Cheeky Daddy

Baby Must-Haves for New Fathers

Baby must have's for new dads

Stepping into fatherhood is an exhilarating adventure complete with a rollercoaster of highs and lows as you quickly adapt to your new life as a parent. It’s no cakewalk, and you’ll want to be as prepared as possible to hit the ground running when the baby arrives. That means getting the right toolkit. Just as swashbuckling adventurer Indiana Jones wouldn’t go anywhere without his trusty whip and hat combo, you shouldn’t go into the thrilling world of parenting without your newborn baby essentials.

Now, don’t get us wrong, we don’t want to scare you. Newborn babies aren’t equivalent to the Temple of Doom. But tackling your tasks can feel like a trial-by-combat if you don’t have the right stuff. Let’s run through your newborn essentials baby checklist.

Nappy Bag Essentials

First up on the list is a sturdy, dad-friendly nappy bag for your day-to-day going to and fro with your new baby. Opt for a backpack style with plenty of compartments and pockets for easy organisation of your baby gear. Trust us; this is absolutely vital for when you are in an emergency nappy-related situation! Baby wipes, burp cloths, and nappies must be easily accessible to avoid any icky mishaps.

You’re going to want to stock up on these. Whether you’re going eco-friendly or disposable, you really don’t ever want to be caught short. And don’t forget a portable changing table for those pit stops. It’s also important to stock cream for your baby’s skin in case of nappy rash.

Given the amount you’ll be carrying around, find a bag that’s comfortable to carry.

Feeding Time Gear

Much of taking care of a baby is providing them with their basic needs: food, shelter, sleep, etc. As such, food is going to be a big part of your day. Let’s tick off your food-related newborn checklist:

  • Bottles and formula – If bottle-feeding is part of your plan, finding the right bottle can feel like our friend Indy’s quest for the holy grail. Remember, it’s about what works best for your baby.
  • Breast pump and accessories – Supporting your partner in the breastfeeding journey? A high-quality breast pump and storage for breast milk can make all the difference. Plus, it means you can take over feeding duties, too.
  • High chair – Invest in a durable high chair when the time comes. It’s not just for meals; your baby’s high chair acts as a front-row seat for your baby to explore tastes and textures, so choosing something sturdy you can rely on is important to let them bounce around in there.
  • Rocking chair – This one’s for you! A rocking chair lulls your baby during feeding time while the rocking motion is comfortable for you, too! It’s a win-win for everybody.

Sleeping Stuff

Baby Crib

As much as you’ll love your cherished newborn baby, there’s also nothing better than when they fall into a peaceful slumber. There are a couple of things you can buy to give you the best chance of a good night’s sleep.

  • Bassinet or co-sleeper – In the early days, having your sleeping baby close by can ease those midnight feeds and check-ins. Stock up on baby bedding as well in case there’s any midnight mishaps.
  • White noise machine – A white noise machine can be a sleep lifesaver, drowning out the world’s noise for both you and your baby.
  • Swaddles – Mastering the swaddle can soothe a fussy baby and might just buy you a few more precious moments of sleep. It’s like a cosy hug for your baby.

Out and About – Travel Must-Haves

With a newborn, the times of rushing out the door in a heartbeat are long gone. Now, there’s a long list of must-haves whenever you feel like taking your newborn out into the world:

  • Car seat – Safety first, always. A reliable car seat is non-negotiable for your baby’s transport needs. You can upgrade to an infant car seat as your baby grows up.
  • Pushchair – Consider your lifestyle when choosing a pushchair. Are you negotiating busy city streets, planning to jog, or travel frequently? There’s now a whole range of pushchair types depending on your preferences. Make sure there’s a few baby toys in the pushchair to keep them occupied.

Health and Safety Baby Gear

Of course, we’re naturally protective of our newborn babies, and it can be incredibly stressful for new parents who constantly worry about their baby’s well being. There are some products to buy that can help set your mind at ease.

  • Baby monitor – Keeping an ear (and sometimes an eye) on your baby while they sleep can offer peace of mind.
  • First aid kit – Stock a baby first aid kit with essentials for those just-in-case moments.
  • Thermometer –A reliable, baby-friendly thermometer is a must-have for monitoring fevers and keeping track of your little one’s health.

Playtime and Development

As a new father, it’s not just about covering those basic needs. You also need to spend time bonding with your newborn baby and ensuring you nurture them through play. This is critical for both of you as you begin your journey together. Here are some things you can buy to facilitate playtime and development with your baby.

  • Play mat – A colourful, engaging play mat is perfect for tummy time and stimulating your baby’s senses.
  • Books and toys –Start building your baby’s library early. Reading to your child fosters bonding and supports their cognitive development.
  • Soft blocks – These are great for sensory play, helping babies develop their grasp reflex and hand-eye coordination. Plus, they’re safe for those inevitable moments when everything ends up in the mouth.
  • Bath toys – Baby bath time is an overlooked opportunity for bonding. Turn bath time into fun time with floating toys, cups, and water-friendly books. It’s a great way to make daily routines enjoyable and a learning experience.

Baby Clothing

When it comes to clothing for your new baby, you need things to be simple and comfortable. While it’s tempting to stock up on adorable outfits, the reality of spit-ups, diaper leaks, and unreasonable growth means you’ll want essentials that are more functional than cute (even if the mother disagrees).

Here are a few must-have baby items for your baby’s wardrobe: baby socks and booties, onesies, hats, easy swaddles, soft pants, sleep sacks, and, okay, a few cute outfits for special occasions!

Babies grow quickly, so choose items that are durable and easy to clean. And always have a backup outfit (or two) handy, because there’s always a messy surprise around the corner. All part of the parenting adventure, of course.

Baby Clothing

Dad’s Self-Care

We’ll share something controversial – it’s not all about the baby! You need to take care of yourself, too.

  • Parenting books – There are some great reads out there specifically for new dads. Arm yourself with knowledge and a few survival tips to give you the confidence to tackle things head-on in those first few weeks.
  • Coffee maker – Too tongue-in-cheek? We think coffee becomes a must-have essential in the early days of parenthood. Treat yourself to a good coffee maker.
  • Journal or app – Documenting your progress as a father can be both therapeutic and a wonderful way to look back on these fleeting moments with nostalgia. Consider keeping a journal or downloading a dedicated app to track your journey.

Wrapping Up Your Must-Haves

Guess what: this list is not exhaustive! Go into any store for babies, and you’ll see aisles of potential products to buy, from nursery furniture to baby clothes to baby toys and other baby equipment. Going through all the essentials would take up too much page space.

The point is this. There’s plenty to buy, but these items really do make your life a whole lot easier as a parent.

Remember, however, that while gear can help, it’s the love and care that truly make the dad.

Since there is so much to buy, we’d love to hear from you. What are your baby must-haves? Did we miss anything on this list that saved your sanity during the first few months? Drop your tips or questions in the comments below.

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