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The Ultimate New Baby Checklist

In this article we'll give you the lowdown on everything you need for a new baby, from birth to six months.  

So why do we think this is the best newborn/new baby checklist out there? Well, not only is it comprehensive (enumerating pretty much everything you could possibly need in the first six months), but it also separates the must haves from the nice to haves, and also lets you know exactly when each item is needed (so you know what you really need from day 1, and can spread out all your other purchases out over time if you if you like).

Of course, the flip side of being super comprehensive is that it's rather long and possibly a bit overwhelming!  Sorry about that, but well, you might as well get the reality check now. :)  For those minimalists out there (we can already hear those first-timer reactions: "How could one tiny baby possibly require TEN PAGES of stuff?! No way this baby is going to take over my house") — we've noted the bare essentials that you absolutely have to get. (Oh, and godspeed. We really do wish you the best of luck not filling your house with impulse purchases made on Amazon at 2am. ;) )

A simplified, text-only version of our Ultimate Baby Checklist appears at the bottom of this article. You can download the real, nicely formatted version here:


Ultimate Baby Checklist (text-only version)

Legend:

  • Bold indicates "must have" items (the ones that practically all parents of newborns end up buying)
  • *Starred items indicate those you need right from birth (everything else you can wait to buy)

Nursery

Newborn sleep

  • Co-sleeper, bassinet, or cradle
  • Mattress sized to fit
  • 1-2 fitted sheets sized to fit  Receiving blankets (1-2) and/or swaddles (3)
  • Sound/white noise machine (as needed)
  • Blackout shades (as needed)

Infant sleep

  • *Crib
  • *Crib mattress
  • *Crib-size fitted sheets (2)
  • Wearable blanket / sleep sack (after transition from swaddling, 1-2 per size)
  • Crib mobile
  • Lovey / security blanket
  • Nightlight (as needed)

Other nursery items

  • Changing station (including changing table/topper, changing pad, and 1-2 changing pad covers)
  • Diaper stacker/organizer
  • Clothes storage (dresser or hangers)
  • Rocker/glider
  • Bookcase or shelving
  • Toy storage

Gear

Infant car seat & accessories

  • *Infant car seat & base
  • Extra car seat base
  • Car seat mirror
  • Window sunshade
  • Car seat cover / sun canopy
  • Car seat toy

Strollers & accessories

  • Car seat stroller frame
  • Full-featured stroller (or "Travel system")
  • Car seat adapter
  • Lightweight/travel stroller
  • Newborn head support
  • Stroller blanket or footmuff
  • Parent storage (e.g. console/cup holder, bag hooks)
  • Stroller toy
  • Toy / sippy cup tether

Baby carriers

  • Newborn wrap, sling, or pouch
  • Infant carrier
  • Frame / hiking backpack

Playtime

  • *Baby seat / bouncer
  • Swing
  • Floor mat or activity gym
  • Exersaucer or jumper

On-the-go and travel

  • *Diaper bag
  • *Diaper changing mat or kit
  • Insulated bottle bag
  • Shopping cart / high chair cover
  • Portable bassinet
  • Playard / travel crib

Clothing

Tops

  • *Side-snap/kimono/style bodysuits or tees (4-6 per size)
  • Lap-neck bodysuits or tees, short and/or long sleeve (4-8 per size)

Bottoms

  • *Loose-fitting, non-constrictive pants

One pieces

  • One pieces, short and/or long sleeve (5-7 per size)

Sleepwear

  • *Gowns or sleepers (3-5)

Outerwear

  • Sweaters or jackets (seasonal)
  • Baby bunting / snowsuit (seasonal)

Sun wear

  • Swim wear and swim diaper (seasonal)
  • Sun protective clothing (seasonal)

Footwear

  • *Socks or booties (for pre-walkers)
  • Crib shoes

Accessories

  • *Skull caps
  • Sun hat
  • Cold weather hat (seasonal)
  • Scratch mittens (2-3)

Feeding

Breastfeeding

  • Breast pump
  • Hands-free pumping bra
  • Milk storage (e.g. containers or freezer bags, soft cooler bag)
  • Microsteam clean bags and/or cleaning wipes
  • *Nursing pillow
  • Nursing cover or scarf

Formula feeding

  • Formula
  • Formula storage/dispenser

Bottle feeding

  • Bottles (4-12 per stage)
  • Nipples (4-12 per stage)
  • Bottle warmer
  • Bottle cleaning brush
  • Bottle drying rack
  • Dishwasher basket
  • Sterilizer

Bibs & burp cloths

  • *Burp cloths (6-8)
  • Drool/milk bibs (6-8)
  • Solid bibs (2-4) (after starting solids)

Pacifiers & teethers

  • Pacifiers (2-4)
  • Optional pacifier accessories: Pouch, clip, wipes
  • Teethers (2-3)

Bath & diapering

Baby bathtime

  • *Infant tub
  • *Gentle shampoo/body wash
  • *Washcloths (3) and/or natural bath sponge
  • Rinse cup
  • *(Hooded) bath towel (1-2) or baby bathrobe
  • Bath toys

Diapering

  • *Disposable diapers
  • *Diaper cream
  • *Diaper pail
  • *Baby wipes
  • Wipe warmer
  • Waterproof lap pads (2-3)
  • Diaper caddy/organizer
  • Disposable changing pads/liners
  • Diaper disposal bags

Cloth diapering

  • Cloth diapers (24-30 for full-time cloth diapering)
  • Diaper covers, PUL or wool (6-10)
  • Reusable (cloth) diaper wipes
  • Cloth diaper pail liner or wetbag
  • Travel-size wetbag (for diaper bag)
  • Diaper sprayer

Health & safety

For the nursery

  • *Baby monitor
  • Humidifier

Grooming & skin care

  • *Grooming set (nail clippers or scissors, comb/brush)
  • *Baby lotion

Oral care

  • Finger brush or infant toothbrush
  • Non-fluoride toothpaste

Medicine cabinet

  • *Digital thermometer
  • *Bulb syringe / nasal aspirator
  • Teething relief (tablets or gel)
  • Colic/anti-gas relief (as needed)
  • Cradle cap treatment (as needed)
  • Infant Advil/Tylenol
  • Sunscreen

Cleaning

  • Baby-safe laundry detergent
  • Cloth diaper-safe laundry detergent (as needed)
  • Baby-safe cleaning supplies
  • Baby-safe stain remover
  • Hand sanitizer (for you)
  • Gentle hand wipes

Other safety

  • *Smoke/carbon monoxide detector

Toys & books

Toys

  • High-contrast toys
  • Grasping and hanging toys
  • Larger blocks / soft toys
  • Sensory or musical toys

Books

  • Soft books
  • Simple board books