Finding the right diaper bag isn’t easy considering the plethora of style and features of each to choose from. In addition, you want to choose from the best diaper bags one that will significantly reduce the stress that comes with each baby outing such as one that allows you to grab a pacifier with one hand the moment your little one starts crying or basically one that makes you look like a star parent.
It is also important to note that a “Diaper Bag” is not just meant to hold diapers and your baby’s essentials, but also to be able to tote some of your stuff too such as cell phone, wallet, iPod and more.
First things First – Key features of a Diaper Bag
Baby essential bags are distinct from most regular or laptop bags for this specific reason in that they are outfitted with several specifically designed compartments, and some that are even fitted with a detachable inner bag complete with a zipper to stash small items such as makeup.
Adding to this, some of the best mom diaper bags, diaper backpacks and dad diaper bags come with a large number of compartments sometimes more than 15 including insulated bottle pockets, compartments for baby wipes, and a washable diaper change pad and plush padded shoulder straps.
As mentioned earlier, diaper bags can be had in myriad different styles, and regardless of the one you choose, you should always opt for one that keeps your hands free such as a messenger style diaper bag or a backpack style diaper bag with shoulder straps.
Once you’ve chosen the type of baby bag for your needs, next step is choosing a look that will match your lifestyle, and the options are literally endless from polka dots, Asian embroidery to signature Louis Vuitton prints.
When choosing the right style of baby essential bag, think about who will be using it the most.
If dad will be using it occasionally, he might not be a fan of a floral pattern per se so pick a pattern that’s a bit more neutral and one that both will be happy to haul around.
And neutral doesn’t have to be boring as there are several diaper backpacks and bags that can be had in subtle prints, unique colors that boast great visual appeal.
Also, it is a good idea to pay attention to the material the diaper bag is made off, and although exotic fabric is most appealing, consider the fact that the bag must last you at least a few years.
Look for fabric that can be easily cleaned, and doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb when stained. Some of the fabrics that are both fashionable and easy to wipe down include vinyl and faux leather.
Next up and highly tempting is to go all out and buy the biggest diaper bag to possibly fit your entire portable nursery, but remember just like your new baby, you will have to carry it around for the better part of the day so the lighter the better.
Carrying non-essentials simply adds to the weight you have to bear on your shoulders, making it an uncomfortable experience.
Regardless of the diaper bag you buy, it is worth noting that some are fitted with tie or snap enclosures, fold over tops or zipper tops.
If you’re going to be reaching into the bag to access certain items quickly, a snap enclosure is bound to be more convenient, and if you think that the bag may be overturned in certain circumstances such as when travelling, then a secure zippered top diaper bag is a great choice.
It is important to be able to use the baby diaper bag efficiently, and remember that you will most likely be closing and opening the bag simultaneously while changing your baby so the enclosure plays an important role.
Changing pads are an important component of most diaper bags, and can be wiped clean, folded up and neatly tucked away in the bag.
Some diaper bags provide an added benefit of a dedicated pocket for a changing pad to isolate it and to prevent it from contaminating the rest of the bag and of course also make it easier to find.
All changing pads aren’t made of the same quality, where some may be cushier than others, but you can always buy one that suits you best separately.
Without further ado, here are the most common styles of diaper bags available today to help you make an informed decision.
Tote Diaper Bags
This style of diaper bag is the bulkiest of all so if you need one with a massive amount of space, tote bags will be a great choice.
This mega space is also well organized and generally divided into designated slots for all your baby gear. This style of bags is increasingly popular among parents who desire both functionality and fashion, and can be ordered in a variety of designs and colors.
But this style of bag is also the least manly even if you choose a plain black color tote baby bag. They do however have a large opening, allowing you to easily view and locate baby gear quickly.
A great example of a good tote baby bag is the Skip Hop Grand Central Diaper Bag.
Pros of Tote Diaper Bags
- Roomy interior space
- Large designated compartments
- Several designs to choose from
Cons of Tote Diaper Bags
- Not very masculine designs
- Can be bulky even when empty
Messenger Diaper Bags
This style of diaper bags are stylish and hang off your shoulder, and often dubbed satchel or sling bags. They are appointed with a single long strap that hangs over the shoulder and are generally smaller in size than their tote counterparts.
One of the key advantages of this range of bags is that given that they hang off your shoulder with one strap, you can easily reach in with one hand to grab essentials such as baby wipes or diapers.
But one of the pitfalls of this style of bags is that all the weight is placed on one shoulder so if you’re one of those parents who is keen on taking your entire nursery wherever you go, they might not be a good fit especially if you suffer from a sore back.
When carrying this type of bag, it is highly recommended that you place it on one side of your body, while the strap goes across your chest and hangs on the other side. Reason being that the bag is more prone to slipping off your shoulder when it hands vertically.
Messenger bags vary in size, but are in no way large diaper bags, and you should be able to easily fit all your baby’s essentials needed for one day.
Pros of Messenger Diaper Bags
- Styles available for both men and women
- Can fit all baby essential required for one day
Cons of Messenger Diaper Bags
- Most designs are geared towards dads
Backpack Diaper Bags
Backpack diaper bags are one of the most popular choices among diaper bags and for several good reasons.
Although a fairly new style of baby essential bag, this style of bags allows you to haul around all your baby gear, while keeping both hands free to perform other tasks such as shopping or carrying around your baby.
The exterior of diaper backpacks are relatively similar to traditional backpacks, but interior tells another story with pockets, pockets and more compartments.
This is perhaps the only style of baby essentials bag that has a designated compartment for each of your baby’s needs.
Furthermore, there are some diaper backpacks that are even suited with easy access pockets, which provide you with quick access to frequently used items such as diaper wipes and baby bottles.
And just like any other diaper bag, backpack diaper bags can quickly get heavy depending of course on how much you stuff inside them.
But unlike other styles of diaper bags that might put a strain on one side of the body, the two plush straps of diaper backpacks help distribute the weight evenly on both shoulders.
If you’re an athletic enthusiast, you will love the myriad styles of backpack style diaper bags available such as the Sleeping Lamb waterproof diaper backpack.
So if you’re comfortable with that back to school look, then diaper backpacks are definitely worth exploring. But if you’re an avid fashionista, then consider a tote or messenger diaper bag.
Pros of Diaper Backpacks
- Weight is distributed across both shoulders
- Can be used while walking or through regular exercising
- A great option if you suffer from back ailments
Cons of Diaper Backpacks
- You won’t win any fashion awards
- Cannot be accessed when carried
Convertible Diaper Bags
A bag that gives you three different carrying options, that’s a convertible diaper bag.
Also known as multi-function diaper bags, convertible diaper bags can be transformed into tote, messenger or backpack diaper bags so if you’re not sure about which style of diaper bag you need, a convertible style baby essential bag might be good option.
These bags to begin with come as a tote style bag, but have detachable straps. Depending on the style you’d like, you can remove or add the straps to suit your needs.
However, it is important to note that while convertible diaper bags can be transformed into other styles of diaper bags, they may not necessarily perform well compared to a standalone tote bag or messenger bag.
This is especially true with cheap quality multifunctional bay essential bags, where the key selling point is the ability to convert them into other style of diaper bags, but behind the scenes lack usability and functionality.
Pros of Convertible Diaper Bags
- 3 carrying options
- Great functionality and usability
Cons of Convertible Diaper Bags
- Some might be of cheap quality
Stroller Diaper Bags
You guessed it, stroller diaper bags attach right on to your stroller and onto your stroller’s handles and not in the storage compartment.
This position allows you to easily access your baby’s essentials while on the move, and aren’t big, but just the right size to house your baby’s basic needs.
Considering their small size and superior portability, it is a good idea to carry a standalone diaper bag as well especially if you’re going to be travelling with a large number of items.
The Bag Nation Diaper Bag Backpack is appointed with straps that make it easy to attach the bag to your stroller.
Pros of Stroller Diaper Bags
- Securely and conveniently attach right to your stroller
- Most are good enough to accommodate all your baby essentials
Cons of Stroller diaper Bags
Small in size so you may need to buy another bigger diaper bag
Designer Diaper Bags
If you’d like to make a fashion statement like no other, you can’t go wrong with designer diaper bags, jut expect to pay top dollar.
Owing to the surge of appeal in diaper bags, many designers have now forayed into this arena with a wide range of products that aren’t just aesthetically pleasing, but are of high quality too.
Take note that just like designer clothes, many designers manufacture these bags as limited editions so if you have your eye on one, its best to buy it before it’s gone.
Pros of Designer Diaper Bags
- Eye catching designs available
- Limited edition makes some of them unique
Cons of Designer Diaper Bags
- Some are highly priced
Diaper bags are an absolute necessity, and hopefully the information provided will help you get the best diaper bag for your lifestyle.
When choosing a diaper bag, you will be spoilt for choice given the vast number of options available. Before getting started on your diaper bag shopping pursuit, you first need to consider the essential you will be lugging around including your things such as cell phone and wallet. This will make it a whole lot easier to get a diaper bag that can match your daily trips with your baby. Regardless of the material you choose, all the diaper bags listed in my guide are crafted of the highest quality including enclosures so choose one knowing that it will be a great investment.