Skip to content



Your cart is empty

Now Reading : Baby Essentials: Must-haves for New Parents

Baby Essentials: Must-haves for New Parents

Baby Essentials: Must-haves for New Parents

Once you have babyproofed your home and created a safe environment for the baby, it is time to move on to purchasing the must-have items!

Shopping for new babies can get overwhelming for first time parents so for this exercise, we will be dividing our shopping list into two categories: the must-haves, and the nice-to-haves.

But before we get ahead of ourselves, it is important to remember that as tempting as it may be, the arrival of your newborn does not mean you must drastically swap all your furniture to baby-friendly ones.

If you were to have extra funds and/or are looking into making new purchases, ensure that you find items with a better safety standard and where less harmful chemicals were used in its production as children are susceptible to toxic chemicals that may stunt their development.

It may be in your best interest to purchase items that will last you for years ahead, in order to reduce overall costs (and contribute to less waste) so do look out for quality items from reputable brands.

Without further ado, here is a quick guide and lists to your next shopping journey!

Essential, must-haves.

  • Baby Clothing

The nights are long but oh, the years are short! In a blink of an eye, babies do grow quickly. There are so many (and cute!) options out there but it is important to pick out essential baby clothings that is both comfortable and practical for babies.

  • Zippable onesies (so much easier to use zippers that use button studs, especially during nappy accidents)
  • Swaddle/ sleeping bags 
  • 6 socks or booties (shoes are unnecessary until baby starts walking)
  • Bucket hats for summer days
  • Lightweight blankets
  • Car Seats

Arguably the most important item if you’re driving home with the baby from the hospital. Up until the age of 12 months, it is highly recommended for new babies to be using a rear-facing child car seat, or capsule (usually last up to 6 months). Whichever brand you choose, make sure it is approved to the AS/NZS 1754 standard and labeled accordingly! Tip: If you purchase from a reputable store, they may just include the installation for you!

  • Car Shades
Car shades are often overlooked, but they are the best solution to protect your baby from UV and direct sunlight, especially on sunny summer days! A good one also helps to shade the car seats from being too hot for when you need to put your baby in the car.



  • Cot/ Bassinet
Some parents use a bassinet for their babies until the age of 4-6months or until they learn to sit or roll over. However the safest way to sleep your baby from birth would be in a cot and most cost effective option. If you haven’t had enough space in the house to create a new room for the baby, you can fit the baby’s cot in a corner of your room. Red Nose Australia recommends to sleep your baby in a cot in the same room as you in the first 6-12 months to reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).

For your baby’s sleep safety, you need an Australian Standards-approved cot, and ensure the cot has no horizontal bars that the baby can use to climb out. No pillows, doonas or cot bumpers as they can be suffocation risks.



  • Mattress & Mattress Protector
Ensure that the mattress you choose is one that meets the current safety standard, and well fitted to your cot. A firm mattress will provide proper support for your baby and at the chance where they roll over while sleeping, their noses will not sink into the mattress and obstruct their airway.

A waterproof mattress protector helps to avoid the intensive cleaning that comes with inevitable accidents and spills and keep the longevity of your mattress!

Above all, keeping an active awareness on not letting your baby lay on other soft surfaces and introducing pillows or other fluffy items is imperative in keeping sleeping time safe for your baby. Safe sleeping practices can reduce the risk of fatal sleeping accidents and sudden infant death syndrome.



  • Prams

So much of the factors contributing to this purchase will be based on your personal preference. As it is one of the most expensive purchases for your baby(ies), don’t be afraid to test before you buy! Apart from the safety standard that your pram needs to adhere to for baby’s needs and comfort, buying one requires you to consider your comfort. Here’s some of the factors to consider:-

  • Is it comfortable for you to handle and carry with just one hand – imagine having to hold your baby in one, would you be able to unfold your pram easily?

  • Storage space that comes with your pram is also important as you’d need to carry essentials such as a nappy bag and feeding items – not including your shopping. Depending on your daily activities, a pram with manageable weight and good tyres can come a long way.

  • Are you planning to have more than 1 baby in the near future? Perhaps choose one with extension to a double pram!

  • Finally, don’t forget to measure the dimensions of your folded pram – it is one of the fundamental requirements that cannot be overlooked – would it fit in the boot of your car?

    • Baby Carriers

    There are times where you cannot take your prams with you and you need to be hands free - yet you can give your baby as much cuddles your baby needs! Having a baby carrier is one of the best things as newborn parents!

    When choosing the one that suits you or your partner, keep in mind that the carrier can hold your baby safely as most can only carry them to a certain weight. For your comfort, ensure that there are padded shoulder straps and waistband, as well as easy to attach by yourself.

    • Nappies

    Believe it or not, newborns need lots and lots of nappies. Typically a newborn goes through 8 to 12 nappies a day for the first six weeks! Stock up when you can or include this as one of the gift registry - you can never have too many!

    • Nappy Bags
    Backpack style is our vote, purely for practicality! We always have a spare one for the car and one to take with you. Personally we need to have at least one of each in each bag:
      • Unscented Wipes
      • Nappies
      • Nappy Rash Cream
      • Change mat 
      • Disposable nappy bags (for soiled clothes)
      • 1 set of change of clothes
      • Baby Play Mats

      For us, play mat is a must-have not only because it has multiple functions that will easily replace some nice-to-haves, in our books - play mat is an essential for both baby and parents. Health professionals recommend that a baby should start tummy time from birth, as it will promote the development of your newborns’ muscles and motoric skills.

      We recommend a padded, waterproof and PVC-free play mats to ensure its safety especially from newborn stage. As a regular activity that comes recommended daily, newborns would need a suitable safe and padded surface to do so, and this is where a waterproof play mat with shock-absorbent cushioning comes very handy.

      Apart from a tummy time prop, waterproof play mats can double as a changing mat hence eliminating the need to purchase a changing table. Safer and more comfortable than a changing table, it is also a wonderful area to bond with your baby over play and other activities.

      We have found that having a play mat helps accelerate many children’s first roll-over, by accommodating a suitable space to flip safely. When they start crawling, a play mat will protect their elbows and knees, and when they take their first steps it will cushion their fall.

      Many milestones to be achieved on one single mat, this one is not only a must-have but definitely nice to have.


      • Bath equipments

      Some say that with minimal movements that newborns make, it is not essential to bathe them daily as it will dry up their skin in the first few weeks of their lives. Personally, we do find that it’s a nice soothing experience and it is part of the daily sleep routine. It helps them relax at the end of a long (& hard) day!. Even if your baby is not bathing daily, these equipment will still prove to be essential for their bathing repertoire.

        • Baby bathtub
          Finding a sturdy and safe baby bathtub can be very helpful and support them from slipping.
          • Baby bath thermometer
            Using your hand as a thermometer is not accurate enough in finding the right temperature for newborns, their skin is much more sensitive.

          • Gentle soap and shampoo (pH balanced preferably)

            There’s so many great brands of baby soap these days but our go to for newborns must be a pH balanced, soap and fragrance free; as this not only prevents skin issues but is gentle for their eyes.

          • Wash cloths

            Have plenty of wash cloths because these tiny cloths are so useful in getting dirt out and most importantly, they are sensitive skin friendly and hygienic. Wash it after every use.

          • Hooded baby towels

            Hooded baby towels are excellent in both drying and keeping the baby's head covered and warm.

            A regular towel is of course just as useful if you’re quick, as you know babies lose heat from their head so a hooded baby towel is also really nice to have so you can take your time.


          Apart from the must-haves, are the nice-to-haves. It ultimately depends on your personal needs and if some of these items count as a necessary luxury. Let’s start our list below.

          Nursery Chair

          A comfortable rocking chair in the nursery is a nice addition when feeding or expressing. It creates a relaxing environment for both mum and the baby, but also can take up quite a bit of space and cost a fair bit.

          Changing table

          It is undoubtedly convenient to have a separate changing area for newborns. It is even better when a changing table has extra storage space underneath for your nappy needs, however it requires your full attention as you absolutely cannot leave your baby on there not even for a second, as it is a huge safety issue once your baby learns how to roll over (our little one did this very early stage) so we have to get rid of the changing table very quickly.

          Baby monitors

          If you have a large house or if you feel anxious about leaving your baby, baby monitors can really help to keep an eye on them!

          Bottle sterilisers

          It’s nice, but also expensive! A pot of boiling water can do the job equally as good.

          Nappy Disposable Bin

          It’s good to have a dedicated bin for your nappies and closeby to your changing area, however they don’t smell great, at all! So chances are you will need to ensure there’s enough ventilation in the room and/or have it emptied every few hours.

          To sum up, the must-haves and nice-to-haves can be rather subjective depending on one’s personal needs. However, we do hope that we have helped outline the items that are most sought after by new parents and packed some information for your shopping journey! 

          Don't forget to take a printout of our checklists with you!

          Leave a comment

          This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

          All comments are moderated before being published.

          Hi! Looks like you're
          shopping from: