Caring for a newborn is as grueling as it is rewarding, and with each passing year, the caregiving toolkit seems to grow exponentially bigger, with more and more baby products and new gear. Features on car seats multiply, carriers become more intricate, monitors monitor more things via more devices at more times of day and night. Some are gimmicks, but some baby products really do make life easier. How’s a new parent to know the difference when faced with an onslaught of bassinets and strollers claiming to be the
With research. We’ve studied the brands, the reviews, the input of experts and parents to create our list of the very best of 2020’s new strollers, car seats, baby bottles, bassinets, and other gear that will ease your parenting journey and let you focus on the good stuff. Which is really what it’s all about.
The Best New Baby Carriers
SeatMe Multi-Position Baby Carrier by LÍLLÉbaby
If they combined a diaper bag with a baby carrier and made it look like something you’d want to wear, this would be it. It has five carry positions, a padded seat, and a removable torso panel. It fits babies up to 45 pounds. And we particularly dig the roomy zippered pocket, which fits all your baby essentials. This even works as a standalone hip carrier, for older kids.
Cradle Me 4-in-1 Carrier by Graco
Finally, a baby carrier that doesn’t require a newborn insert before you can test drive it. Graco’s carrier has magnetic buckles that latch to connect, making it beyond easy to get your baby in and out. You can carry your baby four ways: facing-in newborn seat, facing-in baby seat, facing-out baby seat, and back-carry baby seat. It’s easy to use. Easy to fasten and unfasten. And you can take your newborn out without buying any extras. What more do you need? The weight limit is 35 pounds.
CoPilot Baby Carrier and Backpack by JP Outdoors
Baby carriers can be a little too cutesy-looking. Or cumbersome. Same with diaper bags. The CoPilot is none of these things: Part baby carrier (for babies 8 to 30 pounds), part rugged backpack, and part “parenting bag” with built-in changing station, it’s eminently practical, streamlined, and looks like outdoor gear — because it is. The 40-liter backpack is made from tough 420D ripstop nylon with water-resistant coating, and has a cooler compartment, food and clothing bags, and padded 15-inch laptop sleeve. The carrier attaches to the backpack (creating a balanced load), and you can wear your child in either rear- or forward-facing modes.
Embrace Newborn Carrier by Ergobaby
Newborn baby carriers tend to be either soft fabric wraps that work well for tiny babies but are impossible to tie, or clunky, high-tech contraptions that are designed for older babies and require awkward inserts. The new Ergobaby Embrace newborn carrier, however, gets it right. The soft carrier is easy to put on, with just a few simple buckles instead of a labyrinthine wrapping pattern, and has a padded neckline for baby’s head. The wide, soft straps, cross in back, providing extra support, and are expandable: you can spread the cloth band across your shoulder. Newborns must face inward for safety reasons until they’re 26 inches long, but the carrier can be used for babies up to 25 pounds, making it long-lasting for a newborn carrier. Size can be adjusted to fit Mom or Dad.
LÍLLÉlight Baby Carrier by LÍLLÉbaby
Sometimes minimal truly is better. Made from hemp and organic cotton, this lightweight new carrier is clean, unfussy, and thoughtful. It has a tie-waist in the front, which looks good and also helps you get a great fit. The carrier itself comes with a detachable hood and fits babies 7-36 pounds, using three carry positions.
The Best New Strollers
Hub+ Stroller by Joolz
Don’t get us wrong. Compact strollers are great. Except usually, they feel like compact strollers. In other words, the ride isn’t smooth, the details are missing, and the look is, well, on the chintzy side. Not the the Joolz Hub+. It’s sharp, yes. It’s compact, yes. But the details make it stand out: There’s a rotatable bumper bar and a massive shopping basket. It has built-in front and rear LED lights. The handlebar is adjustable. It weighs 24 pounds. And the ride is smoother than a Tesla. So yeah, that’s smooth. The weight limit is 50 pounds.
Alterrain Pro Jogging Stroller by BOB Gear
There’s lots to love about BOB’s new cruiser, starting with its one-handed, free-standing fold and automatic lock mechanism. Plus, it looks dope as hell when you’re taking it for a spin. It has air-filled tires, ultra-smooth suspension, a foot brake, and an ergonomic handlebar handbrake. Speaking of handlebars, this one has a holder for your phone, plus four other pockets for ample storage. The weight limit is 75 pounds, which means your kid can chill in the ultra-padded seat until they’re 9 years old.
Spring Travel Stroller by Thule
There are tons of strollers out there to choose from, so when it comes to picking one out, it’s all about the details. The Thule Spring is hassle-free: You press a button to fold it, and it just… folds. Like that. The handlebar is adjustable, which is a nice and fairly rare touch at this price point. The seat reclines, the canopy is vented, the fixed footrest makes it easy for kids to climb in on their own. And best of all, this thing glides like it’s a sports car, thanks to its killer suspension and swiveling front wheel, making urban outings and park trips a thing of joy. At 23.4 inches wide, it fits through doorways, and with a 64-pound weight capacity, you’ll get years of use out of it.
Jet Super Compact Travel Stroller by Silver Cross
When you fold this stroller up, you simply roll it along like another suitcase — a brilliant idea for road warriors, and anyone sick of wrangling unwieldy gear. The stroller fits babies up to 55 pounds, and clocks in at 13 pounds, about the weight of a bowling ball, so hauling it around is no big deal. Plus, it looks sleek as hell, and (for those who dare to fly) fits into overhead bins. It has a one-handed fold, an adjustable footrest, and has a multi-positioning reclining seat. And yes, the sweet travel cover is included.
Sleek Everyday Convertible Stroller by Thule
This stroller is made for urban living, but doesn’t cut any corners when it comes to comfort. It can be configured as a single or double stroller, which is handy for growing families. There’s a reversible seat to face front or face the parents; the handlebar is height-adjustable. And shock-absorbing four-wheel suspension is perfect for bumpy sidewalks or uneven park trails.
Mommy Power Stroller Hook
This handy hook provides a hands-free resting place for up to 25 pounds of stuff (think grocery bags, pocketbooks, and whatever other stuff the kids hand you.) But the real zinger is that it doubles as a portable universal charger. So, you can push the stroller without your bags weighing you down and with your phone charging. It even has an indicator light so you can locate it in the dark.
The Best New Baby Car Seats
City GO AIR Infant Car Seat by Baby Jogger
Baby Jogger strollers are immensely popular, because you get great bang for the buck. Now, the brand has branched out into car seats with one mighty fine offering that only weighs eight pounds. It attaches to your Baby Jogger stroller to create a travel system and works without the base in cars, taxis, and rideshares. Yes, it can be used with or without the base, which makes moving it that much easier. It fits babies 4-25 pounds.
Coral XP Infant Car Seat by Maxi-Cosi
Think of this brilliant car seat as something of a burrito for babies. It’s all part of a nesting system includes a car seat base, an outer shell and a detachable inner carrier. It fits babies up to 22 pounds, so it’s ideal primarily for newborns. But here’s the cool part. When your baby is sleeping, instead of hauling him or her out of a car seat and waking them, you simply detach the inner carrier by pressing a button and you’re ready to go.
Sirona S SensorSafe Convertible Car Seat by Cybex
Switching a car seat between rear-facing and front-facing modes is, generally, a massive pain. The Sirona S, however, makes it easy, thanks to its 360-degree rotatable seat, which swivels around and then can easily be locked into place. This might seem like a gimmick, but it makes getting your child in and out of the seat, as well as adjusting the seat’s recline, much less awkward. In addition to a lock that keeps the seat from rotating while the car is in motion, innovative safety features include a load leg, which braces the seat in front, and the brand’s patented SensorSafe clip, which alerts parents via wi-fi if the chest buckle comes undone, or if you somehow forget your kid in the car. The seat has a 12-position recline, and is suitable for kids weighing 4–50 pounds in rear-facing mode, and 22–65 pounds in front-facing mode.
PIPA Lite R Car Seat + RELX Base by Nuna
Imagine a car seat that weighs about as much as a bag of sugar. That’s the newest offering from Nuna, whose previous model, the PIPA Lite, was the lightest car seat on the market. The company’s latest release, the PIPA Lite R, is the new featherweight champ, weighing in at just 5.3 pounds. This rear-facing seat, which must be used with the special RELX base, proves that heft doesn’t equal superior construction or safety. It’s made of aerospace aluminum and specially designed lightweight foam, and is free of fire-retardant chemicals. It installs in seconds, and has indicators that turn green when the seat and the “stability bar” in front are clicked securely into place. Most importantly, it takes some of the heavy lifting out of caring for a newborn. It can be used for babies weighing 4–32 pounds.
Fit4 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat by Chicco
If you’d rather not buy three separate car seats for every stage of your child’s transportation needs, invest in this brilliantly designed beast instead. It will honorably serve you until your kid is 10. Yes, 10. The car seat has clearly labeled 4-stage construction and easy-to-remove layers that you essentially peel off as your kid gets bigger. The Fit4 has nine recline positions and a 10-position headrest, and is slim enough that you can fit three of these across the back seat. In rear-facing mode, it fits babies 4–40 pounds; forward-facing mode works for kids 26–55 pounds; and the booster is designed for kids 40–100 pounds.
Gold Revolve 360 All-In-One Car Seat by Evenflo
Parenting is hard enough. Which is why we appreciate anything that makes things less complicated. This car seat is one of those things. It fits babies 4-120 pounds. It has three different modes of use. But here’s the clincher and the reason any parent would want this seat: The seat rotates, which makes it easier to get your baby into and out of the car. No more twisting and turning to position yourself just so. The seat does the work for you.
The Best New Diapering Aids
Lumi Ultimate Baby Monitor Bundle by Pampers
You don’t have to obsess over whether or not your baby pees enough, but you may choose to, and this groundbreaking all-in-one monitoring system — which includes a smart baby monitor, sleep sensor, 10 days’ worth of diapers, and an app — is here to help. The Lumi baby monitor, designed with Logitech, has 1080p high-definition resolution and a night vision camera, and gives you a 180-degree view of the nursery. There’s continuous and two-way audio so you can hear every burp, snore, and cry. Plus, the monitor tracks room temperature and humidity because of course it does. But the true standout here is the sleep sensor, which works only with Lumi Pampers diapers (and lasts through 1,000 diaper changes): it attaches to the diaper by Velcro and tracks wetness and diaper changes. It all comes together in the app, which lets you keep track of blowouts, vaccinations, sleep patterns, feeding routines, and developmental milestones. It’s the ultimate in Big Brother nursery tech.
Light-Up Diaper Caddy by Skip Hop
Middle-of-the-night diaper changes are hard enough without fumbling for wipes in the dark. This light-up caddy stores all the things you need for a changing in one organized spot, and has an ingenious touch-sensitive light built into the handle. It’s also portable, eliminating the need to stock multiple rooms. The adjustable center ensures that big items can fit, and the light goes off automatically after 10 minutes, allowing you and baby to get back to bed, if not to sleep. It’s such a great idea, it’s a wonder it hasn’t existed until now.
Diaper Cream Applicator by SwipenSnap
Avoid the pesky hassle of getting diaper cream caked under your fingernails — and touching heinies any more than you need to — with this easy-to-use diaper cream applicator. Unlike other applicators, this device attaches directly to the diaper cream tube, which means you can keep one hand safely on your kiddo, and the tip is soft, flexible, and ergonomic, making it easy and gentle on your baby’s bum. The product is compatible with the tubes of most major diaper cream brands.
Redyper Diaper Subscription Service
The sheer and unparalleled convenience of single-use diapers isn’t up for debate, but 4.2 million tons of them went into landfills in 2017 alone, according to the EPA. Gross. Enter Dyper, the subscription service that delivers eco-friendly, Oeko-Tex-certified nappies every month and uses an algorithm to predict how many you’ll need, based on previous usage. Subscribers who sign up for the brand’s new Redyper program get bags and a specially designed hazmat box for used diapers, which are then composted through a partnership with TerraCycle. The diapers themselves are made from bamboo, and are unscented; they’re made without chlorine, latex, alcohol, lotions, TBT, or Phthalates.
The Best New Diaper Bag
Mainframe Wide Open Backpack Diaper Bag by Skip Hop
The super-cool thing about this diaper bag is its wire frame, meaning when you open it, it stays open. No more digging around blindly for wipes. It can be worn a backpack or a satchel, too.
Top ‘n’ Tail Eco Backpack Diaper Bag by BabyMel
What’s cool about the BabyMel? It’s made from recycled plastic bottles, to start. And to keep parents organized, it has two specific sections: The top holds all the feeding gear, and the tail is your portable changing station. The two internal compartments keep feeding and changing essentials separate, so you’re never digging around for wipes, while picking through pacifiers.
Picos Carbon Diaper Bag Backpack by Pacapod
Admittedly, it’s hard to get excited about a diaper bag. Which is why this updated version of the popular one from Pacapod is so innovative. It’s made from a sleek technical fabric, so it actually looks like a pretty dope backpack. It has a new sliding chest strap, which comes in handy if you’re wearing your kid in a sling or carrier. It has side bottle pockets, carabiner tabs, and a new front zipper that gives you immediate access to wipes, diapers, and your tech.
The Best New Feeding Aids
Battery-Operated Bottle Warmer by Baby’s Brew
The Baby’s Brew battery-operated bottle warmer lets parents prepare bottles anywhere without needing to rely on an outlet. Once you choose a temperature (ranging from room temperature to body temperature for breastfed babies), the bottle heats up in 5 to 10 minutes; the relatively slow process is designed to preserve nutrients and avoid pockets of hot liquid that can be created when bottles are heated up too quickly. It comes with a formula dispenser, but works with breastmilk, too. The warmer holds a charge for 8 to 12 hours, fits in a cup holder, and accommodates most bottles (and there’s an adapter for the few that don’t fit).
Sit-To-Step High Chair by Skip Hop
Skip Hop’s newest high chair has a grow-with-me versatile design that converts from a high chair to a toddler step stool (and easily back again). The height-adjustable seat can be reclined in three angled positions, can be used for infants up to 3-year-olds (or 33 pounds), and comes with an infant insert, soft head support, and five-point harness for added safety. The step stool can be used by anyone up to 200 pounds and has a handle/safety bar, making it a secure perch for a little kitchen helper as they grow. The high chair has tons of little conveniences, like a bib hook in the back, and it folds up, making it super-easy to store. And one of the best things about this high chair, with its wood accents and unfussy design, is that it looks good, making it one less garish baby item to look at.
First Bites Full Kit by Lalo