Ask any first-time expectant mom what she finds most daunting about preparing for parenthood, and she'll likely tell you it's not how she's going to get the tiny human growing inside her body out into the world (nature usually handles that), but rather what gear she actually needs to take care of her newborn once the little one arrives.
I should know as someone who's in her third trimester and had a tearful breakdown the first time I stepped into a Buy Buy Baby. After cursing Graco for making 157 variations of its popular Pack 'n Play (not hyperbole), I pulled myself together and did the logical thing: I emailed every woman I know who'd given birth in the last couple of years and begged them for their most essential baby gear recommendations.
Once I started to parse through all of their sage advice, certain patterns started to crystallize. Despite there being thousands of baby products on the market, a handful of items kept cropping up as must-haves from nearly all of the new moms I spoke to. While I haven't had the opportunity to try them myself — that day will come in June — at least I can feel confident about adding these products to my registry knowing that they've all earned a stamp of approval from those who know best.
Click through to see 10 baby products that are universally loved by new moms and hear firsthand from them why they're so great.