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Six Baby Clothing Essentials

Shopping for baby clothes is lots of fun—and it’s a good thing, because that tiny human will need a lot of clothes. Between all the quick changes and first outings, you'll want to stock up on these baby clothing essentials and have them ready to go.

  1. The Essential: Bodysuits   How Many You'll Want: 10 to 20

    The Lowdown: The bodysuit is the foundation for the baby wardrobe. They cover those cute tummies and the snaps provide easy access for diaper changes. And you can use them all year round. In the winter, long sleeve bodysuits provide an extra layer of warmth. And in the summer, babies can stay comfortable wearing only a bodysuit and not much else.

  2. The Essential: One-piece PJs   How Many You'll Want: 4 to 6

    The Lowdown: Whether they snap or zip, these no-nonsense basics are perfect for wearing—day or night. (Enjoy the all-day pajama parties while you can.) They're comfy, cute, and easy to put on. Footie PJs also eliminate the need for baby socks.

  3. The Essential: Pants or leggings    How Many You'll Want: 4 to 6

    The Lowdown: Paired with a bodysuit, baby pants will give you an insta-outfit. The soft leggings will cover baby's legs, and they come in all kinds of fun colors and matching patterns.

  4. The Essential: Sleeping gowns    How Many You'll Want: 2

    The Lowdown: Sleeping gowns provide easy access for middle-of-the-night diaper changes. The opening at the bottom means you won't have to deal with snaps at 2 a.m.

  5. The Essential: Caps   How Many You'll Want: 1 to 2

    The Lowdown: All babies lose the majority of their body heat via their tiny, cute, Elmer-Fudd bald heads, so lightweight knit caps are a necessity no matter the season. In the summer, babies can also use a wide-brimmed hat because extensive sunscreen is not recommended for infants. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests dressing infants in lightweight long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and brimmed hats that shade the neck to prevent sunburn.

  6. The Essential: Socks or booties    How Many You'll Want: A lot.

    The Lowdown: We regret to inform you the universal truth of parenthood: you will end up with a lot of single socks without a match. Stock up so that you always have a pair on hand. When it comes to booties, opt for a version that fastens around the ankle for better staying power. For laundry time, invest in a mesh, washable bag. Make a habit of throwing socks in there, zipping it up and laundering them that way. This will cut down on the number of socks sacrificed to the laundry gods.

And, speaking of laundry, don’t forget to stock up on baby-friendly detergent because there’s a lot of laundry in your future, no matter how many bodysuits you've bought.