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How to Organize Diaper Bags: Our Key Advice

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Figuring out how to organize diaper bags is a task that every parent dreads since you want to make sure you have all of the essentials for your children as well as yourself.

Many parents also find themselves overpacking or underpacking their bags to bring too much or less than usual.

There are several sure-fire tips and tricks that you can use to revolutionize how you organize your diaper bag, so it’s far more efficient.

What Do Diaper Bags Need?

The first thing you want to ask yourself is what you think your diaper bag needs since this will determine what storage solutions you should be shopping for in the first place.

It’s best to take an inventory of the essentials your kids need and create a checklist that meets all of your expectations.

Once you prepared your checklist, put all of the items on the floor in front of you so that you can visualize the number of things you think you need.

Over time, you will find that the more you adjust your child’s essentials, the easier it will be to pack all of their items in the diaper bag without making it too overbearing to handle.

You’ll get a better idea of what items are necessary and what items you’re packing as a simple convenience but never used.

Every family’s diaper bag checklist will be different since each child has specific needs.

That said, here are a few examples of necessities you should focus on:

  • Portable changing pad
  • Diaper rash ointment
  • Diapers
  • Plastic bags
  • Change of clothes
  • Food and snacks
  • Burp cloths
  • Pacifiers
  • Swaddle blankets
  • Hand sanitizer

How to Organize Diaper Bags

At this point, you should have a general idea of what you’ll want to bring with you when you leave the house, which should make these steps much simpler.

Below, you will find the best tips and tricks to use when you are packing your diaper bag for your time spent away from home.

Tip #1: Find Diaper Bag Organizers

Diaper bag organizers are essential accessories that you might want to have on hand in case you decide to change diaper bags. Your second choice has less organization than before.

Even families with plenty of pockets in their diaper bags might enjoy using separate organizers instead of decently sized and easily accessible ones.

These innovative products give you a safe and convenient space to store essentials and to keep them organized throughout your diaper bag, but mainly in the main compartment.

There’s nothing more frustrating than needing a single item, only to have to rummage through your entire diaper bag to find what you need.

With the help of organizers, you can make sure that all of your child’s most needed items are within reach and easily accessible if needed in an emergency.

Tip #2: Buy Diaper Bag-Specific Items

You might be tempted to use the same bottle of diaper rash cream in your home as you do in your diaper bag, but this can make you forget things at home and need to rush to the diaper bag when you’re not out.

Instead, it can be a better idea to purchase travel-size lotions and products that you know you use with your child on a day to day basis.

With this theory, all you should have to do when you leave the house is refill the bag with more diapers, and you won’t have to worry about leaving anything behind.

Although this is an additional cost, it’s well worth the investment since you’ll always be prepared regardless of where you are.

Also, if you’re letting a family member babysit, you can rest assured that all of the things they could need are already within the diaper bag.

Tip #3: Organize Your Essentials

Mom and dad’s essentials are just as important as the baby’s, which is why the majority of diaper bags have individual pockets for the parents’ essentials.

However, if your diaper bag doesn’t have a specific spot for your belongings, you’ll want to make sure you have the right organization to keep what you need in the bag.

Mainly, anything you would need from your purse should be easily accessible in your diaper bag so that you don’t have to worry about carrying around two bags whenever you leave the house.

A fantastic tip for keeping your essentials organized is finding a wallet with a key ring attached so that you can keep your cards and ID in the same location as your car keys.

Also, you might want to consider finding a special pocket lined with felt or another soft material to keep your smartphone and any valuables separate from the other products in the diaper bag.

The last thing you would want is your phone getting covered in milk because of a spill.

Tip #4: Keep Food Separate

This tip may prove to be a little more challenging with diaper bags that don’t have separate compartments in the main pocket, although it’s one of the more essential tips to follow.

You’ll want to make sure your child’s food is separate from any other products, such as lotions, that could easily spill and ruin their snacks throughout the day.

If your favorite diaper bag doesn’t have a separate compartment for food, we recommend investing in a little lunchbox to keep all of their snacks safe.

This theory also applies to bottles, even though many diaper bags have separate insulated pockets for containers to help keep them warm.

You will want to make sure the food is in a safe place for storage.

how to organize diaper bag

Tip #5: Only Use Clip-On Toys

One of the top-tier tips that any parent will love is to leave the standalone toys at home and only focus on giving your baby or toddler a toy that can clip onto their clothes, their stroller, or their diaper bag.

By opting for these items, you can easily track their toys, and it will significantly lessen the chances of your children throwing their toys on the ground.

You’ll also find that they’ll likely be more entertained by moving objects connected to the stroller.

The added benefit of clip-on toys is that you don’t have to store them in your diaper bag, which will take up more space.

Instead, you can clip them to the handles of the diaper bag, so they’re stored safely without using valuable storage.

Tip #6: Designate Pockets

When you first open your diaper bag, it can be relatively overwhelming, primarily if you’ve never used something with so many pockets.

This point is one of the main reasons new parents tend to overpack their diaper bags since there is so much room for a ton of stuff, even if it’s non-essential.

One of the best tips you can put to good use is to make sure you designate pockets inside and outside of the bag, which allows you to make sure you store the right things in the best place.

As you take items in and out of the bag, make sure you place them back into their pockets since this is a fantastic way to keep both parents organized while out and about.

You might even want to take the time to label the pockets so that you know where to access the diaper cream, pacifiers, and so on.

Tip #7: Do Seasonal Cleaning

Even if you think you’ve been keeping up with the organization of your diaper bag, you can guarantee you’ve added a couple of extra items in the previous season.

Not to mention your child’s needs will differ from winter to summer, for example, so you’ll always have to make sure you have the right things available.

For example, the extra change of clothes you have packed for summer isn’t going to be warm enough for winter and vice versa.

You’ll also want to pay close attention to the expiry dates of the travel-sized products in the bag, making sure that you replace them as necessary to avoid using expired products on your baby’s skin.

We recommend washing the entire diaper bag thoroughly to make sure it’s as sanitary as possible before repacking it with all of your future needs, so it’s always prepared for the upcoming season.

Tip #8: Wear the Diaper Bag

Once you have taken the necessary steps to make sure your diaper bag is perfectly organized, it’s time for you to test it out to determine if you have too many or too little items packed for a full day out.

First, you can try wearing it around the house to get an idea of whether it would be comfortable for you to wear for hours, mainly if your bag doesn’t feature stroller straps.

You can also plan a small excursion with the family to test how useful all of the things you have packed and whether you need to consider adding a couple of extras.

You can look at this step as a type of test run to help make sure you are as prepared as possible.

Tip #9: Keep Items in Your Car

The last tip that you should consider is that some of the items you might want to keep in your bag could be better suited for staying in the car, just in case they might ever be needed.

A great example would be an extra shirt for both mom and dad because you can never predict when your baby might spit up while you’re in the middle of the public.

It’s also a good idea to keep a couple of extra blankets for when your children are in their car seats or if you have to walk them to the car from a friend or family member’s home.

With all of the extra storage space in your car, there’s no reason you shouldn’t take advantage of a small part of the trunk for any extra essentials to keep you prepared when you’re out.

Some families also find that having an entirely separate diaper bag that they keep in their car is a unique way to ensure they have everything they need for everyone in the family.

Not to mention, since you won't have to carry the bag everywhere with you, it can be as bulky and heavy as you desire.

Final Thoughts

When you’re working on learning how to organize diaper bags, there are a lot of things that you will learn through trial and error.

As long as you have the right diaper bag at your disposal, the number one tip is to ensure you don’t overpack and make sure you have enough for both parents and your baby or toddler.

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