Starting Daycare after weeks of being with your newborn alone can be daunting. Not only do you have to give up all that bonding time, but you also have to worry about picking the right daycare, whether or not they’ll receive proper care and to top it all, there’s a chance that your baby’s items will be lost or used on another baby. Some daycare centres mandate parents to label all items belonging to their baby: bottles, cups, spoons, pacifiers, extra clothes, blankets, bibs, food etc. In this article, I’m going to show you a few easy and effective ways to label your baby’s items. Whether it’s to leave feeding instructions or identify the item as yours, there’s a labelling method here that’s sure to fit your needs.
The Money Savers Way
The first method I’ll consider and arguably the most popular is what I have the money savers way. This method involves some sort of tape (masking, scotch, electrical or carpenter’s) and a Sharpie (permanent marker). You can use the tape on bottles, sippy cups, and pacifiers but for clothes, you can write your baby’s name on the label.
- 1It’s cheap
- 2It’s easy to use
- 3You can find the tools in your house
- 1The ink cleans off in the dishwasher
- 2The tape comes off easily and leaves residue
- 3The tape has to be reapplied every day
- 4It can be time-consuming
The most durable tape is electrical tape, it can survive a few rounds of dishwashing. To get the most out of your Sharpie, use an industrial sharpie; it doesn’t come off as easily as normal ones.
Dry Erase Stickers and Markers
Next up on the ladder of labelling options is dry erase stickers. These can be gotten for low prices at your local stationery shop. They stick on almost permanently and all you have to do in the morning is rewrite your kid’s name and other needed information.
- 1It’s cheap
- 2It’s easy to use
- 3It’s reusable
- 4It’s durable
- 5The writing comes off easily, but it has to be intentionally wiped so no need to worry about accidental cleanings.
- 1The writing comes off in the wash, so you have to always redo it.
Dry erase stickers are suitable for bottles, sippy cups and pacifiers since they come in different sizes and can fit different needs. For clothes, you can stick them unto the cloth tag.
These are the more expensive and durable option. You can get a label maker or order your personalised labels from Wunderlabel. They come in different shapes, styles, and sizes to fit your every need. You can have your baby’s name printed on them with a little whitespace left to write instructions and the date. Some of them are self-laminating, so you don’t have to worry about wear and tear and the writing wiping off.
- 1They’re durable
- 2They have to be intentionally removed
- 3They’re reusable but can’t be repositioned
- 4They leave no residue
- 5They can handle the dishwasher and sterilisation
- 6They save time
- 1They can be a bit pricey
Personalised labels are so far the best option. They’re expensive but the cheaper option in the long run as you’d mostly only need to purchase them once. You can order them in different sizes and for specific purposes. They come in stick-on for bottles, sippy cups, and pacifiers and iron-on for fabrics, so they meet each specific need without much hassle.
Although I have termed them bottle bands, they can also be used for sippy cups and other small containers. They’re bands that go around the bottle or cups and you can write on them with a ballpoint pen or marker.
- 1They’re cheap
- 2They’re easy to use
- 3They’re durable
- 4They’re reusable
- 5They can be transferred to other bottles, sippy cups, or small containers
- 6They’re dishwasher and microwave safe
- 7The grip makes it easy for babies to hold their bottles and cups
- 1If there’s any ink on them when they go in the dishwasher, the writing becomes permanent.
- 2They’re elastic, so they’re prone to slack.
If you have several different bottles and cups and don’t want to spend much money or time on labels, then bands may just be it for you. They can only be used for bottles and cups so you’d have to explore other options for clothes, blankets, and other items.
A few extra things to note:
When labelling your baby’s items, go with the baby’s legal name. You don’t want to use their pet name and have to order new labels because daycare licencing laws state that the baby’s legal name be used. Also, find out what the daycare prefers.
When using sharpies for bottles, sippies and pacis, write your baby’s name on the outer part far away from the tip that goes into their mouth.
If you choose to use stick-on labels or tape, make sure it doesn’t come off to prevent accidental ingestion and choking.
Lastly, the tags are only essential during the first few weeks; after this, the daycare staff get accustomed to who owns what and there’s no real need for labels except to leave instructions. So there’s no need to spend a lot of money.