As a Los Angeles photographer specializing in newborn and baby’s first year pictures, I love learning about the top baby products. I constantly ask what products my clients are are using, trending and things they bought but didn’t like. Finding out my clients’ favorite “must-haves” has always been fun, but now as a new mom myself I have unique insight into the needs of a new mom. Here are the items that I have compiled from conversations with new and second time moms, then bought and tried out myself in order to write this list of the very best baby registry items:

The Best Baby Essentials

    • A Night Nurse – Before having my daughter I thought that a night nurse was for over-privileged parents. Now I know that a night nurse can help you create good sleep habits for your baby from the start and give you some much needed support and sanity in the evening. I have heard many times that a night nurse has sleep-trained a baby to sleep through the night by six weeks. As the mom of a five month old who still wakes up three times a night – I would pay anything to go back in time to have a night nurse sleep train my baby in the beginning! Ask your friends for a recommendation or go to

    • The Nuna Pipa Car Seat and Nuna MiXX2 Stroller – this is the most lightweight car seat out there. In addition to state of the art safety features, the car seat features elegant design with luxuries like a built in sun shade. The stroller is light, compact and easy to load in and out of your trunk. This is the piece of equipment you’ll use the most, so invest in a good one.
    • Halo Bassinest Swivel Sleeper – For the first few weeks or months you will want your baby right next to your bed for easy feedings. This is the absolute best Bassinet out there since you can swivel it over the mattress really close to you. If you want to go over the top, the Snoo is great, but keep in mind that you can only use it until the baby is 3 months old.  You can always try renting one from The Pump Station to see if your baby likes it before shelling out the big bucks.
    • Halo Sleep Sack – Properly swaddled infants sleep better than those who are not, it’s as simple as that. The wings on this sleepsack make it super easy to put your baby in a tight swaddle he can’t break out of. Choose the cotton version for warmer months or the micro-fleece for Winter.


  • Fisher-Price Auto Rock ‘n Play Sleeper – This is will probably be the best item you will use throughout the first month or two of baby’s life. This motorized version rocks the bassinet for you. Babies absolutely love sleeping int his because it has a soft back, they are upright (perfect for babies prone to spit-up) plus the rocking motion puts them to sleep. Most moms I know had their babies sleep in this for the first few weeks or months instead of the bassinet or Snoo because the babies like it so much.
  • Skip-Hop Backpack Diaper Bag – Trust me, your hands are always full when you are carrying and dealing with your baby. A hands free backpack is the only way to go!
  • V-Tech Baby Monitor – My hubby researched monitors for weeks before settling on this one. We love that it has an app. so that I can view the baby from our phones when we are away from home. You can also tilt, pan and zoom with this camera, so you can see different parts of the room if you’d like.

Mommy Breast Feeding Gear Checklist

  • The Medela Pump in Style Breast Pump – I recommend starting to pump around 2-4 weeks after giving birth.  The reason for this is that once your milk is in a bottle, your hubby can help with the feedings during the day and night and give you a bit of a break. Plus, you deserve a glass of wine now and again – and it feels good to know that you have milk in the fridge if you need it. This model is awesome since it comes with a battery pack. I originally thought I would use that feature when I travel or am on the go – but you would be surprised how often you’ll be in a rush and need to pump while doing your makeup, tidying up the house or cooking – the  so the cordless battery pack is amazing!

  • Clip Down Nursing Camisoles – My favorite was the Jessica Simpson brand, but you can find them all over. If you chose to breast feed, your breast are literally out all day long – especially for the first few weeks when the baby eats every two hours. These tops look cute, plus you can expose your breasts while keeping your tummy covered (which is nice for those of us who are not a super model who bounces back to her pre-baby body immediately after giving birth!)
  • Nipple Shields – I learned about these a few weeks after giving birth when I thought that I might need to give up on breast feeding because it felt like razors every time my daughter latched. These are AMAZING at giving your nipples a break (since they go over them like a protective sleeve) so your nipples don’t hurt when you breast feed. They are also good if you have inverted or flat nipples.
  • Mother Love Nipple Cream – Like it or not, you’ll need to use this for the first 4-8 weeks of breast feeding.
  • Hands Free Pumping Bra – There are a lot of brands out there, but I recommend getting a strapless bra. The reason for this is you’ll probably be pumping at random times, often when you are already wearing a bra. What I do is wear my regular clip-down nursing bra, then I’ll un-clip it so that the “girls” are free and then put my strapless pumping bra over my exposed breasts. This way, you don’t have to undress completely every time you pump.
  • Happy Baby Organic Formula – It’s always good to have a little formula on-hand for any unforeseen events. Even if you are committed to breastfeeding, a little formula here and there can give you a well needed break.

The Best Staple Products

  • Shnuggle Bathtub – Your baby will either love or hate bath time depending on which bathtub you use. Every person I have ever talked to who uses this bathtub says that their baby is a bath time fan.
  • Wipe Warmer – I use it because it’s a convenient way to have the wipes easily accessible on the changing table.  However, I understand that some people say it’s extravagant. Let me ask you this: when you are changing a crying baby in the middle of the night, do you want to wipe them with a nice warm wipe or risk that a chilly wipe will make them even more upset? Plus it’s nice for parents – I prefer a nice warm wipe in my hands as well!
  • Baeba Baby Food Maker – It might feel a little early to think about making your baby’s food before they are born, however this can be a pricier item so it’s nice to put on your registry. I love this food  maker because it steams and blends your baby’s fruits and veggies all in one place. It’s super easy; way easier than using the stove and a pot to steam the veggies and then put it in a separate blender to puree.
  • Boon bottle Drying Rack and Bottle Brush – I see people with drying racks of all sizes, but with so much baby stuff already cluttering up my kitchen counter tops, I opted for the smallest drying rack that was still reasonable for the amount of bottles I use each day. If you are diligent about putting away or re-using clean bottles each 1-2 feedings, this rack is perfect. If you are a bit more of a procrastinator, then go with one size bigger.
  • Dr. Brown’s Bottle Warmer – I can understand why this is a controversial item: some people insist that a baby will drink cold milk if that is all you give them from the beginning. My daughter refused cold milk from day one, and so we use a warmer to this day. The idea of ice cold milk in my baby’s tiny, few week old belly sounded harsh to me so I actually bought the warmer before she was even born. You can always see if your baby takes cold milk, and if not – this warmer makes it way easier to get your milk temp up than boiling hot water in a pot.
  • K’tan Wrap and/or Ergo Baby Omni 360 Carrier – Most people end up with one of each of these, mainly because guys prefer the Ergo and women the wraps. The Ka’tan wrap is awesome around the house, but you will probably prefer the stronger, more stable Ergo carrier for outdoors or long walks. If you only want to get one, then get a soft fabric Ergo that is a hybrid of both.
  • Baby Swing – Your baby will love this for the first three months, and then be over it once they are able to roll over and be more mobile. So, (second time mo tip!) don’t spend a lot of money on this.
  • Bouncer Chair – You won’t need this until baby is about three months old, since they prefer the swing until then. However, it’s a great bigger-ticket item to put on your registry.



The Baby Clothes for Infants

  • By far the coolest, softest baby clothes are made by Paige Lauren. You will want your baby to live in her super-soft, organic rompers and onsies.
  • The best clothes to put your little one in are onseis with both feet and sleeves that can fold over their fingers so that they don’t scratch themselves. Also look for anything with a zipper (ideally zipping open from the feet for easy diaper changes)- they make life way easier than anything with snaps!

Stuff You Want to Buy and Have on Hand

  • Pampers Swaddlers Diapers – I’m sorry Honest, Huggies and fancy brands – Pampers is the most used brand by moms for a reason, they jsut work. AND the color changing stripe on them will save you from opening up to check if the diaper is wet or not. Don’t subscribe to diapers on Amazon though because your baby will be growing and changing sizes very quickly.
  • Water Wipes – My baby has never had a diaper rash. That is possibly because I use these super organic, chemical free wipes. Either way, these are the best!
  • Desitin and Aquafor – the best for preventing and curing diaper rashes. I use this mainly overnight as a preventative buffer.

I hope that you enjoy this list – these products have been wonderful for me, my family and clients!