R.S. asks from Columbus, OH on December 10, 2006
Opinions Needed. What Type of Baby Products Are Best?
I'm now 8 1/2 months pregnant and I have quite a bit of shopping to do. Was looking for opinions on bottles, breast pumps, strollers, and anything else that I may need for a newborn. My youngest is now 8, so it's been awhile since I've been through the baby stuff. I know there's a lot of new products, but I don't want to just go buy everything because it looks useful. What is REALLY useful?
M.S. answers from Columbus on December 16, 2006
Congrats! Unless you plan on putting your baby in a crib from the getgo, I would say get a bassinet. I got a pack n play, and honestly, it was a waste of money. I never used the changing table and it wouldn't fit in between my door ways, so to move it, I had to take it apart. Plus, the playpen part was really crappy. Diapers are obviously a must. I found Pampers Swaddlers were the best. Size newborn and size 1 because my daughter was born weighing 6 lbs. Within a month or so she was needing size 1 (it says to 10 lbs, but by 8 they became snug). Avent bottles were the best for me. I used the 4 ounce ones. Someone else mentioned a car seat. The one I got was made by Graco. I actually got the travel combo thing where it comes with a stroller. I loved it because it made it easier to take my daughter places. The car seat just snapped onto the top part of the stroller. The only downside is the carrier is pretty heavy. Not bad if your baby is under 10 lbs, but the carrier alone is about 13 lbs, so it's not fun to lug around. I also wished I would have gotten a car seat that went past 22 lbs. My daughter HATES her new one, so we are still trying to get her used to it. As for toys and all, my daughter showed no interest until about 2 months ago. A Boppy pillow is a must have for feedings and all. As for pacifiers, I went with Gerber Ortho. A little pricy, but they work great for my daughter. All that other stuff like wipe warmers, bottle warmers etc. I think are a waste of money. Just my opinion and all, but really, all a newborn needs is a place to sleep and some diapers and bottles :) I went a little nuts on clothing and my daughter was so tiny that she basically lived in long gowns for the 1st month or so. One thing I got that I loved were gowns that had finger covers, or slip on baby mittens. My daughter used to scratch up her face, so they really came in handy. If you have any other questions about products let me know. I am sure there are things I am leaving out. Good luck!
S.Z. answers from Cleveland on December 10, 2006
Definetly buy a car seat that goes from 5-80 pounds (or as high as you can find one) sinc ethey now reccomned children in a booster until 4'8". I have 4 Alpha-Omega Carseats. I Prefer the 5 point harness types but both are good. A pack and play is great. They come with an "infant top part and some come with a changing pad type thing. Just depends on your available space. As far as bottles and sippy cups your going to have to decide what your baby and you like best. Also as far as cribs I would get one that converts to a toddler bed and then a big bed. Less money spent in the long run. We have 2 toddler beds and now to big kid beds. I see the toddler beds as a waste of money, now anyway.
K.P. answers from Columbus on December 11, 2006
I found the book "Baby Bargains" to be very helpful. It's kind of like Consumer Reports, but it's only for baby products. The rate every big item on the market, so you can decide where you want to spend more money and where you're happy with the lower quality/lower price. They also give advice like how many clothes, blankets, bibs, etc. you REALLY need.
Having said that my breastpump is a medela pump in style... which I would highly recommend if you're going to breastfeed while working. We got a Graco carseat and stroller... I would recommend the infant car seat to start out with. I can't tell you how many times we've been happy that we had that when our children fell asleep in a store or in the car and we didn't have to wake them up when we moved them! Bottles, we used the Playtex bottles with liners with our first but it got very OLD and expensive using all those liners so for our second we switched to Avent. Personally, we haven't used the pack 'n play that much... our kids got to a point where they didn't want to sleep in there so we used it for changing diapers and that was it. We never got a bassinet, they've both slept in their cribs from day 1 with a motion/sound monitor. We love our swing. I could go on and on... I would highly recommend the book though.
M.G. answers from Columbus on December 11, 2006
Hi R., Congrats! I have worked (and still do) as a nanny for the past 6 years and I have my own daughter who is now 22 months... I have worked with just about everything. First car seats. I would highly reccommend the infant carrier for the first year (or til your baby grows out of it). It is extremely convient if he/she falls asleep and if you are going shopping they attach to most store carts. But as far as brands go, I would recommend Britax. They are very pricey, but they are the best out there. They are European made and tested and their testing is better than ours. It is tested at 65MPH impact. US only tests to 25-30 MPH impact.
As for feeding. Anythign but Dr. Browns good is good. They are a pain to clean and put back together. Its not hard, just extra steps you don't need to have when you are trying to feed a hungry baby.
Strollers.... I have used them all and they are all pretty much the same. We have a Graco one and it collapses with one hand but I think they all do. And the basket is pretty big too. And if you use the infant carrier they attach to certain strollers... (we used a Graco infant carrier and stroller combo.)
I never really used my pack n play unless we travelled. My daughter was pretty content with her seats and to just lay on the floor. But they can come in handy. The first family I used to work for had a 15 mo. girl and twin infant boys so we used one for a changing station on the main floor instead of having to run upstairs all the time and leaving her alone. The vibrating seat is a good thing too. They are about $30 but they can calm a baby down.
And Dreft.... is a hoax (got this from my Ped).. You dont need it. Try washing one outfit in whatever you use as laundry detergent and if there is no rash, you can use ANYTHING that is dye and fragrance free. Alot of parents use ALL free and clear. I have used Tide in all sorts of scents on my daughter from day one. She has exzema and it is NOT affected by using soap. (believe it or not, Johnson and Johnson lotion was the culprit!) I can highly recommend Aveeno prodcuts too... Its the only lotion that keeps her exzema in check all the time. But don't waste your money on a thing of Dreft. Anyway, hope it helped! And good luck! Keep in mind though, that everyone is going to have thier opinion and what works for some of us might not work well with your child. Have a great day!