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Picking A Diaper Bag

Wed, 22 Aug 2012|

-Hi. Welcome to Parents TV. I'm Jessica Hartshorn. I'm a senior lifestyle editor from American Baby Magazine and I am here with Heather McLean, the author of The Baby Gizmo Buying Guide. Today, we're gonna talk about how to pick a diaper bag. Heather, thanks for joining us. -Thank you so much for having me. -Now, go through first why it's so important to pick the right bag. -Well, I have three children well-spaced and so, I've been carrying a diaper bag for a decade-- -Yeah. -and it actually-- the obsession with no longer carrying an ugly one lead to me writing the entire book. The reason diaper bags are so important is because you carry it as much as you carry your child. So, comfort, ergonomics, something that's practical, something that will last, and people do forget you get these big beautiful diaper bags but you're going to have a 15-pound kid here and then a 15 kid-- a 15-pound diaper bag on the other side that-- really, it's an important choice. -Right and you wanna be able to pack everything you need but not over pack, I guess. -Yes. As little as possible for every scenario you would ever need. Yes. -So, go through some important features to look for. -Well, the first style. There are a million different styles, thankfully. Used to be one style called the tote, which-- generally, a tote just looks like a big purse. This is the old fashioned-- everybody, you know, our moms carry this tote. -With an open top. -Yes. But now, there are totes still, but there are also messenger bags that look a lot like laptop bags and have a flap over closure. These are very popular because they lay so flat and you can wear them so easily especially over the shoulder, very comfortable. We also have backpacks. -I'm a fan of backpacks. -Yes. I exclusively carried a backpack for the first child and especially if you can get one in a not-so-pink print. You get Dad to carry the backpack a lot more often than he is willing to carry the totes. -And then I'm seeing these everywhere. -Yes, these are the-- they're actually little many changing pads. There are varying types. This one is another thing very popular right now. It's just one big giant. -Wow. -Changing pad with even circular flaps. -Okay. -So, when you lay the baby, they don't get their hands dirty. -Uh huh. -I'm a big fan of this because changing pad is one of the things that can make or break a diaper bag. -And most come with a changing pad inside though. -Most do. -But, you're saying sometimes they're small. -Too small, yes. Exactly. -And that's what I did with my first. I would put one of these inside and then I could also-- -Yes. -leave the bag in the stroller and just run into the bathroom with this. -Yes, exactly. Exactly. -Okay. So now, let's talk about what you should be packing in here or not packing in here. -Okay. -I know this a fully-stocked diaper bag. -Yes. -It is a little heavier. -Yes. This is what I consider the perfectly packed diaper bag. -Yeah. -You're going to be at the mall for four hours-- -Yeah. -you need what's in here. The first thing I always have is a bottle of water for me, for washing things, washing pacifiers, filling the baby bottle, juice cup, whatever. Always have a bottle of water. And I also always carry a snack. I have a little granola bar in here. A snack for mom, because you never know. -Oh, not just for babies. -Yes, not just for baby. -For you. -Yes. -And then inside is the-- -Most bags have the bottle inflators. Then you will always have your-- -Changing pads. -Changing pads. -And toys. -A couple little toys to distract the baby. One of the best is a picture book because they can read about their family forever. And the links are great because you can attach them to a car seat, to a stroller, and you don't have to play the fetch-the-toy-off-the-ground game. The other thing, you have to have wipes-- -Yes and keep-- -and diapers. I recommend six to eight. -That's the-- -And the general rule of thumb is two for every hour you're gonna be out. So, a four-hour trip, I would have eight diapers. The other thing is whatever your baby's currently eating even if you're gonna be out and it's not feeding time and you think you're gonna get home. You never know about traffic or a flat tire. So, whether it's baby food or formula, or breast milk, whatever you need for feeding, at least one serving for your child. Diaper cream. -Sure. -And a little tiny dry skin cream when they get all cracked and crying. -Or chapped. Yeah. -Yes. Sun lotion as well, just tiny little tubes for the thing [unk]-- -And maybe a hat if it's summer. -Yes. -And I learned the hard way about an outfit. -Yes. A hat for warmth or sun-- -Yeah. Yeah. -depending on the season-- -Uh huh. Okay. -and extra socks. Wow, can they get their socks away. -Right. -And the-- -One puddle and you're done. -I always recommend one outfit, a one [unk] will completely, warm or cold, cover them up-- -Right. -and it packs away so quickly. -And then, of course, you're going to want a card with your name and phone number somewhere in here in case you lose it. -Yes. Yes, absolutely. And there are so-- Also, you wanna make sure that you have a first aid kit. -Okay. -And I always have little Tylenol and nasal aspirator just for an emergency and what I found is super great, because the smaller you can get all of the pieces the better your type of bag will fare. A little first aid kit meant for the diaper bags. -Oh, yes. -So, it's all ready to go. -Is that from a drugstore? -This is-- I think it is from a drugstore. -Yeah, it's the little ones. -It's Medipak and there's tons of little ones. -Yes. Yes. -And they-- smiley face stickers to make them feel better. -So, you are prepared? -Yes. You have everything-- and Kleenex-- -Yeah. -and hand sanitizer. -Fantastic. And now these diaper bags are from about $100 to $200, but there's a huge range of price options available, right? -Yes, actually the ones you see here range from $9 to $250. Yes, so this one is a $19 diaper bag and-- -From Wal-Mart? -Yes, from Wal-Mart. -Uh huh. -and this one is $187 diaper bag. -From Fleurville-- -From Fleurville, yes. -in a nice soft print. Well-- -So, it's a choice. -doesn't matter how much. Yeah. -Do you want a beautiful one that lasts forever or do you wanna change it up and just replace it every couple of months. -Right. So, you're not worried about losing it. -Exactly. -Or messing it up. -Yes. -All right. Thank you so much for joining us, Heather. I really appreciate it. -Thank you. -For more information, you can go to BabyGizmo.com. And also the Baby Gizmo buying guide is out in bookstores now. So, thanks for watching Parents TV. Your source for the best information for your growing family. -Thank you for watching Parents TV. Our families, our lives.