Must-Have for Newborn Twins
Unless you come from a twin yourself, the first reaction every parent of twins has when they hear the news is shock, before excitement gets a chance to sneak in. However, once you get over the shock, reality sets in that you need to rethink your budget, prepare the house for two extra little ones, and, more importantly, shop.
Oh, that word. What do you buy, where do you buy, and what sizes should you get?
As parents of twins, we understand the panic. Our advice at this point is, relax because it’s all going to work out. While undoubtedly overwhelming because of all the product choices out there, shopping for twins is pretty much the same as any baby shopping. But first, you must figure out the baby gear you need to avoid filling the house with stuff you will never use.
When Should I Start Buying Baby Stuff for Twins?
While there is no rule about when you should start buying baby stuff for twins, the period between 13 and 25 weeks is best. The first trimester is full of physical ups and downs for the pregnant mom. It is also when many miscarriages happen. After week 13, the pregnancy is stable for the most part, and you have even started sharing the good news with other people.
That aside, the timing of finding out the babies’ gender can also determine when you will start shopping. If you want to know the sex of the babies, you have to wait until week 20 for the ultrasound results and then start shopping.
You can also hold off the shopping if you have a baby shower, which ideally takes place after the 30th week. If you are a planner, check the registry to see what has been ticked and then buy the stuff that no one else is buying. If one of your friends buys it for the baby shower, you can just return it because it’s unused.
The period between 13 and 25 weeks is where the mom feels their best, so it’s good to take advantage of it. Buying baby essentials early also gives you time to try them and return if something is wrong.
This came in handy in our case because I had ordered the wrong stroller/car seat combo and had to return it and get the right one on time.
What Size Should I Buy for Newborn Twins?
Twins grow just as fast as single babies, so you must factor that in when buying essentials. Whatever you put on your registry, whether it’s a crib, car seat, or even those cute baby high chairs, make sure it’s adjustable to fit them as they grow longer and bigger.
For example, you can buy a convertible crib that later on becomes a toddler bed. While most kid’s items will come with this adjustable option, you still have to plan to buy bigger stuff when they outgrow the initial items. That won’t happen for at least two or more years, though.
What are the Main Things a Newborn Baby Needs?
Wouldn’t it be awesome if all a child needed was love and milk? Unfortunately, there is no such luck.
When making a list of must-have baby products, you should consider their needs one by one. For example, when it comes to feeding, you will require items such as a nursing pillow, baby bottles, a breast pump, among others, at least for the first few months when they are exclusively breastfeeding or taking formula. You can use this strategy when making a list for sleeping, going out, and bath time.
Some items are meant to make parenting just a little bit easier. These include baby monitors, loungers, strollers, carriers, a white noise machine, music CDs, etc.
That said, essential items for new-born twins as well as singleton babies include;
- Diaper bag
- Receiving blankets
- Swaddling blanket
- Baby bottles
- Baby bather
- Changing table and mat
Must-Have For NewBorn Twins: Items Every Parent of Twins Must Have
These items will significantly ease your life with your two little ones. Here is a quick run-through of each product along with some of our recommendations:
1. Double Frame Stroller
Next to diapers on the list of must-haves for twins is a double frame stroller. Carrying two babies around with a carrier, while doable, is not something you should subject your body to often.
Why a stroller frame and not a complete travel stroller? Well, because it’s much lighter and easier to manage. You also don’t want to keep taking the babies out of their car seats and waking them up whenever you need to pack and go. With a stroller frame, all you need to do is unlock the car seats from the car and snap them on the frame to go. The important thing here is to make sure the car seats are compatible with the stroller frame.
Baby Trend Snap N Go or the Joovy Twin Roo Plus are two very lightweight and easy-to-use frames that you can throw into your trunk and go. If you have a toddler, the UPPAbaby Vista has the third compartment so you can carry your three little ones at once.
2. Infant Car Seats
While you won’t have to buy two of everything simply because you have twins, you won’t avoid purchasing two infant car seats. In most places, you can’t leave the hospital without infant car seats, so it’s better to buy them early enough.
In our case, I had to do a lot of math around this because our girls were not exactly independent by the time the twins arrived. They still needed their car seats.
I considered getting a double stroller car seat combo that would fit four kids, but we couldn’t get one with the right ages. Everything in the market favored kids who were closer in age, which would not work for us. Finally, we went with a twin double stroller combo for the boys and let the girls keep their car seats.
It works for the twins because I can remove the carrier portion of the seat from the base and leave it in the car. When your babies are sleeping, you can move them from the car to the house without necessarily waking them up. The stroller is perfect when you have twins because the last thing you need is fussy kids as you walk around.
We recommend The Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 LX Featuring TrueShield Technology because it’s their safest infant car seat yet. This simple ride comes with a silent shade canopy, 4-position adjustable base, and an easy-to-read level indicator, so installation should be a breeze. You can also adjust the handle with one hand, and it’s compatible with the Baby Trend Snap N Go double stroller frame.
The Chicco Fit2 car seats are also great because they grow with your babies longer than any other car seat, thanks to the adjustable extended legroom. Your twins can stay in the rear-facing position until they are two in these car seats, giving you more value for your money.
3. Convertible Cribs
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, twins should sleep in their own cribs. This reduces incidents of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Although the twins have their cribs in the bedroom where they can each have their space, I found the Graco Pack ‘n Play Playard with Bassinet for Twins a lifesaver. It saved us the hustle of taking the boys upstairs during the day when they needed to take their naps. They also enjoyed entertaining themselves in the bassinet.
On our recommendation list is the Delta Children Emery Convertible Baby Crib. It is an awesome 4-in-1 crib and the only one your twins will need in the next foreseeable future. The crib converts from a mini crib for infants to an open crib for toddlers and a full bed when they outgrow the crib. If you want to place it right next to your bed, you can open one side of the crib completely, so it locks onto your bed to become one, making it easier for you to take care of the baby at night.
The benefits of babywearing are well documented. It helps with bonding, especially when you have to share your attention between two kids. It also helps them be more emotionally adjusted.
Once you have twins, multitasking takes on a whole new dimension. Being able to take the babies around as you do your daily tasks really helps. We also found it’s a great way to get babies to catch some z’s as they listen to your heartbeat and feel your warmth.
More importantly, a carrier will be perfect when you need to carry the babies to a crowded place, where a stroller may be a nuisance.
During those first few months, invest in a wrap-style carrier that won’t separate their legs or stretch their spine. The Boba Wrap was our favorite as it is super stretchy and great for tandem-wrapping. As they grow a little stronger, the Minimonkey Twin Wrap is better because of the added structural features.
The Weego Carrier is a soft structured infant baby carrier that makes carrying newborn twins so much easier if you are not into wraps.
Once the twins are past the infant stage, a huge world of carriers opens for them. Our favorite was the TwinGo because it’s sturdy and secure whether you carry one baby or two.
5. Double Breastfeeding Pillow
Besides being intimidating, breastfeeding twins can get complicated. A comfortable breastfeeding pillow can help with the mechanics of it, especially when you need to breastfeed both of them together.
For those moms who aren’t planning to breastfeed, this pillow will still be beneficial. It’s the perfect place for your twins to chill during feeding as they drink from their bottles. With it, you can feed two babies simultaneously.
The Twin Z Pillow is highly rated by moms, but my top pick goes to My Brest Friend Supportive Nursing Pillow for Twins for many reasons. It has a Velcro strap to secure the pillow around your waist as you breastfeed. It is also much firmer than other pillows, which helps hold the twins in place and improve your posture.
This pillow also comes with a removable and machine washable cover because you can count on your twins spitting on it. It’s large enough to fit two babies comfortably, and the large multipurpose pockets keep everything you need close by. With this pillow, feeding two kids will be easier and comfortable for everyone.
6. Bouncer seats
Again, you cannot hold/carry your babies all day long. Bouncer seats, also called baby loungers, will hold and rock your babies as you take a minute to catch your breath. The best thing about these bouncer seats is that they are light enough so you can take them to the kitchen as you cook or place them outside as you garden and everywhere else in the house.
They are also the perfect place to bottle-feed your babies. And because the seat has an inline, the babies won’t have trouble when they spit-up.
I loved placing the twins on their bouncer seats in the afternoon. I would then use my feet to gently rock them back and forth, putting them to sleep in a heartbeat.
However, you should not leave them to nap in the rocker. Once the babies fall asleep, transfer them to their crib for more comfort.
Want to go to the bathroom for a second, and there is no one to watch the babies? Simply strap them in one of these rocker chairs, and they will be safe and calm.
7. An Organized Diaper Bag
Now for things you only need one of, an organized diaper bag is a lifesaver when you have twins. When choosing one, make sure it has as many pockets and compartments as possible to help you organize all the baby stuff you will be carrying. It must also have an insulated compartment for bottles and baby wipes containers.
The Bag Nation Diaper Bag Backpack is the perfect combo for parents with newborn twins. Besides having 14 organized pockets to hold diapers, toys, and clothing, it also comes with a large changing pad and four insulated bottle pockets. You can wear it as a backpack, which is easier than carrying it on your shoulders, but you can also hang it on the stroller. As every good diaper bag should, they have also included a wet bag for those soiled clothes.
8. Baby monitor
A baby monitor will help you keep an eye on your babies without necessarily getting into their room which might wake them. Nonetheless, today’s monitors do more than that. They can monitor the room temperature, the twins breathing, and even sing lullabies for them in your voice.
A baby monitor with a camera can also help you see what the twins are doing and how they are sleeping. You can carry on with your work without worry because you can see and hear the sleeping babies from wherever you are.
The Infant Optics DXR-8 Video Baby Monitor is our number 1 recommendation for twins who share a bedroom.
9. Double Bassinet Twin Sleeper
Even with a baby monitor, sometimes parents prefer to have the babies closer to them. You can use a double bassinet in the living room area during the day instead of taking the kiddos to sleep in their rooms.
If you are nervous new parents, a bassinet is a perfect way for babies to stay in your bedroom according to international guidelines. This will make night feeds so much easier so you can have some semblance of rest during those first few months.
The HALO double bassinet twin sleeper separates the babies to give the illusion of separate beds. It can adjust up, down, or side to side. Additionally, it is lightweight enough to move easily from room to room.
Having your little angels right there gives you more peace of mind as you do other things and reduces your reaction time if anything bad happens.
10. Sound Machine
A sound machine is one of the most forgotten items in the list of baby must-haves that I find quite invaluable. Every minute of sleep you can get will help prevent insanity, and this is where a sound machine comes in.
Besides soothing the little ones back to sleep when they wake up at night, a sound machine will help one twin sleep through the noise when the other wakes up crying.
Ultimately, it could help your twins learn to sleep through each other’s noise. The sound machine helps in the initial stages.
The Homedics white noise machine became a significant part of raising the boys in the first year. I used it every day, and it was so handy. Our babies slept through any noise coming from outside the house easily.
While most parents can tell when a baby has a fever by merely feeling their forehead, a thermometer helps get an actual reading. Depending on the reading, you will know whether to manage the fever at home or rush the baby to the hospital.
For babies under 3 months, a fever of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or more calls for immediate action. A rectal thermometer with digital readings is the best at this age because of its accuracy though it’s not as easy to use.
Twin Baby Registry Items to Skip
As you prepare to welcome your newborn twins home, you will likely feel overwhelmed by all the stuff you will find in baby shops. Baby registry suggestion lists don’t help either, as they make you think you need to buy everything under the sun.
After raising twins and two singleton children, I can tell you for free-you will never use some of those things. In fact, almost half of that registry list will be sitting in your baby’s room collecting dust for months.
To save you from wasting your money, here are 3 items you may not need when you have twins.
1. Rocking chair
When you have one child, rocking together with your bundle of joy as you enjoy a good book or listen to a podcast is pretty much the dream. This doesn’t work so well with twins, though, because the three of you can’t comfortably fit in a rocking chair. Instead, splurge on an oversized loveseat or one-seater couch that has room for everyone.
The idea of warming the baby bottles, wipes, and even food before use is comforting for new moms. When you have two infants, however, keeping it simple is the way to go.
Warmers will take up space that you don’t have and add to the luggage. Instead, buy a nice diaper bag with insulated pockets to keep the bottles and baby wipes warm for a long time.
Having bottle holders may, however, come in handy. Although we didn’t use them as much, these bad boys will help you when bottle feeding your little ones, especially when alone. Some parents swear by them, and I believe them. They are also a great way for some hands-free feeding, especially when the two babies are fussy.
3. Shopping hammock
As a parent, you can do anything, including shopping with two kiddos on hand. That, however, is not something that will likely happen when the kids are small. We found that ordering from bulk shops like Costco is a much easier and, of course, a cheaper alternative. When you absolutely have to go to the store, using a carrier makes it easier to move around, and it is equally safe for the kids.
Shopping for twins is considerably more expensive than shopping for one child. You can reduce that figure by choosing items that will serve you for a long time and those that both the kids can share. Adding some of these essentials to your baby registry will also help lighten the load as your friends will try to get them for you during the baby shower.
If you can find parents who’ve had twins recently, they can help you with items they no longer use as well as some much-needed advice on how to survive twins. All the items mentioned are available on Amazon and won’t cost you an arm and a leg. While I know these products are not set on stone, I found them helpful and hope you will too.