Kiwi Families have compiled this list of useful equipment for bathing & changing babies, based on the bathing & changing experiences of a group of mums and dads.

Defining the essentials versus the ‘nice to haves’ in this category is not so wet and dry (excusing the pun!) as you can actually survive on very few items. Based on their comments you can decide what is essential for you and your baby.

Change Table $100 – 400

Advantages for changing baby

  • Great for changing baby at standing height, especially if you suffer from back problems.
  • Good place to store nappies and other changing needs.


  • Many find it is only used for the first few weeks, then they end up changing baby on the floor wherever they happen to be playing. The change table may take up too much space in the room.
  • There is a risk of baby rolling off! Never leave babies or toddlers unattended at any age!

For a full list of things you should consider when buying a change table, check out our Bathing and Changing Gear article.

Nappy Disposal Unit $50 – 80

Advantages for changing baby

  • Really handy to have by the change table. Pop your dirty nappies in and just change the bag when it is full.


  • If you change baby all over the house, it is just as easy to put the nappy straight in the bin.

Baby Bath $10 – 30

Advantages for bathing baby

  • Great for using when baby is really little. Can be put on the kitchen bench to bathe baby at standing height, or brought out into the lounge where it is nice and warm.
  • Also makes a great first paddling pool!


  • It could be just one more thing to store. It’s easy enough to bathe baby in the big bath right from birth.

Bath Insert $15 – 20

A type of frame that helps hold baby in the bath.

Advantages for bathing baby

  • Really useful when baby is very little, especially while getting the hang of bathing them.
  • If your baby is going to bathe with your other children this will give them a bit of their own space


  • Another expense and yet more storage
  • Baby will soon outgrow this.

Baby Towel Set

Often these have a hooded towel, a smaller towel and a face cloth.

Advantages for bathing baby

  • It is nice to keep a towel set separate for baby from the rest of the family, particularly if you have grubby toddlers!
  • These make a lovely gift.


  • Baby will soon outgrow the small baby towels, so if you’re choosing one, go for a bigger towel, for a snug cuddle in winter!

Gauze Face Cloths $5 – 10 per packet

Advantages for cleaning baby

  • Really soft for baby’s skin, and no more expensive than normal face cloths.


  • Unnecessary if you already have a drawer full of face cloths!

Useful Articles

For more information on choosing the equipment you will need for bathing and changing your baby, visit our article Bathing & Changing Gear

If you want more information on how to bathe your new baby and some tips for nappy changing read Bathing & Changing Technique


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Paula Skelton is a qualified NZ nurse and midwife, a midwifery & childbirth educator and the mum of three lovely girls.

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