What are the best changing bags for Dads?
A good baby changing bag will make your life a lot easier when out and about. Mums have it easy as most baby bags look like handbags. However, we bet that most men aren’t excited about carrying one of those around. Luckily, designers are catching on to making bags that are suitable for dads to use.
Pictured: Tiba and Marl Elwood. Available here.
We highly recommend you start by checking out our Baby Changing Bag Buying Guide. It will help you pinpoint the features which will benefit your family most. We’ve reviewed all that bags available on the market and selected our top ten. Read on to find the one that’s right for you.
Messenger Changing Bags for Dads
This type of bag is designed as a cross body bag, with one strap over your shoulder. The style of a messenger bag makes them a more masculine style than the typical tote changing bag. That straps are usually quite wide, making them easier to carry on broad, male shoulders. Let’s check out the pro and cons of a messenger style bag for dads.
Quick access – Messenger bags are usually very easy to access. The cross body design leaves your hands free to keep everything close to hand and by your side.
Compact – These bags are a lot less bulky than a tote changing bag. That cuts out a lot of the bulk. Men tend to carry less around with them when out and about. Mums usually need to double up the changing bag as a hand bag.
Unisex – This style of bag is a compromise on a style both you and mum can wear. If you are looking to cut costs, opt for a unisex bag rather than buying a mum bag and a dad bag.
Style – This type of bag has a ‘man bag’ feel to it, which might not fit in with your with personal style. If you’re after something more casual, keep reading for our top backpack picks.
Space – These bags are less room than backpack styles. If you like to pack to the gunnels or need more space for say twins, then a larger holdall style changing bag will suit you better.
Strap – Do you suffer from on-going back, shoulder neck or upper arm pains? Then a messenger bag should be avoided. The strap causes uneven weight distribution over this body. This can worsen any exciting pain conditions you have in these areas.
We would highly recommend a messenger bag for dads who want a simple bag with style. Check out our top 5 picks of Messenger changing bags for dads.
Top 5 Messenger Changing Bags for Dads
OiOi Waxed Canvas Satchel
Colour Options: Black, Chocolate
Available here: Kiddiecare
This is our top pick as the design gives no hint of ‘dad bag’. It comes supplied with the usually baby gear, including a changing mat, insulated bottle holder, wet bag, wipe holder and pram straps. Plus for the modern dad it has an addition slot for your tablet or laptop. The material is water resistant to keep the contents safe in unpredictable British weather.
Our biggest bugbear was the lack of padding on the shoulder strap. It can start to dig in after a while, especially if you have big shoulders.
Babymoov Messenger Maternity Bag
Colour Options: Black, Pink, Petrol, Grey, Aqua
You don’t need to spend a fortune on a good quality changing bag. The BabyMoov maternity bag comes with some basic features, including a changing mat, dummy bag, wet bag, pram straps and insulated bottle pouch. If you want a ‘dad bag’, then opt for the petrol blue colour. Want to share it with the other half? Then the black, grey and aqua colours are all ideal unisex colours.
The main complain about this bag was the lack of structure. As is a big bag it can get bulky if you like to pack a lot of stuff.
Bababing DayTripper City Deluxe Changing Bag
Colour Options: Black, Grey
Designed with the busy urban dad in mind. The material is weatherproof and even has reflective strips for those dark winter days. When you are always on the go, you need a bag which is easy to use with quick access. The pockets are a decent size, especially for large hands. You be able to keep everything organised and still have space leftover for your own gadgets.
We found the zippered bottle pocket to be a little on the small side. This makes it awkward to squeeze in even a standard-sized baby bottle.
Colour Options: Navy
This is the perfect unisex bag for modern parents. The navy and tan colours give it a stylish look for for any urban family. The inside is lined with a bright red washable fabric. This makes it easy for you to find what you need in a hurry. There is plenty of storage, especially for bottles. The zippered fastening means you don’t need to worry about your stuff spilling out when it’s full.
The most common complaint we found was with the pram straps. They are made from Velcro and not as sturdy as other bags, which come with solid clips.
Lassig Casual Sporty Messenger Bag
Colour Options: Navy, Olive
The Lassig Sporty messenger bag is ideal for dads who want a casual style. The bag itself is really robust and will handle all types of daily activity. Plus it’s extremely practical due to the well thought out storage. You’ll find a space for everything to be kept neat and tidy and still loads of room left over in the main compartment. The wide adjustable strap means you’ll be able to fit it to your size. Unfortunately, there is no padded area to prevent the strap digging in.
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Backpack Changing Bags for Dads
These bags look just like a regular backpack but with all the features of a baby changing bag. Modern designers have created styles which range from casual to fashionable. Let’s look at the pro and cons of backpack changing bags.
Style – Backpack are a great style of bag for men as they don’t look like a typical changing bag. They are a casual style of bag which makes them look less feminine. You could even use them as a regular bag one baby is out of nappies.
Hands free – The straps will free up your hands, making it a lot easier to get around or help your baby. It’s the perfect solution if you want to run errands with your baby in tow.
Activity – If your family is particularly active, then a backpack bag is the best solution. Now baby can tag along without you having to awkwardly carry around a cross body bag.
Back health – When worn correctly a backpack can help prevent back pain. The weight of the contents is evenly distributed over the shoulders. This prevents aches and pains in your back, neck shoulder or arms.
Heat – As the purpose of a changing backpack isn’t mainly for activity, you’ll find the air flow quite poor. Lugging a full backpack around on hot days can lead to a sweat patch or two. You have been warned.
Compartments – Storage in this style of bag usually goes one of two ways.
- Too much– Can make it difficult to find things quickly in a hurry. Unless you know where every item is this will frustrate you.
- Too little – Will result in a huge jumble of baby thing. This usually ends with you tipping everything out the bag to find the one thing you were looking for.
We would highly recommend a backpack style for dads who want a casual design which is comfortable to carry. Check out our top 5 picks of backpack changing bags for dads.
Top 5 Backpack Changing Bags for Dads
Babymule Original Baby Changing Bag
Colour Options: Black, brown, olive, navy, charcoal, plum, teal, grey pattern, green pattern, red pattern
For the ultimate versatile backpack then check out the Babymule. This back can be worn as a backpack, shoulder bag and attached to your pram. The thick padded backpack straps very comfortable, and the waist belt gives the bag extra stability when wearing. If you do a lot of outdoor walking in all weather, your stuff will keep bone dry due to the waterproof material.
We’d say the biggest downfall of this bag is the price. However, you’ll more than get your money’s worth from it, especially if you plan to have more children in the future.
Damero Travel Nappy Backpack
Colour Options: Plain black, black with dots, navy with dots, green and grey dots
Available here: Amazon
If you want to keep your baby thing organised and not jumbled in a heap, check out the Damero Travel Nappy Backpack. For a decent price, you get a fantastic quality bag with everything you need. The front pocket zips all the way down so you grab what you need quickly. There are 3 internal bottle pocket and 2 external, which allows you to pack enough supplies for a whole day out with baby.
Our biggest annoyance with this bag was the stroller attachment. There are loops available to accommodate this, however no actual strap, so you need to buy this separately if it a feature you’ll use.
Storksak Travel Back Pack Changing Bag
Colour Options: Black
Available here: John Lewis
The Storksak travel bag is like a Tardis, looks compact from the outside but huge on the inside. As the name suggests it’s best suited to those who do a lot of travelling around. You’ll find the storage areas large and practical, including two external bottle holder with zips. The material is extremely lightweight, and with the padded straps this makes is very comfortable to wear over long periods.
The bag is suitable to be use alongside the Storksak cabin bag, perfect if your family travel abroad a lot with baby.
Bebamour Baby Changing Bag
Colour Options: Khaki, orange
Available here: Amazon
A great value backpack is you want a no-frills option. Ok, so it’s not very fashionable, but it is extremely practical. There are plenty of external and internal pockets to hold all your baby stuff. Plus there are plenty of larger pockets to hold the baby mat and your own things. The straps have a mesh lining which makes keeps you cool even after wearing for long periods of time.
There are a few niggles which you would expect with a cheaper priced bag. First, the bottle holders are a bit of a tight fit for wider style baby bottles. Second the bag in not waterproof, so you may want to avoid getting caught in the rain, otherwise your thing will get soaked.
Skip Hop Duo Backpack
Colour Options: Grey, blue pattern
If you have more than one baby in nappies, we recommend considering this bag. It’s perfectly roomy for carrying a lot of things. Plus the backpack style makes it easy for you to chase after an escapee toddler. The straps can change into simple to fit pram clips if you need a break from carrying the bag around. There are lots of storage pockets for baby things, as well as gadget sized pocket for your phone or laptop. This bag is very lightweight so if you plan to use it as a unisex bag, it’s not going to weight a smaller frame down when it’s full.
If you’re not keen on any of our top 10 picks, then why not consider an alternative option? If your bag is hardly ever used, then why not invest in another style, which can occasionally double as a baby bag? Remember you’ll still need to buy a separate travel changing mat and bottle holder. However, the bag can be used way after your baby has been potty trained.
These are ideal as they are often spacious enough to hold a lot of clothing, you’ll find most style have an inbuilt bottle holder. Sports bags are usually lacking in pocket storage, so if you’re not too big organising your bag, then this won’t frustrate you. They are often designed with breathable materials, which prevent you overheat when wearing them for too long.
If you are super organised or have served with the military you may be keen for a highly organised bag. That way, everything has its place, and you’ll know where to find it as quickly as possible. Military bags hold a lot of equipment. They are designed for wearing over long periods of time, so ideal if you often day-long trips out with your baby.
This type of bags are ideal if you like to carry a lot of gadgets around with you. They are usually waterproof to protect any valuables inside from getting wet. As it designed for men who like using gadgets, there are often lots of hidden compartments to stash away other valuables such as phones or keys.
Changing bag Buying Guide
Before you buy a changing bag, you should consider the following elements. If one of these areas is particularly important to you, then make sure the bag you choose scores highly for this area.
Ease of Use
It’s important that your changing bag can store what you need, and to the level, you like it organised. There should be a balance between the amount of storage and how easy it is to access the things stored in it. Consider closures and how well they allow you to access your baby gear, but also keep them in place.
The style you choose can be important, especially if you are sharing the bag with your partner. That means you may have you compromise with a unisex style or colour. This may mean your bag looks a little more like a diaper bag. If you plan to use the bag just for you will probably want to opt for more masculine style, fabrics and colours.
Carrying a heavy load on your shoulder on a daily basis can quickly lead to back problems. You need to consider whether the style of back is right for you, as a backpack will be easier on your back. Comfort features such as wide, padded straps will prevent the bags digging into your shoulders. Always check the weight of the bag without anything in it. You’ll be surprised how heavy a changing bag can get once you have it packed full.
A changing bag can be a big investment. If you want one to last for a few years, then it needs to be robust and durable. The materials should be hard wearing and ideally waterproof. In the British weather, the chances of getting caught in a downpour are high. This can put your contents at risk of getting wet, including expensive gadgets. Always consider user review of seams, closures and stitching for a verdict or durability.
You’ll find changing bags ranging from £20 to £200. Whilst you’ll find quality bags at any price range, you should really consider investing in a good bag. We’d suggest setting aside at least £50 for a great bag. If you plan to use it for more than one child, you’ll get plenty of use for your money.