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As a postpartum doula, I’ve helped a lot of moms put together their diaper bag. I let them know what they need and don’t need when they’re on the go with baby. You don’t need to pack everything and the kitchen sink in your bag–your shoulders and back will hate you–but you also don’t want to forget something that will make your life easier. There are tons of lists out there that you can find, but I’m sharing my knowledge as an experienced postpartum doula on what you really need when you are out of the house with your baby. Here’s what I’m packing as I’m preparing for my baby boy in my diaper bag.
1. A Diaper Bag
Obviously . . . Pick a bag or an insert that you think will be good for you and your baby. I personally love the ToteSavvy from Life in Play because I can continue to wear my purses that I love and easily transform them into a diaper bag. It’s also nice that I just have to lift out the insert full of my baby’s items and can easily and quickly transform another purse into my diaper bag. I’m then not just limited to one bag and one look!
2. Changing Pad
Diaper changes happen even when you’re on the go. You won’t always be able to find a changing table (unfortunately) and even if you do, it’s nice to have a spot you know is clean to place your baby. That’s why having a changing pad is great to have. Luckily a changing pad is folded up and included in the center of the ToteSavvy so I didn’t have to worry about purchasing one.
I mean, it is called a diaper bag after all . . . You need to have diapers with you because babies are always needing a new diaper when you least expect it. Isn’t that always how it works? It’s better to be prepared. I usually recommend having 5 or 6 on hand. This also varies depending on how long you will be out with baby.
Those cute tushies don’t wipe themselves! In my bag, I don’t just pack the travel size wipes, I bring the big 60 count of baby wipes with me. They are great for cleaning spit ups, and wiping baby’s face, sticky hands and dirty bum. You don’t have to have a large pack with you, but I know I would forget to refill and would be stuck somewhere low on wipes if I didn’t pack a larger stash.
5. Diaper Cream & Sunscreen
We must protect our baby’s delicate skin. Preventing diaper rash and irritation is important and that’s why I love the healing balm from Honest. It’s also great for cuts and scratches. The Honest sunscreen is great too if you know you are going to be out in the hot sun. I make sure that I choose the safest products for baby.
6. Wet Bag
Wet bags aren’t just for moms that are cloth diapering. Wet bags are great to have for multiple purposes. For example, if you are in a place where you can’t throw out a dirty diaper (like at a doctor’s office) or if your kid maybe gets super messy and his clothes get dirty–e.g. throwing up, diaper blow out, wet his pants, playing with something dirty, etc. You can put that dirty diaper and dirty clothes in the wet bag and it won’t touch the rest of your belongings in your purse. It also can help keep the smells at bay. This is the wet bag that we have from SkipHop. It also has two handy sections to keep wet and dry clothes separated.
7. Hand Sanitizer
Things get messy and sticky when you have a child. I like to keep the germs away and use this spray hand sanitizer to keep me and baby clean. We don’t want baby to get sick! I like this spray because it doesn’t dry out my hands or feel slimy like some other brands do.
I love a good swaddle blanket. aden + anais have some of my favorite swaddles. They are so light, soft, large enough to fully cover baby in a good swaddle and they are breathable. Plus their designs are precious! You can use them in many different ways too and that’s why I always like to have one with me in my diaper bag like this one. So great for soothing baby and keeping them comfortable.
Babies can get fussy and make a lot of noise. If you’re going somewhere where there will be a lot of people and you need your little one to be calm and quiet, a pacifier is something you gotta have. I have my POP pacifier from doddle & co. ready to go! It’s the cleaner pacifier.
10. Boob or Bottle
I plan on breastfeeding my baby so thankfully I’ll always have a boob ready. 😉 But if I do need to pump or supplement and give formula to my son, I will need to bring a bottle with me. I like this glass bottle from Life Factory.
11. Burp Cloth/ Bib
When bottle-feeding or breastfeeding your baby you need to wipe that sweet face off with something during and after their feedings. That’s why I make sure to bring at least one burp cloth/bib with me. This particular one that I have is really helpful to have when burping baby. Spit up happens! More may come up while burping than you may expect too. A bib that I love is the burpy bib from aden + anais. They are large, thick yet soft and they even have snaps on them so you can not only use it over the shoulder, but you can also snap it around baby’s neck during bottle feedings or spoon feedings as he gets older.
12. Nursing Pads
Thankfully Bamboobies don’t leak, but if you forget to bring a fresh pair with you, I would have an extra set in your bag. Again, I’m planning on breastfeeding my little one and Bamboobies nursing pads are what I plan on wearing to keep myself comfortable and dry. They are reusable and the softest nursing pads I’ve found. The last thing I want is leakage coming through my shirt! So embarrassing.
13. Breastfeeding Cover
If you feel comfortable breastfeeding anywhere and whipping out your boob, good for you! I’m a bit more modest so I will feel more comfortable wearing a nursing cover–especially during the time I’m getting the hang of breastfeeding my son. This breastfeeding cover from Covered Goods is great because not only can you use it as a nursing cover, but you can also use it as a car seat cover as well as a high chair or grocery cart chair cover. I’m a fan and have written about them before here. Covered Goods is also offering a discount code to our readers! Type in babychick5 for $5 off valid through August 1st on their site.
14. Extra Outfit
If baby has a blow out or pees through his/her diaper, you will need to have an extra outfit with you. If it’s a longer outing bring two just incase. I love this kimono from aden + anais. It’s the perfect thing for my newborn baby. 🙂 So soft, stylish and easy to take on and off. Two thumbs up!
15. Baby Wrap
I am a major baby wearing fan! Keeping that baby close to you and having your hands free is everything as a new parent! For my newborn baby, I have this Active Baby Carrier from Baby K’tan. It’s in the side compartment of my ToteSavvy and ready to go when I need to wear him. I love that it’s small and compact to fit in my bag and that the sash converts into this travel bag to keep everything together.
16. Toy and/or Teether
Your newborn baby won’t necessarily need a toy to play with or a teether to chew on this early in his/her life, but I like to have a few things that can be used as a distraction. Distractions are always good. And these will help! Different textures and sounds are great like this soft toy/rattle from Jelly Cats. This teether from Baby Banana is also awesome! You know that it’s super safe for your little one to teeth on as an infant and has he/she gets older.
That’s my diaper bag packing list for your newborn baby! It may sound like a lot, but you will be so grateful that you have them with you. Is there anything in your newborn’s diaper bag that you think is a must-have that I didn’t list? I’d love to hear about it!