What Do Babies Wear Right After Birth: How to Dress Your Newborn

As parents, one of your first responsibilities after bringing a newborn baby into the world is to ensure that your baby is comfortable and dressed appropriately. However, knowing what to dress your newborn in can be overwhelming, especially for first-time parents.

So, we will guide you through the process of understanding what do babies wear right after birth, as well as provide tips for dressing them for different situations such as car rides, sleep, and coming back home. Additionally, we will also discuss the importance of choosing the right fabrics for your baby’s clothing.

What Do Newborns Wear in Hospital?

what do babies wear right after birth

When it comes to what newborns wear in the hospital, comfort and ease of access are key factors to consider. Here are a few clothing options suitable for your newborn during their stay:

Newborn Swaddles or Gowns

Swaddles and gowns are popular choices for newborns in the hospital due to their comfort and practicality. They provide a cozy and secure environment for your baby while allowing for easy access during diaper changes and medical examinations. Here are the benefits of using newborn swaddles or gowns:

  • Swaddles:
    • Mimics the womb: Swaddling recreates the snug feeling of the womb, providing a sense of security and comfort for your newborn.
    • Promotes better sleep: The gentle pressure of a swaddle can help soothe your baby and prevent them from startling themselves awake, resulting in longer and more restful sleep.
    • Soft and breathable: Swaddles are typically made from soft, breathable fabrics that allow for proper airflow and help regulate your baby’s body temperature.
  • Gowns:
    • Easy diaper changes: Gowns are designed with an open bottom, eliminating the need for snaps or zippers and making diaper changes quick and hassle-free.
    • Loose-fitting and comfortable: Gowns provide ample room for your baby’s movements and do not restrict their limbs, ensuring their comfort throughout their hospital stay.
    • Soft and gentle on the skin: Gowns are often made from soft fabrics that are gentle on your baby’s delicate skin, minimizing the risk of irritation or discomfort.

Bassinet Sheet and Receiving Blanket

Alongside swaddles or gowns, having a bassinet sheet and receiving blanket for your newborn in the hospital is essential for creating a comfortable and cozy sleeping space. Here’s how to dress a newborn for sleep and why these items are important:

  • Bassinet Sheet:
    • Proper fit and hygiene: The hospital typically provides a bassinet sheet to ensure a clean and properly fitted surface for your baby to rest. It helps maintain hygiene by protecting the mattress from any accidental spills or diaper leaks.
    • Softness and comfort: Bassinet sheets are usually made from soft materials, such as cotton or jersey knit, which provide a gentle and comfortable surface for your baby to lie on.
    • Breathability: Opting for a breathable bassinet sheet helps promote air circulation around your baby, reducing the risk of overheating and ensuring a comfortable sleep environment.
    • Easy to clean: Bassinet sheets are designed to be easily removable and machine washable, allowing for quick and convenient clean-up in case of any messes.
  • Receiving Blanket:
    • Warmth and security: Receiving blankets are versatile and can be used for swaddling, providing an additional layer of warmth, or as a cozy covering during cuddle time. They offer a sense of security and comfort for your newborn.
    • Multi-purpose use: Apart from being used in the bassinet, receiving blankets can also serve as a clean surface for diaper changes, a nursing cover, or a makeshift shade to shield your baby from bright lights.
    • Soft and gentle: Receiving blankets are typically made from soft and gentle fabrics, such as flannel or muslin, that are gentle on your baby’s delicate skin.
    • Easy to pack and carry: These blankets are lightweight and foldable, making them convenient for packing in your hospital bag and using on-the-go.

Dressing Infants for the Car Seat

what do babies wear right after birth

Dressing your newborn appropriately for car rides is crucial for their safety, comfort, and overall well-being. Here are some essential tips to consider when dressing your baby for the car seat:

  • Choose appropriate clothing sizes: It’s important to select clothing that fits your newborn properly, allowing for unrestricted movement and ensuring the car seat straps can be properly secured. Avoid bulky outfits that may interfere with the proper fit of the harness.
  • Opt for soft, comfortable fabrics: Select clothing made from soft, breathable materials, such as cotton, that won’t irritate your baby’s sensitive skin. Avoid clothing with rough seams or tags that may cause discomfort during the car ride.
  • Layer clothing for temperature control: The temperature inside the car can vary, so it’s advisable to dress your baby in layers. But if you are wondering how many layers should a newborn wear? It’s better to start with a thin, long-sleeved onesie as a base layer and add a lightweight sweater or jacket if needed. This allows you to adjust their clothing according to the temperature.
  • Consider the weather: Take into account the weather conditions outside and dress your newborn accordingly. Consider what do newborns wear in the summer and winter? In colder weather, add a hat and mittens to keep their head and hands warm. In warmer weather, opt for lightweight and breathable clothing to prevent overheating.
  • Avoid bulky outerwear: Bulky jackets, snowsuits, or blankets should be avoided underneath the harness straps of the car seat. Instead, place a thin blanket over your baby or use a car seat cover specifically designed for safe use with car seats.
  • Check for proper harness fit: Ensure that the car seat harness fits snugly but comfortably on your baby. Adjust the straps to ensure they are positioned at or below your baby’s shoulders and that you can fit no more than two fingers between the straps and your baby’s collarbone.

What to Dress Newborns Coming Back Home?

what do babies wear right after birth

Bringing your newborn home is an exciting and memorable moment. As you prepare for this special journey, it’s important to dress your baby in comfortable and appropriate clothing. Here are some essential tips to consider:

Tips on Clothing Sizes

When it comes to choosing clothing sizes for your newborn, it’s helpful to be prepared with a range of options. Newborn sizes can vary, and some babies may require smaller sizes, such as preemie outfits. Having a variety of sizes ensures that you can find the best fit for your baby, allowing them to move comfortably without being constricted by too loose or too tight clothing. Consider having a few different sizes on hand so that you’re prepared for any scenario.

Choosing newborn clothes: soft, comfortable, and easy care

When selecting clothes for your newborn, prioritize fabrics that are soft, comfortable, and gentle on their delicate skin. Opt for natural materials such as cotton, which is breathable and helps regulate your baby’s body temperature. Avoid synthetic materials that may cause irritation or discomfort. Look for clothing with smooth seams and minimal embellishments to prevent rubbing against your baby’s skin. Additionally, choose clothes that are easy to care for, as newborns require frequent diaper changes and may experience occasional spills. Opt for machine-washable items that can withstand regular laundering without losing their softness or shape.

Dressing newborns for warmth

Maintaining the right level of warmth for your newborn is crucial, especially during the early days. Layering is an effective way to ensure their comfort in various weather conditions. Start with a soft onesie or a wrap shirt as a base layer. These garments provide a comfortable fit and easy access for diaper changes. Depending on the weather, add additional layers such as pants, sweaters, or jackets. Choose lightweight, breathable fabrics that provide insulation without causing your baby to overheat. Consider looking into what do newborns wear during the day. Don’t forget to cover their feet with footies or soft socks, as babies can lose heat through their extremities. Keep a cozy blanket on hand to provide additional warmth when needed.

Onesie or wrap shirt

Onesies and wrap shirts are practical and versatile options for dressing newborns. They are typically made from soft, stretchy materials that offer a snug and comfortable fit. Onesies come in a variety of designs, including short-sleeved, long-sleeved, and sleeveless options, making them suitable for different weather conditions. Wrap shirts, with their overlapping front panels, are easy to put on and remove, making diaper changes a breeze. Look for onesies or wrap shirts with snap or button closures, as these provide convenience and secure fastening.


Keeping your newborn’s feet warm and protected is essential. Footies are one-piece garments that cover both the body and the feet. They are often made from soft fabrics like cotton and provide an all-in-one solution to keep your baby cozy. Footies come in various designs and can have enclosed feet or open toes, allowing for flexibility based on the weather and your baby’s comfort. Choose footies with easy access for diaper changes, such as those with snaps or zippers at the legs.

Leg warmers and socks

Leg warmers and socks are additional accessories that can provide warmth and style for your newborn. Leg warmers are stretchy tubes of fabric that cover the legs, providing an extra layer of insulation. They are versatile and can be worn over onesies or paired with dresses or skirts. Leg warmers come in a variety of colors, patterns, and designs, allowing you to add a touch of personalization to your baby’s outfit. Soft and stretchy socks are essential for keeping your baby’s toes warm. Look for socks that stay in place without being too tight or restrictive.


Having a soft and lightweight blanket is essential for various purposes. Blankets can be used to swaddle your newborn, providing them with a cozy and secure feeling similar to the womb. Swaddling can help soothe your baby and promote better sleep. Additionally, blankets are useful for providing an extra layer of warmth during cooler weather or when you’re out and about. Look for blankets made from breathable fabrics that allow air circulation and regulate your baby’s body temperature. Ensure that the blanket is lightweight and not too bulky, as it should provide warmth without overwhelming your newborn.

How to Prepare a Newborn for Sleep

what do babies wear right after birth

When it comes to exploring what to dress a newborn in at night, comfort, safety, and temperature regulation are key factors to keep in mind. By following these guidelines, you can help create a cozy and secure sleep environment for your baby.

  • Choose appropriate sleepwear: Select loose-fitting and breathable sleepwear made from soft fabrics such as cotton. Opt for sleepers, footed pajamas, or sleep sacks that allow for freedom of movement while keeping your baby snug and comfortable.
  • Consider the room temperature: Keep the room at a comfortable temperature, between 68-72°F (20-22°C). Dress your baby in layers, adjusting their clothing according to the room temperature. Use a lightweight blanket or swaddle if needed, ensuring it is securely tucked in around the crib mattress.
  • Avoid overdressing: Avoid overdressing your baby for sleep to prevent overheating. If the room is warm, a lightweight onesie or a diaper and a light swaddle may be sufficient. Use your own comfort level as a guide and check your baby’s neck or chest to ensure they are not too hot or too cold.
  • Safe sleep practices: Ensure that your baby’s sleepwear does not have loose strings, ribbons, or ties that could pose a choking hazard. Avoid using blankets, pillows, or stuffed animals in the crib, as they increase the risk of suffocation or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
  • Diaper choice: Choose a comfortable and absorbent diaper for your baby’s bedtime. Consider using overnight diapers or adding an extra absorbent layer to prevent leaks and provide uninterrupted sleep.

Should I Continue Using Natural Fabrics?

what do babies wear right after birth

When it comes to choosing fabrics for your baby’s clothing, sticking with natural materials is generally recommended. Natural fabrics, such as cotton, are breathable, soft, and gentle on your baby’s delicate skin. They allow for proper air circulation, reducing the risk of overheating. Additionally, natural fabrics are often hypoallergenic and less likely to cause skin irritations or allergies. Choosing natural fabrics ensures that your baby stays comfortable and safe, while also minimizing the chances of any adverse reactions.


Dressing your newborn in appropriate clothing is essential for their comfort, safety, and well-being. Whether it’s selecting newborn swaddles or gowns, dressing them for the car seat, choosing outfits for coming back home, or considering natural fabrics, these decisions play a vital role in providing a nurturing environment for your baby.

By following these guidelines and prioritizing their comfort and needs, you can learn what do babies wear right after birth and ensure that your newborn is dressed in a way that promotes their happiness and allows them to thrive in their early days of life.

Ehsanul Hoq
Ehsanul Hoq
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