The best diaper bags will always rank high on the list of new-parent essentials, but good luck trying to find a stylish one on the internet without completely losing your mind. Between the bulky messenger bags and kitschy cross-body totes that are hardly baby-friendly, the rabbit hole of unsatisfying options is enough to leave even the most determined shopper scrambling.
But that’s where we come in. To track down the best diaper bags for every kind of parent once and for all, we polled moms from around the country on their favorites and compiled all of their tips and picks. Whether you’re an expecting parent or a seasoned caretaker, here’s everything you need to know about choosing the right diaper bag, plus 15 trusted options recommended by real moms. (And yes, all of them make excellent baby gifts, presents for new mom, and gifts for pregnant women.)
What to look for in a diaper bag
- Form: The most popular options are diaper bag backpacks and tote bags; you’ll find them in all sorts of shapes, sizes, and materials. There are also compact diaper bags that often come in the form of cross-body bags; these are made to be thrown into a stroller or carried on the go and are usually a good secondary bag option. You also want to keep an eye out for hybrid bags, which can seamlessly transition from a tote to a backpack.
- Material: Water-resistant fabrics help guard against inevitable leaky bottles and wet onesies. Nylon and polyester have a tighter weave, so while they aren’t quite waterproof, they’re durable enough while being washable. Fabric like cotton or polyester can also be treated with waterproof coatings like polyurethane, which is a material commonly used for cloth diapers. Washable fabric is also a plus, considering all the leaky bottles and dirty diapers you’ll encounter.
- Function: Whatever type of diaper bag you opt for, it needs to be roomy enough to hold an entire arsenal of baby products, changes of clothes, and baby diapers, preferably with easy access. Plenty of pockets and compartments also help organize all the essentials—and keep your bag from becoming a mess. You’re likely going to need a style that can function as a handbag, snack bag, milk cooler, and changing station at once. If you’re really lucky, said convertible diaper bag will also hold up for future babies down the line.
- Looks: It doesn’t hurt if your pick has visual appeal, since it’s going to be around for literal years. Seek out stylish diaper bags that fit in with your rotation of existing wardrobe essentials; some can even pass as chic work bags.
What are the best diaper bags?
There’s a lot to consider when picking out a diaper bag that’s just right for you and your baby’s needs, which is why we asked real parents for their recommendations on styles that actually tick those boxes. After all, they know firsthand about the packing, unpacking, and endless schlepping that comes with newborn territory—and they’re more than happy to pass on their invaluable knowledge. From unisex backpack diaper bags to high-quality luxury totes, these are the best diaper bags to buy yourself or throw on a baby shower gift registry.
Our top picks
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