Whether you're shopping for trendy diaper bags that make a fashion statement, or an inexpensive, basic diaper bag that just holds a few key baby items, you've got your work cut out for you. Diaper bags are available today in seemingly endless styles, colors, shapes and price ranges. Use the following diaper bag buying tips to help you narrow down the list of diaper bags that might meet your needs.
Diaper Bag Prices
If you have a strict baby budget, diaper bags are a great area to save money. Basic diaper bags are available for $20-$30, though your options on colors and styles are often limited in the budget diaper bag category. If you have $30-$100 to spend, there are many roomy, surprisingly stylish diaper bags on the market. Diaper bags are also available in the latest styles and with designer labels if you want to shell out $100 or more. Let your diaper bag budget guide you as you shop.
Diaper Bag Materials
Before you fall in love with a diaper bag in an exotic fabric, consider the abuse that diaper bags must take in a few short years. Look for a fabric that is easily spot-cleaned or can be wiped clean. Vinyl or faux leather diaper bags can be fashionable and easy to wipe down, or, if you prefer the look of a fabric diaper bags, look for a bag that has a clear plastic protective layer over the fabric to keep your diaper bag looking great through diaper changes and other baby messes.
Diaper Bag Styles
Messenger diaper bags, backpack diaper bags and tote-style diaper bags are just a few of the options available today. Consider the amount of time you'll be carrying the diaper bag each day, and whether you will need both hands free for other tasks as you're carrying the diaper bag. Backpack diaper bags are good for long distances or hands-free carrying. Messenger bags and other classic styles are easy for short trips and are attractive enough to carry to the office.
Diaper Bag Features
Wide, non-slip shoulder straps are a must for diaper bags. Carry the diaper bag around the store before purchasing it and check that the straps stay put and that the size is comfortable as you walk. If you are bottle-feeding, look for insulated bottle pockets. If you plan to haul your own items a well as baby's, look for a diaper bag that features key clips, cell phone pockets and parent organizers that fit your needs. Removable changing pads are handy, but be sure they can be cleaned easily.
Diaper Bag Patterns
Thinks about who will be carrying baby's diaper bag most often, and whether others will use the diaper bag occasionally, too. If dad will sometimes use the diaper bag, he may balk at carrying a feminine diaper bag with a bright floral pattern. If two parents will share diaper bag duties, choose a neutral style that both will happily carry. Neutral doesn't have to be boring, though. Many messenger or backpack diaper bags are available in unique colors or subtle prints for visual interest.
Diaper Bag Size
It's tempting to buy the biggest diaper bag in hopes of stashing an entire portable nursery inside. Remember that the more non-essentials you carry, the more strain on your shoulders. If you tend to over-pack or let things accumulate in your bag, consider buying a diaper bag just big enough for diaper change basics, so you won't end up with a bulging diaper bag and a sore back.
Diaper Bag Closures
Diaper bags are available with zipper tops, fold-over tops and snap or tie closures and more. Think about when and where you'll be using the diaper bag, and whether you will often need to reach inside the bag quickly. If so, a snap closure may be more convenient. If security issues or over-turned diaper bags are likely, a zipper top would be more appropriate. Be sure you can work the diaper bag closure easily, and remember that you may be opening or closing it while wrangling a messy baby.