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Gearing up for baby can be an overwhelming and costly undertaking. A team of veteran parents have come up with a list of must haves and have-nots for your baby.

Worldwide spending on baby products is nearing $50 billion annually and many companies market their items as “must-haves”. Experienced parents know that most of these “must-have” products are nothing more than gimmicks that will end up in a yard-sale or handed down to an unsuspecting friend or family member.

DarnKid has created the ‘New Parents Guide To Baby Gear’, created by a team of parents to identify what we truly believe are essential items in raising a baby.

* The list does not include essentials like car seats… for obvious reasons.


Baby In-sight Auto Mirror. Keep an eye on your precious passengers.
Changing Table/Pad. You need somewhere to change those smelly packages. We opted with an inflatable mat from Ikea ($7.99) which was placed atop a dresser.
Baby Swing. Your baby will love it and give your tired arms a break.
Traditional High Chair. Sure you can get one with hooks but things are easier with the old school clip off tray.
Good Stroller. I convinced my wife that we didn’t need an expensive(ish) stroller like she suggested. After going through two strollers, we opted for a Bob Revolution and love it. You get what you pay for.
Video Monitor. Easy and affordable way to keep an eye on the kids from another room. They can be purchased for under $50 on eBay and the video is viewable on any device.
Baby Carrier. We use our Ergo baby all the time. Like the stroller, invest in a decent brand such as Ergobaby or Baby Bjorn.
Nursing Pillow. Comfy kid and comfy wife.
Diaper Genie. Trust me after going a week without one in the Summer (ours broke). Your nose will thank you.
Bouncey Activity Center/Exersaucer. Your kid will love it and you will love not having to hold your child 24/7. Note these are not for newborns, they generally range from 4 months to 24 months.
Pack n Play. An easy, portable bed that your kids (and company) will use for years. This is a must have.

Not Required

New/Name brand Clothes. Kids grow fast and you may only get a couple wears out of that stylish DKNY vest. Most kids live in onesies the first few months.
Baby care timer. There’s an app for that.
Sophia the Giraffe. Any rubbery toy that they can chew and squeaks is a hit.
Baby Shoes. They can’t even walk yet!
Teething Necklace. We had one, not sure if it worked or not as we always ended up giving them Tylenol.
Automatic Formula Mixer. Place bottle in right hand. Shake the bottle.
Pacifier Wipes. Just wash them under water. A specific wipe for everything they put in their mouth would cost you thousands.
Boogie Wipes. Essentially a baby wipe with a different name. See above.
Wipes Warmer. Great for the kid but hey, adults don’t even have warmed toilet paper.
Special Laundry Detergent For Babies. Instead of getting ‘baby’ specific detergent, spend less and opt for scent free option such as Arm & Hammer Perfume & Dye Free Liquid Laundry Detergent.
Baby food Maker/Baby Bullet. Why clutter your kitchen with a micro blender when a full size blender works better?
Diaper Stacker. Unless you have OCD and like your diapers in a perfect pile, these are not needed.
Bottle Warmer. Sure they warm up the milk, but so does hot water.
Pee-pee Tee-pee. Simply place a wipe over ‘it’ to avoid being tinkled on.
Bath Thermometer. The easiest way to check is to use your elbow rather than your hand to gauge the temperature. The water should feel neither hot nor cold
Crib Bumper Pads. Cute but not needed for your baby’s comfort
Baby Towels. A plain towel will do the job nicely.
Bumbo seat. We just propped out our child up using pillows.
Stuffed animals. Your baby will receive these as gifts from friends and family on every special occasion.
Baby Bath Tub. What’s wrong with the kitchen sink?
Bassinet. Why buy something they grow out of in a few months. Just use a crib or Pack n Play.

What do you think of our ‘New Parents Guide To Baby Gear’? Are we missing any essential items? Let us know below.

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