Okay, so I’m definitely not a “baby expert” but I must say that I have lots of baby gear / baby products and I have had ample time to try a lot of them out. So for all my preggo mamas who are “nesting”, I hope this post helps you realise what baby products / baby gear you could probably do without.
Oh but side bar, ALL BABIES ARE DIFFERENT. I know! Shocking. Since I’ve had J, I’m secretly a little baffled by people who swear Pampers are better than Huggies, or said they never used their bottle warmers. What are they TALKING about? How did Pampers not leak all over the place for you? How were they using the bottle in a bowl of warm to heat up the milk? How long did that take?
But I get it. The babies. They like different things. Different things work for each of them.
Anyway, subsequently I’m going to offer you my well thought out list of the most useful things we’ve used from J’s birth till date. But for now these are the 18 LEAST useful baby products to us. Many of which are probably absolutely essential to someone else’s baby. So this may be a very futile exercise, lol, but I hope it helps someone.
1. Expensive Outfits: I really should have listened to everyone on this lol I don’t regret it, but J could have done without the designer baby clothes. Expensive outfits could be left to the relatives and friends to buy: our mother’s on both sides did a great job buying J loads of expensive clothes, shoes and stuff. But on our own budget, we shouldn’t have bothered buying (a lot of) expensive / designer baby clothes especially because a baby’s initial couple of months apparently consists largely of feeding, sleeping, and being held. From a clothing standpoint, this translates to one thing – no one sees the outfit, so comfort is key. Say hello to hand-me-downs for next baby. LOL.
2. New born size clothes and diapers: Again, I should have listened. A perfect fit isn’t really so important, especially in these early months. Overalls that are too small would cramp baby’s toes, but you can use ones that are a little bit big, so go for 0-3 months rather than new-born size. Also don’t stockpile small disposable diapers – you will soon need to go up a size. J was born at 9Lbs 12oz and could barely fit into new-born sizes, in fact he was in 6 months clothing at 3 months old.
3. Wipe-Warmers (and it’s sister The Travel Wipe Warmer): I remember the day I made this purchase (Wipe Warmer), my sister laughed so hard. She thought it was the most useless product ever designed to solve a problem that doesn’t even exist. But I got it anyway. Let’s just blame pregnancy hormones lol. I mean I understand if mommas who live in countries with cooler temperatures need this, perhaps, but for me I realised that the wipe loses its temperature so quickly when it reaches his bum if it’s is not just inches away from the wipes warmer.
Honestly, babies don’t need warm wipes. I swear. They don’t. And someday when you are struggling in an airport bathroom that doesn’t have a changing table (*sideeye* I love my country but boy-oh-boy) and you are using your standard room temperature wipes, this will all become clear.
4. Bath Stand: *sigh* the problem with this is that you have to lift a heavy bath full of water on and off the stand. Turns out it is less effort popping a squat or kneeling bath-side. Packed this up few months after.
5. Bath Thermometer: Just use your hand to check the temperature of the water. I probably used this 3 times, and I felt sillier each subsequent time lol.
6. Baby Bath Robe: You know those cute little robes that usually have cute hoodies and you tie around their waist? You. Will. Never. Use. These. Maybe once or twice for an instagram worthy photo but never again. It probably won’t be of actual use to you, because you probably wouldn’t leave your infant / toddler lying / wandering around in a bath robe like little Prince George (with all due respect lol)
7. Baby Perfume: *sigh* Yes this really exists. *sideeye*
8. A truck load of Toys: So despite what you think, toys are redundant in the first few months and your baby will be ‘stimulated’ by life. Too many over-complicated toys may become a distraction to learning rather than an aid.
I do love me some good old educational toys but frankly what J (and a lot of other kids) really love are everyday objects; anything that isn’t an official play thing – keys, mobile phones, remote controls, ice cube trays, wooden spoons. Baby toy manufacturers often market their products as educational, so it’s easy to fall into the trap of buying them. I think it’s best to conduct some research on what educational toys may be beneficial to your baby’s development.
9. A crib Mobile: I admit – it did look pretty cool hanging there over his cute crib but for J the crib mobile turned out to be more stimulating than soothing, which meant that it had the adverse effect of keeping J awake rather than soothing him to bed. Also, after a few months, once your munchkin can sit up it’s advisable to remove it – for safety reasons.
10. Crib-Side Music Box/Light Show: Fair enough we got this as a gift, so it wasn’t as agonising to pack it up after a few weeks. Like the crib mobile, this turned out to be more stimulating than soothing.
11. Moses Basket/Bassinet: This was so cute, but J had outgrown his bassinet by the time he was about 3 / 4 months old. Big baby. I’ll pull it out when we have another baby.
12. Warm Mist Humidifiers: Used it once when J had a stuffy nose, didn’t bother again. Plus now I hear these could be a fire hazard and they encourage bacteria / mould to grow in the warm, wet environment they create (please carry out adequate research).
13. Baby on Board Sign: I still can’t fathom why I got this. Perhaps to smugly advertise my fertility. I mean, “look at me, I have a baby….he may not be on board at the moment since I’m on my way to work but I do have a baby so don’t hit my car” lol.
14. Newborn Size Baby Bottles: Too small within weeks. Please refer to number 2 above.
15. Formula Powder Dispenser: There is probably no need to purchase a specially designed powder dispenser. You can just as easily measure out formula into a sterilised, small, plastic, sealed container or your baby’s (dry) bottle to save up space in the diaper bag.
16. Door Bouncer: You may be tempted to purchase a baby doorway bouncer. Don’t. I was, and we got one. It turns out the (US) Association of Paediatric Chartered Physiotherapists discourages the use of the door bouncer because they encourage babies to bounce on their tiptoes and arch their back unnaturally. Big Oops.
17. Pacifier wipes: Your baby will drop his or her pacifier, a lot!!!!! As a new mom I stashed on pacifier wipes so I would never run out. Well, I never did but as J got older, it got more difficult to control where he put and what he did with his pacifier; so using the pacifier wipes sort of became pointless. Anyway, after a few months of using a pacifier he got bored of it, so I’m stuck with all that pacifier wipes. Lol.
18. Stuffed animals: Oh my gosh, these will multiply! Everyone would buy you stuffed animals and you know what, they don’t do all that much except clutter up your home. We’ve ended up with a million of them, and worst of all, it just serves decorative purposes. Maybe my story would be different if I had a baby girl lol.
So what did I forget? Please tell me if there is a really useless baby item I missed. What’s your top pick for the most pointless infant / baby product / gear?
P.S: I apologise for being unavoidably absent for so long guys! I got ALL your e-mails and I’m still coming around to responding to EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM. I appreciate your concern and I missed being here too.
Love & Light,