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What Baby Gear Do You Need for Your Newborn?

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Layette: Baby's First Clothes

  • 6 undershirts that snap on the bottom or tie on the side, commonly called "onesies" (3 in three-month size and 3 in six-month size)
  • 3 to 4 infant gowns with elastic bottoms. These make for easy diaper changes. All you have to do is pull the gown up over the belly to change the diaper and then pull it back down when finished. There is no stumbling around trying to snap the gown back together, which is especially nice when it's 3 a.m. and all you want to do is get baby back to sleep so that you can get back to sleep.
  • 6 sleepers/stretch suits (3 newborn to three-month size and 3 in six-month size). These are nice to put baby in during the day, but are not essential items. When buying these, make sure you get the kind that zip up the front. These are easier to get baby in and out.
  • 3 to 4 pairs of booties or socks with stretch elastic band at cuff
  • 3 to 4 receiving blankets
  • 1 sweater and hat

Bathing Baby: What You Need

  • Baby bathtub (sloping with foam pad or flat with molded sponge insert)
  • 4 terry cloth bath towels (hooded towels are OK, but not necessary)
  • 4 to 6 washcloths
  • Tearless shampoo
  • Baby soap. Many brands make baby shampoo and soap all in one.
  • Brush and comb
  • Rounded-tip nail scissors or clippers. Baby's nails grow quickly and can scratch his or her face.
  • Bulb syringe nasal aspirator. These are used to suction excess mucus from baby's nose and mouth (the one you receive in the hospital is a keeper!).

You may want to check with your baby's doctor before the first bath. Most doctors recommend that you wait until the umbilical cord has fallen off and the circumcision site has healed before giving your baby a tub bath. In the meantime sponge baths work great.

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