Monday, January 18, 2016

Best Diaper Bags - All Sizes (Small, Medium, Large)

So this post has been three years (yes, three years) in the making.  Before I had my son, I was a purse girl.  I shamelessly collected purses of all sizes, brands, and styles.  So I guess it makes sense that after having a baby, I became a diaper bag fanatic.  To me, having the right diaper bag can make all the difference between a smooth day and... well... a chaotic one.  The diaper bag should be your on the go bff that keeps all your essentials safe and organized.  So if it instead creates another "where is the pacifier?!?!?!" situation... its probably not the bag for you.

After years of trying different bags, I've narrowed my favorites down to these four.  One is a large diaper bag.  Definitely newborn material.  Two are mediums and one is small.  Take a look!


Large

Petunia Pickle Bottom Boxy Backpack

Please believe me when I say this is a HUGE bag.  But when you have a newborn or a young infant, you pretty much need to carry your entire house with you to avoid any disastrous moments when out.  I still use this bag as an overnight bag for my son since it holds EVERYTHING.  Warning: PPB are generally pricey.  But they are worth every penny since they last years without much visible wear. There are several things I really love about this bag particularly:

1. Its super durable.
Seriously.  You can wipe it clean, it is made with high quality materials and stitching, and it shows very few signs of wear.  Mine is over 3 years old and still looks new.

2. Its really roomy. 
I love how there is one big main ZIPPERED (because I'm that mom that looses stuff and is a hot mess if I don't have a zippered bag) compartment.  You can fit lunch bags, bottle holders, tupperware containers, clothes, formula, etc in this section.  I prefer one very large main compartment to a few smaller compartments simply because you're not as limited on the SIZE of the items you can bring with you.

3. Fold out diaper pad.
The fold out diaper pad is awesome.  It creates a little mini organized changing station for you and your little one.  And when you're done? Simply zip it back into the front of the bag.  Of course, it can be completely removed for washing.

4. Crossbody or Backpack
As you'll see reflected in my list, I prefer a crossbody diaper bag because... well because I'm busy and need both hands when I'm out with my child.  But I loved how this bag could also be worn another hands-free way - as a backpack (my husband preferred carrying it this way.)

Medium

Skip Hop Versa

As far as design goes, this bag is my favorite for its size.  Skip Hop is much more affordable than Petunia Pickle Bottom, but they do show wear a lot quicker (zippers are known to break before the year mark.)  The quality isn't as high as PPB in my opinion, but its not a cheap looking bag either.  And its still a very good buy.  So much so that I purchased a second Versa after my first broke.  I tried using other bags, but they never really measured up to the Versa organizational wise for me.
Here are my favorite Versa features:

1. SO MANY POCKETS
 I LOVE that is has so many different compartments and pockets based around a large main (zippered) compartment. It makes it easy to keep items you know you'll need to grab in a hurry (or often) within reach while still being safely tucked away.

2. Sleek Design
When I first purchased this bag, many of my friends and family were shocked to find out it was a diaper bag and not a purse.  Its an affordable sleek option (especially compared to the more costly Timi & Leslie purse-diaper bags.)

3. Its expandable

Yep! You can change the SIZE of the bag to fit your needs.  If you're going on a lengthier outing (and thus, need more supplies with you. Yes, supplies. We all know sometimes its about surviving the day) simply unzip the middle of bag for more room.









Petunia Pickle Bottom Touring Bag

To be honest, I think this design has been discontinued since I can only find one pattern of the Touring bag on PPB's website.  And its in the sale section.  Don't worry, you can still find them on Amazon.  And the one I have is a little different than the one linked above.  Mine wasn't glazed canvas (the wipe clean material.)  Mine seems to be a silky cotton/poly blend so it definitely shows more wear than the Boxy Backpack.  (Full disclosure, I also threw mine in the delicate cycle of the washing machine- which the tag does not say you can do - because I felt it was getting too germy. Thankfully, no damage was done.)  Even though I didn't like the design of this bag as much as the Skip Hop Versa, I still loved how much more durable it was.  Its also an extremely comfortable, non-bulky bag to wear. 
Favorite features time:

1. Durable
Its Petunia Pickle Bottom.  Like the other PPB's it takes whatever you throw at it.  The zipper on this one did break, but that was after a year of daily use and... overstuffing.

2.  Main Compartment
The main compartment is deceptively roomy.  Though the bag itself isn't large, the main compartment definitely carries more than the typical medium sized diaper bag would.  It's also very easy to access with one hand while still on your hip (you know... in case you're trying to pay at checkout of the grocery store and wrangle a small child at the same time.)

3. Zippered Diaper Pad Compartment
One of my biggest pet peeves with diaper bags is the snap shut (or magnetized shut) diaper pad compartments.  It never seems to stay shut for me and it RAINS all of the time here.  I love that the Touring bag has a zippered diaper pad section since I can then safely keep the diapers in with the pad and out of the way.

So overall between the Touring and the Versa, it really depends on what you're looking for.  For anyone looking for a more affordable option that doesn't scream "DIAPER BAG" yet still keeps things organized, I recommend the Versa.  For someone who is looking for a bag with a simpler design and one that will last longer, I recommend the Touring.  Both are excellent choices.

Small

Ju Ju Be Hobobe


 I fell in love with this bag the minute I saw it.  I coveted it for months.  Its another pricey one so I waited until Christmas to get it.  And I am SO happy I did.  Now I would not recommend this bag for a newborn or even an infant. You just won't have enough room.  But it makes for a great toddler bag.  And its another diaper bag that looks like a purse.  I could even see myself using this bag once my son is out of diapers just because makes it so easy to carry drinks and snacks for him.
Fave Features:

1. Size
Its a small bag.  About the size of a regular purse.  But it still has room for a few diapers/ Pull-ups, sippy cup, and snacks.  Its the perfect size for a quick errand with a toddler.  And its nice to not have to lug around a large bag anymore.

2. Mommy Pouch
The front Mommy Pouch is easy access with enough room for your wallet, some lipsticks/makeup items/pens, and even a key ring for your keys.  There is also a completely separate zippered and padded phone pouch.

3. Crossbody
The biggest problem I had when looking for a small diaper bag was that most of them are shoulder bags without the option to wear crossbody. The Hobobe can be worn either way.