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Expectant mom’s guide to baby gear

Mary Fetzer is a freelance writer and marketing consultant with a marketing degree from Penn State University and 15 years of international business experience. Mary specializes in writing about parenting, children, pregnancy, college, h...

Beyond the crib, stroller and car seat

Are you feeling overwhelmed with all the choices in baby gear? From feeding to cribs, strollers and car seats, we sort through all the options so you can find the best products that will be of most use to you and baby.

Changing diapers

flowerNewborn diapers

You'll go through a lot of little diapers. A lot. Some newborn diapers are designed with a cutout area for the umbilical cord. If your preferred brand does not, simply fold down the diaper's waistband air can get to the cord as it heals. Gordon's research indicated that brand-name newborn diapers (Pampers, Huggies) are recommended over generic.

>> The do's and don'ts of diapers

flowerWipes

You'll use a lot of wipes, too. Get a big plastic case, a thin travel case (or two) and then buy refill packs. You'll find yourself using these for more than baby's bottom — you'll wipe changing surfaces, car seats, shopping cart handles, restaurant tables and more.

flowerLap pads

Thicker than receiving blankets, washable changing pads provide a clean, soft surface for changing baby. Keep them in your diaper bag and near changing tables and other areas in which you frequently change baby.

flowerDiaper bag

Keep your diaper bag stocked with diapers, wipes, lap pads and a change of clothes at all times. No matter where you're headed, just pick up the bag and go — you'll have everything you need.

>> Diaper bag essentials

flowerDiaper cream

Zinc oxide products like Desitin help prevent diaper rash by creating a protective shield on baby's bottom. You'll achieve similar results with the lanolin you picked up for sore nipples (above). If you powder baby's bottom, consider using kitchen cornstarch. It's fragrance-free and less expensive than baby powder.

Next up...baby clothes and more

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