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What to buy for baby … and what not to buy when expecting.

Updated on February 5, 2014

Johnson's Baby Products

Every product in the JOHNSON’S® Baby range is specially formulated for baby’s delicate skin, and clinically proven to be mild, gentle and safe to use.
Every product in the JOHNSON’S® Baby range is specially formulated for baby’s delicate skin, and clinically proven to be mild, gentle and safe to use. | Source

New parent

Below is a useful guide for all mums to help you through pregnancy, getting ready for baby and first days post birth.
Below is a useful guide for all mums to help you through pregnancy, getting ready for baby and first days post birth. | Source

It may be tempting, but the latest iPad and educational apps should not be top of the list when buying for baby.

Save it for later.

Or even better get the grandparents to buy it!

Newborn babies do not actually need all the latest consumer goodies. Their very young desires focus on food, sleep, a clean and dry bottom, and the comfort of Mum and Dad’s cuddles.

Before baby arrives

You need to have the essentials before baby arrives. Baby will need clothes (not as many as you think), a change table (a change mat on the floor is an alternative but maybe not for your back), nappies (lots), a baby bath (again, there are alternatives before baby graduates to the bath), somewhere to sleep (cot or bassinet), cot mattress and mattress protector, cot linen (lots), a pram or stroller (think carefully about what you need and do your research), a car seat, perhaps a baby sling or pouch when you are carrying baby, mobiles and bath toys.

You will need nursing bras and cloths or breast pads if you are breast feeding, bottles and formula if you are hand feeding, a comfortable chair or bed support for feeding, a nappy bag (remember that too big means too heavy), drawers for storage, toiletries and a range of specially formulated baby products.

New and shiny?

Baby may be new but that doesn’t mean that all the trimmings have to be shiny. If it’s a new baby, you can always borrow some of the essentials – including baby clothing – from friends and family. If your newborn is joining older children in the family, you may already have a cot or pram and other items in the essential list. There’s a great ‘cute factor’ when you see your newborn in the same sleepsuit as older sister a year or two before.

You can also buy secondhand, from the stores, or online. Be careful with the safety factors on items like cots, prams, strollers and car restraints.

You will probably have a baby shower which can bring a mountain of gifts and more when baby arrives. Don’t be afraid to supply a baby list, much like a wedding gift list, which will help family and friends to make buying decisions for things you really want.

If you are buying new, remember that your newborn will quickly outgrow her clothing and baby needs as she moves to the next stage of toddler. Baby business is big business – just look at the celebrity magazines. So it’s tempting to succumb to the marketing, particularly with your first baby. Just beware the ‘designer baby’ syndrome where the price tag does not justify the product efficiency. Do your research, take advice from friends and family who have been there before you, and look for the bargains.

After baby arrives

Now that baby is here you can start thinking about the non-essentials. And the future years.

A rocker chair or bouncer will keep baby safe and amused while you are doing other things nearby. A baby monitor is useful when baby starts sleeping in her own room. In preparation for the toddler stage, look around the home to plan how to make it toddler safe. Now is the time for more toys and playthings. Grandparents will be the first to look for the educational toys so that their precious little one will be a baby genius.

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