I’m not kidding when I tell you that I have struggled to find the right diaper bag to use with my boys. During pregnancy, when I registered, I picked out a large bag. It worked, for a little while.
Then I moved to a single cross-strap backpack. It was a much better solution, but it still wasn’t a great fit.
Both bags had the same problem: If I had to leave the house, and carry both boys at the same time, I struggled to keep the diaper bag on my shoulder, or back. It would fall, then the boys would begin to slip, and I’d look like the worst twin mother walking out of the house.
Not to mention storage…
The first diaper bag, more in the traditional style, was okay. But using it when they were brand new babies, I couldn’t fit everything I really needed. It didn’t have the space for me to be organized, and getting one item from the bag could easily turn the entire thing in to a huge mess.
The backpack was better, but it lacked the right kind of storage for everything.
Okay, putting aside the diaper bag thought for a moment…
I’m not the mom that carries a purse, and a diaper bag. Have you seen moms do this? No offense to you moms that can do this but I always look at them and think “yeah, you really needed another thing to carry!”
With Zadey, and even now, if I need a diaper bag for my kid, it is also my purse. And now, with twins, that means I need to not only have enough room for all the things they need, but the things I need as well.
So what diaper bag do I have now?
I just received a diaper bag from Ju-Ju-Be, the BFF bag. Honestly, I debated between this bag and the Be Prepared. And, I’d still love to have the Be Prepared bag (because I have a minor obsession with diaper bags, and purses!). But, I went with the BFF for one single reason.
It can be carried as a backpack, as an option.
That may not be important to some moms. It probably wouldn’t have been important to me with Zadey. But, I often carry the boys out of the house together. And I’m a leave with everything kind of girl. I hate taking multiple trips in and out of the house just to get everything in the car.
Having a diaper bag that I can use as a backpack allows me to grab everything, at once, and leave the house.
Of course, this isn’t the only feature that I really like about the Ju-Ju-Be BFF diaper bag. There are others, but I’ll get to those…
Ju-Ju-Be BFF Diaper Bag Features
Ju-Ju-Be did not miss a beat with details in really making this bag the ultimate diaper bag for moms!
- Machine Washable
- Teflon Treated Outside
- Agion Antimicrobial Treated
- Mommy Pocket with Sunglasses Protector, Key Clip, and Pockets
- 3M Insulated Pockets on Sides
- Metal Hardware Feet on Bottom
- Memory Foam Changing Pad
- Back Pocket Crumb Drain
- 3 Ways to Carry the Bag (backpack, messenger [strap included], and top handle)
- 20 Different Pattern Options
Have a look at this quick, awesome video from Ju-Ju-Be highlighting the BFF’s features.
What’s inside my diaper bag?
I’ve been told that I’m kind of a minimal packer. When Zadey was a baby I probably wasn’t, but as time goes on you begin to realize that you don’t have to carry as much. By the time you have a second (and third, as it may be), you realize you need even less. So, I’m careful about what I take with me. Here’s what my diaper bag looks like for a full day out:
- 10 Diapers
- Package of Wipes
- Changing Pad
- 6 Bottles
- A&D Ointment
- Two Extra Outfits (one for each kid)
- Two Bibs
- Small Snacks
- Two Small Bowls (for eating out)
- Diaper Trash Bags
- My Wallet
- Hand Lotion
If we’ll only be gone for a couple of hours, I don’t take this much. Usually there are less diapers, I don’t worry about packing their bowls (unless we plan on eating out), I don’t take as many bottles, and I may or may not take an extra outfit each — depending on what the weather looks like. If we’re going out for a quick trip, I grab two bottles, my wallet, and go (because I also keep wipes, and a couple of diapers in my car).
Normally I would say that loading this stuff in my diaper bag is a fine art of stuffing and shoving. But, that really is not the case with my Ju-Ju-Be BFF. The pockets all seem to be in the right places, and there’s enough to keep the bag organized and everything handy. Here’s a peek at how I pack my diaper bag:
Finally, to finish off packing my bag, I add in the diapers, wipes, and bowls. This fills the middle space. And, there are two ways to add these items:
I use the method on the right. For me this seems to keep everything very handy, and I don’t have to wrestle with the bowls for diaper changes. But again, the bowls aren’t always with me and I still prefer the method on the right so that I don’t have wrestle with all the diapers, to grab the wipes.
It’s also important for you to know that my boys wear a size 5 diaper. Those aren’t tiny diapers in there, which gives you an idea to the height and length of this bag.
If I were to have a complaint, especially using this bag for twins, it would be this: The side pockets, to carry bottles are awesome. But I do carefully squeeze in two standard Gerber bottles to get 6 bottles in the bag. If they gave it just a tiny bit more space, that would be helpful. However, I previously used the Playtex Nurser bottles for my boys, and if I was still using those, my bottle capacity would go to only 4, which would then mean this is not a full day trip bag.
Having said that, consider how you would pack this bag, and what I have that you may not. Smaller babies wouldn’t need little travel bowls. Removing those bowls would allow for more bottle space. Also, when my boys were younger and still on formula, I took fewer bottles and carried small formula dispensers which would get me through the day. You also may not need as many diapers, bibs, or snacks; considering all of that will allow you to see exactly how the Ju-Ju-Be will work for you, in many different configurations, for many different stages in your baby’s life.
Beyond the Diaper Bag
I was raving (because I really do love this bag) to my friend, Bobbie, and she had so many great points, that I want to share. Because, she made me really think about how and why we use diaper bags.
Long after the diapers are gone for kids, there are still so many reasons to carry a bag for them. And the Ju-Ju-Be BFF bag is perfect for those uses too. Our ideas include:
- Clothes, for visits to a friend’s house
- Packed toys and snacks for a day trip, or vacation
- Perfect carry on for your “big kid”
- Beach bag
Here’s a perfect example. We spent last Sunday in Chicago for the day. Being three hours from home, I left the house prepared with an extra change of clothes of all the kids, and car entertainment for Zadey. Had the BFF bag not been used for a diaper bag for my boys, I would have used it for all the extra changes of clothes, and Zadey’s little car toys. Instead, she brought her backpack.
Also, at almost 8 years old, Zadey always leaves the house with a little something for herself be it toys, an iPod, or just her favorite stuffed animals. In addition to carrying her own water bottle.
Use the Ju-Ju-Be BFF as a beach bag. When you’re time is done at the beach, and you’re heading off to change, use the included changing pad to step on while you change clothes, and keep your feet clean after brushing off the sand!
It takes years to go out of the need for a bag for your kids, and the Ju-Ju-Be BFF bag will grow with you for years to come.
Pricing & Purchasing
I have to be really honest with you here. The Ju-Ju-Be BFF diaper bag retails for $165 (at the time of this post). And initially, I really thought this was a high price. But, then I did some thinking about this and here’s the conclusion that I have come to…
With Zadey I carried a diaper bag for 3 years, and I’m sure I will do the same with the boys. I started this post telling you that the Ju-Ju-Be diaper bag is my third diaper bag and my boys are only a year old. I have already invested $70 in to diaper bags that did not work. That’s almost half the price of the Ju-Ju-Be BFF diaper bag!
Now that I have been using the Ju-Ju-Be, I can tell you, honestly, that it will last me the next couple of years and would certainly have lasted right from the start! And, as I said, I’m sure I’ll find uses for it long after I need it for a diaper bag (or maybe, just maybe, I’ll get to hold on to it for another baby). It is high quality, durable, and being machine washable, has everything to stand up to years of use and the price tag reflects that.
But, if you do the math, purchasing this Ju-Ju-Be bag, right from the start is just $55 per year, for three years of use. That’s less than what I have already spent on diapers bags. So, my point is, consider what you need to carry, how many kids you’ll be packing a diaper bag for, and how long you’ll be carrying a diaper bag. I’m sure then, the pros will outweigh the price.
Get it. For one kid, two kids or twins; you will not be disappointed.