10 Baby Shower Gifts Working Moms Really Need
When a parent-to-be puts together a baby registry, it’s easy to get distracted by oh-so-adorable baby clothes and decor while envisioning a perfectly color-coordinated nursery. Sure, it’s the pre-baby haze, so it can be easy to overlook some really necessary items. Your job: Slip these really needed gifts in with the bodysuits and board books.
1. A diaper bag that’s chic enough to tote to work
Working moms don’t have time to constantly shuffle their wallet and keys between a diaper bag and purse. Save your friend the hassle by getting her a diaper bag that’s sophisticated enough to carry to the office. (Bonus points if it fits the breast pump, too.) Splurge: Jujube’s backpacks ($148, amazon.com) are machine-washable and come in work-friendly patterns, and Skip Hop’s Duet 2-in-1 Diaper Tote is two bags in one: a sleek, faux-leather tote and a removable organizer that can be worn on its own as a crossbody bag ($130, skiphop.com). Steal: Get her a diaper organizer, which she can just pop into her favorite handbag when she’s with baby ($20, target.com).
2. A lightweight stroller that travels well
Everyone else is chipping in to get your friend the fancy travel system on her registry, and that’s great. But in a year or two, she’s going to want a lightweight stroller she can take on the plane and tote around town. Surprise her with one she’ll love. Splurge: The gb Pockit Stroller folds down small enough to fit in a handbag or under an airplane seat ($178, amazon.com). Steal: The Summer Infant 3Dlite Convenience Stroller weighs only 13 lbs. ($63, amazon.com).
3. A comfortable nursing and pumping bra
Why is it that no one wants to buy the breastfeeding gear on mom’s registry? Just buy the darn breastmilk pouches and nipple cream, please. Or, even better: Indulge your pal with a super-comfy nursing and pumping bra. Splurge: The Dairy Fairy Arden: All-in-One Nursing and Hands-Free Pumping Bra is a godsend for moms who pump during the day and nurse in the evenings ($68, amazon.com). Steal: The Essential Relaxed Pump&Nurse Nursing Bra is super comfy ($28, amazon.com).
4. Swaddle blankets for, well, everything
There’s a reason these are on every registry: They do double- and triple-duty for new moms. They’re light blankets for warmth. They swaddle babies for comfort. They can be used as burp cloths or stroller shades or nursing covers or a thousand other things—and they’re always handy in a pinch. We’ve even used them to keep warm when the office AC is on full blast. Splurge: Aden + Anais Silky Soft Swaddle 3 Pack ($45, amazon.com). Steal: Oh Joy! 3pk Muslin Swaddle Blanket ($25, target.com).
5. A badass baby swing for soothing baby
For moms who work from home (or moms who love the sweet sound of a baby who is not crying), an electric baby swing is a must. Splurge: The 4moms MamaRoo Baby Swing offers five different motions that babies are known to love, including ones that mimic a car ride and a tree swing ($176, amazon.com). Steal: We can personally attest that even a simple swinging motion, like the one offered by the Graco Simple Sway Baby Swing, is enough to get some babies snoozing peacefully ($80, amazon.com).
6. Sterilizer bags for cleaning pump and bottle parts
Take these to work to clean breast pump parts, or use them at home to sterilize bottle parts and pacifiers. Just pop the items in the bag and pop the bag in the microwave for a few minutes, and voila, you’ve got sterilized baby accoutrements. Splurge: These are actually a steal! Try the Medela Quick Clean Micro-Steam Bags, 5 Count ($5, amazon.com) or Dr. Brown’s Microwave Steam Sterilizer Bags, 5 Count ($4, amazon.com).
7. A Keurig for baby formula
For moms who plan to formula-feed, there’s good news: Nowadays, you can make a bottle just like you’d make a cup of coffee using a Keurig. Splurge: Try the Baby Brezza Formula Pro One Step Food Maker ($180, amazon.com) or the Gerber BabyNes Baby Formula Dispenser ($200, amazon.com). Steal: Unfortunately, this technology is still a splurge for now.
8. A comfortable baby carrier of some sort
The options are endless but the notion is the same: It’s so much easier for moms to get work done when their hands are free and baby is cozy, comfy and happy. There are wraps, ring slings, mei tais, soft structured carriers, you name it. Softer carriers work better when baby is younger and structured carriers tend to be better for bigger tots, but really, you can’t go wrong. Splurge: Sakura Bloom’s silk ring slings are sophisticated enough to tote your little one to sales meetings or a wedding ($90, sakurabloom.com). Steal: The Boba Wrap is a comfy way for moms to wear their little one ($40, amazon.com).
9. Diaper wipes. All of the diaper wipes
“I don’t know if I’ll use all of the diaper wipes I got at my shower,” said no mom ever. Even if a mom is using cloth diapers instead of disposables, at some point, she will use a diaper wipe—on dirty hands or a dropped pacifier or her own blouse. (Don’t judge.) Splurge: WaterWipes Sensitive Baby Wipes are chemical-free, made of 99.9% water and .1% fruit extract. ($31 for 540 count, amazon.com). Steal: Pampers Baby Wipes Sensitive are perfume-free and hypoallergenic ($11 for 448 count, amazon.com)
10. Wine. All of the wine
Now that baby is here, mom can finally relax with a glass of vino, so say cheers and raise a glass in solidarity. Splurge: Cratejoy’s Counter Culture subscription box will deliver two bottles of naturally produced wines made by real people (instead of factories) across the globe ($45/month, cratejoy.com). Steal: This travel mug by Aspen Lane lets folks know that, “Shhh … There is wine in here.” Bottoms up! ($18, aspenlane.com).