Preparing for baby's arrival: the must-have list

The arrival of a baby is a huge change for parents, emotionally, physically and organizationally. You will have to let go, trust yourself and let your instincts guide you, but especially your baby. Are you stressed? The opposite would be strange (smile). Let us help you in your preparations with our list of essential products to prepare for the arrival of baby.

breast-feeding mother

To make it easy for you to find your way around, we've divided this article into categories: Home, Meals, Outdoors activities, Care, Clothes. In each category, discover explanations, tips on products you could rent or buy (new/second hand) and favorite brands of MotherStories and mothers of the community

Don't forget to download our checklist so you don't forget anything. Ready to go? Let's go !

Home

Bed / Bassinet
At first, baby will probably sleep with you. Either in a small bassinet that you can rent at the clinic or borrow from a friend (it's not worth buying it for such a short time) or in co-sleeping with a bed stuck to yours with a barrier on the other side. The co-sleeping is appreciated for the proximity that you have with your child in complete safety. Afterwards, we recommend you an evolving bed with bars that can accompany you until your child is 4 years old.

When to prepare the baby's room? When you feel like it. It's usually an exciting and fun project to do. If you wait until the last minute, it can be stressful. You may not have the energy to go shopping or the patience to wait for a long-delayed order.

your favorites :

  1. Chicco Next2Me co-sleeping bed
  2. Cocoonababy Nid Red Castle

MotherStories' favorite :

The butterfly bed light Baby-Bjorn because it's ultra convenient for traveling, going to dinner with friends or letting baby play in it during the day at home.

Changing table
This piece of furniture is a real bonus in the future baby's room. It will be used to change, nursery and create links with your child without hurting your back! You can choose a changing table, an evolving dresser or simply add a module (board) to be fixed to a dresser you already have.

Don't forget to bring a changing mat, several spare covers (you can also use diapers to protect the mattress) and small baskets to store baby's products (creams, wipes, diapers, liniment, etc.).

Your favorites :

  1. Design: Evolving changing table Bobo Kids Diego
  2. Economic: Changing table Sniglar IKEA

MotherStories' favorite :

The wall-mounted changing table Noga Charlie Crane as pretty as it is practical. It is wall mounted and opens and closes after each use.

Swaddling
Swaddling (very common in English-speaking countries) consists in wrapping baby with a special technique in a maxi diaper or a blanket. As in a cocoon, he will be soothed and reassured. The fact of being swaddled will prevent him from involuntarily wriggling in all directions and will allow him to fall asleep more peacefully and longer. To be done until he is about 2 months old before switching to a classic sleeping bag. Look at this tuto which explains you how to do it.

Whether it's for swaddling or wiping baby, swaddles will be your best allies and you'll need them all day long! Maxi or mini but above all multi (smile).

MotherStories' favorite :

Organic cotton diapers Nooshi Petit Stellou. They come in 2 sizes and will be practical for both you and baby.

The bouncy chair
An essential to be able to put baby safely. Sometimes, he will fall asleep in it but it is not a great position so use it with moderation. It is still very practical when you need to be free for even 10 minutes to prepare food, take a shower or take care of the older child.

Your favorites :

  1. Two in one: the bouncy chair Up & Down Béaba (practical also for the first meals of baby from 4-6 months).
  2. Design: the bouncy chair Levo Charlie Crane

MotherStories' favorite :

The different models (with or without toys, several materials/colors) of bouncy chairs BabyBjörn

Play mat
On his tummy on his mat, baby will learn to roll over, stand up and develop his motor skills. Choose a mat with an integrated mobile (mirrors, colors, little games that make noise).

Your favorite :

  1. The most colorful: Mat Gymini Tiny Love

MotherStories' favorite :

Liewood Glenn is a very nice and comfortable play mat that takes baby to the discovery of the fabulous marine world. It hides many little sensory surprises to awaken and stimulate baby's senses.

Meals

Breast milk / artificial milk
Breastfeeding or bottle feeding, the choice is yours. If you choose to breastfeed, you will need less equipment at the beginning, although we advise you to have a bottle on hand. Don't hesitate to take advantage of your midwife's regular follow-up at home to help you get the process started, which can sometimes be a little tricky. If this is the case, don't worry, it happens to many moms and often all it takes is a few good tips to make it work. If you want to use a breast pump, you can rent one at a pharmacy.

A few essential accessories to bring along with you when breastfeeding or bottle-feeding: bibs and diapers. Your child may spit up (a little or a lot) and drool as soon as he starts teething. It is therefore important to have a small supply of cloths to wipe and protect your child's clothes.

You will also find an article dedicated to the maternity suitcase with a check-list of essential products for breastfeeding.

Your favorites :

  1. Teething bibs Cheeky Chompers
  2. Triangular scarves in soft organic cotton jersey H&M
  3. Baby bottle maker Milkeo Béaba
  4. Silver nursing cups. Good plan : available for rent in pharmacy.
  5. Milk pump Elvie
  6. Baby bottle MAM
  7. Bottle tree & accessories Béaba

MotherStories' favorite :

The Tajine Banane brand of nursing clothes and its creative graphics absolutely mother-watching in high quality materials/finishes.

High chair
The high chair is not an urgent purchase since it will be useful only at the time of the food diversification (from 4 to 6 months). But it is still important to put it on a birth list or to think about it beforehand because the first weeks with baby go by quickly and we don't necessarily have the time to think about it. You can also choose an evolving high chair from birth.

MotherStories' favorite :

The Tripp Trapp high chair Tripp Trapp Stokke design and evolutionary which will follow your child from its birth to its independence 😉

Food diversification
It is not for immediately but as for the high chair you can anticipate the purchases. You will also need to think about plastic cutlery and large bibs to protect baby's clothes. When you are ready for this new step, discover our article on food diversification.

Your favorite :

  1. Baby Cook Béaba

MotherStories' favorite :

The silicone meal set with pink suction cup (unbreakable 😉 from Béaba to facilitate the learning of the meals, in all serenity.

Outdoors activities

Stroller
There are a lot of choices of strollers on the market and it would be good for you to look for the model that suits your lifestyle. Are you a city girl, a country girl or a mountain girl? Do you need big wheels to ride on the snow for example? Do you plan to have two children close together? If so, there are evolving strollers that can be enlarged later to accommodate a baby carriage and a seated carrycot. The second hand option is also a solution for the stroller because it is one of the most expensive purchases. Moreover, the ideal combination would be to have a large one for walks and trips on foot as well as a foldable one to leave in the car for errands in town or trips, hence the interest of borrowing from a friend or buying second hand.

Your favorites :

  1. For city dwellers: the Bugaboo with several models according to your needs
  2. Second hand: via the Swiss App Petit Marché
  3. Two in one: Doona Car Seat & Stroller
  4. Practical gadget: Dooky or Lässig stroller hooks

MotherStories' favorite :

The Yoyo Babyzen is THE lightweight and practical stroller by excellence. Ideal for travel (you can take it with you as hand luggage on a plane), it folds and unfolds in seconds. The Yoyo accompanies your child from birth to infancy with its different configurations (newborn pack, carrycot, color pack from 6 months).

Car seat
Indispensable for car trips. Note that we won't let you leave the maternity ward without it (if you go by car ;). There are many choices on the market, here is a comparison made by the TCS to help you.

Your favorites :

  1. Car seat Cybex
  2. Car seat Maxi Cosy
  3. Car seat Britax Römer

Baby carrier / Sling
If you like to keep your little one close to you and have your hands free, then the baby carrier or sling is for you! Note that there are babywearing courses given by midwives or people specially trained for this. Practical for putting baby to sleep, he will feel reassured and soothed, curled up against his mother.

Your Favorites :

  1. Ergobaby Aerloom baby carrier
  2. Baby carrier BabyBjörn

MotherStories' favorite :

The Sling Studio Romeo physiological sling allows you to carry your baby from birth. Simple and adjustable, you just have to put the fabric through the two rings and that's it.

Changing bag
A changing bag is a practical way to carry what you need on your trips. It's important to choose one that attaches easily to your stroller or to get a backpack model to avoid hurting yourself. There are also other practical gadgets such as small hooks to attach to the stroller (for your purse, shopping bags...). As for the model, you will be spoiled for choice! There are now all kinds of colors, shapes or materials according to your tastes and needs.

Your Favorites :

  1. Changing bag Cam Cam Copenhagen
  2. Travel changing mattress Cam Cam Copenhagen

MotherStories' favorite :

How do you combine practicality and aesthetics? With the Lillibell bag organizer. You arrange all your baby's things in its different pockets before putting everything in your own handbag.

Care

Diapers
The product you need in quantity! 2 options: disposable or washable diapers. We strongly advise you to choose a brand that offers a subscription formula with monthly home delivery (great isn't it!). Some brands also offer diaper and bath care products that can be adapted to your baby's needs. Don't forget the diaper bag to neutralize bad odors.

Your favorites :

  1. Ecological disposable diapers: Love and green
  2. Disposable diapers with subscription system: Joone

MotherStories' favorite :

The disposable diapers from Lilydoo which offers 2 ranges : Lillydoo selection and their brand new Lillydoo Green, environmentally friendly, but also more absorbent and soft for the skin than classic diapers. Cute graphics and a subscription system to receive your diapers every month at home.

Bath
You can buy a small bathtub to put in your bathtub (always under high supervision) or, use your sink the first times if it is big enough. For the products, there are hundreds of brands. Take the one you like and pay attention to the composition, which must be 100% clean! Baby's skin is particularly fragile.

Your favorites :

  1. The folding bathtub Flexi Bath Stokke 
  2. Practical gadget: bath draining system Premaman

MotherStories' favorite :

Marelle's organic skin care products for babies and children are made in Switzerland with 99% natural ingredients. Quality products that respect the most fragile skins and that can be used from birth.

Pacifier
There are many opinions on this subject, but whether it's a pacifier, thumb or blanky, there is no ideal option. You'll have to choose according to your child's needs. Did you know that sucking is a mechanism that is present long before a child is born and gives him a feeling of comfort, relaxation and security? Around the age of 2-3 years (this is ideal but after that each child is different), most children will discover other ways to soothe themselves and will give up their thumb, pacifier or blanky on their own. To anticipate possible damage to your toddler's jaw, teeth or palate, try to limit pacifiers and thumbs to sleep (naps and nights).

Your favorite :

  1. Pacifier Medela

MotherStories' favorite :

The pacifiers of the Danish brand Bibs are made of 100% natural rubber. They are soft, flexible, comfortable and ultra light. 3 sizes are available (0-6 months, 6-18 months, 18+ months) to accompany baby until it is no longer necessary.

CLOTHES

You will buy too much! It's perfectly normal, especially if it's your first, not to mention all the gifts you're going to get from your friends and family. Your baby will grow up so fast that you will have to change his wardrobe constantly. That's where we think second-hand clothes become very interesting. Friends or colleagues will be happy to give you sets of clothes like new. Concerning the sizes, do not buy the size 1 (except if premature) because it will not fit anymore after a few days. Go for bigger sizes.

MotherStories' Favorite :

The Swiss App Petit Marché offers quality second-hand baby products and clothing for babies and children. A more ecological and economical way to consume.

You've reached the end of the article (smile). Are you reassured or on the contrary panicked? The goal was to give you options and food for consideration in order to choose the products that will make sense for you, your baby and your wallet. So enjoy your preparations and keep in mind that in the end, the only thing your baby will really need is you!

Download your checklist :

Paola Herscovici

Article co-written with Paola Herscovici
Volunteer writer for MotherStories
mother of 3 children