Honest baby product reviews, newborn baby essentials and what we couldn't live without and useful tips from a first-time mum
Firstly, I want to start off by saying I am well aware that every baby is different, has very different needs and enjoys different products. This blog post is from my perspective as a first time mum to my daughter and to give you tips and an insight into what I have found useful. The hope is that you can take what you want from this blog post and find some helpful products to use on the crazy journey they call parenthood.
Next to me
Our daughter has the Lua Mamas and Papas next to me crib and love it. My husband and I purchased it from a friend at a discounted price which we were extremely grateful for and it was in impeccable condition and looked barely used. We purchased a new mattress, mattress protector and sheets from mamas and papas which fit like a glove.
The side of the next to me does not found down all the way but lowers and we keep it that way at all times for easy access during the night to comfort our daughter. We have found we can gently rock the next to me which soothes our daughter and it also has some helpful shelves below for storage and comes with a changing mat which we use downstairs during the daytime.
We use the LeapFrog Wifi baby monitor (LF2936FHD) and love this product. The screen is extremely clear which means we never have to guess what or how our baby is doing. The microphone is also extremely sensitive so we know as soon as our baby makes the smallest of sounds to go and check on her. I would definitely recommend having a high quality baby monitor for your peace of mind.
You can find a more detailed review of the baby monitor here
My husband and I purchased our nursery furniture from Facebook marketplace which I would highly recommend. We bought a cot, wardrobe and changing table which should have been £1200 new for £50 total! We simply disinfected everything when it arrived home and it fits perfectly in the nursery. Again we purchased a new mattress, mattress protector and sheets for the cot. We have a cot bed which can last our daughter up until she is 4 years old.
The furniture is the Mia range from Mamas and Papas which they still sell new.
We use the Baby Jogger City Sights pram which is an all-terrain, compact stroller and you can purchase a basinet for the pram for your baby for the first 6 months. The pram is extremely easy to assemble, folds up small enough to fit in the boot and really does work on all terrains. We have used the pram in woodland, over gravel and up and down steep and uneven inclines.
You can find a more detailed review of the pram here
We have the 360 Joie car seat which is extremely useful for getting baby in and out as it spins. I would definitely recommend a spinning car seat for ease.
Please note this car seat is not compatible with the Baby Jogger City Sights pram. Only Maxi-Cosi/Cybex and BeSafe car seats are.
We use the Baby Björn Harmony carrier which works perfectly for us as we are keen walkers and hikers. The carrier can also be used indoors if your baby is a fan of baby-wearing. The carrier can be used from 0-3 years of age.
You can find a more detailed review of the carrier here
We use the Boba wrap sling which can be great for babies who enjoy baby-wearing. To be perfectly honest we have not used the sling as much as we thought we would. Our daughter was not a huge fan of it and only relaxed in the sling if she was asleep. I would suggest if you are keen to try baby-wearing, do this frequently and as soon as they are born so they get used to it quickly.
We use the Thule changing backpack which has a lot of useful compartments to carry everything baby needs when out and about. The best thing about this changing bag is the removable small pod bag which is the size of a bum bag and is great for when you only need a few items for going out and about.
You can find a more detailed review of the changing backpack here
Useful and essential items for living areas
We were gifted the Little Green Sheep moses basket which is extremely aesthetic and practical. Our daughter has slept happily during her day time naps in this moses basket since she was born. You can purchase any moses basket sheets to fit.
We use the Ergobaby Evolve bouncer which our daughter adores. She is a nosey child! So loves looking around and seeing what is going on. We also have the toy bar which she plays with and reaches forward to touch the toys. She also sits in the bouncer to watch her favourite baby sensory show on Youtube and watches us prepare dinner and do other chores.
You can find a more detailed review of the bouncer here.
We have a caddy and a changing mat (the one which came with our next to me) downstairs which we use for baby changes. We find it so much easier have two changing stations, one upstairs and downstairs rather than transferring things back and forth. In the caddy we have the following:
Thumble nail file
Aveeno moisturising cream
Vitamin D drops
Our daughter is exclusively breastfed so I do not have any recommendations for formula. I do however express a bottle each day which we give her before bed. This was so she would get used to taking a bottle so I could occasionally leave the house without her!
The products which we use and have found useful for feeding are:
MAM Easy Start bottles
Tommee Tippee steam steriliser
Medela hand breast pump
HPA Lanolin Nipple Cream (invaluable during those first few weeks!)
Silicon nipples shields if you are sore or are struggling to get your baby to latch
We use this for hiccups. Our daughter had fetal hiccups and still has then for around 10-15 minutes at a time. She used to get extremely frustrated by them but the gripe water takes them away instantly
Aveeno emollient cream
We find this extremely helpful and effective for dry baby skin
The nasal aspirator and vapour rub are extremely useful for stuffy noses
Other useful items
- Tummy time toy
- Sensory cards
- Nuby baby bath
- Ewan the Dream Sheep
- Portable white noise machine (travelling and use downstairs)
- GroEgg nightlight and temperature gauge
I hope you found this helpful and I wish you the very best for your bundle of joy. You got this mama and papa!
Next post: Staycation packing for baby