Why You Should Use Your Purse as a Diaper Bag

Using your purse as a diaper bag will help you be so much more conscious of the things you pack on the go because in all honesty, you probably don’t need as much as you think you do!

how use purse as diaper bag

At one point, I was the newborn mom carrying a duffle bag for my first baby because “I just want to be prepared” just in case.

I had the spare outfits, diaper cream, lotion, vitamin D, etc but 99% of the time, I didn’t use anything besides diapers and wipes!

Learning to let go of the baggage – pun intended – was a game changer for us and has made outings so much more enjoyable for both me and the girls.

I carry as little as possible when we’re on the go these days.

Keep reading to learn:

  • what to use as a diaper bag
  • can you use a regular purse as a diaper bag
  • how to use a tote bag as a diaper bag
  • best diaper bag inserts
  • how to pack a diaper bag

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How to Use Your Purse as a Diaper Bag

use purse as diaper bag

To use your purse as a diaper bag, you need to break it down to the essentials.

Let’s look at what that means for moms and what that means for babes!

Mom Diaper Bag Essentials

  • Wallet
  • Keys
  • Phone

I also like to carry a chapstick since I have a terrible habit of licking my lips when I’m deep in thought!

Medication like an inhaler could be something else you might want to carry with you.

Baby Diaper Bag Essentials

  • Diapers
  • Wipes

If your child is eating solid foods, you probably don’t need anything else!

If not, you might want to add a spare outfit and a zip-loc bag to contain the messy outfit you’ll need to toss in the wash once you get home.

A zip-up pyjama was my go to choice – it’s lightweight, compact, easy and quick to put on after an accident.

A foldable changing pad is another item I sometimes carry on my person if I’ve got a larger bag (for longer day trips) but keep in my car just in case with my usual lightweight bag.

What to use as a diaper bag

There are four styles of bag I recommend for use as a diaper bag:

  • belt bag
  • purse
  • tote bag
  • backpack

My Lululemon belt bag is my go to choice but I often supplement with a small tote for longer outings.

lululemon diaper bag waist

Related: Lululemon Diaper Bag Ideas (Top Picks for Real Moms!)

Can you use a regular purse as a diaper bag?

Absolutely, you can!

You’ll just want to separate your mommy items from your diaper bag goodies.

You could do something a simple as a large zip-loc bag to keep diapers and wipes together or keep your personal things in a small pouch like I do.

This will prevent you from having to dig through diapers in order to find your personal belongings AND if someone else is giving your child a change, you can hand them the zip-loc bag instead of your entire purse.

Alternatively, I take my phone and pouch out of the bag before I hand it off to my husband if he’ll be giving the little one a change.

lululemon diaper bag purse

How to use a tote bag as a diaper bag

I like to layer my diaper tote bag.

Placing diapers on one side and your bag of wipes on the other is super convenient for organization but it’ll be off balance so, if your packing diaper cream, pyjamas (a great idea when visiting relatives since I find we often stay longer than we thought we would), drinks, snacks etc, you’ll want to place these on the diapers side.

A spill proof water bottle and portable changing pad on the left, diapers in the centre, and wipes on the right works well.

tote diaper bag

Big items like clothing can go on the bottom or on the top if you prefer to cover your goodies.

I like putting it on the top since it prevents it from spilling over in the car too.

If you want to carry a wallet and your phone in the same tote, I’d get a set of little purse organizers (or even a wristlet like this one) to keep your things together.

I use the small pouch from the set above for my cash, cards, receipts, etc but will pack a wristlet in my tote to hold my phone and keys if I’m not wearing a belt bag.

It makes it SO much easier to find your essentials when you need them fast too.

More tip for new moms:

Best diaper bag inserts

The most popular style of diaper bag insert is this one and for good reason.

It fits well into purses and tote style bags while providing all of the pockets that make specialized diaper bags so functional.

Just pop it in, organize, and when you’re ready to use the things you’re carrying, a simple glance at your supplies will do.

It definitely beats digging through your bag when you need a clean diaper and wipes now!

These stretchy mesh diaper organizing bags are really nice for organizing your things separately from your your kids’.

I like that it comes as a five piece and could be use to organize according to kid or purpose.

For instance, if you’re spending a day at the beach, one sleeve makes for a nice section to put things like sunglasses, sunscreen, bug spray, etc.

Clear organizing pouches like these ones work the same way as the mesh bags above but are more structured to keep your purse nice and organized.

The bags don’t take on the shape of the combination of things inside like the mesh bags do so they won’t roll around on you.

The mesh ones are more compact though, so it’s all about your personal preference!

How to pack a diaper bag

Packing your diaper bag comes down to a couple of things:

  • how many kids you have
  • how old your kids are
  • the duration of time you’ll be out for

Since we almost always travel by vehicle, I wear my Lululemon Everywhere Belt Bag (EBB) nearly every day.

The EBB is great for three diapers and about 15 wipes but sometimes plans change – I keep a little stash of diapers and wipes in my centre console just in case!

You might visit a friend or family member on the way home and stay out longer than you anticipated.

I’d recommend keeping half a package of wipes and three diapers in your car – a backup to your backup ensures your prepared just in case you forgot to restock this stash too.

diaper bag purse insert


Going out for only an hour or two at a time?

You really don’t need much!

I like to pack the smallest bag I can with a single diaper and about 10 wipes in a zip-loc bag BUT I keep a stash of extra supplies in my car.

Packing light allows you to be hands free and gives you a little extra control over your environment.

I switched to a belt bag after being annoyed by the constant swinging over my arm that a traditional purse and even messenger style bags are prone to do.

Sometimes I change it it up with an even smaller crossbody bag.

It only fits one size 5 diaper, a zip-loc with about 10 wipes, my wallet, and phone, but its fantastic for shopping trips with the kids!

The best part is that I can clip my keys to the outside since there isn’t enough space inside – this also makes it a little easier to open the door when we get back home!

pack small diaper bag

Day Trip

This is where a purse might come in handy!

Instead of packing a belt bag and a backup tote bag like I do, you’ll have everything you need in one place.

Half a pack of wipes (I like extras in case we’re cleaning hands or washing faces during a meal) and five or six diapers is probably more than enough for a few hours with one child (eating solids) still in diapers.

Newborn moms may want to pack a few more plus a spare outfit!

purse diaper bag newborn

All Day Adventure

Stock up!

If I’m dropping the kids off at grandma’s or know that I’ll be away from my vehicle with only a bag of supplies at hand, I’ll pack more than usual.

At 2 years old, six diapers and half a pack of wipes is more than enough for my little one.

At 1 year old, I probably would have packed eight with my usual half a pack of wipes though.

I really like this backpack for play dates, field trips that last all day long, and other occasions where snacks, drinks, and spare outfits are a must-have.

backpack diaper bag

Shop These Lululemon Diaper Bags:

How to Use Your Purse as a Diaper Bag: Final Thoughts

You can use just about any purse in place of a diaper bag – no matter your style, size preference, or purpose.

While I love my belt bag for short day trips, tote bags, purses, and even a backpack does have its place though.

The important thing is making the supplies you need accessible.

Organizing your bag with a diaper bag insert and/or packing light is a great way to get it done and really enjoy your time out with the little ones!

So, how will you organize your purse to transform it into a diaper bag? What style of bag is your go-to choice?

Happy organizing, friend!

text reads nikki xo in pink font

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