the inevitable baby sick, spills and dribbles.
There’s plenty to do when your baby arrives, so many mums may decide to have newborn disposable nappies ready for the first week. Cloth nappies are a cheaper investment and better for the environment and with so many to choose from nowadays they are a very easy alternative to disposable. Even just one cloth nappy means you save more than 365 nappies going to landfill!
You'll also need a baby changing mat, toiletries and a baby changing bag for when you are out and about. A baby changing station for use at home means you won’t have to bend over so much saving you potential backache. That may sound silly but not when you discover that a newborn baby needs up to 10 - 12 changes a day!
To breastfeed your baby, invest in some good nursing bras and some breast pads. If you want to express your breast milk you’ll also need a breast pump, storage containers, steriliser, bottles and teats.
A baby's skin is delicate and they can be slippery when wet so try some specific baby wash instead of soap and shampoo. You can buy a baby bath but a washing up bowl is equally fine! Water is just fine on its own to wash new babies as they don’t really get very dirty.
You needn't buy a cot quite yet. A bassinet or the carrycot from a pram will do nicely, especially as you'll probably want to keep moving your baby around the house with you. You'll need proper, soft baby bedding. A listening monitor is optional for those times when you're in another room.
Don’t forget the car seat!
If your baby's born in hospital you'll need a car seat to take them home. It’s very important to fit the seat correctly according to the manufacturers instructions and it’s always much safer for your baby to fit the seat in the back of the car. If you have airbags in your car, remember you must always fit the baby’s seat in the back.
Pram or pushchair
If you do get a pram or pushchair make sure it’s designed to let your baby lie flat, to protect their growing back.
Cheap baby stuff
Ask friends and family to see what you can borrow and go to second hand or nearly new stores. They’re great for picking up bargains. Look out for 'value options' in well known stores too. Just because something is cheaper doesn't mean it hasn't had to meet proper safety standards. However please remember that it is not recommended to buy a second-hand car seat.
Although it may seem cheeky, why not do a wish list of baby things? Most of your family and friends will probably want to give you something. You'll be doing them and your baby a favour by giving them a shopping list for your new baby! If you're lucky enough to have a large and generous family maybe put a few requests for clothes and toys to suit them when they're a little older? It's amazing how time flies!
We’ve put together a list of things you might like to buy for your new arrival, download it here.