Newborn Essentials

As I sort our children’s things to clear out some things we don’t use anymore, I remembered the newborn (0-3 momths at least) things I used to prepare every time I gave birth. I really learned a lot after 2 close childbirths. I learned on what the essentials really are and what are the nice-to-haves.

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Hope you find this list helpful, moms and dads. Just adjust the quantity depending on your budget and how often you do your laundry. I find it sp nice to buy all white. Babies look so clean, smells clean, and always fresh plus you’ll be able to see if there are some insects or fly crawling or flying on or near your baby.

  •  5 shirts with sleeves
  • 5 nightgowns (for use until the cord falls off)
  • 3-5 white pajamas
  • 2-3 pcs newborn bonnet
  • 5-7 onesies (I find onesies easier on babies. They are carried all the time so their clothes get displaced easily. But with onesies, it stays in place. Onesies are for after the cord falls off)
  • 7 pairs of booties 
  • 7 pairs of socks
  • 5-7 pairs of mittens
  • 1-2 cardigans or jackets
  • Laundry detergent for babies
  • 3-4 clothes for going out
  • 2 cotton baby blankets
  • 5 receiving blankets (they also make handy burp cloths)
  • Anti mosquito oil or spray. Click here for our recommended brands

For breastfeeding moms, I recommend these:

  • Burp cloths or those cloth diapers – plain white ones (also called lampin by many)
  • Breast pump (so many brands put there in the market from double pump to one pump and manual to automatic). You can buy or borrow. I was lucky that good friends made me borrow their so I was able to try and use 2 brands.
  • Milk storage containers (reusable or disposable milk bags whichever you prefer)
  • Nursing pillow (you can buy from department store or baby specialty shops. We got ours from Mothercare and it was worth every peso paid).
  • Nursing bras (if you’ll before your baby is born, buy at least one cup size larger than your pregnant bra size and buy something comfortable)
  • Breast pads (disposable or washable will do. I bought 4 pairs of washable breastpad after using disposable for the first 2 months)
  • Lotion for sore nipples (there are a lot of choices in the market today but a simple petroleum jelly will get the job done too).

Bottle feeding things:

  • bibs
  • burp cloths / white diaper cloths are also nice to use
  • 4 four-ounce bottles (newborn bottles)
  • 8-10 eight-ounce bottles
  • Bottle and nipple brush
  • Formula (parents can choose which formula to give their child but doctors also recommend most of the time. Organic milk is widely consumed today and a lot of brands are available too)
  • Sterilizer (We use Avent sterilizer. I like how fast it sterilizes the bottles and I find it practical budget wise too compared to the new ones coming out. Back in the day, our parents just boil our bottles in water in a pot and that’s it)

We don’t use reusable diapers and we actually never tried due to a lot of home moving the past 2 years since I gave birth. Maybe someday we can try. Here are the useful one for diapering:

  • Two boxes of newborn-size diapers (it’s better not to buy too many in advance in case your baby is large or grows quickly)
  • small plastic bags where we can put soiled diapers since diaper pails are not a thing in the Philippines
  • Changing pad (I love the classic rubber pink and blue colored ones which you can buy in department stores. Also, diaper / baby bags come with changing pads too)
  • Disposable wipes or wet cottons to clean baby’s bottoms (We used wipes on the 3rd month)

Bath Time

  • 1 plastic infant tub
  • 1 small basin (Click here for the details on newborn bath and bath essentials)
  • 12 washcloths (face towel size)
  • Baby soap or cleanser
  • Soft-bristled hair brush for baby
  • Baby cotton buds
  • towel (We did not purchase baby towels. We used a receiving blanket or our smaller towels which were washed well for baby)

Sleep time

  • crib or mattress (others prefer cosleeping with the baby so they don’t need these or prefer a floor bed with just a mattress and a playmat around it)
  • at least 2 waterproof mattress covers
  • 2-3 fitted cribsheets
  • 2 blankets
  • Baby pillows (but usually just for a newborn baby’s sides. Not too many and not big ones. Some don’t like pillows in their baby’s crib)
  • Bedtime music (probably from a musical toy or mommy’s singing voice. Best to keep nice music playing so baby won’t get surprised with little noise plus it will be a good sleep routine until the baby grows a little older)

Other needs

  • car seat (although the Philippine law doesn’t require it, it’s still best for babies to be safe in all forms of transportation)
  • Stroller that reclines so newborn can lie flat (This is the ideal stroller. In our case, we bought the once for newborns and others for strolling and just the umbrella types available now. They’re not bulky and easy to move around in smaller spaces)
  • Nail clippers or scissors
  • Nose suction for mucous / colds
  • Baby thermometer (ear or forehead thermometer)
  • Medicine dropper and medicine spoon
  • Medication in case of fever – paracetamol is my must-have medicine always

Nice to have things

  • Change table (or just use change pad on top of dresser or bed)
  • Rocking chair or a Lazy Boy for feeding and rocking baby to sleep or maybe duyan?)
  • Playpen
  • Sling or baby carrier
  • Diaper bag (You can just use any bag actually, I used my own bag before too. Check it out here)
  • 1 or 2 change pads
  • Plastic hangers for closet
  • Sun shade for car windows
  • 2 or 4 pacifiers (if you choose to use these)
  • Rattles and other baby toys
  • Mobiles
  • Night light
  • Night music
  • Newborn cute towels
  • Swaddle
  • And many many many more since there are so many things beings introduced in the parenting and kids’ world these days. 

There are so much more new products in the market now and every year businesses come up with newer or improved ones. Can you imagine how simple life was before and yet everyone survived well and good. There were no breast pumps and no one collected breast milk for storage. There were no comfortable play yards and playpens, no baby carriers, no disposable diapers, and no sterilizers. Life was simple and more affordable. But affordability is usually dependent on our preferences and lifestyle. So moms and dads, aunts and uncles, grandmas and grandpas, don’t fall into the trap of product marketing. Some exagerrate that we “need” some things in life wherein we really don’t. Sometimes we have to stick and think of the essentials and let go of our wants. You’ll be surprised how it will make things simpler and easier too.

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