More than ever, new moms need to save time and money. Here's a list of baby items from seasoned moms (and a nanny!) that will accomplish both ... but only if you avoid buying them.
1. Shopping Cart Cover
Sarah, a pharmacist and mom of a preschooler with baby number two on the way, says to just skip it. "Have you ever tried to get one (and keep one) on the cart? You're better off bringing a small blanket in order to make your little one more comfortable," she says.
2. Wipes or Bottle Warmer
And Sarah was quick to add wipe and bottle warmers to her list. Moms Kim, Lisa A., Tia, and Tami agree. Tami adds, "The wipes warmer dries out our wipes!"
3. Dishwasher Basket and Bottle Drying RackKim, executive director of a non-profit and mother of one, says to skip the dishwasher basket. "You know," she says, "the container that you put in the dishwasher for bottle tops and the little sink topper thing that you put bottles on so they drip dry."
4. Diaper Genie
Moms Catherine, Julia, and Melissa nominate the Diaper Genie. Melissa says, "The Diaper Genie is unnecessary, a waste of plastic, and bad for environment (as if disposable diapers aren't bad enough)."
Heather, mom of two, adds her tip: "When it comes to a stinky diaper, place the mess in a bag and throw away in your normal trash. It's a good way to recycle old bags that have been used for something else like chips, etc. Lora adds, "I agree with Heather. Toss those stinky diapers out with the trash that you would take out everyday anyway! There is nothing worse than a three- to four-day-old dirty diaper hamper/geenie thingy ... blahhhh. Just wrap it up and toss it out—the sooner the better."
5. Bottle SanitizerLisa, a stay-at-home mom of three, says you can kick this little gadget to the curb. Instead, try the dishwasher or good ol' hot water.
6. Education Baby Toys
Kristina, a future mom and nanny of many, says give toys the boot, but specifically anything like "baby can read" or "other baby-genius gimmicks!"
7. Crib Bumpers
Crib bumpers are a no-no, says Joanna, mother of two little ones. Not only do they make it difficult to make the bed and end up bunched up in the corner as kids get older, bumpers, meant to protect infants from hitting themselves on the crib railings, actually do more harm than good. In fact, 27 deaths of 1- to 2-month-old infants have been attributed to crib bumpers.
8. Teething RingsJoanna also says don't waste money on teething rings. Instead, submerge a wash cloth in water and freeze. "That way, teething relief will always be handy and you won't freak out when you lose it. Besides, more babies than not prefer it over the plastic teething rings," she says.
9. Cloth Diaper Stacker
You know, the cloth diaper holder to hang by the changing table? Jan, mother of four, says it's not needed. "Depending on the size of the diaper always stuffing them in never fit right," she says. "Seems I would usually pull from the package to prevent having to fill it up again."
10. Forehead Thermometer
Another one of Jan's skip-its is a forehead thermometer. "It's never accurate and you end up double checking with an ear or under-the-arm version," she says.
11. Crib Mobiles
"Crib mobiles were also a big pain—always got in the way when I was trying to lay a sleeping baby down in the crib ... or would play a few notes of music if the crib was slightly moved, and that would wake baby up," says Melissa, a tae kwon do instructor and mother of three.
Another baby item not really needed? A bassinet, says John, who refers to himself as "husband, dad, tech guy, and involved citizen." "Bassinets are only used for such a short time and hardly save any space—[and] are a huge waste of money." Suzanne takes it one step further and adds the "Moses" basket to the list, calling them "so impractical!"
13. Baby Shoes
They're cute, but pediatricians will tell you that babies shouldn't be in shoes until they're walking, and even then, choose wisely. Stacy, a homeschool mom of two boys, agrees. "Seriously, don't stuff those little feet into tennis shoes," she says.
14. Designer Outfits
Liz, mother of two sons now taller than she is, says don't waste your money on cutesy or designer outfits. "You save them for a 'special occasion' and they've outgrown them. Onesies, jammies, blankies, and maybe a cute Celtics (or your team of choice) sweatshirt. That's all you need. If you give them [as a gift], give them a gift receipt so that mama can exchange them."