Baby Shopping Guide
A Newborn Checklist
Being a first-time parent brings up questions many people may have never considered before: What formula is best for my baby? Are they getting enough of it? When should babies start wearing shoes and what kind? The list goes on and on. Thankful this complete guide will offer tips, tricks, and real-world advice so money isn’t wasted on unnecessary products that just don’t work. Whether you are an expecting mom researching diapers or a soon-to-be grandma stocking up on goodies for the new baby, this guide has you covered.
Baby clothes are so cute and it can be tempting to pick up that little argyle sweater vest and bowtie or white ruffled dress. However, here are some things to consider before making any purchases.
To get the most use out of baby clothes, go a size bigger than you need. While people love to gift baby clothes, they tend to buy newborn or size 0-3 months. The problem with this is those clothes will only fit for a short time (and, in some cases, if the baby is born at eight or more pounds, they may surpass the newborn size completely).
Tell family and friends to buy bigger than your baby’s actual age. Namely, most 9-12 month clothes can fit six-month-old babies and they’ll have room to grow. Remember to consider the season, though. Don’t purchase lightweight clothes they can only wear for a few weeks before fall and winter.
End of season sales are the best way to purchase clothes at an affordable price. If your baby is nine months old at the end of winter, they’ll be approximately eighteen months old at the beginning of next winter. When the weather starts to warm and spring approaches, stores will put all their winter wear on clearance to make way for the new season. Take advantage of the sales and buy items such as clothes, snowsuits, and footwear that are between 18-24 months in size. This way, your baby will be winter-ready for the following year with a stockpile of discounted clothes to keep them warm and cozy!
People often purchase or are gifted, name brand baby clothes. Be aware, though: babies are notorious for ruining their clothes. It’s absolutely okay to put them in name brands – just be selective about what the article of clothing is and how often it will be worn.
For example, onesies and t-shirts will get dirty, so it’s not wise to spend a lot of money on them. A special occasion dress for the family Christmas picture that your baby can wear for family parties or church may be a better investment. Don’t be afraid to mix and match name brands with cheaper options for a complete look without breaking the bank. Also, shop for clothes at garage sales, second-hand stores, and Buy Sell Trade sites for the best deals. Or better yet, visit our baby clothing section to get deals and discounts on your favorite baby brands!
Shopping for baby shoes can be stressful. What should you look for in a shoe? How can a parent know they’re choosing the right kind? Here are some tips on how to make the best purchase:
Before hunting for the perfect shoes for your baby, keep in mind that babies don’t need shoes until they begin walking. Socks, booties, and soft-soled shoes are fine for warmth, but hard-soled shoes aren’t necessary and can hinder mobility.
Once your baby takes their first steps, it’s time for a rubber-soled shoe, instead of the slipper-like shoes and boots they’ve been wearing. Their first pair of shoes should be more practical than fashionable, with flexible, non-skid soles.
What Else to Look For:
Laces: Velcro fasteners are much easier to put on and remove. However, if your baby figures out how to remove them on their own, consider moving to laces and double-knotting them.
Material: Choose a material that’s breathable, such as soft leather or cloth. Stiff leather can actually hinder foot growth and development, in addition to not allowing the skin to breathe.
Sole: The sole of the shoe should be flexible when bent and still have grip. Pass on the shoes if they’re stiff. Also, keep in mind that non-skid rubber soles will have the best traction.
Fit: The baby should be there to try the shoes on. For the best fit, have your baby stand and squeeze a pinky between their heel and the heel of the shoe. There should be just enough room to do so. In the front of the shoe, there should be a full thumb-width between the end of the longest toe and the front of the shoe. There should be just enough wiggle room in the shoe without being too big. Check the shoe every month to see if it still fits or it’s time for a new pair of shoes.
• If the shoe material is soft, try grabbing it while the shoe is being worn. If it can’t be grabbed, the shoe is too tight.
• Baby’s feet will swell. For the best fit, shop for shoes in the evening.
• After taking the shoes off, look for marks of irritation on the foot.
Diapers may be the most important purchase you make for your baby. But with so many brands, sizes, and kinds, what’s best? Here are tips on how to make the best choice for your baby:
Try, Try, Try
Buy a few small packs of diapers to try and use them before committing to one brand and type. Also, sample packs can be obtained from the hospital, through the mail, etc. Don’t be afraid to experiment until you choose the best diaper for baby.
Have friends with kids? Ask them what diapers they used and what they liked about them, what they didn’t, and so on. Take to social media and ask what diapers everyone used for their babies. New parents can get tons of responses and ideas this way. Then, they can research and check reviews from there.
Size of Baby
Take your baby’s size into account when choosing diapers. Comfort is key, so if they are bigger than most, go up a size.
Size of the Diaper
The weight guidelines on the packages of diapers are just that – guidelines. If your baby is between sizes, go up for extra room and ultimate mobility.
We are the one stop shop for discounts, coupons, and offerings when it comes to diapers! Check them out here!
Choosing a good formula can be a daunting task. However, by looking at a few criteria, you can make a decision you can feel good about:
Types of Formula
Powdered – The powdered form of formula is the most cost-effective, but it takes the longest to prepare with measuring and adding water.
Liquid – It’s liquid that just needs to be mixed with water for easy prep.
Ready to Use – Formula that’s ready to serve after opening and is the most expensive.
All types can be made of cow’s milk, soy milk, lactose-free, and hydrolyzed (with proteins broken down). The formula used should depend on the baby’s health (allergies, eczema, lactose intolerance) and specific needs like if it’s a supplement to breast milk or if the parents decide to go organic.
New formulas are constantly coming on the market. They claim to help babies with everything from digestion issues to relieving colic or acid reflux. However, some experts say they have similar nutrients as breast milk and won’t largely improve issues.
Most doctors recommend babies who aren’t exclusively breastfed be given iron-fortified formula until the age of one. Here are other things baby’s formula should include:
• Vitamins C and D and minerals (such as four grams of iron).
• Nucleotides for immune system development.
• Rice starch to alleviate acid reflux.
• Dietary fiber to treat diarrhea.
• Amino acids (found in breast milk).
• Probiotics and prebiotics to prevent intestinal infections.
Formula is a matter of preference. Ask friends and family what they used, research the different types and read reviews, and, if you’re truly baffled, ask your pediatrician for recommendations. Also, don’t try to diagnose an allergy or sensitivity; take your baby to the doctor to see what formula would be best for them. Looking for deals for your nursing and feedings needs? We've got you covered! Get great discounts on formula, nursing pillows and more here!
Buying baby products doesn’t have to be difficult. Shop for deals, use your resources and you'll quickly become a superstar parent! For extra deals, check out our list of retailers that offer freebies and discounts on baby products like diapers, formula and more here!