August 14, 2009

Happybeagle product review: Mini diaper bags

Welcome to a new feature here on happybeagle, my product reviews. Or review, in case I never get motivated enough to write another one. heh.

So today's installment is the mini diaper bag. Now before I became a mom (BIBAM) I didn't realize the wide variety of style, size, and price of diaper bags. There's the cutesy diaper bags, the stylish, the designer, the mod, the size of a canoe, the "we guarantee Dad will carry this around," and pretty much anything you could ever want in a bag. We got the Columbia Trekster Diaper Backpack.

The Columbia Trekster is a great bag. It's very large, the backpack style is easy to carry, it comes with a changing pad which is quite nice and an insulated pocket for bottles (although it's not leak-proof). It holds just about everything. However, the main drawback is that it holds just about everything. I mean, it's huge. So it's perfect if you're out for the whole day or going over to Grandma's (pick one, Theo has several), but if all you're doing is going to the pool or the library or Target, it's just unwieldy.

Enter the mini diaper bag. Now the mini diaper bag (I've sort of coined this term for what I'm calling these) is the bag that holds basically a couple of diapers, wipes, and a disposable changing pad cover (optional), and maybe a spare onesie if you think you're going to need it. These are the bags you grab when you're just running out the door.

My favorite of these is a bag I happened to buy on an impulse from BabySteals (on a side note, BabySteals is a site that offers one baby product a day at a steeply discounted price. They post at 9am MST and items are available while quantities last. Popular products tend to sell out by noon our time). It's a My Royal Heinie bag. Now first I have to say that My Royal Heinie changed their design and I'm not a fan of the new features, so if you want the one I have they're on clearance. Anyway, the My Royal Heinie I have is exactly as I described above, but the best part is that it has a waterproof pocket on the outside for the wipes, so you just lift the purse flap and grab a wipe. You don't have to fish out the package and open it up, scrape around inside, and so on while trying to wrangle a squirmy baby. Like everything else "invented by a mom"--it's very handy. Here's a picture of mine:

It's a bit smaller than a typical hardcover book and best fits up to 6 diapers. I usually keep about 3 in there, and sometimes a folded-up onesie. There's a small pocket inside that would fit Desitin if I wanted it to. The handle is great too because it can either be a purse strap like pictured, or it can snap together to be a wrist strap. I like snapping it to the handle of the stroller.

Now the new My Royal Heinie looks bigger and includes room for your cell phone, keys, sippy cup, etc. But for me, this is going into the diaper bag category, albeit a small diaper bag. For right now, I just want the mini bag. Maybe as Theo gets older I'll want to trade up, but I like the one I have. They also have "the wallet" which looks just like the mini bag except it lacks the snap strap, which is one of my favorite things about the one I have anyway.

And to get an idea about BabySteals, the bag I have was originally $38, and the My Royal Heinie site is selling them on special for $24.99, but I got it on BabySteals for $15.

Moving on, I also have a Diaper Pal from Etsy. Now in case you're not familiar with Etsy, it's a big collection of artists and craftsmen and people who make things right there on the web. It's like an online craft fair. You can get just about anything and everything is handmade by individual artists. It's wonderful, and I love shopping Etsy for one of a kind gifts, and I particularly like directly supporting craftsmen and women.

So the Diaper Pal is something I got from a friend of mine when we started our adoption. A Diaper Pal is very simple--it's a cloth pouch designed to be just the perfect size for diapers and wipes, or as I was describing above, a mini diaper bag. A couple of people make them, but the one I have and I think the cutest ones are made by Bamboobaby. Here's what a Diaper Pal looks like:

And I think that cupcake pattern is absolutely adorable. I keep my Diaper Pal in the glove compartment of my car, and it has already come in handy once. I'm sure that won't be the last time! I like to put those little sample size packets of wipes you get (the kind with like 15 wipes in them).

In summary, the My Royal Heinie mini bag is my absolute favorite. I love the wipes accessibility and the snap strap. My Diaper Pal is also fabulous. I'd like it better if the Diaper Pal had a snap on the handle though.

Posted by Shelby at August 14, 2009 01:17 PM
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