A Minimalist’s Guide to Packing a Diaper Bag

By Nikki M

Maybe you're just planning on doing a quick grocery run. Perhaps the park's a block away and you don't feel like lugging a ton of stuff around with you. Or maybe diaper bags just aren't your style, and you prefer to use that's something… uh… not nylon. Whatever your reason, it's not the end of the world if you decide to ditch the diaper bag. Sure, they offer many conveniences, but you'll be totally fine without one! Here's what you need:


Find a pouch that's large enough to fit some baby essentials, yet compact enough to slide into your regular handbag. It's a wonderful way to stay organized- having everything you need in one place means no digging around! A flat pouch is great, but you might find that cosmetic or toiletry cases offer even more space.

Try this adorable, Medium 3D Zip pouch by Baggu (pictured below). It's just the perfect size and comes in the most adorable prints (we love the elephant print!). At only $10, it's also easy on the pocket.

If you want something a bit sleeker, Cuyana makes lovely, zip pouches in leather. Grab it in Black Crocodile or Brick and no one will ever know it holds nappies and binkies.

If you want to splurge a bit, try a printed leather pouch by Commes des Garçons (pictured). This will definitely get a lot of use – we’re betting this will replace your go-to nighttime clutch!

Clockwise from top left: Baggu pouch, Honest Co. wipes, Aden + Anais Swaddles, Comme des Garçons pouch


Pack the bare minimum

If you're not planning on being out and about for a long time, all you really need to bring with you is one diaper and a small packet of wipes. These Honest Travel wipes come in ultra-portable 10-packs.

Get creative with rolling: a diaper, some wipes, plus your keys, credit card, and cell phone could easily fit in the tiniest cross-body bag!

Multi-purpose is key

There are so many different types of cloths marketed for babies: burp cloths, swaddles, nursing covers, changing pads, blankets, even shopping cart covers. No wonder we need a dedicated diaper bag - that's a ton of bulk to carry around! Instead of being a walking linen closet, try to streamline things and get one piece of cloth to do the job of six. Go for the swaddle — it's large, thin, and breathable, yet folds very tiny! We've sung praises about the Aden + Anais muslin swaddle… it truly is the best!

Timing is everything

Plan your outings so they don't coincide with baby's feeding schedule. In doing so, you've eliminated the need to bring a nursing cover, milk bottle, formula container, water bottle, and a burp cloth. Besides bringing less stuff, you have the added benefit of actually getting errands done!

In the same vein, take note of what time of the day your baby loves to blow up that diaper. Pretty self-explanatory.

Get creative

In a pinch, dampened toilet paper can work as wipes, paper hand towels can be used as a changing pad, napkins can be used as bibs, and milk can be ordered at a coffee shop.

While this might seem like the antithesis of a super parent, being able to MacGyver your way through daily life whilst avoiding the baby marketing trap is nothing short of impressive!

How do you manage without a diaper bag? Share your tips and tricks in the comments below!

Cover image via Baggu

Tags : baby gear   newborns   diapering   

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