17 Diaper Bag Essentials


It’s no secret that when you become a mom you pretty much take the entire house with you when you leave to go anywhere.  It seems like a lot of things to take with you, but you will become a pro at it in no time, I promise. 

First and foremost, you are going to need a diaper bag.  It is the most essential thing you can get when you have a baby and/or a toddler.  I happen to have 2 diaper bags that I lug with me, one for my baby and the other for my toddler, because….well….they both need different stuff. I purchased the RUVALINO Large Diaper Tote and it is by far the best and most stylish diaper bag I could find. If you open my handy dandy diaper bags you will find: 

1. Diapers of course! For my baby that is.I usually pack at least 12-15 diapers for an 8 hour period. I never use them all, but it’s better to have more than not enough. To save some money on diapers, I recommend buying them in bulk.

2. Baby Wipes.  Even if you have a totally potty trained toddler, you should still carry baby wipes, or some kind of cleaning wipes. 

3. Portable Changing pad (for baby). I have been in situations where there wasn’t a changing table around and I ended up using my sweater to lay her down on instead. Avoid those “what do I do now” scenarios with a portable changing padJust for the record, some diaper bags come with a portable changing pad as part of the package deal. 

4. Disposable Diaper Bags.  No trash nearby? No problem! I use disposable diaper bags all the time, even at home to keep dirty diaper smells contained. Not only do the help contain dirty diaper smells when you don’t have a trash nearby, they are also good to use for dirty clothes.   Toddlers can have “accidents”, so if I am out of the home I would put her wet clothes in the nicely scented bag and grab the change of clothes I packed for her.  Which leads me to my next essential item.

5. Change of clothes! I can’t tell you how many times my kids get dirty in some form or another. So for both my girls I have 2 sets of spare clothes, JUST IN CASE.

6. Bottles or Sippy Cups. If formula feeding, formula is only good for an hour after it’s made. So what I did was fill my Avent bottles up with water and then add the formula afterwards when my baby was hungry. This kept the formula bottles fresh. BUT if you are like me, I exclusively pumped for the first 3 months. Luckily, expressed milk lasts longer in room temperature. Ideally it should be used within 4 to 5 hours, but you could extend that time up to about 8 hours.  I never went anywhere that long with my baby, so it was never an issue staying in that timeframe. I don’t really need to explain what to put in sippy cups, right? Okay, moving on. 

7. Snacks! Make sure you bring snacks. I pack snacks for both my girls, age appropriate options of course. This is probably the most important thing to your kid, so DO NOT FORGET IT.  It doesn’t matter if you are leaving the house for 10 hours or 10 minutes. Always bring a snack or 2, or 3. 

8. Lotion. Not much to say on this one, but I pack this because my girls tend to get dry skin in the winter months.  I use Aveeno eczema cream and it works like a charm.

9. Sun screen.  Definitely an essential during the summer months.  Kids love playing outside and the last thing you want is for them to get burnt. They may hate putting it on, or at least my kids do, but it’s very much worth it. They will thank you someday for not having skin cancer.

10. Travel Tissues. Because boogers, right?  That is all.

11. Toys/Comfort Toys. My kids both have a blanket and a stuffed bear they bring everywhere. Heaven forbid we forget the take those with us.  I also pack another toy or toys for entertainment, depending on where we are going and how long.

12. Band-Aids. Kids are klutzy little humans.  It’s a good idea to have Band-Aids on hand for those “boo-boos” that can’t be healed with your kiss. 

13. Diaper Rash Cream.  You know, to sooth that little baby butt if it needs soothing! Keep some cream on hand just in case you got a little red bum to take care of.

14. Burp cloths. I’m almost positive you would rather your baby’s spit up to be on a burp cloth than down the back of your shirt, right? If you choose to disregard this one, make sure you bring a change of clothes for yourself too.

15. Bibs. Babies are messy eaters. Bibs will help catch the fallen food, but I can’t guarantee it will catch all of it. You have been warned.

16. Hand SanitizerThis is something I use mostly for myself to kill those pesky germs because I am handling my kids all the time.  So no, not a diaper bag essential, but definitely a purse/car essential!

17.. Medicine. I pack Baby Tylenol, toddler cold medicine and Baby OrajelFor the record, the baby orajel can be a lifesaver for a cranky teething baby. If you are bringing your kid(s) to a daycare make sure the daycare provider has a license to distribute medication.

This does look like a lot of things, and as you go through the motions you will probably come up with a few more items that you will want to keep handy.  Like a breast pump and nursing pads for example, which I most definitely needed the first 3 months. Anyways, I hope this list helps you get the ball rolling at the very least.  Happy diaper bag prepping!