New parents or people who are expecting their first bundle of joy are often blinded by all of the things they think they need for their nursery or just don't even know where to start. This can lead to baby shower registries filled to the brim with things they won't ever actually touch.
Whether you're heading to a shower or shopping for yourself, we asked new moms and parents across social media about the things they couldn't imagine their nurseries without. Here are the items they found most useful.
Baby nursery must-haves, according to parents
Shop TODAY senior editor Jess Bender bought this bottle warmer for her sister-in-law and said it's one of the things she's consistently used over time. It has features like automatic shut-off to prevent overheating and an alarm to let you know when it's done. Plus, the removable basket makes it useful for heating up baby food, too. NBC News Digital's vice president of commerce Jen Birkhofer is also a fan of this warmer.
Another gift from Bender to her sister-in-law, this silicone brush is designed to help apply ointment or diaper cream to baby's skin. It keeps the process mess-free and is also helpful when you're on-the-go for quick, sanitary application.
Birkhofer (as well as several other parents) loves to use a wipe warmer to keep cold material from touching baby's bottom. This Munchkin style warmer holds up to 100 standard wipes and the view window will help you keep track of when it needs to be refilled.
Birkhofer says these swaddles are "the best. They are so easy to use and you can transition them from arms in to arms out at three months," she raved.
Shop TODAY editorial director Adrianna Brach loves these sleep bags for when babies outgrow swaddling — and she's not the only one. For starters, it has over 5,700 five-star ratings.
"Our baby girl sleeps so soundly in it and I have peace of mind that she’s warm and safe!" one verified buyer raved. One mom even said she refused to use sleep sacks but eventually grew to love it.
For the transition period between swaddles and sleep sacks, Brach likes this suit from Baby Merlin's. It's designed with baby's comfort in mind with features like a scoop neck to keep fabric out of their face while they sleep and double zippers for easy diaper changing.
Brach says zip-up pajamas are a must and suggests avoiding snaps or buttons. She likes Mori pajamas because they're soft and stretchy, and said her baby was able to wear them for a few months instead of outgrowing them after a few weeks — an experience she had with other brands.
Several people called out the benefits of having a sound machine in their nursery. Brach and commerce photo editor Becca Delman both have this smart model from Hatch. This three-in-one machine acts as a night light, sound machine and alarm clock with experiences that can be customized from an app on your phone.
Both Delman and Brach have baby cams from Nanit and love it. Check on baby throughout the night via the connected app and you can even use it to play white noise and soothing sounds to get and keep them asleep. Brach also invested in the travel stand to take it with her anywhere she goes.
Delman also loves this wipeable changing pad for minimal to no messes. It has raised edges and a strap to baby secure in case they're a roller.
A diaper organizer like this one can be kept near the changing table so you don't have to run around the entire room just to find what you need. It even has space for grooming essentials so the post-bath time routine is easier for you. Delman also has this organizer and says she loves it because it makes her feel "orderly and neat."
Few things are worse than a baby with a runny or stuffed up nose. Not only is it uncomfortable for them but, without the proper tools, can be a pain for you to manage. Nicole Morales (full disclosure: the mother to my sweet nephew) said they never thought they'd use this "snot sucker" but ended up buying extras to keep in other places so it was always on hand. One pack comes with four disposable hygiene filters and it can be washed in the dishwasher between uses.
If your baby has dry skin, Aquaphor Baby is the way to go. You can even use it to heal diaper rash!
Burp cloths are a new baby essential that you can't ever have too many of. This pack of four comes highly-rated from Target reviewers and is affordable enough to purchase multiples at once.
Giving medicine to a baby is a deceptively difficult task. This pacifier-capped syringe makes it easy on parents by dispensing liquid to the side of the cheek, which the brand says is the doctor-recommended way to reduce spit ups.
One mom on social media loved her Boppy and said she used it outside of the nursery for when the baby can hold the bottle on their own and feed themselves. According to the brand, it's designed to give your back and arms some relief during feeding time so you have a soft, elevated surface to rest on. The slipcover is removable and machine-washable. You can even buy other covers to switch it up.
Several people on social media mentioned how much they loved having a recliner or some sort of rocking chair in their nursery. One person said they didn't have one for their first three children and it was a game-changer when they got it for their fourth! This glider and ottoman duo comes in seven colorways and even has a pocket on the side for you to store baby's favorite bedtime story or other essentials.
Diaper Genies were another fan favorite. The disposal system comes with scented bags to mask any odor, while the hands-free foot pedal makes clean up a breeze so you can focus on baby. One mom said she didn't actually think she needed it, but it made all the difference in a small apartment.
Brach also suggests having a phone charger in the nursery because you'll be spending so much time in there. This wireless charger works with different phone types and eliminates any messy wires that can get tangled, lost or become a hazard as baby grows and gains the tendency to grab anything and put it in their mouth.