What do you need in those first few weeks after bringing your baby home from the hospital? You don’t need a ton of toys or fancy gear for a new baby, but you will need some practical essentials for feeding, diapering, bathing and soothing.


Newborn babies do not require an extensive wardrobe, but there are definitely some essential basics that you will want to have on hand.

  • Bodysuits (4 to 6)
  • One-pieces (4 to 6)
  • T-shirts (4 to 6)
  • Long pants (2 to 4 pairs)
  • Socks/booties (4 to 6 pairs)

Many babies outgrow newborn clothing in the first few weeks and they will wear multiple outfits a day because of messy blow outs and spit ups. In the end, the number of pieces you really need depends on how many loads of laundry you want to do in a day.


Having a comfortable chair in your nursery is a must! One that rocks and swivels will help you soothe your baby to sleep and allow you to be comfortable throughout the day, whether it is late-night feeding or a midday cuddle.


It is recommended that you purchase 6 sleepsuits that will cover your baby from their neck to their feet, with snaps in the leg area to make changing easy whatever the time of the day. Sleeping bags (or swaddles) are also important for nighttime – and the tog will be dependent on what the temperature is like when your baby is born.

Knits and beanies

If you have a winter baby, you will want a knit and beanie or two, to keep your baby warm. Heat is lost out of the top of their head, so the beanies are essential in maintaining the baby’s body temperature.


You should have two packs of nappies or enough cloth nappies for two days, on hand at all times. Babies tend to go through several nappies every day, make sure you look out for sales and stock up whenever possible. Remember to get a nappy cream too!


You will be bathing your baby daily, so getting a small plastic baby bath to place in the bathtub or in a large sink will make this easier! Make sure you get a specially formulated baby wash and shampoo to clean your baby, as they are gentle on your baby’s skin. You will also need a few washcloths and hooded towels to keep up with the frequency of bath time.


Wipes will become your new best friend. They are so handy and essential for not only nappy changes but for messes all around the house. Keep a pack on your changing table and in your baby bag. It is recommended that you get fragrance free wipes as they are more gentle on the baby’s skin.

Grooming gear

Keeping baby’s nails short will prevent them from scratching themselves ad you. Get nail clippers to make especially for baby’s soft little nails. If your baby has hair, get a fine-toothed baby comb to gently brush their hair after bathing.

Keeping baby’s nails short will prevent them from scratching themselves ad you. Get nail clippers to make especially for baby’s soft little nails. If your baby has hair, get a fine-toothed baby comb to gently brush their hair after bathing.

Medicines etc

When a baby is sick or just had their immunisations, there are a few tools that can help calm your fussy baby. Make sure you have a nasal aspirator for stuffy noses since newborns can’t breathe easily through their mouths. To help track temperatures, make sure you get a digital baby thermometer. And from 3 months old, a baby can have paracetamol, so get some Panadol and Neurofen too.

Bassinet, cot and mattress

Make sure the bassinet, cot and mattress you get for your baby meet all consumer safety requirements. There are so many styles available that it can be overwhelming, but even the simplest bassinet or cot can be dressed up with adorable linen. It is also recommended that you buy a mattress protector to prolong the life of your mattress.


Buy fitted bassinet and cot sheets to suit your nursery decor. You will want to wash them frequently, so ensure you have three or four on hand. There is no need for a top sheet or blanket for a cot.


As blankets make a wonderful baby gift, you may not need to buy any for your baby. Make sure you have a few blankets of a various thicknesses to wrap your baby up at home or whilst going for walks.


For the first few weeks of their life, your baby will be sleeping and eating machine. If you are breastfeeding, you will also want to have nursing bras, disposable nursing pads and a breast pump. If you are bottle-feeding, you will need to have at least 4 bottles, a bottle brush for cleaning, and four to six bibs. In regards to formula, it is worth asking what formula that hospital use so that you can keep your baby on the same formula as they have for the first few days of their life. It is also a good idea to have 12 burp cloths on hand to protect your clothing.


A baby bag is a must-have for outings with your baby. Choose a bag with compartments that will help you find necessities quickly. Also, look for one that has a foldout changing pad since you will never know when your baby needs a nappy change.

Capsules and car seats

A car seat for your baby is the only baby item that you are required to have! Make sure you buy it a few weeks before your due date and practice securing it properly in your car to get familiar with it before the baby comes. There are lots of options, so it is recommended that you speak to someone who specialises in capsules and car seats. You will need to make the decision on whether you get a capsule (which usually lasts for the first 6 months of the baby’s life) or if you go straight to the car seat.