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One thing that most new moms look most forward to is picking out the perfect things for their baby. All the cute clothes, the swoon-worthy nursery, the latest baby gear… and we think we know exactly what we’ll like best. But then the baby comes and turns everything you thought you knew upside down.
There are some things, though, that experienced moms tend to agree are not worth the money. Babies really don’t need much in the beginning and here are some of the items that moms say you don’t really need for your precious little ones.
Five things you really don’t need
Baby Towels & Wash Cloths
Believe it or not, babies can get just as clean and dry with regular towels and wash cloths. Ok, sure, the tiny little ones you find in the baby aisle are cute and soft and the towels have hoods. But let me tell you, those tiny little wash cloths wear out fast and can get lost because they are tiny. And those hooded towels? Well, I hated them. When my baby was fresh out of the bath I didn’t want to sit there trying to get a hood on a slippery, wet, angry baby. It was so much easier to just wrap a regular towel around him and quickly take him to get dressed. While those little hooded towels might be great for a cute picture op, you can skip adding them to your registry for day-to-day use.
Tons of Blankets
Yes, you will need blankets for your baby. They are great for swaddling, nursing, draping over the carseat, and a million other things. But you don’t need 584 of them. Seriously, you can get by with a handful of quality blankets. Trust me, you’ll be washing laundry constantly anyway, so you won’t run out. We rotate about four blankets for our youngest boy and that’s more than enough. Of course, you’ll probably still end up with a ton of blankets because it’s one thing that everyone loves to make for new babies. But just know you won’t need to add them to your registry.
Dressy/Fussy/Special Holiday Clothing
Alright, first of all, your newborn really could not care less what they are wearing. All they care about is being clean, warm, and fed. Second of all, have you ever tried dressing a newborn? They don’t help at all! Make your life easier and stick with the most basic clothing items for those first few months. Some things to avoid for any child under the age of 1? Jeans, anything with lots of buttons or zippers or ties, and clothes with lots of little frilly things. Another thing that many moms agree is a waste of money? Special clothes for baby’s first *fill in the blank*. Yea, ok, that adorable onesie that says “Baby’s First Christmas” makes great cards to send to the in-laws. But it’s really like a one-time outfit. Maybe if you’re sentimental you’ll keep it in a nice little box and reminisce some day, but otherwise, don’t bother. Go ahead and buy one super cute fancy outfit if you want, but for the every day outfits stick to basic onesies and leggings. Trust me on that one.
Too Many Clothes
Along the same lines, many moms say that having an over-abundance of clothes was unhelpful. You may think that you’ll need a ton of clothes for your baby because everyone knows they go through at least 3 outfits a day, right? But here’s the thing, they will grow at a ridiculous speed and they’ll never get a chance to wear about half the clothes they own. Don’t believe me? Go to a second-hand store that sells baby clothes and see how many items still have their original tags on them. Just sayin’. Realistically you will do just fine with about 15 tops and 15 bottoms. Some may need a few more and some may do great with less. But start small and work your way up. Plus, you don’t need to put baby clothes on your registry. Whether you ask for them or not, EVERYONE will buy baby clothes for you. They just can’t resist.
The Bumbo Seat
So many parents think that this item is a necessity. Let me tell you, it’s really not. Baby’s should not be propped up in any kind of seat before they can sit up on their own. And after they can sit up, well, there’s no need for a special seat. And there is evidence that using seats like the Bumbo can actually contribute to developmental delays in some children. There are other concerns as well, such as parents using them on high surfaces where they can easily tip over and the child being left unattended. Hey, I get it, we have other things to do too. That laundry isn’t going to fold itself and someone has to cook, right? But there are much better places for your baby to hang out when you’re otherwise occupied than in a baby seat. The most developmentally appropriate and the safest place for baby (besides your arms, of course) is on the floor in a baby-proofed space where she can explore her surroundings on her own terms.
top 3 most useless baby items…
So which items do moms regret buying the most?
Baby shoes! They are tiny and adorable and you need to keep you baby’s feet warm, don’t you? Baby shoes are completely unnecessary. Babies don’t walk!! The best foot wear for tiny feet is none at all. Or, if you need to keep their feet warm, just put some nice cozy socks on them. My oldest son got his first pair of shoes when he was 14 months old. After he learned to walk. My 11 month old has still never worn shoes. I personally think that infants look a little silly in big clunky shoes and I much prefer to keep my babies bare foot as much as possible. When we go out and it’s cold, my baby wears socks and soft booties (we actually love our Zutano booties). When it’s warm outside, though, he goes barefoot even when we’re out and about. Leaving your little ones feet free actually helps them learn how to walk easier. And it allows their feet to develop appropriately instead of being crammed in a shoe all the time. Hey, if you want to get your baby a tiny pair of converse, I won’t judge you. (Ok, I might a little). Just remember that, just like with clothes, your little one will outgrow those tiny shoes before the charge clears your bank.
Yea, yea. You don’t want to startle your baby with an ice cold baby wipe in the middle of the night. I get it. But I really don’t think that’s going to be your main concern when you’re sleep deprived and your sweet baby is crying at 2 in the morning. First, wipe warmers need to be plugged in. That requires that you have your changing area near a working outlet, which may be a bit inconvenient and could become a safety hazard. Second, you have to make sure you keep water in there because the heat will dry out your wipes over time. Besides those two factors, you won’t always have warm wipes when you’re out and about and you can also warm a wipe up between your hands for a minute if you really need to. But, honestly, your baby isn’t going to care if their butt wipe is nice and toasty. They just want a clean diaper. So go ahead and skip this one, momma.
By far, this is the one item that moms point to as the most useless baby item. Whether you use disposable diapers or cloth doesn’t seem to matter. Having a special diaper pail seems to be something most moms don’t see a need for. You can just as easily throw your dirty diapers in the regular trash bin. Some moms even use a separate bin or bag that they then take out or empty at the end of each day. Regardless, you don’t need to spend $50+ on a special bin just for diapers. A $10 trash bin from Target will work just as well. If you use cloth diapers, invest in a few hanging wet bags and just hang them on your bathroom door, like I do! Throw them in the wash with the diapers and you’re good to go.
And a few honorable mentions…
Here are a few other items that some moms found to be least useful for them.
- Baby Swing
- Newborn size diapers and clothes
- Baby toys and stuffed animals
- Baby coats
- Bottle Warmer and/or Sterilizer
- Special Laundry Soap
- Crib bedding (other than sheets)
- Baby Bathtub
- Specific bottles and/or pacifiers (baby may decide they like a different kind better)
To find out what you most