Baby’s First Week Home: What You Really Need to Buy

Baby's First Week Home: What You Really Need

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Having a baby will bring a whole new dose of glorious reality into your life. You’ll have questions about what you need for the baby, for the house, and for yourself. You’ll have friends, family members, and advertisements telling you what you absolutely must buy before bringing your baby home. On top of that all, you will probably be tired from pregnancy and your postpartum recovery. So I put this list together to help you sort out the real necessities for bringing baby home!

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I’m a simple girl and I don’t like spending money on things that I don’t really need, so you’re only going to see my absolute must-haves on this list, the things that truly got me through those first few weeks at home with a new baby. This is assuming that I have all of my basic toiletries, clothes, and food stocked up already, which is a thought for another day.

First, I had to ask myself what babies (and mamas) really need for survival during that first week home. A healthy newborn baby just needs breastmilk or formula, lots of sleep, a clean diaper, warm clothes, a swaddle blanket, and lots of snuggles. From my experience, a newborn baby that gets sick has a few additional needs, but we’ll still keep the list short for the sake of this article. Part Two of this series will touch on the necessities for babies that do get sick, which is something I had to deal with during the first few months of my baby’s life. Now without further ado, here is what you really need to buy for baby’s first week home.

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– Diapers (Target brand are my favorite)
– Wipes (Pampers Sensitive are my favorite, but Kirkland are good too)
– Swaddle blankets (Just for You Carters swaddle blankets are my favorite)
– Onesies and sleepers (a few of each will do)
– Binkies (Avent Soothies worked best for us)
– Bottles and formula (if you are formula feeding)
– Bassinet or Moses basket (a laundry basket works too)
– Baby shampoo and lotion (coconut oil works great for moisturizing if you prefer to limit chemicals)
Boppy pillow (super useful to have!)


I’ll preface this by saying that the hospital provides all of the “unmentionables” that you need for your recovery, so I won’t be listing that here. These are just the things that I purchased for myself that felt like must-haves during my first week home with my baby.

– Nursing tank tops (Awesome for nursing, but bra tops work good too)
Nursing pads (your boobs will be leaking milk every time you feed baby and you don’t want to wash 10 shirts every day)
– Yoga pants (I lived in these and they are perfect for recovery)
Coconut oil (helps with dry skin and stretch marks)
– Hair ties (to wrap up that hair)
– Breast pump (if you need to pump and store milk)
– Milk storage bags (if you are pumping)
– Huge water bottle (you NEED to drink water like it’s going out of style)

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Everything on this list will help you get through that first week home with your baby. You’ll likely be staying close to home and learning to feed and swaddle that baby, so there is no need to spend tons of money. We kept our baby daughter in onesies and swaddle blankets for the first few weeks, and we were blessed with tons of second-hand stuff from friends that she was able to grow into for several months.

We also bought a wonderful glider chair that saved me during her 6-week bout of bronchitis when we had to sleep sitting up, so that one could also be called a must-have by moms like me.

What is on your “must have” list for bringing baby home?

pregnancy resourcesThis post was written by Cate from the blog,  Sweet and Simple. Cate is a busy wife, mommy, and writer, finding her way with trial and error, laughter, and lots of coffee! Her day job as an office manager pays the bills, but writing soothes her soul. She’s a California native that loves books, mom life, and the beach. You can connect with her more on her blog, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.


Psst… If you enjoyed this piece, you may also like 6-Month-Old Baby Feeding + Sleeping Exclusive Sample Schedule.

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  1. It is nice to see a list of real essentials. I found that sleepers are really the best clothes for a newborn (boy or girl) for months. You need other outfits for showing off, haha. Thanks!

    • I agree. With my second child, I made sure to have many sleepers in each size and a few nice outfits for the days we left the house. 🙂

  2. One of the things I noticed that the list for mama was missing was nipple balm… Omg, was I sore after a few days and one of the products that really helped me along was the Honest brand organic nipple balm. Completely safe for baby and made me feel so much better. It is completely safe to leave on when you have to feed your new baby and is just a lifesaver.

  3. This article was helpful, I wish I would have thought about some of these things when I first became a mom. I would also like to include some articles that can help new moms during the baby’s first year of life.

    Practical Gifts New Moms Can Use

    First Foods You Can Feed Your Baby

    Milestones During Your Baby’s First Year of Life

  4. Spot on recommendations for first week survival! My husband and I used also the “Love to Dream Swaddle Up” swaddlers so LO’s arms could be in the up position that she preferred but still bundled in tight enough to avoid the startle reflex! And the Rock N Play saved our lives the first few weeks!

    xoxo, Kate

  5. Amazing post!!! Essentials mentioned for Mama is must haves…i didnt know them before so had a hard time when we came back home with our Little N . Thank for sharing great content 🙂

  6. I was about to add Nipple Cream but saw I wasn’t the only one who noticed! That SAVED me those first 2 weeks postpartum. I wish I would’ve realized how much I would have my son in those 1 piece sleepers and onesies more than anything else! Don’t waste your money on super tiny outfit sets! It’s so much easier to undo a couple buttons with how often you’ll be changing diapers anyways!

    • Yes, when I had my second child, he only wore sleepers around the house for the first few months. They are a total life saver and so easy.

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