As any parent will tell you, there's a fine art to packing a diaper bag.
On one hand, you need to prepare for every eventuality, weather condition, and messy situation possible. But on the other hand, you don't want your diaper bag to be so weighed down with diaper bag accessories, food, and creams that you can barely lift it.
Of course, learning how to pack a diaper bag isn't just about making a diaper bag checklist and shoving everything inside. You'll also need to consider where to position items for optimal organization and ease of access, as well as how to adapt to your baby's changing needs.
Read on to find out our top tips for packing a diaper bag.
First and foremost, you'll need to select a suitable diaper bag. You might have thought you could make do with an old backpack or gym hold-all, but packing a diaper bag is a whole lot easier if it's meant for that purpose.
These stylish and neat diaper bags come in various designs, blending both form and function with plenty of storage space for all your baby's needs. To cut down on luggage these could even double-up as a purse for you. Or, if you share your diaper bag with baby's dad, this quilted backpack in grey, beige, or khaki is ideal.
Start a running diaper bag checklist and keep it on display in the nursery. This will allow you to check everything off it before you go out, but you'll also be able to add to it when you recognize the need for extra items.
As your baby grows, you'll be able to cross items off the list too. When deciding what to pack in a diaper bag, knowing what to leave out is just as important as knowing what to bring.
When considering what to put in a diaper bag and where to put it, start small and work your way up. Within each of the diaper bag compartments and pockets, organize small items such as a pacifier, cotton bibs, and baby wipes into separate pouches or containers. This way you won't have to rifle through each pocket in search of these smaller baby essentials.
Do you find yourself rushing around the house gathering diaper bag accessories and supplies before every outing? Save yourself the stress and reduce the possibility of forgetting something by stocking your diaper bag with its own supply of essentials. These will include sample size diaper cream, a spare pacifier, teether, bibs, and baby wipes.
You'll still need to review your bag's contents before you leave to make sure you've restocked anything you used last time, such as clean clothes and diapers. But knowing what to put in a diaper bag is a whole lot easier if most of the bag is already packed before you leave home.
One of the main advantages of neat diaper bags over regular bags is their many pockets and compartments. But with so many compartments, it's easy to forget exactly where you put something.
To avoid this, decide what you'll store in each pocket at the onset and stick to it, prioritizing easy access for items like baby wipes and diapers. This way, you'll always know you can lay your hands on a wipe by reaching in the left outside pocket.
Babies often have accidents, and not always in the most convenient of places. To make sure you're prepared for a diaper disaster no matter where you are, diaper bag accessories such as a changing pad and wet bags make life a whole lot easier.
You'll also want to include at least one complete change of clothes, several cotton bibs, and plenty of baby wipes. Keep a few disposable plastic bags in your diaper bag too. These can come in handy in the event of a bottle leak or for storing dirty tissues, wipes, and food wrappers.
It isn't called a diaper bag for no reason—diapers are what you'll need the most of whenever you go out. As such, you can never pack enough of them.
Most people advise packing at least one diaper for each hour you plan to be outside plus a few more in case of unexpected accidents or leaks. If you're going out to the park for an hour, two or three diapers should be plenty. But if you're visiting friends or family and plan to be gone for a while then it's wise to bring around eight.
Another bonus of over-packing diapers is that, should you ever forget to top up your supply before you head out the next time, you'll have enough diapers for at least a couple of hours.
No matter how organized you are, the more you use your diaper bag, the messier and more cluttered it will get.
Once a week, make a point of reviewing what you have in your diaper bag, returning everything to its allotted compartment, and restocking supplies.
On a less frequent basis, you'll also need to consider making your diaper bag contents appropriate for the season. For example, while your set of spare clothes might be a t-shirt and shorts in summer, in winter you'll need to pack a few extra layers. Likewise, as we head into summer, you can swap the blanket, mittens, and woolly hat for sunscreen and a cotton bucket hat.
As this guide shows, learning how to pack a diaper bag takes a lot more thought and consideration than you might have realized.
But as any parent knows, babies are full of surprises. As such, it pays to be prepared with a diaper bag packed with supplies for every eventuality, ensuring that you're not caught off guard when you're out and about.
To stock up on baby essentials, see what Perry Mackin has to offer!