Baby Estella Paterson gets soothing body rubs, long soaks in the bath and lots of cuddles because mum Isla Melton believes it has calming benefits and helps her thrive.

But Melton, 33, a first-time mother, is picky about what baby products she uses on her 4-month-old.

"I'll look for products that are natural, gentle and preferably with no harmful chemicals because it's going on my baby," she said.

Mother Isla Melton massages her baby, Estella Paterson, 4 months, using Nellie Tier baby spa products. Photo / Jason Oxenham
Mother Isla Melton massages her baby, Estella Paterson, 4 months, using Nellie Tier baby spa products. Photo / Jason Oxenham

Melton is one of thousands of mothers and others looking for baby products and services to soak up the exhibits at the Auckland Baby Show this weekend.

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More than 200 exhibitors, offering everything from baby food, maternity wear, car seats and skincare, are taking part in this year's event.

"It's a good place as a mum to find out what's new, and to take advantage on the show specials and stock up," Melton said.

Mother Isla Melton says she is very selective over what products she uses on her baby, Estella Paterson, 4 months. Photo / Jason Oxenham
Mother Isla Melton says she is very selective over what products she uses on her baby, Estella Paterson, 4 months. Photo / Jason Oxenham

Sara Sadd, director of New Zealand natural skincare product brand Nellie Tier, said the company will be launching its baby product range at the show.

The product range was initially produced for the South Korean market, and is being made available in New Zealand for the first time.

They include a "super gentle" bath and baby shampoo, calming baby massage oil, bottom balm and moisturising lotions, all naturally made using locally sourced ingredients.

"The baby market is an interesting one, because the actual numbers of baby is falling but the demand for baby products is on the rise," Sadd said.

"Families are having fewer babies, but for each baby, there's actually more people - the mums, dads, grandparents, uncles and aunties - eager to spoil and dote on them."

A nappy-changing competition at a previous baby show. Photo / File
A nappy-changing competition at a previous baby show. Photo / File

Last year, New Zealand recorded its lowest ever fertility rate of just 1.71 children per woman, down from 1.81 in 2017 according to Statistics NZ.

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We're Mama, a Chinese mothers' club catering to the needs of mainly migrant mothers, is another that's taking part in the event.

Club founder Vivian Wu, a mother of three, said it can be a challenge for migrant mums with young babies who did not have extended family members here.

"The club provides a platform for these Chinese mothers to communicate and help each other," she said.

"We share pregnancy and parenting knowledge, and also organise various activities with mum-related topics."

Expert speakers will also be on hand at the show to give top baby tips.

Gemma Douglas of the Motherhood Project said new parents have to accept that life will be uncertain and unpredictable for a while.

"Accepting this will make you feel more in control than desperately trying to be in control all the time," Douglas said.

"Don't compare yourself to other parents. They might seem like they're doing a much better job than you, but the reality is that nobody has it all figured out."

The Baby Show, the biggest parenting event in the country, kicks off on Friday and runs until Sunday, Aug 18.