Essentials

Having been bamboozled after the birth of our daughters by all the marketing as to what we needed. We thought it would be useful to let new parents benefit from the experience of parents who have come out the other side. We have thus surveyed our highly knowledgeable customers as to what they would buy if they were to do it all again. Here are the results.
View:all | clothing | sleeping | feeding | bathing | nappies | transport | misc | entertainment
rank ▼product ▼catogory
Wash clothsessential 0%
useful 0%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Wash Cloths
Organic cotton or muslin soft cloths for washing baby.
bathing
Baby Monitor (Audio only)essential 100%
useful 0%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Baby Monitor (Audio Only)
Typicaly this product has a baby unit which is pluged into sockets near the baby and a parent unit that can either run off battires or mains and allows the parent to easierly hear when the baby starts to cry.
sleeping
socksessential 100%
useful 0%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Socks
To keep little feet warm. If you can get them to stay on. Personally, we found traditional booties better, with a tie or fastening round the ankle!
clothing
feeding
bootiesessential 100%
useful 0%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Booties
To keep little feet warm. Available in cotton, Merino wool, Merino fleece, and countless man-made fibres. Babies' feet do sweat though, so we recommend breathable natural fibres.
clothing
bouncy chairessential 50%
useful 50%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Bouncy Chair
A small cloth chair with a sprung metal frame that a baby can lie in and can gently be bounced to sleep
sleeping
jumpers or cardigansessential 50%
useful 0%
limited 50%
not useful 0%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Jumpers Or Cardigans
A warm outer layer for your little one.
clothing
cot mobileessential 33%
useful 18%
limited 16%
not useful 15%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Cot Mobile
Attaches to the side of the cot, extends over the cot and generally goes round and round while playing music. I guess the idea is to entertain your baby while it goes to sleep.
misc
nursing brasessential 33%
useful 15%
limited 21%
not useful 17%
useless 11%
non votes 0%
Nursing Bras
Bras with easy release of the cups to make feeding easier
feeding
bath thermometeressential 34%
useful 15%
limited 23%
not useful 9%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Bath Thermometer
Eliminates the guess work, getting the temperature just right for baby's bath.
bathing
cotton vests(bodies)essential 32%
useful 21%
limited 13%
not useful 13%
useless 19%
non votes 0%
Cotton Vests(bodies)
These are the first layer next to the skin, come in long and short sleeves, have no legs and have poppers at the crotch.
clothing
book of nursery rhymesessential 26%
useful 26%
limited 15%
not useful 15%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Book Of Nursery Rhymes
Handy if you've forgotten them all or decide to sing your little one to sleep in the evenings. If you've still got your own from Auntie Carol, complete with original toddler scribble, all the better for the nostalgia trips.
entertainment
nursing chairessential 23%
useful 25%
limited 25%
not useful 11%
useless 13%
non votes 0%
Nursing Chair
A low chair which brings the knees up making breast feeding easier.
feeding
vests/babybodies/bodysuits - cottonessential 33%
useful 33%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 33%
non votes 0%
Vests/babybodies/bodysuits - Cotton
These are the first layer next to the skin -the things with long or short sleeves, no legs and with poppers at the crotch. Available in cotton and cotton mixes, organic, fair trade, long-sleeved or no sleeved, with cute animals on or bold stripes... you name it!
clothing
moses basketessential 26%
useful 18%
limited 22%
not useful 20%
useless 11%
non votes 0%
Moses Basket
Used for the baby to sleep in for the first few months
sleeping
breast shellsessential 29%
useful 15%
limited 21%
not useful 17%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Breast Shells
Shells that can be put over the nipple inside a bra that catches leaking milk for storage (or donation to local baby units)
feeding
nursing cushionessential 19%
useful 29%
limited 19%
not useful 17%
useless 13%
non votes 0%
Nursing Cushion
A semi-donut shaped cussion that suports the baby at the correct hight during breast feeding
feeding
cotton blanketessential 21%
useful 25%
limited 17%
not useful 28%
useless 7%
non votes 0%
Cotton Blanket
sleeping
steam sterilising kitessential 29%
useful 13%
limited 19%
not useful 23%
useless 13%
non votes 0%
Steam Sterilising Kit
For sterilising feeding and storage equipment using steam
feeding
bottle brushessential 33%
useful 11%
limited 17%
not useful 17%
useless 19%
non votes 0%
Bottle Brush
Brushes to specifically clean baby bottles.
feeding
cotessential 25%
useful 21%
limited 19%
not useful 19%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Cot
These come with varying features such as drop sides, adjustable base height and draws underneath
sleeping
nappy nippasessential 23%
useful 25%
limited 17%
not useful 19%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Nappy Nippas
Many cloth nappies come with poppers or velcro, but if they don't, the Nappi Nippa is a good alternative to the nappy pin. It's a plastic gadget which grips the nappy and keeps the folds in place without running the danger of skewering your baby's skin.
nappies
rattles, plastic teething keys, toys with lots of jingly bitsessential 19%
useful 25%
limited 25%
not useful 17%
useless 13%
non votes 0%
Rattles, Plastic Teething Keys, Toys With Lots Of Jingly Bits
Great for shaking and exploring and for chewing on,these types of toys seem to be perenially popular.
transport
entertainment
non slip bath matessential 21%
useful 19%
limited 34%
not useful 7%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Non Slip Bath Mat
A mat to use in the bath to stop your baby slipping over in the bath
bathing
moses basket standessential 28%
useful 15%
limited 22%
not useful 15%
useless 18%
non votes 0%
Moses Basket Stand
A stand for a moses basket
sleeping
bibsessential 30%
useful 18%
limited 11%
not useful 18%
useless 20%
non votes 0%
Bibs
You can get bibs with velcro, bibs with poppers, bibs with plastic pockets, bibs with plastic trays, plastic bibs and cotton bibs and plasticised cotton bibs, bibs with sleeves and bibs without. Or you can fold a muslin diagonally and tie around the neck. The choice is yours, but your baby will still get food everywhere. including on you!
feeding
woolen blanketsessential 21%
useful 21%
limited 23%
not useful 17%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Woolen Blankets
Warm breatherable and temprature regulating blankets for when your baby is in a pushchair, pram or cot
sleeping
disposable nappiesessential 22%
useful 22%
limited 18%
not useful 18%
useless 16%
non votes 0%
Disposable Nappies
A wide range is available, from eco-friendlyish wool-pulp nappies to chemical gel nappies. Single use. Different brands may fit your baby differently - try to find one where the poo doesn't always leak up the back...
nappies
storage bottlesessential 24%
useful 26%
limited 12%
not useful 16%
useless 22%
non votes 0%
Storage Bottles
For storing expressed milk in
feeding
car seatessential 19%
useful 25%
limited 19%
not useful 21%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Car Seat
Generally start of rear-facing for little ones, though you can get some that lie flat across the back of the car which is good for sleeping newborns. Many double as a baby-carrier as part of a pushchair/carseat combo.
transport
cloth nappy outersessential 21%
useful 17%
limited 25%
not useful 25%
useless 11%
non votes 0%
Cloth Nappy Outers
The cloth nappy will absorb the wee and poo, but most people use a nappy outer as a barrier between the nappy and the clothes. Previously known as "plastic pants", the plastic ones are now breathable and nicely fitted, with a range of cool colours, and there are woollen ones as well which are natural and breathable.
nappies
carrycotessential 18%
useful 28%
limited 20%
not useful 9%
useless 22%
non votes 0%
Carrycot
Good for getting from A to B, though if you have a light car seat, or are using a sling, or have a moses basket, or have a pushchair suitable from birth, you may not need one.
transport
mattressessential 22%
useful 16%
limited 24%
not useful 20%
useless 15%
non votes 0%
Mattress
Some say you need a new one with every baby but you must get one the correct size for the cot.
sleeping
top and tail bowlessential 19%
useful 26%
limited 13%
not useful 23%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Top And Tail Bowl
A bowl with different sections for cleaning the two ends of your baby with
bathing
fitted sheetsessential 23%
useful 17%
limited 21%
not useful 15%
useless 21%
non votes 0%
Fitted Sheets
Elasticated sheets that stay where they are supposed to.
sleeping
night lightessential 23%
useful 21%
limited 15%
not useful 19%
useless 21%
non votes 0%
Night Light
sleeping
baby bathessential 15%
useful 27%
limited 19%
not useful 19%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Baby Bath
A small bath for washing your baby in
bathing
squeaky, rustly toysessential 25%
useful 15%
limited 21%
not useful 15%
useless 23%
non votes 0%
Squeaky, Rustly Toys
Generally make you feel like you're trying to entertain your baby, though your baby would rather pull your hair.
entertainment
cloth nappiesessential 20%
useful 20%
limited 20%
not useful 15%
useless 22%
non votes 0%
Cloth Nappies
A wide range is available, from fitted nappies to foldable terry squares, from organic cotton nappies to bamboo, from the brightest of colours to the all-natural look... Well, there are websites and websites full of them but when you try them, you WILL get a kick out of it, promise.
nappies
sterilising fluidessential 23%
useful 17%
limited 19%
not useful 17%
useless 23%
non votes 0%
Sterilising Fluid
Some people use this with cloth nappies.
nappies
over cot changing tableessential 0%
useful 33%
limited 33%
not useful 33%
useless 0%
non votes 0%
Over Cot Changing Table
A tray that fits over the bars of the cot for changing a baby on
nappies
hat or bonnet for Autumn/Winteressential 33%
useful 0%
limited 33%
not useful 0%
useless 33%
non votes 0%
Hat Or Bonnet For Autumn/Winter
Like us, babies lose most of their bodyheat through their heads and keeping your little one's head warm is important in cold weather. Wool is ideal, as it is insulating but breathable, and stays insulating even when it gets a bit wet.
clothing
collapsible strolleressential 18%
useful 20%
limited 20%
not useful 18%
useless 20%
non votes 0%
Collapsible Stroller
Lightweight, collapsible strollers are a great choice if you use public transport regularly and don't take up much space in the car. "Umbrella strollers" collapse in two dimensions very neatly and tidily. Generally only suitable for babies over 3 months as they don't lie flat.
transport
bottle warmeressential 17%
useful 19%
limited 23%
not useful 21%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Bottle Warmer
To bring the bottle to the correct temprature
feeding
cot bumpersessential 22%
useful 16%
limited 20%
not useful 13%
useless 26%
non votes 0%
Cot Bumpers
Attached to the sides of a cot to make you feel better when your baby lies all night with their head against the bars.
sleeping
electric breast pumpessential 21%
useful 13%
limited 21%
not useful 21%
useless 21%
non votes 0%
Electric Breast Pump
Electric pump used to express milk
feeding
chemical sterilising kitessential 22%
useful 10%
limited 20%
not useful 32%
useless 16%
non votes 0%
Chemical Sterilising Kit
For sterilising feeding and storage equipment using chemicals
feeding
changing bagessential 14%
useful 22%
limited 20%
not useful 28%
useless 16%
non votes 0%
Changing Bag
A multi compartment bag to grap on your way out the door
nappies
portable changing matessential 16%
useful 18%
limited 18%
not useful 36%
useless 12%
non votes 0%
Portable Changing Mat
A small changing mat that folds down so that it is easy to take with you where ever you go
nappies
changing unit/tableessential 22%
useful 10%
limited 24%
not useful 24%
useless 20%
non votes 0%
Changing Unit/table
A dedicated unit that has convient storage and is higher enough to change a baby on with out leaning over
nappies
vests/babybodies/bodysuits - wool or wool/silk mixessential 13%
useful 22%
limited 20%
not useful 26%
useless 16%
non votes 0%
Vests/babybodies/bodysuits - Wool Or Wool/silk Mix
These are the first layer next to the skin -the things with long or short sleeves, no legs and with poppers at the crotch. Merino wool bodies are great for keeping skin healthy, are breathable and don't get cold when wet.
clothing
swaddling blanketessential 19%
useful 25%
limited 7%
not useful 21%
useless 26%
non votes 0%
Swaddling Blanket
Many new born babies sleep better when wrapped in a blanket so they can't wave thier arms around.
sleeping
baby lotionessential 17%
useful 15%
limited 23%
not useful 26%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Baby Lotion
Preferably, choose a lotion that is phthalate, paraben, ethanol, phenoxyethanol & fragrance free.
bathing
manual breast pumpessential 15%
useful 21%
limited 23%
not useful 13%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Manual Breast Pump
For expressing milk
feeding
feeding bottlesessential 17%
useful 21%
limited 19%
not useful 13%
useless 27%
non votes 0%
Feeding Bottles
feeding
pramessential 15%
useful 19%
limited 19%
not useful 28%
useless 17%
non votes 0%
Pram
Prams allow your baby to lie flat as they get some fresh air, indulge in a bit of shopping or are gently rocked to sleep. Many convert into strollers for when your little one gets older. Many are part of a "travel system", combining a pushchair with a car seat. Today's prams are oh-so-much-smaller than the ones we grew up in, and not a patch on the sweeping elegance of 1950's style ones - but you don't need a mansion to keep one in.
transport
baby bucketessential 15%
useful 17%
limited 25%
not useful 23%
useless 19%
non votes 0%
Baby Bucket
A large bucket to wash your baby in, saves water & stops your baby's head being submerged.
bathing
towel bath seatessential 15%
useful 23%
limited 15%
not useful 21%
useless 23%
non votes 0%
Towel Bath Seat
Used to lay your baby on whilst they are in the bath
bathing
disposable nappy disposal unitessential 15%
useful 21%
limited 21%
not useful 15%
useless 26%
non votes 0%
Disposable Nappy Disposal Unit
All the rage in the US, these are bins that you put your disposable nappy in and are basically smell-confinement systems. As far as I know.
nappies
nappy bucketessential 19%
useful 15%
limited 17%
not useful 23%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Nappy Bucket
Stick your cloth nappies in here while they wait for the next wash. Make sure it's got a close-fitting lid!
nappies
baby powderessential 17%
useful 17%
limited 17%
not useful 23%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Baby Powder
We recommend a talc free baby powder.
bathing
sheepskin rugessential 17%
useful 13%
limited 21%
not useful 23%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Sheepskin Rug
There are several manufatures of safely tanned sheepskins that are good for lying small babies on. These have many benifits
sleeping
room thermometeressential 21%
useful 5%
limited 21%
not useful 25%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Room Thermometer
Gives an indication of how much night clothing your baby will need
sleeping
nipple shieldsessential 11%
useful 21%
limited 19%
not useful 21%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Nipple Shields
For helping with problem breast feeding
feeding
nappy sacksessential 17%
useful 21%
limited 9%
not useful 17%
useless 34%
non votes 0%
Nappy Sacks
Plastic bags with some kind of anti-smell coating, I think.
nappies
slingsessential 13%
useful 18%
limited 18%
not useful 18%
useless 30%
non votes 0%
Slings
Although it's hard to do without them if you're living in Cambridge, the rest of the country seems somehow to survive without Ergos, Mai Tais, ring slings and large pieces of cloth. Great for keeping your little one close to you and great for transport when a pushchair is cumbersome. Experts cleverly breastfeed using them.
transport
bonnetsessential 9%
useful 25%
limited 13%
not useful 25%
useless 26%
non votes 0%
Bonnets
Light weight head wear designed to keep the babies head warm particuarly whilst sleeping
clothing
breast padsessential 9%
useful 17%
limited 23%
not useful 23%
useless 25%
non votes 0%
Breast Pads
Pads inserted into the bra to catch breast leakage
feeding
nail scissorsessential 11%
useful 11%
limited 23%
not useful 29%
useless 23%
non votes 0%
Nail Scissors
Cutting a babies nails is hard and stressful. Any advice greatfully recieved
bathing
dummyessential 11%
useful 15%
limited 23%
not useful 19%
useless 30%
non votes 0%
Dummy
Satisfies a baby's urge to suck and can be a life-saver. Can become habit-forming and may lead to dental problems, but very popular.
misc
soft spongesessential 9%
useful 17%
limited 17%
not useful 27%
useless 27%
non votes 0%
Soft Sponges
Cellulose fibre or sea sponges as an alternative to polyurethane foam sponges.
bathing
changing matessential 10%
useful 14%
limited 18%
not useful 20%
useless 38%
non votes 0%
Changing Mat
A large changing mat that is kept in the location you normaly change the baby
nappies
tea tree oilessential 0%
useful 0%
limited 33%
not useful 33%
useless 33%
non votes 0%
Tea Tree Oil
Some people use this with cloth nappies, putting a few drops in the bottom of the bucket to keep it smelling fresh or adding it to the soak if using one. Can also be added to the washing machine load.
nappies
hat or bonnet for Spring/Summeressential 1%
useful 1%
limited 1%
not useful 0%
useless 94%
non votes 0%
Hat Or Bonnet For Spring/Summer
Cotton beanie hats protect your baby's head from the breeze, though look for hats that come down over the ears for snug protection. Sunhats with wide brims are important to protect your little one from the sun's glare.
clothing
Baby Monitor (Video)essential 0%
useful 0%
limited 0%
not useful 0%
useless 100%
non votes 0%
Baby Monitor (Video)
Typicaly this product has a baby unit which is pluged into sockets near the baby and a parent unit that can either run off battires or mains and allows the parent to easierly hear when the baby starts to cry and also watch the baby while it sleeps
sleeping


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