Choosing Diaper Bag

Choosing Diaper Bag-Fox Cools

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best DIAPER BAG

Diaper bags come in hundreds of different styles and shapes just like any other fashion accessory. Common ones include:

Tote Diaper Bags

Totes are the most popular diaper bag option on the market. As a result totes are available in countless designs and are hugely popular among parents who want the functionality of a diaper bag with a strong focus on fashion. A tote is pretty much a giant handbag. By far the bulkiest of diaper bags (and that’s without even stuffing your baby gear inside), totes provide an organized and roomy solution for taking your baby’s gear with you when traveling.

Advantages:

  • Lots of room inside.
  • Many different designs to choose from.
  • Have large compartments

Disadvantages:

  • Can be bulky, even when empty.
  • Very few (if any) dad friendly designs.
  • Cannot be accessed while carried.

Best for:Moms who want an abundance of room to store enough baby essentials to last a full day out.

Messenger Diaper Bags

Flat, stylish and hang off your shoulder. Messenger diaper bags are also known as sling or satchel diaper bags. Identified by a single long strap that hangs over the shoulder; messenger diaper bags are generally slimmer than totes.

Advantages:

  • Retrieve items from inside without placing the diaper bag down.
  • Slim.
  • Men and Women’s styles available.

Disadvantages:

  • Many designs look a little too manly.
  • Not suitable for twins or more.

Best for:Modern parents who share a diaper bag and want to fit enough gear inside to last all-day or just for dads.

Backpack Diaper Bags

Perhaps the newest style of diaper bag on the market, backpacks allow you to lug around all your baby gear while keeping both of your hands free to carry your baby, shopping or to simply double high-five your best mate.

From all outwards appearances, diaper bag backpacks look like a regular backpack. If you take a look inside you will realize the backpack is anything but regular. Pockets, pockets and more pockets.

Advantages:

  • Free up arms.
  • Weight is more evenly distributed.
  • A better option for those who suffer from back pain
  • Men and Women’s styles available
  • Can be worn while exercising

Disadvantages:

  • Not overly fashionable.
  • Not suitable for twins or more.
  • Cannot be accessed while carried

Convertible Diaper Bags

A diaper bag that has three different carry options? Fancy! Convertible diaper bags (also known as multifunction diaper bags) can turn into at least two of the three previously mentioned styles of bags: Tote, Messenger, Backpack.If you are fickle or are not 100% sure as to which type of diaper bag is best for you then a convertible diaper bag may be the way to go. If you find one style of diaper bag uncomfortable simply swap it over to another style.

Stroller Diaper Bags

As the name suggests, a stroller diaper bag attaches directly to… You guessed it… Your baby’s stroller. Rather than sit below the stroller in the storage compartment, these diaper bags hang from your strollers handles, allowing you to quickly and easily grab your baby’s gear.

How to choose the best diaper bag

Choosing a diaper bag is personal. What may be right for one person won't be right for the other.

The amount of space you need

The ideal capacity of a diaper bag will entirely depend on your personal situation.

The first thing you will want to do is put a list of all the different things that you want to be able to carry inside your diaper bag. This list should include both your baby’s gear as well as your own.

Stuck for ideas?

Don’t worry. I’ll help you get you started on this list with some common examples.

Baby gear

  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Rash cream
  • Changing pad
  • Bags for dirty diapers
  • Pacifier
  • Change of clothes
  • Toys
  • Burp cloths
  • Nursing cover
  • Baby bottle/ sippy cup
  • Hat + sunscreen

Your gear

  • Keys
  • Phone
  • Wallet
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Sunglasses
  • Drink bottle
  • Snacks
  • Hat
  • Headphones
  • A good book
  • Make up (for Mom)
  • Beer (for Dad)

Phew… As you can see the amount of things you will need to fit inside a diaper bag can quickly add up. If you can, gather these objects together and see just how much room they take up otherwise you will have to do your best at visualizing it in your head.

If the amount of gear you want to fit inside a diaper bag boarders on the ridiculous you may have to go through each item and decide whether it is essential or not. A second opinion will be a huge help here (the voice of reason).

The diaper bag should fit all of your chosen objects in an organized manner (more on that in the section below) without having to resort to stuffing everything inside in a big mess.

Still having trouble deciding on just how much space you need in a diaper bag? Maybe the below real world examples will help you narrow your choice down.

Situations where you need a large space

  • You have twins or more than one baby in diapers
  • You want to hold enough baby gear for a full day out
  • You have twins or more than one child in diapers

Situations where you need a small space

  • You pack light and only take a select few baby essentials with you
  • You only take your baby out on short trips

It is worth mentioning that capacity goes hand in hand with size. There are times when a smaller sized diaper bag will benefit you, such as when you are flying on a plane.

How much does it cost?

Whether you like it or not, price is going to play a large role in what diaper bag you choose. Lets take a closer look at what you can expect from different priced diaper bags.

  • Low end: Below $40 – In an effort to keep costs down, sacrifices must be made. Generally a manufacturer will skimp on size, quality or durability to get the cost of a diaper bag as low as possible. These diaper bags may just last through a single child but don’t expect much more than that.
  • Mid-range: $40-$120 – If you are looking for value then it is worth spending a little bit more. Mid-ranged diaper bags offer a good mix of quality and storage, particularly towards the upper end of the price range. If you want your diaper bag to last through multiple babies then this then this is your starting point.
  • High end: $120 and higher - You are in designer diaper bag territory. Arguably, functionality does not improve after the $200 mark. After this you are paying for the design or label (but dang, do they look pretty!)..

Important Unfortunately you simply cant buy a low end diaper bag and expect it to last the distance. If you can stretch your budget I strongly recommend jumping into the mid-ranged category. Remember, if your diaper bag lasts then you may be able to sell it once it is no longer needed.

Not too heavy

An often overlooked detail when choosing a diaper bag is how much it actually weighs when empty. Some empty diaper bags can weigh up to 3 pounds. To put it simply:

The heavier the diaper bag is when empty, the heavier it will be once you have filled it with baby gear

If you suffer from a medical condition that restricts you from carrying objects that are too heavy (stiff joints, sore back etc.) then you will have to pay particular attention to the area as you do not want to make your condition worse.

Factors that can contribute to the weight of a diaper bag include:

  • Size
  • Material
  • Design (additions of metal, etc.)
  • Features

It can be a huge struggle to lug around a heavy diaper bag all day. Why not consider a heavier, spacious diaper bag for long trips and a light, compact one for short trips?

Easy organization

Organization is a touchy subject. Some of you will be organized to the point of color coordinating clothes and alphabetizing your pantry.

If you are more like me, you will take the “build-a-pile” approach to organizing and find that more often than not what you need is on the bottom.

How you choose to organize (or not) will impact greatly on the type of diaper bag you choose.

  • Large compartments – Great for stuffers and those of you who couldn’t care less about organizing. A single large compartment will allow you to cram a great deal of gear inside. Unfortunately, this cluttered approach can make it difficult to locate items in a hurry.
  • Pockets galore – Perfect for keepers of order (that would be a cool superhero team name). You can dedicate a pocket to each individual piece of baby gear which will keep everything neat and tidy. By being organized you will be able to efficiently locate baby gear at a moments notice.

Just remember…

A leopard doesn’t change it’s spots

If you are a stuffer, buying a diaper bag with lots of pockets will not immediately make you an organized parent. Being organized can take a lot of effort. If it isn’t in you then you will quickly get frustrated at how little you will be able to squash into a small pocket.

So whether you are a stuffer, shover, piler, crammer, jammer, packer or a squasher… simply embrace it. You are unique and deserve a diaper bag with a large compartment to accommodate your special way of organizing your baby gear.

How much does the diaper bag weigh?

An often-overlooked detail when choosing a diaper bag is how much it actually weighs when empty. Some empty diaper bags can weigh up to 3 pounds, and that’s before you put anything insdie. To put it simply:

The heavier the diaper bag is when empty, the heavier it will be once you have filled it with baby gear

Unless you are a weight lifter, you will more than likely grow tired carrying a heavy diaper bag around all day.

If you suffer from a medical condition that restricts you from carrying objects that are too heavy (stiff joints, sore back etc.) then you will have to pay particular attention to the area as you do not want to make your condition worse.

Factors that can contribute to the weight of a diaper bag include:

  • Size
  • Material
  • Design (additions of metal, etc.)
  • Features

It can be a huge struggle to lug around a heavy diaper bag all day. Why not consider a comfortable, spacious diaper bag for long trips and a light, compact one for short trips?

Comfortable to carry

You will be carrying a diaper bag every time you leave the house with your baby, often for long periods of time. You don’t want to suffer from aches and pains because you chose an uncomfortable diaper bag… do you?

How comfortable a diaper bag not only depend on the bag itself but also your body type and preference. Some factors that affect just how comfortable a diaper bag can be include:

    • Your body size (small, medium, plus size)
    • Existing medical conditions (sore back, allergies etc.)
    • Carrying preferenceThe weight of the diaper bagPadded, adjustable straps

The good news is that diaper bags come in a huge variety of styles and shapes to suit different body types. If you already have a super comfortable bag hiding away in your closet why not get the equivalent version in a diaper bag?

If you have never had a comfortable bag before then I strongly recommend that you take the time to figure it out now. You don’t want to waste your money ona n uncomfortable diaper bag.

So how do you find the most comfortable diaper bag for you?

Try before you buy

Go shopping and try all the styles until you find a comfortable diaper bag for your body type. Once you have found the perfect type you can go back home and order it online (where you will likely find cheaper prices and more designs).

It’s fashion, baby

Looks are important to EVERYONE. While some people will tell you they don’t care how they look; even these people will have mirrors in their home. Now why would you need a mirror if you didn’t care how you look?

Whether you like it or not the look of a diaper bag will play a major role in whether it appeals to you.

You may choose a diaper bag that has less features than another just because it looks better.

And that is just fine.

There are few times as a new parent that you will feel glamorous. If a diaper bag helps you feel fashionable then by all means rock out with it.

How a diaper bag looks is important to both men and women.

Which brings me to my next point.

Just how Dad friendly do you need your diaper bag to be?

It’s not the 60’s any more. Your husband is more than likely help you raise your baby. You know what that means? You will have to share your diaper bag with your partner.

This may surprise you but it turns out guys are not huge fans of bright pink floral print. If you are going to share your diaper bag then you may have to tone down the design and choose one that is a little more gender neutral

If it turns out that you simply cant come to a compromise on a diaper bag that both you and your partner will wear then why not buy one each?

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