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7 Must-Have Baby Shower Gifts

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7 Must-Have Baby Shower Gifts

There are many necessary and practical baby items that moms may or may not receive at their baby showers.  Many baby shower gifts are fun and cute, but moms also usually want them to help put a dent in the list of things they have to buy for the new little bundle of joy. 

From my personal experience, I know that my husband and I still had to buy A LOT of things for our son after the shower was over.  We received 4 sets of baby clippers and hair brushes as baby shower presents, but only 1 box of baby wipes!  There are a lot of cute things that don’t make the best baby shower presents; did you read the 6 Baby Shower Gifts to Leave at the Store last week?

We received too many clothes, lots of duplicate items, and almost none of the items we registered for!  Some items I initially thought I could do without, but later on found were incredibly helpful after all.  

So what baby gifts do new moms really want at baby showers?  Below we bring you the useful, the handy, and the desirable baby gifts that many expectant moms will be hoping for at their baby showers (and don’t forget the budget baby gifts too). 

Baby Shower Gifts That Moms will Love!

1.  Diapers and wipes. All sizes and brands of diapers are welcome! You’ll never have to wonder if the gift you’ve given will be returned or exchanged, because every baby needs diapers.  New parents will go through so many diapers so quickly, that having a large supply on hand will be greatly appreciated. 

Even if the parents will be using cloth diapers, it never hurts to have a few disposables on hand for babysitters, baby staying with relatives, or baby going to daycare (some of which will not allow cloth diapers still).

2.  Digital ear and forehead thermometer, also known as a temporal thermometer.  These are fantastic for checking a feverish baby while she is sleeping, since you don’t have to wake the baby.  They work in the ear canal or on the forehead, and many even have a built-in flashlight for nighttime use in the dark.  Is this a luxury? Yes, when it comes down to basic survival! A regular thermometer will do just fine, but lessening the discomfort and fuss from an already cranky, sick baby is a valuable thing.

3.  Diaper Genie 13 Best Baby Shower Gifts on a Budget and refills 13 Best Baby Shower Gifts on a Budget, or another diaper pail.  Stinky diaper pails are a thing of the past when you use a system that traps the odor.  The last thing you want during the sleep-deprived first days of your newborn’s life is to enter the nursery and smell dirty diapers! 

We live in a small house, which means we keep close quarters with the nursery.  My husband and I ended up buying our own Diaper Genie and refills (when they were on sale, of course!), but I would have much rather given up a few baby outfits to receive this gift instead. 

4.  Battery operated nasal aspirator.  The old standby squeeze-bulb nasal aspirators (fondly referred to by many dads as the “nose suckers’”) will work in a pinch, but not with much accuracy.  With a screaming stuffy baby, you want to clear the mucus out of his nasal passages as quickly as possible. A battery operated nasal aspirator will get the job done much faster and more accurately, and they’re not as invasive as the old style.

5.  Gift cards. Believe it or not, a very common question asked by our readers is this: “Is it appropriate to give a gift card or gift certificate at a baby shower?”  The answer:  Yes!  No new parent will be unhappy with a gift card, because it will enable them to get something that is  already on their list that they didn’t receive.  Aim for cards to mass merchandisers that carry a wide variety of baby clothing, baby food, diapers and baby wipes, so they’re likely to find what they need.

6.  Baby Formula.  If they’re not planning to breastfeed, having a stockpile of baby formula in the pantry can be a stress-reducer.  Formula is incredible expensive, and even if you’re buying the store brands, it can be a large added amount to your regular grocery budget.  I treasured the few free cans of formula that came from the doctor’s office, and wish I had received formula as baby shower presents.

7.  Bottles and nipples.  This item goes along with #6, in that you have to ask the mom beforehand if she plans to bottlefeed and what brand of bottles she’s going to use.  We chose Dr. Brown’s bottles for my son, which are a bit on the expensive side.  Even though we listed Dr. Brown’s bottles and nipples on our registry, we didn’t receive any as gifts.  We got by fine on a few bottles which we washed frequently, but it would have been a wonderful gift to receive a few extra sets.

There you have it- 7 great gifts for baby showers!  Since we’re on the subject of baby showers, check out our 10 ways not to break the bank when baby comes  and learn how to choose nursery furniture on a budget.

For more Works for Me Wednesday, visit We are That Family. Baby shower photos of Danelle Ice by my talented sisters, Kim Byquist and Jennifer Capson.

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Danelle Ice is an entrepreneur in Los Angeles and mom of 3. She is the creator of and Danelle is also known as internet personality SimDanelle, the first virtual person. Danelle is a beauty guru on YouTube, vlogger, blogger, and new media darling. She is a current brand ambassador for for Keurig and previous AMD Tech Mom, Kraft Foods Delicious Byte brand ambassador, and Purex Insider.


  1. Hillary @ The Dunham Diaries
    Feb 24, 2009 @ 20:10:56

    Love these ideas! I’ve had 2 babies and I still sometimes question what to bring to a shower. I ususally bring the basics because I know that they will always need those.
    And I had NO idea about the battery operated nose sucker! WHAT?? I’ll have to check into that! Thanks for the great tips!


  2. mub
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 00:03:53

    I love making diaper cakes since you can gift diapers and a lot of other little goodies that sometimes get overlooked. I usually put a bottle on my diaper cakes, but wouldn’t have thought to add extra nipples. Great article =)


  3. Posts about Baby Shower as of February 25, 2009
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 02:50:19

    [...] e-retailer, and blogger. Shop La La Baby Boutique for all of your Unique Baby Shower Gifts 7 Must-Have Baby Shower Gifts – 02/25/2009 7 Must-Have Baby Shower Gifts There are many necessary and [...]


  4. Sarah
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 05:11:36

    I’ve had people tell me “but gift cards aren’t fun to give.” That may be true but they are very much appreciated and useful. This is a great list.


  5. Hadley
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 06:40:58

    Great ideas! I always add boredeaux’s butt paste with whatever gift I give (I try to stick to the registry otherwise) – It’s the best stuff ever for the hiney!

    I’m with you – stick with practical!


  6. Britt
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 06:00:41

    Hey, add Nosefrida to your list, it’s the most awesome little gadget on the planet, recommended by Dr Sears.. got mine at Whole Foods but they sell them online at Amazon and on their own website. Really the only thing you need…


  7. Maria
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 15:33:40

    This is a great list of pratical gift ideas. I can’t remember how many gifts I received at my baby shower that I did not need. I also love making diaper cakes for baby showers. They are a great way to give the mommy-to-be a unique gift that includes a lot of useful baby products.


  8. Tiff
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 17:35:47

    Love your ideas AND your website!


  9. Charles
    Nov 10, 2011 @ 21:46:16

    I know this article is over 2 years old and so this comment may not be read… but of these 7 “fantastic” gifts, 3 would have been completely useless to us! (disposable nappies, formula, diaper genie). Potentially 4 as expressed milk I think needs a different type of bottle but not 100%. Of course parents are entitled to make whatever choices they want as to how they look after/raise their child but to list these as “must haves” is a bit much!


  10. Home Ever After
    Feb 24, 2009 @ 20:43:08

    @Hillary: It’s great that you bring the basics- you can’t go wrong by sticking with what you know! The power nose sucker – my hat is off to the inventer of that contraption. Totally!

    You’re welcome and thank you so much for stopping by. Glad you left us a comment!



  11. Home Ever After
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 09:09:10

    @Kim (mub): Me too! I had never seen or heard of a diaper cake until my sister, Jen, made me one for my baby shower. It was too cute and I’ve been in love with them ever since! I’d love it if you sent in a picture of one of the diaper cakes you’ve made; I’d love to include it in an article.



  12. Home Ever After
    Feb 25, 2009 @ 09:10:55

    @Sarah: I’ve heard that too! In that case you could always give a gift card for half the amount you were going to spend, and only spend half your budget on buying an item. That way both giver and receiver are happy! Thanks for sharing :)



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