Before my first set of twins, I carefully researched every product. I tried to choose the best, most versatile items. I made an extensive shopping and baby registry list. Some items worked, some didn’t. I thought I’d be the woven wrap baby-wearing, cloth-diapering breastfeeding, stay-at-home mom that the internet told me was best for everyone. Nope, not me. I’m a stay-at-home mom now and use cloth diapers, but that’s been a long road and a lot of changes in the last three and a half years.
After going through the newborn stage with twins for the third time, I’ve found a few favorite items that help me take care of newborn twins without losing my mind completely. These apply to a stay-at-home or working mom. Some are specific to twins and some are also applicable to singletons.
10 items I recommend for newborn twins
1. Fisher Price newborn-to-toddler rockers
This is the best rocker ever! The seat is machine washable, the whole thing folds down for travel, the back is stiff so there’s no slouchy newborn problem, and the weight limit is 40 pounds. In the wake of the rock and play recalls, I think this is a good alternative even though it doesn’t rock automatically because it is nearly impossible (in my estimate) for a baby to asphyxiate if s/he’s not sitting too upright for his/her age. I use them for sick babies overnight too so they don’t (figuratively) drown in snot. Pro tip: line the rocker with a large burp cloth or cloth diaper to lengthen the time between washing the rocker itself.
2. Joovy Twin Roo +
I didn’t try any other frame stroller, but this one has worked well. I like that I can have both car seats face sideways towards the same side. I definitely like being able to transfer the babies from the car to the stroller without waking them up or taking them out of their warm seat in winter. Pro tip: face the babies towards the shelves in a store so people can’t poke and prod them as easily.
3. Weego twin carrier
The Weego is so easy to use and lets me carry both babies through the entire hour and a half church service. It leaves my hands free to help other kids, whether holding their hands or carrying them to the basement for a break. I can even feed the babies in the carrier.
I didn’t have this for the first two sets of twins and that makes me sad. I supposed I didn’t have much need for it since I used the stroller when we lived in town and didn’t attend church. Our new church is not even remotely handicap accessible since it’s in an old building. That means no stroller.
4. Car seat covers
If your baby is born during a cold season, these shower cap car seat covers are great! As I mentioned above, you can transfer the babies and the seats to the frame stroller without waking up anyone.
5. Disposable diapers
The best balance I found between price and quality is Huggies Snug and Dry, especially through Amazon Subscribe and Save. Up & Up diapers from Target gave my kids rashes and Parent’s Choice diapers leak and channel poo up the babies’ backs. If you use Parent’s Choice diapers, buy more clothes. (I’ve since switched to cloth, which saves us over $200 per month with five kids in diapers and is less prone to blow outs than any disposable diaper I’ve tried, and I’ve tried a lot of disposables.)
6. Store-brand formula
I use formula full time because I hated breastfeeding. If you choose or need to use formula the store brand stuff can save you a bundle. Sam’s Club has the best prices, followed closely by Walmart online. At Walmart there is a four-pack online that saves you around $5 compared to buying the individual tubs. Also, if your baby is prone to spit-up, the Parent’s Choice formula at Walmart has a version with rice starch to thicken it and help babies keep it in their bellies. I occasionally use Enfamil and Similac coupons to buy ready-to-use formula for travel.
7. Nose Frida snot sucker
There is no way to clean the bulb syringe that the hospital gives you and it doesn’t even get as much snot out as the Nose Frida. Once you get past the fact that you’re sucking out snot with your mouth (there’s a filter in between), it’s awesome for relieving baby congestion. Pro tip: squirt a drop or two of saline solution into each nostril a few seconds before you use the snot sucker to help loosen and thin out the snot so you can get more of it out.
8. Cheap bibs, and lots of them
Babies aren’t great at getting or keeping liquid in their mouths. Bibs don’t need to be fancy since they’re just catching drool and spit-up. I like the cheap terry cloth ones that come in a ten pack on Amazon or bandana bibs for the first few months. Pro tip: If you buy bibs that have velcro closure, close it with a safety pin in the washer so the bibs don’t stick to everything else.
9. Sleep and plays
Newborns can live in these. Sure, they’re jammies, but who cares when the babies spend most of their time sleeping anyhow? Don’t mess with socks and separate tops and bottoms. They’re more hassle than they’re worth.
10. Skip Hop Duo Double diaper bag
This diaper bag carries everything. If you exceed its capacity, you’re probably packing too much for two babies. I fit enough for five kids in it. I considered a backpack diaper bag, but that wouldn’t work with the Twingo carrier later.
5 items I do not recommend
1. Graco twin pack n play
It’s worked okay for the last three sets. Not great, just okay. The bassinets sag towards the middle and it’s almost impossible to change a dirty sheet on the mattress when it’s shoved into the bassinet attachment. Since newborns leak, you want a mattress protector and a sheet. For the next set of twins I plan to try two separate bassinets.
2. Cute but dinky burp cloths
Those babies are going to spit up half a bottle at some point. A cute little terry cloth burp rag is wholly insufficient. You’re better off with flour sack towels or cheap cloth diapers.
3. Bath sling
This is harder than just taking the baby in the shower. The baby can fall off the sides, any part that isn’t submerged gets cold really quickly, and you still have to reach into a bath tub to bathe the baby. Just use a sink, or take the baby in the shower with you.
4. Woven wrap
Many people love these. They’re strong and versatile. They’re also a wee bit harder and slower to use than a soft structured carrier like the Weego twin (or later the Twingo). I don’t have time or energy to waste on wrapping and unwrapping as much as I’d need to when babies poo, get hungry, or get fussy (or when big kids need something and my arms can’t reach around two babies).
5. Parent’s Choice diapers
As I said above, they just leak everywhere. It’s worth paying more for Huggies to reduce the amount of laundry and the frustration of having pee and poo leak onto everything daily. I have to say, though, that the velcro stuff on the waist is the strongest I’ve found in a disposable diaper.
There you have it. After three sets of twins I think I’m as much of a professional twin mom as one can be. Your style may be different from mine. I hope this gives you a starting point for