I remember being pregnant with Hudson and wondering what I needed for my first time mom baby registry. I found lots of articles with a baby registry checklist a mile long! It was a little overwhelming since my husband was still in school and I was quitting my full-time job. We didn’t have a lot of money so did I really need $35 swaddle blankets??
Since I’ve had two children now, I have a pretty good grasp of what you need with a new baby and what not to put on baby registry lists. And honestly, you don’t need a lot. Like a wipe warmer for example… it’s definitely nice for keeping babies more comfortable, but I would say save that money and put it toward diapers! I also have friends who are becoming new moms and one of the questions they ask me the most is “What should I buy?” So here are my favorite first time mom baby registry must haves!
UPDATE: I just had my third baby so I’ve updated the list with things I’ve really truly used with all of my babies!
(Don’t forget your ultimate baby registry checklist printable at the end!)
When Should you Start a Baby Registry?
My best advice is to wait until you know what you’re having (unless you aren’t finding out!). There’s really no baby registry etiquette you need to follow. This just lets people personalize items for boy or girl if they choose! You can start your registry as early as you want and update it as you find the items you truly want.
Favorite Baby Registry Items for Mom
Heart Doppler: I didn’t have this with Hudson, but I decided to buy one for Ella and it gave me so much peace of mind. I loved that I could check the baby’s heartbeat at any time of the day. Some may think it’s too excessive, but it was cheap and made me feel better.
Abdominal Binder: I put this on within the first 24 hours after having my babies and kept it on for the first week. It helped my stomach shrink back to its normal size so quickly.
Must Have Newborn Items
Diapers: These are obvious! There are cloth or paper options and everyone will have one they prefer. We use paper. I love Huggies until they’re eating solids and the Kirkland brand after that. (I’ve heard the Kirkland diapers are made in the same Huggies factory, but the Kirkland are cheaper!)
Wipes: We use wipes all. the. time! I think I will always buy wipes just to clean up sticky fingers and messes. I’ve used Kirkland and Parent’s Choice.
Changing Pad/cover: I love this cover because it wipes clean so easily. I was really worried about the cream color, but even that brightly colored newborn poop comes off so easily.
Diaper Bag: I LOVE this diaper bag! I had one that had a shoulder strap with Hudson and hated how it fell off. I love this backpack version. I love the color and the price can’t be beaten! If you have more than one child, I would suggest this diaper bag for more space!
Travel Changing Pad: I received this as a baby shower gift and we still use it for Hudson. It’s nice to just take this and the wipes into the bathroom for changes. Most diaper bags come with one of these changing pads so you can save yourself some money and skip this product if needed!
Diaper Pail: I’m still undecided on this one. Our diaper pail got SO smelly after two kids so we threw it out. Now I just keep a plastic bag in the room and change it every day. It keeps smell contained and you don’t have to buy the expensive refill cartridges.
Nursing Cover: I’m a breastfeeding mom and so a cover is nice for feeding in public, plus it doubles as a cover for your car seat!
Nursing Pillow: I only use this for a few months while my babies are small, but it makes breastfeeding so much more comfortable. It also doubles as a pillow for them to do tummy time and sit up with when they get older.
Burp Cloths: Another item I only use for the first few months, but you’ll want a lot! Babies spit up and it’s helpful not to have to do laundry all of the time.
Glider: I debated about adding this to the list, since I’ve nursed in our bed and on the couch, but it really is nice to have a chair in the baby’s room just for feeding (and for reading books when the baby gets older!) I will say that a lot of gliders are very pricey. If you’re going to get a nicer one, choose something that wipes clean, like this one. Babies are messy (think spit-up/poop all over the chair!!) so get one that‘s inexpensive or one you can clean easily.
Crib: We went with this crib for both Hudson and Ella. It has a nice modern look but without the expensive price tag. Babies bite on their cribs, so I’m glad we didn’t spend a lot of money. This crib also converts to a toddler bed. This is the crib we are using for Mia.
Sheets: We have two sets of sheets for each kiddo. I love any of the crib sheet options here.
Blankets: I got so many blankets at my shower and I don’t use them a ton. I use thin ones in the summer and a nice thick one for the winter. You might want one more that goes on the floor for playtime, but other than that, you don’t really need a lot.
Swaddles: These are a lifesaver! Most babies like to be swaddled, but my babies have always broken out of the ones they do in the hospital. These swaddles have velcro so they stay secure all night. I recently started using this swaddle with Mia and it has been a lifesaver!
Pack n Play: You’ll want some sort of portable crib to take on vacation. I love this one because it has a bassinet and changing pad attachment. Ella slept in this in our room for the first month in this and it was super convenient.
Babywise: I’ve shared about this book on my Instagram. Some people don’t like scheduling their children, but this really helped Hudson with his sleeping problems and had Ella sleeping through the night at 7 weeks! It’s worth a read for the additional baby information it has too.
Grooming Kit: I love this because it has combs, a thermometer, and clippers. Everything you need for grooming.
Nose Frida: Those blue bulbs they give you in the hospital are crap. Get this instead. It seems gross, but there’s a foam piece that keeps anything from passing into your mouth. It cleans out their noses way better than anything else.
Car seat/Stroller: Another obvious, and there are TONS of different options. I just bought a Graco one and it’s worked just fine. I’m sure the expensive options are really nice, I’ve just never tried them.
Swing: A swing is a good option to calm fussy babies. I also use it to put Ella somewhere so I can make lunch and dinner.
Carrier: When my babies are super fussy and I have to get things done, I use this. It helps calm them down and I can use both of my hands. I love the Ergo because I can wear them in the front or back, so we’ve taken it hiking and on vacation. If I was to get another one, I would get the 360, because the baby can face forward. This is one of the most expensive baby registry items I bought, we’ve definitely got our use out of it.
Activity Center: This is another place to put baby if you need to get things done. Ella loved it and Hudson sat in it to eat his lunch until he was about 18 months.
High chair: We’ve bought two high chairs. I like this one because it has seven different seating options! I love this one because it’s super affordable and white goes with everything 😉
Utensils, Cups, Plates: There are lots of different options for these, so get the ones you like. We like having plastic items so they don’t break when kids drop them on the floor.
SleepSack: When babies start rolling over, this is a good option to keep them warm at night without putting a blanket on them.
Skip Hop Cover: I love using this at the grocery store and on restaurant high chairs to keep germs away from baby.
There are a few other things that we have like a car mirror so I can see the baby’s face while I’m driving. And I got this robe to wear in the hospital after Mia. Both are nice to have, but definitely not baby registry necessities.
And obviously, you need clothes for the baby! Things like onesies, pants, jammies, etc. I didn’t really register for clothes, because people usually will give you those anyway! I would say have 5-6 outfits in each size ready when baby comes. My two kiddos grew out of the smaller sizes really quickly, so I’m glad I didn’t buy a lot in those sizes. You’ll be able to tell how many of what size you need based on how your baby is growing.
Baby Registry Printable
I also wanted to make this as easy as possible for you all so I also created a FREE baby registry checklist for first time moms! Just fill out the information below and your printable baby registry checklist will be emailed to you!
Final Thoughts on a First Time Mom Baby Registry
If you were to buy all of the items listed above, you would have all that you needed for a new baby. The best part is once you already have a baby, you don’t have to purchase a lot of the items again. We only bought a crib and a few of the other essentials for Ella. Definitely choose items that are as gender-neutral as possible to save yourself money in the future!
And don’t feel like you need to buy all of these items at once! That can be very expensive. Just take it one stage at time to figure out if you really need the items or not.
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