Buying the essential baby things

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It’s so easy to get carried away with the amount of things you can buy for your baby. From toys for the nursery, to the latest gadgets it’s easy to lose track of how much you’ve spent.

Follow our tips to find out what things you really need for a new baby, with a list of newborn essentials that will cover all the bases, without breaking the bank.

Baby clothes

With so many cute things in the shops it's easy to get carried away with buying outfits. Trouble is, your baby won't stay the same size for long and there's only so much they can wear!

Baby clothing essentials probably include a minimum of 6 babygros and vests, some socks, a couple of cardigans, a little hat, some mittens (in case they have scratchy nails) and tops with poppers – a must for quick changes. You might also find a pack of muslin squares useful for saving your own clothes from baby sick and dribbles.

Nappy changing

There’s plenty to do when your baby arrives, so lots of mums have newborn disposable nappies ready for the first week or more. You'll also need a baby changing mat, toiletries and a baby changing bag for out & about. A baby changing station for use at home means you won’t have to bend over so much, and might save you possible backache. That may sound silly but not when you think that a newborn baby could need 10 - 12 changes a day!

Baby feeding

If you’ve chosen to breastfeed your baby, invest in some good nursing bras and some breast pads. If you want to express your breastmilk you’ll also need a breast pump, storage containers, bottles and teats.

Baby washing

A baby's skin is delicate and they can be slippery when wet so try some specific baby wash instead of soap and shampoo. You can buy a baby bath but a washing up bowl is equally fine!

Baby sleeping

You needn't buy a cot quite yet. A Moses basket or the carrycot from a pram will do nicely, especially as you'll probably want to keep moving your baby around the house with you. You'll need proper, soft baby bedding. A listening monitor is essential for those times when you're in another room and a thermometer to check the temperature is right.

Don’t forget the car seat!

If your baby's born in hospital you'll need a car seat to take them home. Look out for models that last from newborn to 4 years to save money.It’s very important to fit the seat correctly according to the manufacturers instructions and it’s always much safer for your baby to fit the seat in the back of the car. If you have airbags in your car, remember you must always fit the seat in the back.

Pram or pushchair

If you do get a pram or pushchair make sure it’s designed to let your baby lie flat, to protect their growing back.

Cheap baby stuff

Ask friends and family to see what you can borrow and go to nearly new sales. They’re great for picking up bargains. Look out for 'value options' in well known stores too. Just because something is cheaper doesn't mean it hasn't had to meet proper safety standards. However please remember that you should never buy a second-hand car seat.

Baby gifts

Although it may seem cheeky, why not do a wish list of baby things? Most of your family and friends will probably want to give something. You'll be doing them a favour by giving them a shopping list for your new baby! If you're lucky enough to have a large and generous family maybe put a few requests for clothes and toys to suit them when they're a little older? It's amazing how time flies!

We’ve put together a list of things you might like to buy for your new arrival, download our new baby checklist here.

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