Are you expecting a bundle of joy and hoping to get prepared early with the latest baby tech? Or maybe your little one has already arrived and you're currently reading this at 3AM hoping to find the key product that will help them sleep better? I've been there! Well, actually, I'm currently there, with a nine-week-old turning my life upside down (in a good way).
When it comes to babies there is no shortage of products that promise to solve age-old parenting problems, but just remember this, babies need very little in the way of technology - parents have been raising children well before white noise machines and motorised baby rockers arrived on the scene.
That being said, there are certainly well-designed products that make your life as a parent easier. Here are a few I've personally tried (some bought, some sent to review from the brands) and would recommend:
The first product on this list is something I'd recommend to all first-time parents - Ewan The Dream Sheep. This was a late-night Amazon purchase but it's one I certainly don't regret. Ewan is a cute and cuddly sleep aid that replicates the comfort of the womb with soothing sounds and lights.
It includes actual recordings of a mother's womb and heartbeat to help lull your newborn or toddler into a peaceful slumber. Best of all, the Delux version of Ewan features a cry sensor, which automatically activates when your baby cries, helping to resettle them back into a restful sleep without you needing to get up.
This is a bit of a luxury but there's no denying that this pram has made my life easier. The Reef is Silver Cross' next-generation travel system designed to offer the ultimate in design and baby comfort.
The Silver Cross Reef is a premium pram, it's crafted from recycled materials that look luxurious but are also durable enough to stand up to whatever your baby can throw at it.
This next-generation travel system has a number of features aimed at making the parent's life easier; such as a collapsable newborn carrycot, which is perfect if you're short on space; a magnetic buckle; and a harness which can be adjusted with one hand.
I don't like Amazon for all of the various, very obvious reasons, but I do have to give it to them - having Amazon Prime with a newborn has been so convenient. Need some breast pads? Milk bags? Wipes? Medicine? Ewan the Sheep? Order it on Amazon and it'll arrive tomorrow, for free, without you having to leave the house.
As someone who has resisted getting Amazon Prime up until now, this has blown my mind. I can't count the times I've been browsing Amazon in a sleep-deprived state, ordering anything that might help get my little one to sleep longer.
The Cybex Cloud Z2 is top of T3's best car seat buying guide for a reason - its incredible flexibility. What sets this car seat apart from the rest? The Cloud Z2 can be reclined to a full lie-flat position, which means you can leave your baby in the seat for longer.
The Cloud Z2 can also be placed in a semi-reclined position while in the car. This new feature allows greater comfort for the child without compromising on safety while on the road.
On top of that, I love that the rotating Z2 Base is easy to install, and the large, futuristic-looking canopy is made from UPF50+ fabric.
Okay, here's something that I probably could have lived without, but glad I didn't have to. I've always loved the Google Pixel range of smartphones for their excellent photo-taking abilities, and now that I have a little one this is more important than ever.
I want quick, clear pictures at the press of a button and the Pixel is excellent at doing that. There are two features that make the Pixel 7 especially good at taking pictures of a newborn; Face Unblur, which automatically detects slow shutter speed and movement to reduce fuzzy faces; and Night Sight, which improves low-light photography without using the flash (which could wake up a sleeping baby).
Elvie Stride is a powerful, quiet, and lightweight breast pump that sits comfortably under clothing. The best thing about the Stride is that although It's battery-powered and weighs less than 150g per cup, it still provides hospital-grade suction strength.
The pump is controlled via a very intuitive app that gives you the option to choose between ten intensity settings in both Stimulation and Expression modes. You can even save preferred settings and track pumping history.
Sometimes there are days when your baby just won't want to be put down, but you still need to do things around the house. Enter the Nuna Cudl baby carrier. The Cudl is comfortable and customisable with breathable mesh fabric and padded shoulder and waist straps. This makes it great to wear every day around the house, as well as on longer trips out and about.
It features four magnetic buckles that make securing on the go quick and simple, and four carry positions that offer optimal support as your child grows.
Before having a baby I've always wanted to keep baby tech down to a minimum, but after experiencing the anxieties that come with a newborn (Are they sleeping enough? Are they sleeping too much? Are they breathing? What was that funny sound?) I quickly changed my mind.
The Owlet Smart Sock allows you to track your baby's heart rate and oxygen level, and will alert you if they drop below a safe level. It offers valuable peace of mind when you're just getting used to everything.
Owlet’s completely redesigned Smart Sock 3 now fits a greater range of babies, from 5lbs to 30lbs, allowing parents to track tiny infants as soon as they come home from the hospital. The new version continues to track the baby’s heart rate and oxygen through sleep, with an improved tracking frequency of 97% during an 8-hour session. You can also use the sleep history feature to see how long and how well your baby slept and use the insights to create new routines as your baby grows.
I love the Cybex Lemo Highchair for its sheer adaptability. For a start, the Lemo can be used as a bouncer to keep your newborn entertained, but when it comes to meal time the nest seat can be removed from the bounder base and attached to the high chair base, meaning your newborn can sit up the table while you eat.
That is currently the stage that I'm at, but when your baby outgrows the newborn nest seat, the Lemo has a chair which will adapt and grow with your little one. It's a very impressive piece of design and engineering. The Lemo is so well made even I, at 191 centimetres, can sit in it!
BBHugMe is designed to help women sleep comfortably throughout their pregnancy, but we're still using it now that our baby has arrived.
The adjustable pillow allows you to find the perfect firmness and shape to support your body as it grows and changes from the first trimester and beyond. It can be used around your belly, lower back, pelvis, knees and ankles to ensure 5-point support.
Now we use it as a breastfeeding pillow, as the comfortable pillow allows for a hands-free feed.
The kit is made up of a BBHugMe inner pillow filled with BioFoam beads, two pebbles to secure and adjust each end, and a super soft and breathable cover.
The Yoto Player is essentially a smart speaker that can be controlled by your child using physical story cards. The screen-free device features an integrated battery, stereo sound, Bluetooth connectivity and three different play modes.
Yoto has built a brilliant library of content featuring some of the very best children’s authors such as Julia Donaldson, Roald Dahl and Judith Kerr. Simply pop in a card (or select it on the app) and you'll have a celebrity reading your child a classic story in no time.
I know what you're thinking - all of this sounds a bit too advanced for a newborn. Well, Yoto actually has a selection of music, podcasts, radio and white noise as well, so we use this a bedtime to create a calm atmosphere. It's really useful and will become even more useful as your child grows.
This was another sleep-deprived Amazon Prime purchase when we suddenly decided our bedside lights didn't dim enough. The Sympa Night Light is a fairly simple product, it emits a soft, warm light that can be dimmed. Oh, and it looks a bit like an Angry Birds character. It's perfect for late-night feeds and nappy changes.
It's simple to use, with one button controlling the power and brightness, and another controlling the light warmth. The battery lasts for ages, and when it does finally run out it can be recharged via Micro USB.
One thing to note: the Amazon listing notes that it can play eight soothing sounds, but it definitely cannot - there's no button for this and no mention of it in the instruction manual.
Planning on travelling with a newborn? It's a daunting task, but one that's made easier thanks to the Micralite Sleep&Go Travel Cot. It sets itself apart from rivals by being adaptable: it's a travel cot one minute, a playpen the next, and can even transform into a newborn co-sleeper. Perhaps best of all, it's able to transform between these functions in seconds thanks to its innovative all-in-one frame.
One of the most frustrating things as a parent is getting home from a walk with a baby sleeping soundly in their buggy, only for them to wake up as soon as the buggy stops moving. It happened to me so many times until I got Sleepytroll. This handy little gadget can rock your stroller, crib, or car seat, helping them stay asleep for longer when you're stationary.
What's smart about Sleepytroll is that it has a sound sensor and movement sensor, and will immediately start rocking again when your baby starts to stir.
I also really love that it's silent, and the battery lasts a long time.
As you can probably tell from the other products on this list - I really like products that can do more than one thing. That's why I like the Cybex Zeno so much. As the weather has gotten (a little) warmer, we've started to venture out more, and have found that our regular stroller isn't really designed to go off-road. That's where the Cybex Zeno comes in, with its big wheels, it can tackle almost any terrain.
It's also perfect for active parents and has been designed to work with multiple sports, including running (pushed or pulled), cycling, and even skiing! I love its versatility.