4 Baby Items That Are Totally Fine to Buy Used (and 5 That Aren’t)

Photographs By IPGGutenbergUKLtd

Sure, it’s tempting to shell out $850 for a new stroller with the best shocks (or so you’ve heard), but pssst, it’s actually one of many baby-related items you can totally buy used. That’s why we pulled together a full list of second-hand essentials that don’t have to be 100 percent new … plus some that totally do.

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Used: A Stroller

As long as it’s manufactured after 2007—when new safety standards were put in place—it’s A-OK to invest in a stroller that’s been around the block a time or two. Just be sure you do a once-over for loose or missing parts before you buy. (You can cross-check the sale by researching what’s typically included with a new model online.)


Used: A Baby Bathtub

Sad but true: Your newborn outgrows it in a hot second. As long as the one you snap up isn’t moldy (and doesn’t smell of mildew), you should be good to go.


Used: Toys

As long as they don’t have any loose parts or chipped paint, it’s completely fine to accept hand-me-down toys. Just be sure you know the origin of any plush or fabric critters. (Ending up with bed bugs via a used teddy bear would be the worst.)


Used: A High Chair

As long as there’s a crotch post, safety restraint with a five-point harness and wheels that lock in place, it meets current standards and is totally fine to buy used.


New: Breast-Pump Parts

The machine is fine to reuse, as long as it’s a closed pump system (aka the working parts of the pump never actually touch the breast milk). But you shouldn’t scrimp on brand-new pump parts—think the flanges, tubing and bottles. It’s a sanitation thing. You want to make sure all the auxiliary pieces that go with the pump machine are squeaky clean.


New: Crib

It’s all about finding one that meets current safety specs. (FYI, drop-rail sides and wide gap slats are officially no-nos, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission.) If you do find yourself with a used crib on your hands, be sure these important standards for safety are met.


New: Baby Bottles

If they’re made of plastic, there’s a risk that they might contain BPA and phthalates (chemicals that have the potential to have harmful effects on your newborn).


New: Car Seat

The life of a car seat is typically about six to eight years. If you have access to the model name, number and manufacturing details—meaning you can cross-check for any recalls—it’s probably fine, but if you can’t confirm this info, it’s worth investing in a seat that’s brand-new. You also need to be sure the car seat hasn’t been in an accident before, so if you don’t know the person selling it, you should probably steer clear.


New: Changing Pad

Even if a machine-washable liner has protected it for the duration of its use, there are no guarantees against seepage. (Ew.) Treat yourself to a new one.

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