It won’t come as any surprise that I’m passionate about babies, innovation and combining the two!
As a mum of 7, running a home, a business and being a very active community member, I take help wherever I can get it. Whether it comes in the form of baby equipment, clothing or food – if it makes them happy, keeps them healthy and makes my life easier, I’ll take it.
I was always amazed by innovation. I mean, who has time to sit and think of solutions to life’s problems? Then I became a mum and I realised that you don’t need time or head space to innovate. You need to face these problems head-on and pro-actively set about solving them. The most famous and world-altering inventions in history were all born of necessity.
Enter SockOns. The age-old problem of baby socks falling off and getting lost was driving me mad. So I invented a sock that doesn’t come off a baby’s foot, no matter how hard they pull, crawl, tug or chew. I’m not brilliant, and I certainly didn’t have time to mull. I was simply living with an irritating issue and drew on my creativity to find a solution. Over a million Sock Ons have been sold – that’s a lot of relieved parents!
Hitting this landmark figure prompted me to think about all the amazing baby inventions that have changed parenting for the better, throughout time.
I’m not interested in brands or colours. I’m talking about big ideas. Profound concepts that have made it easier to care for babies.
Here are my favourite baby innovations:
- We’ve all heard our parents talk of steaming pails of pooey towels. Can you imagine? Interestingly there’s been a return to cloth-nappies for environmental reasons. But let’s face it, it’s amazing to have the choice. And there are also some green disposable nappies on the market to cover all bases, although they are slightly more expensive.
Best and most economical nappy – is the Aldi Mamia Nappy Range. Same quality of Pampers for a fraction of the price!
2. Even for breastfeeding mums, this has been a revelation. For over 100 years mums have been able to express or formula feed babies which is convenient, gives dads and grandparents a chance to bond with baby, and ensures that babies can always be fed, even if mum isn’t around or can’t breastfeed for any reason. They signalled the end for wet-nurses, but baby bottles improved baby-rearing forever.
My favourite has always been the AVENT. They are easy to clean, don’t leak and are available everywhere! https://www.philips.co.uk/c-m-mo/baby-bottles-teats
3. Breast Pump – Revolutionary. Self-explanatory. Bestowing upon mums a newfound freedom and reassurance that their baby can be fed by someone else.
Second to hiring a hospital grade pump which is sometimes worth it in the beginning – Medela Swing gets my vote!
4. Nursing Apron. Modesty works for most people, including mums and passers-by. Check out mamscarf especially as a new mum still trying to get the hang of everything.
5. Swim Nappies. In my book this is one of the best. I remember swimming pools being evacuated by lifeguards regularly when I was a child due to deposits by baby swimmers. No more! Thanks Huggies – they are great and you can also let the ‘clean ones’ dry out for reuse – just like a swimming costume!
6. Baby Sling. This is brilliant for keeping baby close and giving you two free hands. And it’s great for outings where the buggy is too cumbersome. I found the Babybjorn hard on my back and preferred slings like Baby Ktan - a wrap without all the wrapping!
- Swaddle Blanket. Muslins are too small. Bath towels are too big. These inventions are just right. Keeps baby cosy and fast asleep. Big shout out to fellow Australian designer for inventing the Love to Dream swaddle https://lovetodream.com.au/ easy to use with hands up position.
8. We’ve all seen black and white pictures of Victorian babies in long white dresses. Probably not the most comfortable attire for the ball pit at soft play. Or for sleeping. Or crawling. Well done to the person who came up with the Babygro with poppers! Again – a shout out to Bonds Baby for their amazing Wondersuits. A new take on the poppers with a zip at the bottom for easy nappy changing and feet that can live in or out!
9. No drip cup. Just discovered the Miracle cup by Munckin – an absolute brilliantly designed weaning cup that doesn’t leak!
10. Playmags - Acrylic plastic tiles that have magnetic ends that stick together and provide hours of entertainment for a full age range of kids. And best of all they are so therapeutic to pack up! Makes cleaning up fun!
What are your top baby innovations or products you couldn't imagine doing without?