What Baby Gear Do I Really Need?


As a first time parent it can be very hard to determine what baby gear you really need.

When I was expecting my first baby, I had to have ALL. THE. THINGS. 

Clothes in all sizes. 

Different baby carriers. 

Different brands and sizes of both cloth and disposable diapers

One of those travel systems with the car seat, stroller and big kid seat. 

Brand new furniture for what used to be the guest bedroom and was now the baby’s nursery, including matching headboard, convertible crib, changing table / dresser, glider and decor. Of COURSE decor.

A special co-sleeper that attached to our bed in our bedroom.

Baby monitor. Baby gates.

Wipes, pacifiers, socks, hats, blankets, toys, books…. Like I said. All. the. things.

As a practiced American, I am SO good at buying all the stuff! I love having a new iPhone, trendy makeup, a car with all the computer-y gadgets. So naturally I must encourage all of my clients as a postpartum doula to buy all the baby gear, too? Right?  

Welp. No.

See, after my first baby I discovered that I needed about 15% of what I listed above.

With the second and third babies, I had tried and true hand-me-downs ready and knew exactly what I would use and didn’t use. (This was a good thing because budgets get a LOT tighter as your family grows!)

I’m definitely not judging you for buying all of the lovely things you want to get for your baby. It’s so much fun purchasing all those sweet, wee items. 

But when I’m in your home, helping you make the transition of adding a baby (or two) to your life, I’m rarely suggesting that you need more THINGS. 

The things aren’t magical. Babies don’t really need all of the baby gear out there. The vast majority of claims about the things are pure marketing, as a beloved former client would say, “More ways to part you and your wallet.”

As postpartum doulas, Buddha Belly is going to work with the things you already have and you and your unique baby to help you discover your own path through parenthood. Maybe you already have an assortment of things and need help understanding and using them. We got you. Maybe you’d prefer a minimalistic approach and would rather proceed with as little extra baggage as possible. Not a problem. Maybe you’re like many of us, struggling to balance between the right and the not-so-right things. We can help with that too.

We do have experience with lots of different baby items and can tell you what we recommend based on experience. For more info on that check out our blog post: The Best Baby Registry – Advice from a Postpartum Doula. 

So much of the conversation today about modern parenting is all about this topic: the RIGHT bottle. The RIGHT swaddle. The RIGHT baby bed. Or the RIGHT whatever. We’re here to tell you that this just isn’t the case.

Modern parenting can be made more convenient, sometimes, with these items, but for the rest of us, we need support. Pure and simple, we need experienced, caring people in our corner helping us figure it all out.

For more on this topic please check out this blog post: Code Red Baby Preps.

About Amy Lewis

Amy is certified by ProDoula as a labor doula, postpartum and infant care doula and postpartum placenta specialist. She was certified by the Healthy Children Project and the Academy of Lactation Policy and Practice as a lactation counselor and is a birth, newborn and breastfeeding educator.