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Kylie McConville

5 Reasons To Start A Baby Registry

Wondering if you really need to register? It can be time-consuming and stressful, but here’s why it’s worth it.

To register or not to register—when you’re expecting a baby, that is the question. Our take? Do it! Aside from the basic things you know you’ll need (think: a crib, baby clothes, a car seat and a stroller), we're willing to bet there are a dozen items you might not have thought about—like bottles of baby shampoo and diaper cream. (You'll go through products pretty quickly once baby makes his debut!) Trust us, you’re going to need a bunch of stuff! Here are the top five reasons you should register for all that baby gear.

1. You have control.

Creating a registry gives you and your partner a good deal of control over the products your baby shower guests buy for you. You'll be able to select which brands, how many, what colors and what sizes—which goes a lot further than making not-so-subtle hints about what you want. The last thing you want is 40 onesies, only one receiving blanket and a car seat you can't stand (and can't return!). Doing your research ahead of time to figure out what gear you’ll need and what features you want will majorly cut down on having to make returns and exchanges down the road.

2. You can register for some really fun stuff.

Registering isn't all about stocking up on baby wipes and onesies. We promise there's fun stuff involved too! With some retailers, you can register for more than just baby products. (Uh, what's not to love about that?) How about some adorable nursery decor that’ll totally define the space, or a few pregnancy products to pamper yourself? There's nothing wrong with adding a few items you want (need is so relative) to your registry.

3. There are usually discounts.

Yup, you read that correctly—discounts! More often than not, a retailer will offer a discount on the items leftover in your registry after your shower. Usually, it's a percentage off the remaining items—which means even if no one sprung for that pricey stroller, you can afford to buy it yourself.

4. Things will match.

If you don't make a registry, you're liable to get tons of baby items (from must-haves to must-returns) that don't fit the style you’re picturing for baby. As much as guests love to pick things out, they also like to have some direction, and your registry will clue them in on your tastes and your needs. Sure, there are bound to be a few surprises (weird gifts are inevitable!), but overall, you'll know what you're getting is stuff you'll actually use—and won’t just take up space in baby's closet.

5. You'll be less crazed.

So two shower guests accidentally bought you the same gift, and you decide you don’t need that baby quilt after all. By registering with specific retailers, you’re limiting the number of stores you’ll have to deal with to return or exchange any gifts. Plus, if you hit up all of the various baby departments when registering (clothing, feeding, diapering, on-the-go gear and more), you’ll probably receive a pretty comprehensive collection of baby gear—and that’ll go a long way in making you feel prepared for baby's arrival. A little less stress is a very good thing.

Ready to register? Get started now.

PHOTO: Darcy Strobel