Having the right baby sleep gear is essential to make life as a new parent as easy as possible. In this post, I will share the only four baby sleep must haves you absolutely need.

This list consists of just the baby sleep essentials you need through the first year of your baby’s life. There are a whole host of other baby sleep things that make life easier with a baby, that I love and highly recommend. But, for this post we are just reviewing baby sleep must haves.

Since I am a twin mom, and write about baby registry items for both twins and singletons, I have included the quantities needed of baby sleep must haves for both twins and singletons.

Please note, there are affiliate links in this post. Read my disclosure policy to learn more.

Should You Get A Bassinet?

My opinion on getting a bassinet or a cosleeper, is yes, absolutely get one.

It is extremely convenient to have your newborn sleeping next to you when he or she wakes up in the middle of the night. On top of that, it is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics to have your baby sleep in your room to reduce the risk of SIDS.

You can do feedings and diaper changes without needing to get out of bed. I found it much easier to fall back asleep myself if I could avoid getting out of bed.

When my kids were babies the inclined sleepers, like the Rock ‘N Play sleeper, were super popular. However, these types of inclined sleepers have since been recalled due to suffocation risks while our baby sleeps.

I am pointing this out because I DO NOT want you to go out and buy a used inclined sleeper. They are no longer considered safe.

Instead, I recommend this rocking bassinet, which has a very reasonable price tag.

Another option is to get a bedside sleeper. These are a little pricier, but if you prefer this setup, go for it.

You will need (1) bassinet or bedside sleeper, and if you have twins, you will need (2). 

Baby Sleep Must Haves For Swaddling

Before you go and buy too many swaddling blankets, keep in mind that you can take any receiving / swaddling blankets you use from the hospital for free.

I recommend doing this because they are of great quality. You won’t see me recommending the slipper socks they supply you, but the baby blankets are definitely good.

The hospital blankets are big, so they are perfect for swaddling, plus they can double as a burp cloth.

Besides the hospital blankets, these muslin swaddling blankets are my absolute favorite. They are big and stretchy, perfect for swaddling.

Between what you take home from the hospital, and a pack of muslin swaddling blankets, that should be enough to start. You can always buy more swaddling blankets, if needed.

You will need (8) swaddling blankets, and if you have twins, you will need (12). 

Are Pacifiers Necessary?

Now this is a loaded question. Personally, I have always been in favor of offering a pacifier to my babies for sleep only. Some people don’t believe in using pacifiers, which is fine.

I have pacifiers listed as a baby sleep must have because they are inexpensive, so I think it is worth it to have them on hand. Even if, in the end, your baby does not use pacifiers, it is worth the peace of mind of having a couple brands available to you.

You can try out the ones you buy and see if your baby likes them. To get started I recommend having two or three brands and pacifier types.

Based on my experience I recommend these soothie pacifiers, these Avent silicone pacifiers, and these Nuk silicone pacifiers, to give you a good variety.

Since pacifiers usually come in packs of two I recommend a total of (6) pacifiers to start. For twins, you can start with the same amount.

A Playard For Traveling With Baby

For the times you will spend nights away from home, you will want to invest in a playard, also commonly referred to by its trade name of a Pack N Play.

Your baby will actually fit into this playard until around 3 years old, so you should get a lot of use out of it.

Now, there are some decisions to make as to the type of playard you get. You could opt for a playard with a bassinet and changing area combo. Or, you can just get the basic playard.

It is really dependent on your needs which one you get. Just remember, if you plan to use the bassinet or changing area you need a spot in your house you can leave the playard setup while your baby is a newborn.

Personally, I don’t think it’s worth the extra cost for the top insert because it is only usable during the first 3 months and then your baby will have outgrown it.

Besides using playards as a portable crib, you can also use playards as a playpen. I loved using the playard as a playpen from 6 to 10 months old. It provides a safe, contained play area, which is especially useful when you need to leave the room for a few minutes.

What About The Twin Pack N Play?

We own the Twin Pack N Play, and used the top bassinets for naps until our twins were 6 weeks old. With that said, since the top bassinets are only usable for the first 6 to 8 weeks, I do not recommend buying it.

There is nothing particularly wrong with the Twin Pack N Play, but for the amount of time it will be used, it’s just not cost effective. I recommend investing in (2) basic playards instead.

I also want to add that the Twin Pack N Play is slightly larger than a regular playard. That means it will take up more space in the trunk of your car.

You will need (1) playard, and if you have twins, you will need (2). 

Baby Sleep Must Haves List

To summarize, here is the list of the only four baby sleep must haves.

  • Bassinet
  • Swaddling Blankets
  • Pacifiers
  • Playard

Are you wondering why a crib and other nursery items are not on this list? Baby sleep items that are part of the nursery are included in our nursery must haves list, so be sure to check those items out too.

If you are looking for more help on your baby registry be sure to check out our extensively detailed baby registry checklist.

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Four must have baby sleep items.

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