As a first time mom, I didn't really know what to expect in terms of postpartum and newborn care. Thankfully, I had a lot of girlfriends and family members that helped me out and suggested several great products! And of course, I also had to learn what worked best for me and my sweet little girl. I thought it would be fun and helpful to pass along what others have shared with me as well as what I have learned. Here is a list of twenty must-have newborn and postpartum items!
No. 1: Drying Rack
I registered for this drying rack after reading all the good reviews and it was given to us as a baby shower gift. It has been a lifesaver! We love it so much that we actually brought it with us when we traveled to Utah last week. I love it because it sits on my counter right by the sink and it's so easy to just pop all of the bottles, pumping pieces and lids on it to dry once washed. This is a lot quicker than putting everything in dishwasher and waiting for it to dry. The convenience and design make this a must by in my book!
No. 2: Sound Machine
I heard from several people that I had to have a sound machine! It's the best way to drown out the coos and non-urgent baby noises that usually keep new moms up at night (I was totally guilty of this in the beginning! It's hard as a new mom to not worry and be alerted by every little sound). One of my friends told me about the Hatch sound machine and said she loved how it was a touch activated night light as well as a high quality sound machine. There are several different sounds and night light colors to choose from. The light can be dimmed on a handful of settings and the volume has a wide range of settings as well. We use this every night!
No. 3: Electric Breast Pump
One of my friends told me to apply for a free breast pump through my insurance and sure enough, I qualified. My insurance sent me a Medela Pump In Style Advanced. I chose to pay an additional fee to have a backpack sent with the pump. The bag I bought has a built in cooler in the bottom half so I can take pumped milk with me anywhere. So handy!
No. 4: Bottle Brush
This is hands down the best bottle brush! I've tried others and the bristles aren't as flexible or pliable for cleaning the inside of bottles. This one works on bottles, pump parts and lids. The brush also comes with a stand so you can set it next to the sink instead of in it. This brush paired with the drying rack make cleaning everything a breeze!
No. 5: Anti-Colic Bottles
Ok so I'm not sure if all bottles nowadays are anti-colic, but these ones I got specifically say they are and Bryn has loved them! My milk actually took quite awhile to come in so I had to supplement with formula and she took these bottles really well...which was a huge blessing! I like the design and how the neck and top are wide, it makes them really easy to wash.
No. 6: Bottle Warmer
If you are exclusively breastfeeding, you may not really see a need for this. But if your milk takes awhile to come in, you plan to do both formula and breastmilk or if you do exclusively formula...this warmer is a must have! It has several settings including "fast warming", "sterilization" and more. It goes off a timer and a sensor that accounts for how much milk is in the bottle. I know some people say it's a waste or not necessary, but it makes life so much easier! It beats waiting for the faucet to get warm, microwaving a bowl of water to set it in, or keeping the bottle between your legs forever hoping it will eventually get somewhat warm. Seriously, this has saved my life (and my sanity!) during all those late night feedings!
No. 7: Baby Monitor
So we actually bought an OWLR camera on Amazon to use as a baby monitor, but realized we also wanted something for sound that would alert us when Bryn woke up or cried...and would be mobile so we could take it on vacations with us. The OWLR monitor is a higher quality camera that we'll install in her nursery and use for when we're away from the house. This Hello Baby monitor is attached to the wall next to her crib in our room right now and we've been really pleased with it. The quality of picture is a lot better than I expected and I like how it has a setting where the camera on the mobile piece will turn on if she makes any noise. I believe it also has a temperature setting, but we haven't really used it yet. Two of my sisters-in-law have this exact same monitor and were the ones who recommended it to us.
No. 8: Dermoplast
Ok, so I wasn't going to ever use this product, let alone recommend it to y'all...but I was pleasantly surprised how much I liked it and how much it seemed to help! They gave it to me at the hospital and I took it home with me to use as I continued to heal. Do yourself a favor and use it!
No. 9: Manual Breast Pump
Game changer! My cousin's wife actually recommended a manual breast pump to me because of how convenient it is to take with you and use anywhere; road trips, airplanes, you name it. It's especially nice for woman like me who are exclusively pumping. You'll never be left in a bind if you don't have access to a plug for your electric pump or are away from your baby!
No. 10: Tucks Pads
Just like the Dermoplast, I'm super glad I had these cool soothing pads for my postpartum recovery! They are great for putting on top of a large pad inside the postpartum underwear I linked below. The cool, soothing feeling helps so much!
No. 11: Peri Bottle
I registered for this after reading some blog posts about postpartum care. The hospital will give you a spray bottle to use for "down-there-care", but I like this one better because it has the angled arm that makes spraying during bathroom trips way easier!
No. 12: Overnight Pads
You can use any brand of overnight pads you like, I just really liked these. Make sure you get the right pad for how much you are bleeding and what is best for your recovery. These fit great in the postpartum underwear I'll link below. Place the tucks pads on top of the pads and you're good to go!
No. 13: Postpartum Underwear
One of my good friends recommended these underwear to wear postpartum and I really liked them. They fit great and had plenty of room to place pads inside. I got these to just be for postpartum and didn't plan on using them after so if they got ruined during recovery I wouldn't really mind. I didn't wear these until a few days postpartum, when I didn't ned to wear the absorbent underwear (Depends) anymore. I'd say they run a bit small so order up a size!
No. 14: Absorbent Underwear
The hospital gives you lovely mesh undies to wear postpartum, but I had been warned that they're awful and that I should get absorbent underwear (Depends) instead. I'm so glad I did! They are way more supportive and comfortable than the mesh hospital underwear. Pads also fit easily inside these and they absorb more than normal underwear, so they're perfect for those first few days postpartum.
No. 15: Travel System
What's a travel system? I'll be honest, I didn't really know what a travel system was until I got pregnant and started looking into strollers. A travel system is a carseat stroller combo that connect and go straight from the car to stroller. You don't necessarily need to go with this exact travel system, but this is what I have and I LOVE it! The carseat hooks right onto the stroller with adapters and the stroller folds up super small! It's actually backpack size and can fit in the overhead bins on airplanes. We took it to Utah with us last month; it was so convenient to have in the airport and a breeze to travel with! Trust me, getting one of these set ups will make your life so much easier!
No. 16: Recovery Band
Trust me, you're going to want a recovery band! This one that I got is great because it has three different parts or stages that you work up to and add on week by week. I feel like this really helped heal my diastasis rectii and everything to shrink back to normal quickly. Plus, the tight structure it provided helped ease my back pain and other aches as my body adjusted back to normal. I totally recommend this one, it has amazing reviews!
No. 17: Mamaroo Glider
This glider is everything! I use it multiple times a day and my little girl loves it. She is obsessed with the "car ride" setting and it puts her to sleep every time. The Mamaroo has several different motion, speed and sound settings that make it super versatile and sure to make any little baby happy! The tilt of the glider can be adjusted as well, so your little one can recline or sit up. It is also bluetooth compatible and can be controlled by your phone. So if you're feeling too lazy to walk across the room to adjust it, you can do it from your phone instead! I love putting Brynleigh in this when I'm working at my desk or doing dishes...she just chills right next to me.
No. 18: Baby Probiotics
I actually didn't even think about giving these to Bryn until her pediatrician recommended it after she was showing signs of reflux and digestion troubles. We mix one dose in Bryn's bottle each night and it really seems to help her digestive system and keep her regular. Shortly after we started giving her these, my mom actually sent me an article that talks about all of the health benefits now and in the future for babies who are given probiotics before the age of three. Definitely worth looking into!
No. 19: Weighted Sleep Sack
Brynleigh hates to be swaddled! She grunts and wiggles until her arms are freed. But at the same time, she loves the feeling of being held and cuddled. So we looked into alternatives to swaddling that would still provide the feeling of being in the womb. My mom had seen these weighted sleep sacks on "Shark Tank" and said we should look into it. Well, we did and Bryn loves it! It comes with the sack part that zips from top and bottom as well as a separate velcro sleeve that can be used to hold your baby's arms down if you want to. Sewn into little diamond shapes all along the front of the sack are beads that provide just enough weight to mimic the feel of mom or dad's hand on their chest. Bryn has definitely slept better since we started having her sleep in this! You can read more and shop here.
No. 20: Nursing Bras
Nursing bras are a give-in when it comes to essential postpartum items! First of all, they don't have any wire in them which helps prevent clogged ducts and mastitis. Second, they're super handy and make everything easily accessible! I got these ones from Amazon and have loved them so far. I did make one modification to them though...the pads kept slipping, folding over and moving so my husband used a needle and thread to tack the pads in place. It's worked like a charm and the pads don't budge! These are comfortable, supportive (which is soooo important!) and the price point is great!
Well there you have it, a list of 20 great items to have for your newborn and postpartum care. I hope you found this post helpful and please leave any questions or product recommendations in the comments section below! Happy Monday!
*this post contains affiliate links