The baby gear industry changes FAST. Even if you’re a second (or third!)-time mama, or have a lot of mom friends offering their “sage” advice, there’s still plenty to learn -- and, sigh, buy -- for this new baby of yours. The good news is, every baby gear innovation is meant to make your life as a mama simpler, safer, less stressful...and possibly even more stylish. Here are 6 baby gear trends to look out for in 2017.

1. Baby Sleep Technology. Nothing stresses a new mama out more than her baby’s sleep. Already, we’ve seen incredible baby sleep monitoring devices from brands like Owlet and Mimo, which monitor baby’s breathing and give parents some peace of mind. In 2017, look for sleep brands to up the ante, like Dockatot’s new Cloudtot, which not only monitors baby’s breathing, but also detects wet diapers and more; and Dr. Harvey Karp’s new SNOO, which actually soothes baby to sleep using his signature “Happiest Baby on the Block” strategy. Baby monitors keep getting tech-ier too; Nanit’s “computer vision” and “insights” let you watch baby’s entire night’s sleep in fast-forward to detect patterns and get baby’s sleep on the fast track.

2. Eco-friendly Gear. We all want to do right by the environment, but well, we care about our babies more. With all the green baby products hitting the market in the next year, though, you won’t have to choose. We’re loving product expansions from eco-pioneers like Green Toys, but we’re equally as excited about some newcomers to the U.S. market like Joolz (pictured above), a design-minded European stroller brand that touts reusable packaging (a birdhouse! A kids’ chair!), sustainably-housed production facilities and headquarters, and plants a tree for every stroller registered.

3. Better Breast Pumps. “I love my breast pump,” said no mom, ever. But in 2017, that may change. We’re crushing on the new hospital-grade Naya, which uses water instead of air to create a more comfortable, productive, and quieter breast pumping experience. We're also chomping at the bit for Medela’s new Sonata, the company’s quietest yet highest performing personal-use pump, which connects to its award-winning digital breastfeeding support app. Lansinoh’s Smartpump is another great app-connected pump, and a little easier on the wallet.

4. High-Style Baby Gear. Instead of dreading the hideous baby gear you’ll have to welcome into your home, why not celebrate it? Because in 2017, it’s not hideous at all! Our high-design wish list covers every room in our house, from the kitchen to the nursery. Some of our faves include Beaba’s new rose gold Babycook, Stokke’s custom-engraved Tripp Trapp and Fisher Price’s everything from Jonathan Adler, including chic cribs, nursery decor and even formerly cringe-worthy (but not anymore!) bouncers, rockers and activity gyms.

5. Wearable Tech for Pregnancy and New Moms. On the heels of the activity tracker explosion in the mainstream market, pregnant gals and new moms now have wearable tech to call their own. While brands like Bloomlife can monitor your early and labor contractions, Project Nursery’s SmartBand helps you keep track of fetal movements, pre- and post-natal vitamins, breastfeeding, bottle feeding and more... Plus, it offers messages of encouragement! If you prefer you wearable tech to read less and speak more, WavHello’s BellyBuds now offer a VoiceShare app so friends and family can record messages and create playlists for baby.

6. Gender Neutral Baby Clothes. As the gender identification conversations continue to escalate (in a good way!), the soft goods baby market is flush with alternatives to boy vs. girl. Insta-babies are clad in gender-neutral prints from brands like Bobo Choses and tinycottons, or sporting the perfect gray (while donating to a baby in need) from 12I12. Brands like Primary make it easy for your little ones to fall in love with gender neutral colors like yellow and green; and a big shout out to L.A.-based INIMINI, which not only “embraces children for who they are - regardless of their gender,” but also makes the perfect basic black onesie so you NYC mamas can finally have your mini-me.

Homepage image courtesy of Joolz.

Courtney Barker

British mom Courtney Barker is sharing the story of how her son, 7-month-old Arthur contracted COVID-19 in the hopes of preventing other families from going through what hers is. Thankfully, little Arthur is now feeling better, but last week he was rushed to the hospital.

His mama recalled the experience in a now-viral Facebook post that is attracting worldwide attention.

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