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What Do You REALLY Need For A Newborn?

What do you need for a newborn? The answer is, actually, not a lot! Have a look at these 10 essentials to make sure that you’re fully prepared for when your little bundle arrives.

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The morning sickness has finally gone, your bump is starting to grow, and you’re thinking about starting your baby shopping. You’ve got a few things in mind that you want to buy, but you’re still left wondering ‘What do you really need for a newborn’?

Will we survive the first few months without a nappy bin, changing table and 50 different outfits, or are they an essential part of life with a baby?

It’s no secret that pregnancy can be hard. As well as all of the physical changes going on with your body, you’re also having to deal with all of the advice, wanted or unwanted, from anyone that thinks they know best – which as it happens, is everyone (even people that don’t even have children).

As if pregnancy isn’t overwhelming enough right?

Before you know it you’ll find yourself sitting on the sofa in the evening thinking ‘I have to go out right now and buy that pink sparkly nappy bin because Aunt Sue said I absolutely have to have one’. Well, guess what… You don’t, and that goes for most of the other things you’re told you’ll need too.

If you like planning and keeping track of things on paper, why not visit my Etsy store and grab a New Mum And Baby Checklist and Hospital Bag Checklist in my New Mum Bundle.

What do you need for life with a newborn?

First of all, have a think about what it is that you really need. Those first few weeks after giving birth, you’re likely to be in pain, exhausted and just looking for a quick and easy way to do things, so comfort is key.

You’re probably not going to feel like popping to the local supermarket to pick up nappies or wipes every day, so make sure you have enough of everything before baby gets here.

First of all, we’ll have a look at all of those Mum essentials that will keep you going through the sleepless nights:

Things you need for a newborn | Mum essentials

Maternity pads

PP bleeding sucks, but it’s totally normal and happens to all of us. It can last for a few weeks after giving birth, so make sure you stock up on maternity pads. Don’t be tempted to use your normal pads as these can irritate the skin, especially if you’ve had stitches.

Breast pads

Did you know that when your milk comes in, you’re most likely going to leak through your clothes at some point? Even if you’re not planning on breastfeeding, you’ll still get that inevitable leakage, and you just know that it’ll happen at the most inappropriate time too! This why breast pads are most definitely a new Mum essential.

Breast pads come in disposable and washable varieties, and you can find some great ones at Boots. Click here for the disposable ones, and here for the washable ones 🙂

Ibuprofen and paracetamol

If you can take them, ibuprofen and paracetamol can be great pain relievers in the first few days/weeks after giving birth.

Obviously, check with your midwife before taking them, and follow the instructions on the packet!

A good supply of pajamas and comfy clothes

I lived in pajamas for the first few weeks, so make sure that you have enough to last for a little while, especially if you’re not going to be doing much laundry.

Vest tops or button-up shirts are always a good idea if you’re breastfeeding.

Things you need for a newborn | Baby essentials


You will need a good supply of nappies for the first few days/weeks, especially if you don’t really feel like going out straight away. Aim for about 10 – 12 a day to start off with, and then see how you get on.

It can be a good idea to buy some smaller bags of a few different brands at first so you can see which ones you and your baby get on with better.


I personally found wipes to be the easiest for cleaning up during a nappy change, but it’s totally up to you and is just personal preference. Cotton balls, pads, etc work well too. Stock up with a good supply because poo explosions are definitely a thing!


For a newborn baby, onesies are probably the easiest item of clothing you can dress them in. They’re easy to put on and take off, they’re easy to clean, and you can get some really cute ones.

They’re also a good item of clothing for the colder weather because you don’t have any gaps that will let the chill in, especially at night.

Boots do some adorable ones in their Mini Club, and they’re not too pricey either.

A moses basket

A moses basket is an absolute must have for a newborn.

Babies tend to sleep a lot, and they usually decide to fall asleep when you have something to do! The good thing about a moses basket is that it has handles, so you can take it around the house with you without disturbing your little one.

Feeding supplies

Depending on how you’re thinking of feeding your baby, it’s always a good idea to stock up with a few essentials:

Bottles – Aim for about 5 bottles to start off with. This will give you a chance to wash, sterilise and store milk while making sure you that you still have enough to feed the baby with.

Steriliser – A steriliser isn’t just for bottles! You can also use it for teethers, dummies, plates, and spoons, so it’s worth getting a good one.

Breast pump – Breast pumps are very handy if you’re planning on breastfeeding, but sharing the night feeds! I preferred to use a manual one, but as with everything, it is personal preference. You can find the manual one I used here, and the electric version here.

Formula – If you’re planning on formula feeding, make sure you have enough in the house for when your baby arrives. The last thing you want is to send your partner out on a 3 am hunt for the nearest open shop!


Muslins are without a doubt the best invention ever! They’re so handy, and you definitely shouldn’t leave the house without one in your changing bag. If you opt for something cheap and cheerful and you can’t really go wrong. There’s just no point in paying too much for them because they don’t stay pretty for very long!!

A selection of blue baby items

Enjoy your wonderful newborn without worries

Babies are amazing little things and you’ll want to savour every moment with them while they’re tiny. Try using the above points as a guide to stock up on the essentials and you should be able to get through those first few weeks quite smoothly.

Just remember, you’ve got this!

Was there anything you found you couldn’t live without in those first few weeks? Let me know if I’ve missed anything out.

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8 Replies to “What Do You REALLY Need For A Newborn?”

  1. I would add that having a few cartons of ready made new born formula even if you plan on breast feeding can be a life saver. I planned on breast feeding, and at week 3 in the middle of the night I ran empty. I simply didn’t produce enough for her appetite. Luckily a friend lived two doors down, had a baby too and had formula on hand so we got through it. With the second one I made sure to have some on hand just in case it was needed.

    1. That’s actually a really good idea! I could have done with some of that in the first few months. I had an awful stomach bug and remember laying in bed throwing up with baby beside me crying because he was hungry. Ready made formula would have been perfect that night!!

  2. I have 4 kids and I think every single time I was nearing the end of my pregnancy my mind would circle this very question. Doesn’t help when you’ve got mom/preggo-brain. Usually it is a lot less than you think you need, but you never want to forget those key essentials. I like that you included a few must have items for mom as well, very important!! Great suggestions on both accounts! 🙂

    1. I panicked a bit at the end of my pregnancy because I thought I needed about 50000 different items! But like you said, it is usually a lot less than you think 🙂

  3. Breast pumps can be expensive, but in the US (a few years ago, hopefully still true) you can get one for free from your insurance. Thanks for the post, love the Mom necessities section!

    1. Oh, that’s handy 🙂 I wish they’d do that over here! They are expensive, but so useful sometimes.

  4. This is a great post! I’m way past the new born stage but I remember I went overboard on items I actually needed. It would have been great to read this back then. It will really help expecting moms prepare.

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