Being a mom is a rewarding experience, but it can be stressful when you always carry your baby’s essentials. That’s where a diaper bag comes in – it’s your best friend when you need ALL your stuff for your little one on the go. But what exactly should you be packing? With three kids, I’ve learned what you need and don’t need! Here are twelve diaper bag essentials you should always have on hand.
The items I recommend I’ve personally used and love. Any of these products does not endorse me; it’s just my experience to give you some ideas if needed.
12 Diaper Bag Essentials You’ll Need In A Pinch
1. Baby Nose Sucker
Would you believe me if we told you that a baby nose sucker is one of the most USEFUL items to keep in your diaper bag? Yes, it’s gross, but taking care of your baby’s blocked nose on the go is essential. Especially if your baby is stuffy or has a spitup that comes through their nose, a nose sucker will be your and your baby’s saving grace!
My girls had terrible reflux and were notorious for big spit-ups where we had to suck out mucus and milk from their noses. Eww, I know.
2. Bottles and Formula
If you’re bottle-feeding, ensure you have enough bottles and formula for your outing. You don’t want to run out of food and have a fussy baby on your hands! That is a nightmare.
I always keep one bottle for every three hours I am gone. If I’m out for six hours, I will have two bottles on hand.
3. Burp Cloths
If your baby spits up or you need to feed a bottle, having a few burp cloths on hand is always a good idea. They can be used for everything from wiping wet burps to cleaning up spills.
4. Changing Pad
While changing tables are available in some restrooms, many places don’t. That’s why a changing pad is a must – it provides a CLEAN surface for diaper changes no matter where you are.
This might seem like a no-brainer, but ensure you have PLENTY of diapers when leaving the house. The general rule is to pack one diaper every hour you’re gone. That way, you’re covered if you’re out longer than anticipated OR your babe has a major blowout.
6. Diaper Cream
Diaper rashes can happen anytime, so having diaper cream is a good idea. Look for a cream that’s gentle on your baby’s skin and easy to apply when you’re on the go.
7. Extra Clothes
Babies are notorious for spit-up, spills, and diaper leaks, so having a change of clothes for your little one (and maybe even for you!) is always a good idea. Make sure to pack clothes that are appropriate for the weather and any activities you have planned. I always pack at least one to two outfits, just in case!
8. Hand Sanitizer
As a mom, you’re constantly dealing with lovely germs. Hand sanitizer in your diaper bag ensures you can clean your hands before and after diaper changes OR any other dirty situations.
If your baby uses a pacifier, pack one or two. They can be a lifesaver in CALMING a fussy baby.
If your baby eats solid foods, don’t forget if they get hungry! Make sure you have some healthy snacks on hand for when hunger strikes.
Lastly, don’t forget about entertainment. Small toys or books can help distract your little one during diaper changes or long waits.
My twins LOVE this toy. They chew on it, and popping the bubbles keeps them busy!
Wipes are essential for keeping your baby clean and fresh. Carry a small pack of wipes in your diaper bag to quickly clean up any messes.
I’ve tried MANY diaper wipe brands, and my favorite (by far) is the Kirkland brand at Costco.
The reason is, my girls do not experience diaper rash when I use these. I’ve noticed other brands caused them to get a redder bum or diaper rash. My girls have sensitive skin, which is why I like these, BUT again, use what works best for your sweetie!
9 Items You MAY Need In Your Diaper Bag (Optional)
Depending on your situation, you may need one or more of these items on the go!
1. Baby Blanket
A soft blanket can be used for everything from keeping your baby warm to providing a clean surface to lay them on. Look for a lightweight blanket that packs easily and can be washed.
2. Baby Bottle Cooler Bag
If you’re out for an extended period of time, you’ll need a baby bottle cooler bag to keep your milk or formula fresh.
3. Baby Lotion
Keeping a small tube of baby lotion on hand may be a good idea to prevent your little one’s skin from becoming dry OR if it already is.
I use Cetaphil for my girls (recommended by our Dermatologist) to help their eczema.
4. Disposable Diaper Baggies
Got a messy blowout or need a place to throw away diapers? I always keep these disposable diaper bags on hand. I am partial to these because they are lavender-scented and help keep stinky diapers under control if you aren’t near a trash can.
5. Medications or Medical Supplies
If your baby needs any medications or has medical supplies, pack them in your diaper bag.
For instance, my twins had Nasogastric (NG) feeding tubes through their noses for several months. I always made sure to have medical tape in my diaper bag if their NG tubing came loose on their face.
6. Nail Clippers or Nail File
As your little one’s nails grow and get sharper, you may need to trim them while on the go, OR they may get a hang nail. Keep a pair of nail clippers or files in your diaper bag to handle this task quickly and efficiently.
Personally, I use an electric nail file because I’m TERRIFIED of cutting my girl’s hands with clippers. Especially, when they were newborns. This is my go-to thing to file down their nails. Plus, I can use it too!
7. Nursing Cover
If you’re breastfeeding, a nursing cover can be a lifesaver. It makes breastfeeding in public more comfortable and discreet.
If you’re headed outside, make sure to pack sunscreen for both you and your baby. Even on cloudy days, UV rays can still cause sunburn.
9. Teething Toys
If your baby is teething, having a few teething toys can help soothe their sore gums.
When should I prepare my diaper bag?
If you’re pregnant, generally, by the third trimester, you may start to prepare. However, gathering your essentials and slowly building your perfect diaper bag is never too early. Preparing everything will give you peace of mind before your little bundle (OR bundles) arrive!
But if your baby is here, getting the essentials ready the night before is a good idea. This lets you have a peaceful morning without any last-minute scrambling to find essentials. Plus, it can allow you to double-check that you have
Do you need lotion in a diaper bag?
While it may not seem like a must-have item, having a small tube of lotion in your diaper bag can be handy, it can soothe your little one’s dry skin and also be used to moisturize your own hands after multiple diaper changes.
Should you change a diaper before or after nursing?
Most experts recommend changing your little one’s diaper before feeding them. This way, your baby will be more comfortable during the feeding, which can be helpful when trying to establish a good nursing routine.
Additionally, changing the diaper beforehand can help prevent distractions during breastfeeding and allow you to focus on bonding with your little one.
Should you check a diaper before or after feeding?
It is recommended to check your baby’s diaper before feeding to ensure they are comfortable and their diaper is not distracting them from feeding. However, if your baby tends to fall asleep while feeding, you may want to wait until after to change their diaper to avoid disrupting their sleep. Remember, every baby is different, so paying attention to your baby’s cues and adjusting accordingly is essential.
To Wrap It Up
A well-stocked diaper bag can make ALL the difference when you’re out and about with your little one. With these ten diaper bag essentials, you’ll be ready for anything. Don’t forget to restock your diaper bag regularly, and you’ll be good to go!
Until the next post, happy travels, momma!
What other diaper bag essentials do you need that I did not mention in this post? I’m curious and will surely add it to the list. Let me know in the comments below!
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About The Author
Linds is the proud mom of two little miracles, Mono Mono twin girls, and one AMAZING older brother! She is the founder and content creator of Mono Mono Twins, Intensive Therapy for Kids, and Co-Founder of The LENN Foundation, a 510c3 that helps children across the United States with cerebral palsy receive grants for intensive therapies to thrive. ♥
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