Mom with her newborn.

The Most Important Newborn Essentials for Your Baby


In addition to the ongoing pregnancy to-do list, it’s important to make some time for a little newborn shopping. However, with so many baby products and gadgets available on the market, it can be challenging to figure out what your newborn truly needs, what you can get secondhand, and what you need to buy new. To help, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide on the most important things your newborn needs.


Newborn Checklist: Everything You Need for Your Newborn and More

The following list of baby essentials is designed to help you navigate the world of baby gear and ensure that you have everything you need to keep your little one happy, healthy, and comfortable in their first few months of life.


Baby Gear and Furniture

Babies don’t truly need that much, but there are a few essential items that are required. For one, you need to have a car seat that’s properly installed. You will not be able to leave the hospital without one. Make sure to do this ahead of time and then consider getting an inspection to ensure it’s safe for use. You’ll also want to get a place for your newborn to sleep. Most parents opt for a crib, but a cradle, co-sleeper, or bassinet will also work depending on your preferences.


Bedding and Sleep Needs

Practicing safe sleep with a newborn is the best way to reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Make sure that you follow recommendations set forth by the American Academy of Pediatrics and never put anything in your newborn’s crib with them while they sleep. That includes bumpers, blankets, pillows, and toys. With that being said, all you need to create a safe sleeping environment is:

  • Crib, cradle, co-sleeper, or bassinet
  • Crib mattress
  • Waterproof crib mattress cover
  • Fitted sheets
  • Baby monitor


If you want to create an environment that promotes good sleeping habits, you can also get a white noise machine. This will help comfort your baby as it mimics the noises they heard in the womb. You can also get a humidifier to help ensure that the air in your baby’s room isn’t too dry. Blackout shades are also recommended if your baby’s room is on a side of the house that gets a lot of sunlight.


Clothing and Babywear

One thing that many new parents love to have fun with is dressing their newborn in cute outfits. While we definitely recommend picking up a few for pictures and special events, newborns grow pretty quickly. You don’t need to stock your closets with hundreds of outfits for a three to six-month-old, as it’s unlikely you’ll even have time to use them. Instead, try to keep 80% of your newborn’s clothing simple and buy a range of sizes to accommodate their growth. This is also a great way to help save some extra money and stick within your budget. To make the most out of this phase without running out of options, consider stocking your newborn’s closet or dresser with the following:

  • Onesies or other soft clothing outfits
  • Sleeping sacks or pajamas
  • Swaddle blankets
  • Undershirts
  • T-shirts
  • Leggings or stretchy pants
  • Baby socks or booties
  • Newborn hats or caps
  • Sweaters or jackets
  • Winter wear (depending on location and season)


The number of items you should buy really depends on how often you’ll want to do laundry. Thanks to spit up and/or diaper explosions, you should expect your newborn to go through about one to two outfit changes a day. If you only want to do laundry once a week (or once every other week), you’ll need a lot more of each item.


Diapers and Changing

Another newborn essential is diapers and products you’ll need during changings—newborns go through about eight to 10 diaper changes a day! This is one item new parents tend to struggle with, as there are so many options to choose from. However, the type and brand tend to be personal choices, so consider buying a few of each to see which ones you’ll like. You can also ask your friends, family, or pediatrician for recommendations. Don’t overstock newborn diapers though, as they will need to increase in size as your baby grows. To help you get the most out of every diaper change, make sure you have the following items on hand:

  • Plenty of diapers
  • Diaper pail
  • Disposable wipes
  • Diaper rash cream
  • Washcloths
  • Changing pad
  • Changing table


Bath Time and Grooming

During the first few weeks of your newborn’s life, you’ll need to bathe them carefully in order to properly care for their umbilical cord. This usually means giving them a sponge bath, as you should avoid submerging the cord until it falls off naturally. Once it does, you can start bathing your newborn regularly. However, unlike adults, babies shouldn’t be bathed every day as it can dry out their skin. About three times a week with spot cleanings in between is recommended. To help you master bath time and grooming, make sure you have the following essentials on hand:

  • Baby washcloths
  • Baby bath seat or tub
  • Baby lotion
  • Newborn-friendly bath wash
  • Baby shampoo
  • Baby sponge
  • Plastic cup
  • Soft towels



Feeding and Nourishment

Many new mothers decide to breastfeed their newborn exclusively at first. However, over time, you’ll likely need a little help. To make sure that you have everything ahead of time, stock up during pregnancy. Some of the most important feeding and nourishment items that you’ll need include the following:

  • Nursing pillow
  • Nursing bra
  • Bibs
  • Burp cloths
  • BPA-free bottles
  • Bottle warmer
  • Bottle brush
  • Bottle sterilizer
  • Bottle drying rack
  • Milk storage bags
  • Breast pump
  • Breast pump accessories
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Baby Travel Essentials

During the first couple of weeks, it’s unlikely that you’ll venture out of the house too often. The period of transition can take a lot out of new parents, but don’t worry. Eventually you’ll fall into a routine and start wandering back out into the world. When you do, make sure you have the essentials to care for your newborn while you’re on the go. Some of the most important things to have include the following:
  • Car seat
  • Stroller
  • Stroller rain cover
  • Baby carrier
  • Baby wrap
  • Diaper bag
  • Portable changing pad


Toys and Entertainment

To help encourage development in your newborn, you may want to pick up a few toys and playtime accessories. These can help stimulate your baby and spark their curiosity. Bouncers are great for physical development, while any colorful, textured, or noisy toys can help with mental development. For a starting point, consider some of the following:

  • Baby bouncer
  • Portable play yard
  • Baby swing
  • Rattles
  • Soft toys
  • Toys that make noise
  • Colorful toys
  • Play mat


Just make sure that any toys you do give to your newborn are age appropriate and don’t pose a choking hazard. Always supervise your newborn when they’re enjoying their tummy time.


Baby Care and First Aid

Another category of newborn essentials is first aid items. You don’t need to have a hospital’s worth of products on hand, but a few baby-specific items can help you avoid panic and help soothe your baby’s discomfort. Some of the essential items to include are:

  • Baby thermometer
  • General first-aid kit
  • Baby nail clippers
  • Soft-bristled hairbrush
  • Bulb syringe
  • Medicine dropper
  • Baby sunscreen


Avoid buying any pain medications at first, as it’s not recommended to give to newborns until they’re about three months old. If your newborn becomes ill, your doctor can work with you to ensure discomfort is addressed during treatment. You should also avoid spending too much time in direct sunlight, as babies shouldn’t really be lathered in sunscreen until they’re a little older. Always talk to your doctor or pediatrician about any questions for baby care and first aid.


To help ensure that you have everything you need for your newborn, Byram Healthcare is here. Byram makes it easy for new and expecting mothers to order an insurance-covered breast pump. We partner with various insurance providers such as Blue Cross Blue ShieldAetnaUnited HealthcareCigna, and more to help you find the perfect pump for your needs.

As a reputable medical supply company, Byram also offers educational materials, support, and supplies to help new mothers excel in their pregnancy and journey into parenthood. If you have any questions or concerns about your insurance coverage, reach out to Byram Healthcare's team for assistance.