When we had our first baby three years ago, we spent HOURS reading reviews of new baby gadgets. Visited half a dozen stores to try them out in person and talked to every new parent we knew to get their opinions on what baby gadgets they loved.
Ultimately we resisted many of the temptations to go overboard with baby monitoring and gadgets with baby #1.
We tried our best to stay on budget and thought we would quickly turn into helicopter parents if we monitored the baby’s every move!
This led to a lot of stressful nights lying awake listening for the baby’s breathing, trying to make baby food in our full-size blender (FAIL), and running to the store in the middle of the night for a humidifier when the little one came down with a nasty cough.
Well, we learned our lesson, and when baby #2 showed up, we went all-in with the latest and greatest baby tech.
This has led to us sleeping better, baby sleeping better and us being happier and less stressed as parents.
Here are Some of Our Favorite Baby Gadgets
Baby Gadgets for the Bedroom
I will admit that I was the one pushing against buying a sleep monitor for our first baby. And now that we have one for the second I will fully admit that it was a mistake to wait this long.
The Owlet Smart Sock monitors the baby’s heart rate and oxygen levels through a soft, sock-like wrap that goes on the baby’s foot.
Unlike some other monitors that require pads or clip-on gadgets, this monitor stays secure and still works if the baby moves around the crib during the night.
This set also includes a baby cam so you can monitor everything in one handy app.
The Owlet has 100% allowed us to sleep so much better at night, knowing that it will send an alert if the baby’s heart rate or oxygen levels drop below a certain level.
A baby shusher is one of those things that we would regularly see at baby stores or on Amazon and always just dismissed it as a gimmick. It wasn’t until we attended a baby photoshoot session, and the photographer pulled one out that we realized how awesome it was.
The second she turned it on our fussy baby instantly calmed down and went back to sleep!
The best part is these shushers have a strap so you can wear them around your wrist when you are rocking the baby to sleep. Trust me when I say that shushing a baby can get old fast when you have to do it for half an hour!
They also have a handy timer so you can set it by the baby’s crib and know that it will turn off after they have fallen asleep. This helps prevent them from becoming too dependent on the sound.
These shushers make PERFECT gifts for new parents.
One unavoidable reality with babies is they are going to get sick. And it seems like the first time they get sick is always going to be at the worst possible time!
Our first little one came down with a NASTY cough in the middle of the night when he was only a few months old. It scared us half to death as his cough sounded like a crazed seal barking.
We now know this is a classic symptom of croup (an upper airway infection very common in babies), but at the time we were terrified.
One of the recommendations to help calm croup in babies is to use a humidifier near their crib as it helps to open up their airways.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have one, so I drew the short straw and got to make a late-night visit to the store to buy a humidifier.
We later picked up this humidifier for their room, and it has been perfect. It has an auto-shutoff, so we don’t leave it running for hours like our old one. It also has a soft LED light that acts wonderfully as a nightlight.
This is another gadget that many parents don’t think to buy until they absolutely need it and would make a great holiday or baby shower gift.
Here is an anxiety-producing scenario for any parent. Baby is finally asleep in their room, but you forgot to turn on the sound machine, and suddenly your toddler feels like playing the cymbals.
Don’t laugh because this has happened to us.
Our two options are taking the cymbals away from the toddler and induce a pre-bedtime meltdown or try to sneak back into the baby’s room and turn on their sound machine which for some reason was designed with a knob that clicks – LOUDLY – when turned on.
The Hatch Baby Sound Machine is the perfect answer for this scenario. It can be controlled with your phone through the Hatch app, so forgetting to turn on the machine is now a simple fix.
This sound machine also includes a TON of other features like a nightlight, customized sound programming and a gentle wake light as your child grows older.
Baby Gadgets for the Bathroom
In the early months, your baby’s eating, and growth can be stressful. You can never be sure exactly how much milk they are drinking, and most baby scales aren’t accurate enough to properly capture accurate before and after feeding weights.
This Smart Changing Pad and Scale is accurate down to ¼ ounce and is super easy to use since it doubles as a changing pad.
Each time you change the little one, the pad will record their weight and automatically sync the data with the Hatch app on your phone.
You can then track their weight progression and growth percentiles with the WHO published data.
Having to care for a sick little one is no fun, and it makes it even worse when they get more upset when you have to take their temperature the…ahem…old fashion way.
Layer on keeping track of what their temperature as been over the last 24 hours and what medicine they have taken it can quickly become a lot of deal with.
We really love the Smart Ear Thermometer as it connects to the Kinsa smartphone app and will track their temperature history, make care recommendations based on their level of fever, and track their medicine dosage history.
This may not seem like much, but when it is 4 am, and the baby is up for the 5th time, it can make a world of difference to have all this data right at your fingertips.
I’m pretty certain that it is impossible to truly understand just how small and squishy baby’s fingers are until you sit down for the first time to cut their nails.
There have been days where it feels like we needed to buy one of those jeweler’s eye loupe things to see what we were doing.
This nail trimmer has honestly been a lifesaver. It quickly files down their nails rather than relying on old fashion clippers which can very easily cut into their precious little fingers.
It also comes with an LED light which is far easier than turning on our smartphone flashlight which seems to be what we always had to do with the first baby.
Baby Gadgets for the Kitchen
With both of our kids, we have made an effort to include them in our mealtime routines. This includes eating when and what we eat, especially at dinnertime.
Many store-bought baby foods will include fruits added into the purees, which will make it substantially sweeter. Of course, kids love this, but it doesn’t always do wonders for their eating preferences as they grow into toddlers.
At first, we tried microwaving vegetables and then using our full-size blender to puree the food. This worked fine for large quantities but if we just wanted to make a couple of servings there just wasn’t enough food in the blender for it to puree properly.
And to top it off we then had to clean the full blender and whatever we cooked the food in after every meal.
After a few months, we switched over to an all-in-one baby steamer and blender, and it made mealtime so much easier. While we were cooking our dinner, we could throw some vegetables into the baby food maker, and in 15 minutes it was ready.
I can’t say our toddler is an amazing eater now, but we like to think that it helped a little 🙂
And last but not least is the trusty bottle warmer. As it goes with the rest of these items, we thought at first that we would take the easy way out and go old fashion with sticking a bottle in a cup of warm water.
It turns out it takes a long time to warm a bottle that way, and when the baby is hungry, an extra 10 minutes can feel like an eternity.
This bottle warmer is honestly a lifesaver.
It warms the bottle in a quarter of the time as using warm water. It sends an alert to your phone when the container is ready, and it even fits baby food jars and bags.
All we can say is you won’t be sorry for adding this bottle warmer to your wish list as a must-have item.
Final Thoughts on Our Favorite Baby Gadgets
When it comes to a baby, we have fully embraced the easier is just a better mantra. Any time you can save, any extra rest you can get, any baby you can avoid upsetting. It is all worth it in the end.
Caring for a new baby can be a roller coaster, and these gadgets will help you live happier and healthier lives.
Michael launched Your Money Geek to make personal finance fun. He has worked in personal finance for over 20 years, helping families reduce taxes, increase their income, and save for retirement. Michael is passionate about personal finance, side hustles, and all things geeky.