Looking to buy a Floral Diaper Bag and the best diaper bags? Being out with a baby is like starring in your own action-adventure movie: Will you be able to find a clean pacifier with one hand before she starts crying? Can you fold down the changing table in the gas station restroom and set up for business without letting baby or diaper bag touch the filthy floor? The right bag can make you a hero in just about any situation.
It should fit everything you’ll need to take care of a baby–whether for that emergency diaper change or a weekend at Grandma’s. Besides diapers, it’ll tote baby’s extra clothes, snacks, and toys. Since you’ll carry it everywhere you go, consider one large enough to hold some of your stuff, too. Many feature sections to hold your iPod, wallet, cell phone and more. Many bags, such as the Duo Deluxe Edition from Skip Hop, have specially designated areas for your cell phone, wallet and keys–helping to make sure they stay dry and you stay organized. The Emily Canvas from Storksak features a detachable inner bag (with a zipper) where you can stash makeup or other small items.
Floral Diaper Bag
best diaper bags
You could save money by using a bag you already own. Some parents find a structured tote like a laptop bag works well. But bags designed for hauling baby paraphernalia usually have more pockets—some up to 14. Plus they usually come standard with a washable diaper-change pad, insulated bottle pockets, compartments for baby wipes, and lightly padded shoulder straps. If you want to use your own bag, you can purchase something like the Pronto changing station from Skip Hop, which has a foldout changing pad and a pocket for wipes.
Keep your partner in mind when choosing a bag. One parent might prefer a backpack style to more evenly distribute the bag’s weight, while another might like a messenger style. When it comes to fabric patterns, get one that neither of you will mind carrying. If you can’t agree on one bag, get a second one—and stock them so you’re both ready to head out the door.
Opt for a bag that leaves your hands free, such as a backpack, sling, or messenger-style with a diagonal strap.
Many bags can convert into a backpack style. Others are very simple “sling” styles that are great for quick trips. The McKenzie Kids Messenger Bag is actually a small sling style with a pocket for diaper wipes under the front flap. The small Mothers Minder Sling Bag has a bungee cord attached to the front to store extra stuff. The JJ Cole System Bag 180 is a roomier messenger style that comes with its own “pod” to hold a pacifier.
A bag that allows your torso to bear the brunt of the weight you’re carrying is better for your neck and shoulders. With this type of bag, you won’t have to balance your baby in one hand and a bag in the other. A hands-free bag will also make it easier to juggle a stroller and shopping bags while keeping up with an energetic toddler—that’ll be your baby in no time—when you run errands.
You can buy a bag designed to hang on your stroller’s handlebar or clips that give you the same option with other bags, but we don’t recommend this because the weight might cause the stroller to tip backward.
The Right Bag for the Right Price
You can buy a perfectly chic yet durable and practical carryall for $35 to $40, such as California Innovations Rounded Tote Diaper Bag ($39.99) or Trend Lab’s Messenger Bag ($29.98). Or you can spend hundreds for a designer or other high-end bag from Gucci, Kate Spade, or Juicy Couture. If you’re looking for something less floral or feminine, there’s an entire subindustry aimed at designing diaper bags for dads. Ju-Ju-Be carries the Be Hip messenger bag in slate and timber colors, for example. Storksak carries the Jamie bag made of cowhide and big enough to fit a laptop along with the nappies. And DadGear messenger bags can be found decorated with flames and skulls, if you’re so inclined. Just keep in mind that a bigger investment might not deliver a bigger return in terms of convenience or durability. And remember that a diaper bag can get dirty and worn pretty quickly.
“Try to consider what your priorities are before you go out and buy a $500 bag,” says Mary Carlomagno, a mother of two, professional organizer, and author of “The Secrets of Simplicity.” “Trial and error is often what works when it comes to children. I have gone through a couple of different diaper bags, and half the time all you need is a diaper and a wipe. Go to a retailer who can explain the benefits of the various diaper-bag options. Don’t invest too much, because you might want to get another one.”
There are many types of diaper bags, including backpack, messenger, and tote styles—the three most popular. Most come with a padded mat for changing a baby’s diaper on the go.
A backpack diaper bag looks like a regular backpack but with extra pockets to hold wipes and changing pads, among other items. The Travel Baby Depot Bag, for example, gives you tons of room to stash your stuff and distributes the load on your shoulders evenly.
The messenger-style bag (sometimes also referred to as sling style) has one strap and can be carried on a shoulder or across your chest. They are often designed with dads in mind, but you can find them in almost any variation, from unisex to floral. Storksak’s Jamie bag has an adjustable shoulder strap, is big enough to hold a laptop, and has plenty of pockets, including insulated ones for bottles.
A tote-style looks like an overgrown handbag. Like other bags, some include extra pockets and space for cell phones and more. Some tote styles, such as the Ju-Ju-Be BFF bag, come with detachable straps so you can turn it into a backpack or messenger bag, or simply grab the tote handle on the top. Other tote styles look even more like large pocketbooks, such as Petunia Pickle Bottom’s high-end Cosmo Carryall, made with Italian cut velvet. It has large handles, just like a fashionable purse.
Stroller Handlebar Bags: A Bad Idea
Another variation, sometimes called a “stroller diaper bag,” is basically a tote-style but designed with longer straps to fit on the back of a stroller’s handlebars. Models are available for double strollers as well as single. Some of these stroller bags have clips. Manufacturers are adding stroller strap-on mechanisms to other styles as well, such as the OiOi hobo-style bag mentioned below. You can buy separate clips to fasten any bag to your stroller.
Consumer Reports advises against hanging anything on the handlebar of a stroller because the weight might cause the stroller to tip backward. The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association agrees.
Linda Woody, communications manager for the association, says that if you plan to use a larger bag or purse, you should choose a stroller that can safely carry them in a basket, not on your stroller’s handlebars. “We recommend that parents don’t hang pocketbooks, diaper bags, or shopping bags over the handles of the carriage or stroller.
“You want to use the shopping basket underneath the stroller and make sure it is low on the back of the stroller or directly over the rear wheels,” Woody says.
She says there are so many types of carriages and strollers on the market that parents should look for one that fits their needs. But she adds that many convertible strollers will often have a basket underneath where a diaper bag can easily be placed. (Convertible strollers are used with an infant car seat that can be changed to carry a child once they outgrow it.)
Other Styles and Trends
Hobo bags mimic the style from handbag fashionistas. The OiOi hobo diaper bag, for example, has one main internal compartment and a shoulder strap with an adjustable buckle.
Convertible bags, such as the Ju-Ju-Be BFF, come with a handle and a removable sling strap and backpack strap so you can use it in whatever mode is most convenient.
If you want wear your baby gear around your waist like a carpenter belt, you can get a fanny-pack style, like the Mia Bossi MB601 Tobey Diaper Bag.
Some sling-style bags are designed to be smaller for quick outings. Like a messenger bag, it has a strap that can cross your chest, but because it’s compact it can fit snugly.
Last and least are mini bags, which are made to fit inside something else. They look like a small handbag or clutch, such as the Cross Town Clutch by Petunia Pickle Bottom or the Amy Michelle Poppy Chic Diaper Clutch.
As you’re realizing by now, there are enough different types of diaper bags on the market right now to warrant their own edition of “Project Runway.” Parents can choose one that looks practically professional, a mod messenger bag, a hike-worthy backpack, a small sling, such as the Mothers Minder Sling Bag, or a tiny “changing purse” such as the clutches mentioned above. Some bags hold only a few diapers and are made for quick outings; others are big enough for a four-day getaway, with zippers to let you expand the bag when you need more room.
Before you’re seduced by all the choices in shape, style, fabric, and fashion, think about where you’ll be bringing the bag and what will work best for you. An imported Italian leather fanny-pack style like the Mia Bossi Tobey might look chic when taking a walk to a local coffee shop, but you’ll want something more substantial for a day trip, when you need to pack an extra outfit for your baby, your cell phone and wallet, and a day’s worth of juice boxes or formula.
Practicality is paramount, but a diaper bag can still be a fashion accessory. If you want that silk-covered bag with great graphics and colors, just make sure the interior is nylon or microfiber so you can clean up after the wet diapers and spilled milk. Ju-Ju-Be bags, for example, are machine washable, have light-colored interiors that make it easy to see inside, and are easy to wipe clean. Plus they’re treated with an antimicrobial finish. In the mood for a bag with a camouflage design, your alma mater’s insignia, or even a skull and flames? It’s all out there. You can also easily find something more subdued but modern, like stripes or polka dots. You’ll have to look a bit harder for those old-school, sweet-and-innocent designs like butterflies or Winnie-the-Pooh, but they can be found, too.
From Budget to Deluxe
Prices range from $15 for a low-end fabric or vinyl model to as much as $500 and up for well-appointed designer bags. Here are more specifics about what you’ll find in each price range.
The Lowdown on the Low End
At $35 or less, these might skimp on quality and durability, leaving you with a zipper that won’t zip or a bag that is quickly frayed and needs to be replaced. If you expect to have more kids and want diaper-bag shopping to be a one-shot deal, spending a little more (in the upper end of the $35-to-$100 range) will get you a good-quality bag that might last through several years of Sesame Street.
If value is what you’re after, midpriced models (in the $35-to-$100 range) offer the best mix of sound construction and generous storage. The best bags can be wiped clean inside and out because gunk tends to accumulate on all surfaces. They also have lots of Velcro or zippered pockets, which can help you stay organized.
High-End, Haute, and Hip
Many of the top names in fashion have jumped into the diaper-bag business, as they have with baby clothing. So if you want to make a statement with yours, you can. Just be prepared to pay for it. The Addison Op Art Baby Bag by Coach, for example, will set you back $500. The Mia Bossi Maria Chocolate is a couture bag with distressed Italian leather that goes for $600.
You’re apt to get a good-quality bag, but make sure it’s the type you want and has all the Features (such as durable fabric and closures and double seams) you seek. Think washable, wipeable, and waterproof. You might want to avoid a bag that requires dry cleaning.
Do you want a bag with a built-in soft-pack cooler, room for 16 diapers, and a special pocket for a portable DVD player? If you have twins or plan to travel a lot with your kids, a bag with tons of space might be perfect. If you prefer to travel light, look for something more streamlined. Some diaper bags come packed with features, so it’s worth considering your options.
Look for wide, padded, adjustable straps that won’t dig into your shoulders. Try to buy a bag that has well-reinforced, finished seams. You want the seams to hold up to use and washing, and not fray. Stress points on the bag should be reinforced with a rivet or zigzag stitching. Look for good-quality hardware: heavy-duty plastic or metal zippers with sturdy closures. Zippers with large teeth and tabs that are large enough to make them easy to grab are superior. Finally, zippers, rather than magnetic closures, can help ensure your stuff won’t fall out if your diaper bag tips over or a frustrated toddler kicks it. A flap that closes over the bag, rather than an open-type tote with just a zipper, will have a better chance of keeping your contents dry.
Most bags come with a rectangular changing pad that folds up, fits in the bag, and can be wiped clean. Many pads fit into a designated pocket—a plus, since isolating the pad can prevent it from contaminating the rest of the bag, and make it easier to find. Some pads are cushier than others, but you can always buy one separately. A few models come with a pad attached to the side or, like the Petunia Pickle Bottom Society Satchel (pictured), into a zippered bottom compartment, and can be used as self-contained changing stations.
The handles of a tote-style bag should be short enough so that the bag doesn’t drag on the ground when you carry it like a briefcase, but long enough so that it can be slung over a shoulder, such as the Sally Spicer diaper bag.
Some bags now come with a variety of handles; a short “grab handle” or “lug handle” and backpack straps as well, such as the B.F.F. bag from Ju-Ju-Be. Wide or well-padded straps are more comfortable. A backpack, messenger, or sling-style diaper bag keeps your hands and arms free. A backpack’s shoulder straps should be adjustable for proper fit. A few even come with a sternum strap, which connects the shoulder straps at the upper chest and can help distribute the weight more evenly.
There are hundreds of choices in fabrics, from modern brocades to glazed, coated canvas. While the outside designs can be dazzling, make sure you choose something durable. A moisture-resistant nylon or microfiber bag will be more practical; you’ll want a diaper bag that can be wiped clean, inside and out. Beware of vinyl bags if you live in a cold climate. They can crack when the temperature dips.
Some manufacturers continue to offer “baby colors”—pastels and light-colored prints. But dark shades are less likely to show dirt or stains. For the interior however, a light- or bright color, like the one in the Eddie Bauer Davenport Diaper bag in silver, can make it easier to see what’s inside.
Easy-to-access zippered interior and exterior compartments, which can function as a wallet and storage for things you constantly need, such as baby wipes, pacifiers, and your cell phone, are a convenient plus.
Clear vinyl, fabric, or mesh pockets inside can hold diapers, wipes, sanitizer, and more. An insulated cooler section is great for traveling with your little one’s formula or food. Bottle pockets are handy, but make sure your brand of baby bottle and your water bottle fit. Pockets are important because you always want to keep bottles and food separate from dirty diapers.
Check out how much the bag weighs when empty; a diaper bag that weighs 3 pounds before you pack it will quickly become a heavy load once you add diapers and more. It might make most sense to have more than one bag, perhaps a more spacious one for long trips and a more compact one for quick jaunts.
Friends since graduate school, co-founders Amy and Michelle have been designing elegant and fashionable diaper bags since 2004. Available at specialty stores and on the company’s website.
BOB (short for Beast of Burden) started out in 1994 making trailers for bikes. Today, the company still makes trailers as well as strollers, and carrying bags and accessories for both. Company website lists retailers by location.
Founded in 2002, Baby Sherpa is a designer and manufacturer of gear-carrying solutions aimed at active families. The popular diaper backpacks come in three styles: Original, Short-Haul, and Alpha. Available at Babies “R” Us and online.
Since 1986, California Innovations has been producing soft-sided insulated products. Available online at Babies “R” Us and in stores through the Columbia Sportswear company.
Founded in 2003 by two new fathers, Dad Gear is dedicated to bags for dads, from messenger-style to courier-style, backpacks, and even vests and jackets. Available at specialty stores and the company’s website.
The outerwear experts even have a diaper bag. Available at a wide variety of stores and several online sites, such as Amazon.
J.J Cole Collections
A young company based in Utah, J.J. Cole Collections changed the bunting market with its innovative BundleMe product.
Ju Ju Be
Started by two people who felt that “no one had successfully acted on the idea that fashion and function aren’t mutually exclusive, and no one else had delved into the deep realm of microbes and anti-stick coatings.” Ju Ju Be claims to make “smart bags by smart people.”
These handmade, high-end diaper bags are made from high-quality Italian leathers and fabrics, and can be used as a purse, a computer case, or a carryall.
Established in England in 2002 and the USA in 2003, OiOi began as an Australian company more than a decade ago. Its diaper bags are known for their quality, beautiful designs, vibrant colors, and functional styles.
This Utah-based company develops products “for the love of little ones,” which includes front baby carrier system, travel, and shoulder bags, along with accessories. Available at specialty retailers and on its website.
Petunia Pickle Bottom
Designing stylish baby accessories, Petunia Pickle Bottom was founded in 2000. Available at Nordstrom, Pottery Barn Kids, Neiman Marcus, and other high-end department stores.
Sally Spicer makes a wide variety of bags, from clutches and cosmetic bags to baby messenger and baby tote bags. Available on the company’s website and at eBags, Zappos, Walmart, and Amazon.
In 2003, inspired by their needs as new parents, Ellen and Michael Diamant founded Skip Hop and introduced the stroller bag called the Duo. Today, they also make diaper bags in several styles. Available on the company’s website, Nordstrom, Babies “R” Us, and Target.
Established by the British design duo Melanie Marshall and Suzi Bergman, Storksak began offering its brand of “fashionable and functional” diaper bags and accessories in the U.S. in 2006. Available on the company’s website and specialty stores.
Trend Lab LLC is a privately held Minnesota-based company founded in 2001 on the belief that new parents wanted trend-conscious nursery décor. Their line includes bedding, diaper bags, baby gifts, and even pet products. Available wherever juvenile products are sold.
You might find it handy to have more than one diaper bag, perhaps a big, feature-laden one for long trips and a small one for quick jaunts—whatever is going to work for you and your family.
Consider how you’ll use your diaper bag. The diaper bag should be your “nursery on the go,” says Mary Carlomagno, a mother of two, professional organizer, and author of “The Secrets of Simplicity.” So it’s worth giving some thought to how it is going to fit with your family’s lifestyle. “Will you keep the bag on your stroller most of the time, or are you a driving mom who takes your kid to day care? Where will your bag live? Will you carry it on a stroller, will it spend a lot of time on your shoulder, or will you most often be tossing it into the car?”
Try it on. You’ll be carrying your bag for a year or more—perhaps even after your child is potty trained, since it’s useful for any gear. So it’s a good idea to try on some bags for size, look, and feel, even if you ultimately decide to shop online. Bring some of baby’s stuff from home, plus some of the necessities from your own bag, and load up the bags you like at the store. The diaper bag should be easy to use, but comfort is vital, too. Check out how much the bag weighs when empty—the supplies you’ll be carrying weigh plenty so there’s no point in adding to the load with a heavy bag.
Bigger is not necessarily better. You’ll want a good-sized diaper bag. As your baby grows, her bigger diapers and bottles will take up space. But you don’t want one so cavernous that you’re constantly losing things in it, or bumping it into people. A deep hobo-style diaper bag, for example, might be too big for everyday use with one kid (though possibly perfect if you have twins). And even if you don’t really need much stuff, there’s a tendency to fill the void. Try not to wind up with a diaper bag that weighs more than your baby and ruins your posture.
Look for (some) extra compartments. Efficiency is the key here. When you need to clean spit-up from your shoulder and find a clean diaper, all at the same time, being able to easily put your hands on those items is a lifesaver. Loops inside or out to clip your keys or your baby’s toys on are handy, too. You want to grab and keep going, without having to break stride every 5 minutes to find what you need.
“If you have the changing pad in the pocket, and you keep a wipe and a diaper there, you can just grab and go,” Carlomagno says. “Too many pockets can give you too many choices. Keep the bag packed the way it is easiest for you to grab, because half the time you are grabbing it with a kid in your hand.”
Back-Saving Diaper-Bag Toting Tips
Scott Bautch, a Wisconsin-based chiropractor and father of six, has seen many new mothers complain of aching backs. He says badly designed, overly stuffed bags and the way parents carry them contribute to the problem. When choosing a bag, he offers a few things to keep in mind. “The number one principle is, the smaller the better. If it is big you will load it up.”
Bautch, who is past president of the American Chiropractic Association’s Council on Occupational Health, says parents should consider how the weight of the bag will affect their posture. “I am a big fan of using a backpack instead of baby bag,” he says. “I think a lot of times we think our baby bag needs to be soft and cuddly because it is a baby bag, but nothing beats a backpack. Also, the bigger the handle [at the top] is the better; it should be large and big and easy to grab. And the strap has to be as comfortable as possible when it comes in contact with you.”
Parents should also think about the patterns they get into when they go out with their baby, he says. Don’t get into the habit of tossing your diaper bag on the floor. Instead, place it on a table or chair so you don’t have to bend down to get it, especially when you are already carrying the baby. “Think about how you pick up the baby and the car seat and the backpack,” Bautch says. “You should drop your knees and drop your hips and get closer to what you are lifting. Get down and start your lift with your knees, hips, and ankles, and then stand erect. You really have to think about the fact that you are going to be an athlete like you have never been, bending and lifting all the time.”
Above all, Bautch urges parents not to over pack. “When it comes to diaper bags, I think dads have an advantage sometimes because we are minimalists,” he says. “We aren’t with our garages or the trunks of our cars, but we are with kids. We can be out for 4 hours and think–OK, I need three diapers and a few bottles! Moms should be realistic: How many diapers do you really need? And don’t carry huge cans of formula with you. A lot of moms do that. You don’t need all of that. Break it down and carry what you need. You don’t have to bring everything.”
Diaper Bag Checklist
Let’s face it: With a baby in tow, popping out of the house at a moment’s notice just isn’t an option. But you’ll have one less thing to worry about if your keep your diaper bag stocked and ready to go.
“The key to diaper bags—and any sort of bag that travels—is restocking,” says Mary Carlomagno, a mother of two, professional organizer, and author of “The Secrets of Simplicity.” “My biggest trick is restocking the moment I come home and keeping duplicates of everything.
“I look at it like a survival kit,” she continues. “If you and your baby get stuck somewhere, this will answer all of your and your kid’s needs.”
Be systematic about how you organize your diaper bag. Don’t have enough pockets to stash your stuff? Extra diapers can go inside a large plastic bag, while a backup pacifier can go in a smaller one. However you decide to organize and use the bag, do it the same way each time and a messy diaper change will be no big deal.
Whether you’re packing a diaper bag for an afternoon play date or a week-long trip, the checklist below can help you make it out the door prepared:
• At least five or six diapers if you’ll be out most of the day.
• A travel pack of baby wipes. (You can buy them in bulk and restock a smaller travel holder as needed.)
• Hand sanitizer for cleaning your hands before and after diaper changes if you won’t be near soap and water.
• A changing pad.
• Zinc oxide diaper-rash ointment.
• Antibacterial ointment, such as Neosporin (or generic bacitracin).
• Plastic bags for soiled disposable diapers, wet bottles, or clothes. (Some diaper bags come with one of these.)
• A complete change of baby clothes, including socks, a hat, sweater, and/or jacket if it’s chilly out.
• Extra formula and sterilized nonfluoridated water (if you’re bottle-feeding). Carlomagno suggests keeping a bottle packed and ready with the formula already measured inside.
• Breast pads if you are breast-feeding.
• Snacks such as cereal and crackers in plastic containers with lids or plastic bags, and an insulated bag for cold items such as yogurt or breast milk. (If you want to reduce your dependence on plastic bags, many companies offer reusable food-storage bags and containers. Reusit.com is one site that carries many of these items.
• A baby spoon in a plastic bag or other reusable bag to keep it clean.
• A bib or two.
• Two spare clean pacifiers (if your baby uses them).
• A book or toy for your baby to hold.
• Teething toys (if necessary).
• A small towel or burp cloth to mop up spit-ups and spills.
• A small first-aid kit with baby pain and fever relievers.
• Water for you, especially if you are breast-feeding.
• Reading material for you, in case you have a few minutes!
• If you’re going on an overnight trip with your baby, plan for unexpected delays by packing extras of everything, especially diapers, clothes, wipes, formula, sterilized water, snacks, plastic bags, and pacifiers.
5 Best Diaper Bags for 2020 – Reviews
Having a baby means that you need to be ready to act fast in all kinds of situations. Be it that you need to feed your little one or change its diapers, you need to be prepared and ready. If your baby is going with you, you need to carry all those essential things with you. For that, you need a good diaper bag that will hold all these items and make your life easier!
We will review some of our favorite bags and list some of their main features. Now let’s talk about what do you need to look for in a good diaper bag!
A short Diaper Bag Buying Guide
Why are you getting one?
It would be best if you asked yourselves, how will you be using the bag. Will it be a more extended trip or just a stroll through the park? Do you need it for one occasion, or will you be using it regularly? Maybe a smaller tote bag where you could hold a few diapers and a bottle will suffice, or perhaps you have multiple kids, and you need a big bag with numerous compartments and also some space for your things.
As mentioned, you need to plan and be sure that all can fit in the bag. Remember that not only diapers, bottles or clothes will fit in the pocket, but also your wallet, sunglasses, or any other items.
Type of Bag
According to the people at babybottles.com, the main question is, how do you want to carry the bag. Choose what fits your style of parenting: a smaller tote bag, a messenger bag, or a backpack. We frankly suggest the third option as the most versatile one as it gives you free hands, and that can be very useful when handling a child. There are even convertible ones that can switch from option to option!
Next to this, all bags are not unisex; there are male and female bags, so also have that in mind when purchasing one. Getting a unisex one is probably the best bet. One more thing to think about is, can you attach the bag to your stroller, and will it be practical for you.
Note how the bag is closing and how durable it is. You want something designed with longevity in mind, and you want one that is made out of anti-stain materials. Waterproof fabrics will also be a significant benefit. Interestingly enough, some of these bags even have warranties!
With that, let’s talk about some of our favorites!
1. RUVALINO Multifunction
A stylish unisex choice is suitable for moms and dads! It’s part of a neutral collection by Ruvalino! This option will be a great addition to your wardrobe, and it will prove itself very convenient. It has two big compartments with 16 pockets! We like how much space there is, and this one even comes with an insulated baby bottle holder to keep that milk warm.
Things we liked:
- Not bulky
- It looks very cool, a truly stylish option
- Great side pockets
- Excellent straps
- 3-month warranty
- Comes with a waterproof changing pad
2. Upsimples Baby Bags
Another unisex option that we liked from the get-go, for how it looks! This one even has a USB charging port with an ant-thief pocket for your phone. So they did think of everything. Antifriction Oxford fabric makes it super lightweight, and of course, it is waterproof. The specifications boast a 25L capacity, which sounds impressive, and it is impressive. In this one, you will get 11 pockets for your things!
Things we liked:
- Two waterproof pockets where you can put your wet or dirty clothes
- The charging port is a cool idea
- Three insulated pockets to keep milk warm
- We also really liked the shoulder pads as they are super comfy and soft
3. HaloVa Diaper Bag
This HaloVa looks like a high-end bag, in our opinion. It has a 24L capacity with five interior pockets! It has separate aluminum pockets that will keep your bottles warm, and what we liked about this one was the L shaped opening in the back. With this zipper, you can take items from the end of the bag. You don’t have to open it on the front! That is tho, more of a mom bag than a dad bag!
Things we liked:
- The high-end look and style
- The coral/orange color scheme is super cute
- Full refund option in 3 months, and replacement within three years
- The L shaped zipper in the back! So handy!
4. Bamomby Multi-Function
Baby will give you all you need in a bag in a very stylish package. That is also part of a neutral collection, but we do think that you need to be a cool looking dad to rock something like this. It looks like a fancy backpack, but it won’t fail you as a diaper bag. It has 16 pockets, including one for a laptop and three insulated pockets! Oxford fabric and waterproof!
Things we liked:
- The size! We think it’s a perfect size, really
- Good design can look cool with any outfit we think
- Very comfortable to carry around
- It has some great stroller straps
5. Hodar Diaper Bag Backpack
We had to include this one, just for the floral pattern! Hodar seems to be an emerging player in the diaper bag game, and this bag is one of the low vital options! From what we saw, we see that this one is suitable for traveling for daily use. This one also comes with a USB port and an Ipad compartment. It also can be a tote bag!
Things we liked:
- THE FLORAL design is everything that we wanted
- It comes with an extra wet cloth bag in which you can store dirty diapers or wet items
- We loved the robust handle
- The tote bag transformation makes it not just a diaper bag, but a very stylish bag for everyday use
These were some of our favorites and the ones we had our hands-on! We hope that you got some basics of what features you should look for in a diaper bag! So think in advance and good luck with picking out one!
Our Favorite Diaper Bags
We have tested 19 diaper bags over the past three years, filling them with diapers, bottles, and snacks on more than 70 outings, and found several shoulder, messenger, crossbody, and convertible bags that are great for toting baby gear.
You don’t need a designated diaper bag to leave the house with your child, but having a fully stocked bag at the ready can certainly make it easier to get out the door and change your kid on the go. While diaper bags generally come equipped with a changing pad and internal organization for holding wipes, diapers, baby bottles, and personal items, you can outfit a bag you already own (such as one of our tote bag picks, which are favorites among parents on staff) with a portable changing pad or smaller diaper clutch and/or use plastic bags or packing cubes to help you find what you need quickly.
Whatever bag you use, keep in mind that the American Academy of Pediatrics and most stroller companies advise against hanging bags on handlebars due to the tipping hazard that causes (though most diaper bag makers—and parents—ignore this warning).
Some of the bags we looked at can be converted into backpacks, but if you prefer a bag designed for back-carry that will leave both hands free, you may want to check out our guide to backpack-style diaper bags.
More ergonomic options
- Our Favorite Backpack Diaper BagsWe tested 15 backpack diaper bags in a wide range of styles to find the best bags for families with a variety of needs and tastes.
Hold everything: Skip Hop Duo Signature Diaper Bag
This popular, affordable bag makes it easier to store, organize, and access baby gear than any other bag we tested.Buy from Amazon
*At the time of publishing, the price was $50.
Who it’s for: Parents who want a practical diaper bag they can rely on to hold whatever they need for the day.
Why it’s great: The Skip Hop Duo Signature is a sturdy, comfortable, well-made shoulder bag with an ideal array of pockets that make it easy to store, organize, and quickly access all your necessary baby gear. It has nearly all the features of a great diaper bag and costs less than half the price of many of them. The adjustable, padded no-slip strap and tote handles make the bag easy and comfortable to carry; we found that the adjustable strap is long enough to allow smaller and medium-size adults to carry it messenger-bag-style.
Care: Spot clean with a damp cloth. The narrow main compartment is a bit challenging to reach into for cleaning compared with those of other diaper bags, but the polyester material is slippery enough that we could still clean it easily.
Pockets and organization: One of the standout features of the Skip Hop Duo is its combination of 10 open and zippered pockets, which make it easy for storing and quickly grabbing whatever you need. The four external pockets are great for accessing things one-handed. Two are large front pockets that stay closed magnetically and can hold bottles of milk, snacks, or diapers and wipes. Competitors’ bags have similar pockets, but the Skip Hop’s stand out for their simple but clever magnetic closure. Two additional elastic mesh pockets on the sides of the bag can carry a baby bottle, a Thermos of coffee, a large adult water bottle, or a big container of sunscreen. Like most diaper bags, the Skip Hop also has an external slot on the back for its included changing pad (which is machine washable). At the top of the bag, a discreet zippered pocket securely holds your smartphone and keys. Another much larger zippered pocket that runs across the front of the bag can fit a book or tablet, large wallet, and other miscellaneous items. Inside the main zippered compartment are two elastic pockets for diapers and wipes, along with two narrow, tiny pockets that could hold pens and pencils (but not much more).
Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Skip Hop Duo Signature won’t be roomy enough for everybody. It’s big enough for everyday use if you have a single child in diapers but could feel too cramped if you have more than one young child, are using cloth diapers (which take up more room), plan to travel frequently, or want to carry personal belongings such as a laptop in your diaper bag. When I used the Skip Hop as my carry-on during a several-hour flight, adding my laptop and some basic toiletries to its usual contents, I could barely zip the main compartment. If you’re seeking more space, consider the Skip Hop Mainframe, one of our backpack diaper bag picks.
The most common complaint we’ve heard about this bag is that the main zippered compartment is deep, narrow, and simply not big enough. On the plus side, the narrow compartment means that the Skip Hop Duo Signature doesn’t become too bulky when filled, as did many other diaper bags we tested. But it also means that you may end up stacking your stuff in the main compartment, defeating any attempt for organization.
Weight: 1¾ pound
Colors: black, slate (charcoal gray), gray and white chevron, and two shades of heather gray
All the bells and whistles: JuJuBe B.F.F.
May be out of stock
*At the time of publishing, the price was $121.
Who it’s for: Parents who want versatility; thoughtful, premium details; fun, stylish prints; and machine-washable convenience.
Why it’s great: The JuJuBe B.F.F. is a durable, well-made, feature-rich bag that is in the upper range of cost but still offers good value. It can be worn as a backpack, messenger bag, handbag, or tote. The B.F.F. comes with multiple straps that are adjustable and quick and easy to unclip and remove (though we found that they can sometimes still get in the way). The bag has a high-end look and feel, with details such as gold metal hardware, and comes in a range of bright, colorful prints (including occasional collaborations with designers such as Tokidoki). It includes additional features that are nice but not essential—a set of luggage-style feet keep the bag up off a dirty surface, for instance. The exterior is coated with Teflon to resist stains, and parents have reported that their bag still looked like new after months of use. The construction feels robust, although you do see some occasional complaints of things breaking.
Care: Machine wash cold, gentle cycle. Line dry.
Pockets and organization: Parents have praised the B.F.F.’s thoughtful combination of pockets, particularly the “mommy pocket,” a dedicated zippered compartment on the front of the bag that includes an elastic key ring and a unique microfiber pocket for sunglasses. Two open but snug insulated pockets on the sides of the bag are nice for bottles (but were not great insulators). A changing pad (included) can be tucked into the bag’s back panel pocket. The main compartment includes an additional three zippered and four elastic pockets.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: Some parents complained that the B.F.F. wasn’t roomy enough for their needs. One verified customer said, “Unfortunately it is just too small. I couldn’t fit half of the stuff we need in our diaper bag on the regular basis in this … If JuJuBe made a larger version of this bag I would buy it in a heartbeat.”
Weight: 2.8 pounds
Colors: 24 solids and patterns, including black, gray, floral, and nautical
Sleek minimalism: Babymel Robyn Convertible
Who it’s for: Parents who want the flexibility of carrying their bag in multiple ways in something that doesn’t look like a diaper bag.
Why it’s great: We appreciated how easy it was to switch the Babymel Robyn from a shoulder bag to a backpack. It has only one, long strap—rather than multiple straps, like the JuJuBe B.F.F., Petunia Pickle Bottom Boxy Backpack, and Mark & Graham Mercer. Pull in one direction and the strap lengthens so it becomes a shoulder or crossbody bag. Pull both ends down in the other direction and the bag turns into a backpack. It also comes with separate tote handles.
Care: Spot clean with a damp cloth or sponge.
Pockets and organization: The Babymel Robyn has just enough pockets to get by. Two open pockets can hold a bottle on one side and diaper wipes on the other, with a Velcro flap that lifts up to dispense the wipes. (Some parents complained that the pocket didn’t fit their wipes well, but we did not have a problem with our 32-count Huggies wipes.) A large flap on the front of the bag snaps open to a pocket roomy enough for an 8-inch tablet or the included changing pad. Inside the main compartment is a small zippered pocket for valuables, two elastic pockets for diapers or additional bottles, and a flat Velcroed pocket for small, miscellaneous items.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Robyn is not easy to clean. Though it has a wipeable polyester interior, the main compartment does not zip open completely, nor can it be flipped inside out. We had trouble reaching and removing the crumbs and crusted milk, which were frustratingly wedged under a thick seam at the bottom of the bag.
Weight: 1.5 pound (canvas version) to 2.2 pounds (vegan leather)
Colors: seven color and fabric options, including dark-gray tweed, red canvas, and tan vegan leather
Life beyond diapers: Mark & Graham Mercer Convertible Backpack
This nylon bag can be worn as a backpack or tote.$200 from Mark & Graham
Who it’s for: Parents who want an elegant diaper bag that they can use beyond the diapering years.
Why it’s great: The Mark & Graham Mercer (also called Maddie) has classic good looks, and the leather shoulder handles give it an upscale touch. The roomy, versatile bag also includes clip-on straps that transform it into a backpack. Sturdily made with durable nylon, it can convert to a work bag once your child is out of diapers. The light-colored lining and zip-open top make it easy to see everything inside. Mark & Graham is a sister company of Pottery Barn Kids, whose kids lunch boxes and backpacks we recommend.
Care: Wipe with a damp cloth. The lining can conveniently be pulled out for spot cleaning.
Pockets and organization: The Mercer comes equipped with many pockets to help organize your child’s gear and your own. Two open side pockets can hold bottles, while the large, flat front pocket snaps open and can be monogrammed with your initials for $10. Inside the main compartment are two rows of pockets lining the perimeter: The top five pockets include a zippered one for valuables. Inside the bottom of the bag, seven mesh elastic pockets can fit bottles, wipes, and diapers. There are two additional narrow and deep pockets that snap open on the back of the bag, but, with the backpack straps in the same place, are difficult to access.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: The Mark & Graham Mercer is the most expensive of our picks—and is even pricier when you factor in the additional cost of a changing pad, which isn’t included. It’s also on the larger, heavier side as a shoulder bag, though it feels comfortable to carry as a backpack (the straps, however, are made of webbing and are not padded).
Weight: 2.6 pounds
Tough and utilitarian: Tom Bihn Parental Unit
Made of high-quality materials, this sturdy messenger bag offers plenty of well-thought-out organization and comes with a lifetime guarantee.$150 from Tom Bihn
Who it’s for: Parents who want a rugged shoulder- or messenger-style diaper bag.
Why it’s great: Recommended to us by readers, the Tom Bihn Parental Unit is made with a rugged, waterproof nylon, and heavy-duty components such as Duraflex buckles. It can be customized with your choice of materials, such as ballistic nylon, or with an adjustable neoprene shoulder strap that has an “internal control-stretch system” for comfort (not tested). Its unique touches include 10 O-rings for parents to attach pacifiers, organizer pouches, and other items. The company offers a lifetime guarantee against manufacturing defects and also makes repairs due to normal wear and tear for a small charge.
Care: Hand wash with mild detergent. Soak for half hour. Rinse, and lay on top of a bath towel to dry.
Pockets and organization: The front and back of the bag are symmetrical: Both sides have a small zippered pocket that can fit a phone or wallet, as well as a large zippered pocket that spans the length of the bag. The interior is divided into three chambers, one of which can fit diapers and wipes. The main zippered compartment includes two pockets, one on each side. The two pockets can be zipped together to divide the main compartment in half for further organization.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: The 13.5-liter bag can quickly become heavy and unwieldy when packed. The front and back-panel pockets expand outward and are roomy enough to store water bottles and other bulky items. But filling the front or back-panel pockets with anything on the thicker side makes the bag lose its svelte shape. In addition, all the pockets in the Tom Bihn are zippered, and we prefer the convenience of having one or two open pockets that offer easy access. The Parental Unit does not come with a changing pad.
Weight: 1.2 pounds
Colors: eight color combinations, including blue with a light-green ripstop lining and purple with a light-gray ripstop lining
Convenient and compact: Colugo On the Go Organizer
This machine-washable fanny pack/crossbody bag holds just the essentials and can also be used as a stroller organizer.$45 from Colugo
Who it’s for: Parents who want a bag that holds only the bare essentials and are willing to rock a fanny pack.
Why it’s great: We appreciated the simple and convenient two-in-one design of the Colugo On the Go Organizer, which doubles as a fanny pack or crossbody bag and a stroller organizer. To turn it into a stroller organizer, you open and attach it to the handlebar with a pair of built-in Velcro straps. (While it is meant for the Colugo stroller and has an additional attachment that is compatible only with that model, we found that it worked with our travel stroller.) You may want to check first, however, that it doesn’t cause your stroller to tip when attached. The Colugo holds up to 2 pounds.
While we did not compare the Colugo to other stroller organizers or fanny packs, we found that it came in handy as an accessory to our diaper bag—particularly one morning when we were told we couldn’t take our diaper bag into a museum. We shoved what we needed into the Colugo, including one diaper, wipes, an extra pair of pants, wallet, phone, and keys. As your child outgrows diapers and bottles, and your load begins to lighten, the Colugo can be an effective way to carry the minimum you need. Plus, the fanny pack appears to be making a comeback.
Care: Machine wash separately cold. Air-dry.
Pockets and organization: The eight pockets on the Colugo On the Go Organizer include a small felt-lined zippered pocket on the front of the fanny pack, a wide zippered pocket on the back for flat, miscellaneous items, and a zippered mesh pocket inside the flap for small, light items like a travel pack of tissues. Padded nylon dividers separate the main compartment into three, and pop in and out so you can store one to two bottles upright with the bag in stroller organizer mode. There’s also a small clip to attach keys and an easy-to-access open elastic pocket at the back of the main compartment to slip your phone into.
Flaws but not dealbreakers: You will need to repack the bag to transition from stroller organizer to fanny pack, and vice versa. For instance, opened up as a stroller organizer, the internal pocket dividers allow you to securely store a bottle upright. But if you want to take that bottle with you and zip up the fanny pack, you will have to reposition the bottle on its side.
Weight: 9.5 oz.
Colors: black, camouflage, floral
How we picked
In our research and through our interviews with baby-gear retailers and conversations with dozens of parents, we found that a good diaper bag should be:
- Comfortable to carry: We looked for padded straps, good balance, and a low weight. We cast a skeptical eye toward bags that, when empty, weigh more than 3 pounds. Comfort is subjective, and we wanted to select options for people who find messenger bags more comfortable than shoulder bags. Bonus points for bags that could be carried in multiple ways.
- Easy to clean: Ideally, the bag would be machine washable, or at least made with material that could be easily wiped clean and not absorb stains and odors.
- Roomy enough: At minimum, a full-size diaper bag should hold several diapers, wipes, a changing pad, a change of clothes, snacks, a bottle, a small toy or book, a cell phone, keys, and a wallet. For many of our outings, we also tossed in a portable toilet seat for my potty-training toddler, a sweatshirt, a notebook, and pens. (We made an exception for the fanny pack, as it is not full-size.)
- Organized with the right pockets: We found that a variety of pocket-closure types—zippers, magnets, Velcro, snaps, elastic—go a long way toward making a bag intuitive and easy to access. We also preferred the convenience of having at least one open, exterior pocket to hold a water or milk bottle; an insulated pocket for bottles was nice but not essential. While we did not disqualify bags without changing pads, we did note the ones that did not include them.
- Durable: We wanted to find bags that would hold up well through hundreds of trips (and diaper changes) over several years and more than one child. We dismissed bags that had frequent complaints about broken zippers and other signs of poor craftsmanship. We also considered the likelihood that we would continue to use the bag after our child was out of diapers.
- Reasonably priced: You can find diaper bags for as little as $15 and as much as $1,500. We opted for a middle ground and set a maximum price of $200. A lower-priced bag may be preferable since you might use this bag for just the few years your kid is in diapers. On the other hand, bags at the higher end of the range often have more thoughtful details and better materials and construction and can last through the diaper stage for multiple kids. No matter the price, it’s important to get a bag you enjoy using and like looking at, since you’re likely to carry it any time you go out with your baby.
How we tested
For the original version of this guide, we narrowed down the initial list of 40 bags to 14 to test, including several backpacks, which are now part of our backpack diaper bag guide. We examined the overall design, features, and pocket structure carefully. My husband and I spent six weeks carrying the bags daily in everyday life, using each bag for at least two days and the best ones for far longer than that (I’m a 5-foot-3 woman; my husband is 5-foot-10). We generally packed the bags with the basics: a few diapers, a travel pack of wipes, a change of clothing for our then 18-month-old son, an insulated lunch bag with snacks (usually crackers, Cheerios, granola bars, and oranges), a 16.9-ounce disposable water bottle, sunscreen, toys (usually a toy car or two), tissue, hand sanitizer, a smartphone, wallet, and keys.
We used the diaper bags on airplanes, and at the beach, Costco, the zoo, playgrounds, restaurants, a kids soccer game, museums, and the pool. Almost all the diaper bags traveled with us during a family vacation to Hawaii, where it was humid, sandy, occasionally rainy, and about 85 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit on most days. We hung the bags on our stroller—which indeed tipped over several times, though luckily not with the baby strapped inside it!—during long walks, and we slung it over our shoulders or backs the rest of the time. In the majority of our outings, we changed the baby’s diaper to see how manageable it would be to set up the changing pad and reach the diapers and wipes.
For the 2019 update, we narrowed our choices to seven finalists. My son was potty training, so anytime we went out, we packed not only diapers, wipes, and a changing pad but also a portable toilet seat and a lot of extra clothing. We spent about three weeks taking the bags with us on daily trips, as well as on a short family vacation.
Finally, to see how easy (or not so easy) the bags were to clean, we poured a quarter cup of crushed Cheerios and 2 tablespoons of milk into each bag, leaving the mixture to settle for at least 24 hours. We then rated how manageable it was to remove the concoction.
The Diaper Dude was a former pick, but the company is currently undergoing rebranding, and it is unclear what that will spell for the future of the bag (it’s currently unavailable). We did appreciate that, despite its light weight and small size, the Diaper Dude still managed to fit all of our essentials.
The Herschel Supply Co. Sprout Diaper Bag was the perfect bag for an overnight trip but feels overwhelming for everyday use. Large and roomy, it is essentially the Strand Tote modified for parents. Both feature three big open pockets on the outside, giving quick access to items that you want to keep handy. For an additional $35, the Sprout comes with a changing pad, removable shoulder straps, and stroller attachment straps. Inside the zippered main compartment, the Sprout also has a T-shaped pocket divider to help organize your belongings. The internal dividers make the bag tougher to clean; our bag continued to smell for a few days after we removed the milk and Cheerios from our testing. We also wish the Sprout included a small zippered internal pocket for a wallet and other valuables.
The Hip Cub tote makes a nice lightweight (1.6 pound) over-the-shoulder handbag that happened to be a diaper bag—with a nautical feel. We liked its two open front pockets, similar to the Skip Hop Duo’s (though without the magnetic closures to keep it secured). But after a few weeks, we noticed that the fabric had started to bleed, so the white stripe had a faint blue tint. Our messages to Hip Cub’s customer service went unanswered.
The Petunia Pickle Bottom Boxy Backpack is a common competitor to the JuJuBe B.F.F., and it offers many of the same advantages: It can be converted into a backpack, messenger, or shoulder bag, though the straps are not padded and can’t be removed like the B.F.F.’s. We especially liked the Boxy Backpack’s changing station: A cushioned changing pad folds out from the front of the backpack, revealing two elastic pockets that hold the diapers and wipes. With everything in one place, diaper changing with a squirmy, uncooperative baby was more manageable than with any of the other diaper bags we tested. Unfortunately, the Petunia Pickle Bottom has only two small open pockets, which aren’t big enough to accommodate a reusable water bottle (you can shove a disposable 16.9-ounce plastic water bottle into the pocket, but it’s a tight fit)—and these outside pockets proved extremely useful on our other picks.
Skip Hop sells a larger version of the Duo, the Duo Double Signature Diaper Bag, meant for twins and sized to hang on side-by-side double strollers. We didn’t have the opportunity to field-test it, but the Duo Double is about 4 inches wider than the Duo Signature and has 16 pockets (compared with 10).
The cute Storksak Poppy Luxe Black Scuba has the same convenient convertible straps as the Babymel Robyn, allowing us to carry it as a backpack, shoulder bag, crossbody, or tote. It has an array of internal elastic pockets but is overall too small. The included changing pad and insulated food and bottle bag fill up most of the main compartment, leaving little room for any other incidentals and making it difficult to reach anything in the internal pockets.
The Timbuk2 Stork Messenger Diaper Bag can easily double as a sleek and stylish work bag. It includes premium details such as a large external pocket with a magnetic closure for the changing pad (included), a zippered external pocket lined with felt for personal essentials, and an internal pocket with a removable neoprene bottle koozie. The bag’s main drawback is its compact size: Once we packed backup clothes and snacks in the main zippered compartment, there wasn’t room for much more. At 2.7 pounds, it is also the heaviest bag we tested for our 2019 update.
We did not consider cult-favorite brand Timi & Leslie because almost all of its bags are made with leather and weigh 2 pounds or more. The OiOi and JJ Cole diaper bags are also on the heavier side, according to their online specs. We were intrigued by the Paperclip Diaper Bag, aimed at dads, with a built-in changing station for when a changing table isn’t available in the men’s restroom. (Like the Petunia Pickle Bottom boxy backpack, the changing pad folds out from the front of the bag; the Paperclip also has a wall on both sides.) At the time of our review, the Paperclip cost more than $200.