Updated: Apr 26, 2021
Basic infant/newborn clothes include bodysuits, sleep and play/sleepwears, jackets, caps, swaddles and blankets (including swaddle blankets and receiving blankets), washcloths & bath towels, and burp cloths/bibs. All the clothes need to be soft and the best material is cotton. Bamboo rayon works better in high temperature places/season.
Fabric No. 1: cotton (strongly recommended)
Cotton is usually grown naturally and made with least chemicals. It is soft and highly absorbent, and gentle against an infant’s skin. Organic cotton is even better for infants with allergies. There are many types of cotton, and muslin is one of the best types
Fabric No. 2: Bamboo Rayon
Bamboo rayon is a soft and durable rayon fiber derived from bamboo plants. It is good for sensitive and/or sweating skins. Usually it is used to make swaddle and blanket in higher temperature places.
Fabric No. 3: Polyester (not recommended)
Polyester is a common fabric and is used in many baby clothes, but it is . I usually do not recommend any chemical fabrics. The reason is that it causes static electricity shocks in dry environment.
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Moms need different types of clothes which are convenient to put on newborns/infants. Since newborn's neck, arms and legs are very soft, snap style is the easiest for new parents. Zipper style is also fine, but parents need to pay extra attention not to zip into newborns' skins. Here is a list of necessary types of clothes.
Type No.1: Bodysuit (Suggest at least 3 clean bodysuits everyday)
Bodysuits are newborns' underwears. Its function is to wrapping their bodies and making it easier for parents to change diapers since bodysuits do not have leg parts. Famous brands include Gerber, Carters, etc. Bodysuit looks like this (remember snap ones are easier to put on):
Type No.2: Sleep and Play/Sleepwears (Footed is better, Suggest at least 3 clean Sleep and Play everyday)
Sleep and Play can be used almost anytime during the first few months of your newborns. Comparing to shirt and pants, sleepwears are easier to put on/off and more widely used. Besides, footed sleep and play can save you some time from putting on shoes and socks. Footed Sleep and Play looks like this (again, snap ones are easier to put on):
Type No. 3: Jackets (Suggest at least 2 clean jackets every going out)
If you need to take newborns outside, and the temperature is low, buy some jackets. Not like sleep and play, jackets are seldom made of 100% cotton. To keep newborns comfortable, the inner side of the jacket is better to be made of cotton. Here is an example:
Type No. 4: Caps (Suggest at least 1 clean cap everyday)
Caps are usually not necessary at home all the time (may cause overheating). However, if newborns are taken outside and the temperature is low, then you need a hat. Again, it needs to be made of cotton.
Type No.5: Swaddles and Blankets (Suggest at least 2 Swaddles, 4 swaddle blankets and 4 receiving blankets at hand)
Swaddles are essential for newborns in the first few months. There are two kinds of swaddles: swaddle blanket and muslin blanket for swaddling. Swaddle blanket are easier for first time parents since you only need to wrap the newborns in three steps and no need to worry the swaddle will be loose during midnight.
However, blankets for swaddling are more useful. You can use it almost in any case, like wipe newborns' mouths, wrapping/swaddling them, and so on.
Besides, if the temperature is low, thicker receiving blankets are necessary.
Type No. 6: Washcloths and Bath Towels (Suggest at least 4 washcloths and 4 bath towels at hand)
When giving a shower to newborns, you need washcloths and bath towels or bath robe.
Hooded bath towels are cuter and more convenient to dry a newborn's body including head.
Type No. 7: Burp Cloths / Bibs (Suggest buy at least a dozen of burp cloths and a dozen of bibs and keep 1/3 of them clean all the time)
Newborns will spit up tons of times before they can learn how to nurse. You will be surprised how much mess they can produce so you will need to carry at least 1 burp cloth all the time on your shoulder. Of course, do not forget about bibs.
Burp cloths look like this:
Choosing bibs are more fun since there are so many cute bibs. Just remember, 100% cotton is always best for newborns.