The Ultimate Newborn Essential Kit
Written by Pamela Lim, https://joyfulparenting.sg
Already in your third trimester? This is a a great time to start getting ready for the baby. So if you are wondering what and how to prepare, I'm here to help by creating the Best Newborn Essentials Guideto help you prepare and get organized for your baby while keeping them safe and healthy.
It's good to keep in mind that what we place on our skin is absorbed into our bloodstream within seconds. Babies put everything in their mouths to chew and suck therefore swallowing whatever is in and on the material. We need to protect our little ones from as many toxins as possible. Babies and children are more susceptible to toxins because their organs are still growing and maturing. So it's best to invest in their health by buying safer and healthier products for them.
I must say that newborn babies really need very little.
"A newborn baby has only three demands. Warmth in the arms of its mother. Food from her breasts. Security in the knowledge of her presence. Breastfeeding satisfies all three." — Grantly Dick-Reed (Grantly Dick-Read was a British obstetrician and a leading advocate of natural childbirth)
So, let’s get organised!
Here's what you'll need for your new bundle of joy...
Baby clothes come in different sizes:
- 3 months
- 6 months
- 9 months
- 12 months
What size should you buy? You won’t really know how big your baby will be until the day it is born. So it’s a good idea to have both newborn and 3 month sizes handy. Babies usually weigh 4 - 5 kilograms when they are 1- 2 months old. Some babies are born big. Well, all my 3 babies were born weighing at least 4.2kg!
You'll want to focus on buying baby clothes that are soft, breathable, roomy and comfortable. Newborn skin is very sensitive. It’s a good idea to buy 100% organic cotton but if 100% organic cotton is out of your price range, the next best thing is to buy 100% cotton.
Avoid clothing that has dangling strings, tassels, and ribbons because these are choking hazards.
Baby’s First Wardrobe
- 4 - 7 one piece, stretchy (terry-cloth) sleepers. They have snaps or zippers down the front and all the way down to the leg. The benefit is that it will allow you to change your baby's clothes easily without pulling things over his/her head. Make sure whatever you buy opens easily at the bottom for diaper changes.
- 4 - 7 rompers or onesies (mix of short sleeve and long sleeve - kimono style)
- 3 - 5 pairs of leggings or pull up pants
- 3 – 5 nightgowns
- 2 - 4 newborn beanies (hats) - make sure these are stretchy
- 4 - 8 pairs of socks or booties (to wear with nightgowns and outfits)
- 3 to 5 pairs of scratch mittens, to keep baby from scratching his/her sweet face or until their fingernails are trimmed
- 2 - 4 receiving blankets
- Burp cloths (cloth diapers work best and get a bunch cause babies spit up a lot)
As Baby Grows
- 4 rompers (snap at the crotch)
- 2 washable bibs
- 4 outfits for dressing up (optional)
- 2 - 4 sleep sacs (optional)
Should you wash your baby's clothes and baby’s sling carrier before he/she is born?
YES. Remember that you and your partner will be holding your baby A LOT so you'll want to wash your clothes too, with non toxic, fragrance free, laundry detergent.
Good brands of laundry detergent for infants and family:
- Seventh Generation Free & Clear Natural Laundry Detergent (Best Baby Detergent for Sensitive Skin) Free of scents, colours and artificial brighteners, relying on plant-based enzymes to break down difficult stains. Hypoallergenic and environmentally friendly.
- Biokleen Baby Laundry Liquid (Ecologically-friendly) Fragrance-free, dye-free and preservative-free solution that does not aggravate eczema. Grapefruit seed extract and plant-based surfactants that eradicate tough odours and stains.
- all Laundry Detergent (Best Stain-Removing Baby Detergent) Fragrance-free, dye-free, fluoride-free and specially prepared for sensitive skin. Hypoallergenic and also has the National Eczema Association approval (NEA).
Here is a fun little baby fact...An average baby will go through approximately 2,700 diapers a year. WOW! That's a lot of pee and poop!
Whether you use cloth or disposable or something in between (some diapers use a reusable cover with a disposable lining), your baby will probably go through 10 to 12 diapers a day at first, so plan accordingly.
Your decision to use either disposable or cloth diapers will not only have a great impact on your baby’s comfort and health, it can also impact the environment and your finances.
- More Expensive: Over the years, you will probably spend around $3,000 diapering your baby in disposables.
- Bad for the environment: It is estimated that around 1 ton of non-biodegradable waste is deposited into landfill.
- Diaper–rash: According to one study, 78% of babies in disposable diapers get diaper-rash, compared to only 7% of cloth diapered babies.
- Harder to potty-train: Toddlers can’t feel wetness as much with disposables so it’s harder for them to potty-train.
- Cost-friendly: Cloth diapers can be expensive for the initial set-up (SG$300-500) but works out a lot cheaper in the long run, compared to disposables.
- Less diaper-rash: Cloth diapering tend to have lesser diaper-rash because of the breathable natural cotton fibres.
- Can be used for subsequent children: Works out to be even cheaper because you can use for more children you have later.
- Easier to potty-train: Since the cloth tends to hold moisture to baby’s skin. Cloth diapered children tend to potty-train earlier.
- Stylish: You can find cloth diapers with Velcro or snap fasteners and in a variety of colours and designs.
Make sure to shop around for best prices because diapers add up. And keep in mind that you may need to see how different brands work for your baby.
- 3 dozen cloth diapers (considering the washing and drying time)
- Diaper pin, velcro or clips if using cloth diapers
- 5 - 7 waterproof diaper covers or consider all in one diapers
- Dirty diaper pail - diapers get stinky!!! (soak all dirty diapers by end of each day)
- Cotton balls, cotton swabs
- Baby wipes (My favourite baby wipes are Pigeon Baby Wipes as they are 100% pure water. Other wipes I like are:
- Huggies Wet Wipes Natural Care (Ideal for sensitive skin, unscented and pH-balanced)
- Babyganics (Non-allergenic, Alcohol-free, plant based that kills 99.9% of germs)
- Offspring Plant-Based Baby Wipes (Best for eco-friendly material) High-quality and strong biodegradable fibre material)
- Soonsu Wet Wipes (Best Korean baby wet wipes, 99.9% Purified water and gentle on sensitive skin)
Newborn baby's skin is super sensitive. For the first few weeks don’t use baby wipes. Buy a roll of very soft paper towels and cut into squares, have a bowl and a thermos with warm water by the changing table to clean baby with or use a washcloth and warm water.
- Diaper-rash cream
- Mama’s Choice Baby Diaper Cream (Safe, halal, natural and fast-acting formula ingredients for sensitive skin – it can also be a preventive measure for application to areas prone to rashes)
- Ceradan Cream (Triple protective action which helps to reinforce a healthy skin protective barrier – a top brand among Dermatologists in Singapore)
- California Baby Diaper Rash Cream (100% bio-based formula, cloth-diaper safe and does not contain any preservatives)
Supplies for breastfeeding
- Extra pillows of nursing compared to nursing pillows.
- 6 burp clothes (cloth diapers work the best)
- Nursing bras (if buying before baby is born, buy one cup size larger than your pregnant bra size)
- Nursing pads for bras:
- Baby sling (The Birth Shop’s original baby ring slings) This allows you to be handsfree whilst nursing baby discreetly publicly in the sling
- Nursing blouses and dresses (with nursing access)
- Milk storage container – For storing access milk and if you are going back to work. You can use small glass mason jars in the first few months instead of plastic bags and they are extremely durable
- Breast pads (disposable or washable)
- Nipple cream: (Earth Mama Organic Nipple cream) or just use your hindmilk
- Nursing Cover or just use a light weight blanket
- 2 receiving blankets
- 1 or 2 rubber-backed waterproof pads.
- 3 crib or bassinet sheets
- 1 plastic infant tub (or an infant tub you can use in a big sink, or take baby in the bath with you.)
- 12 washcloths, not used on baby's bottom
- Baby Wash – Frequent washing might cause your baby’s sensitive skin to dry out. If your infant requires soap, it’s likely because he stinks like cheese… In that case, castile soap can be used. Just fill a foamy dispenser halfway with the following ingredients:
- 1 ounce Castile soap that is unscented
- 4 ounces filtered drinking water
- 3 drops of essential lavender oil
- 3 drops essential orange oil (or 3 drops lemongrass oil)
- Baby soft-bristled hair brush
- 3 soft-hooded towels
- Crib and or Bassinet - For Bassinet, Cradle and/or Crib mattress (consider spending money on the non-toxic brand)
- Changing table or padded work area
- Baby sling – The Birth Shop
- Car seat- What You Should Know About Fire Retardants In Car Seats.
- Diaper bag
Toiletries and Medical Supplies (for the first couple of months)
- Digital thermometer
- Antiseptic for cord - your doctor will make suggestions
- Cotton balls - cotton swabs
- Infant Acetaminophen
- Baby nail scissors or clippers and a nail file (newborns need their nails filed)
- Eye dropper or medicine spoon
- Vaporizer, type recommended by your doctor
- Gripe Water