Practical Diaper Bag Alternatives

Diaper bags aren’t for everyone. But, you will likely find that you still need to have some baby gear with you when you’re out and about with your kid(s). Enter- practical diaper bag alternatives!


You can absolutely carry a fashionable bag in place of the traditional diaper bag. You (may) sacrifice some of the conveniences diaper bags offer, but I think you can totally carry one of these bags in place of a diaper bag without issue!


Once you find the right diaper bag alternative for you, be sure to scroll to the bottom and see two of my favorite diaper bag alternative hacks!


*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. I only recommend products I love or would personally use.


Herschel Classic Backpack XL


What People Love: People love the durability of this backpack. Many have carried this backpack daily without issue. The front pocket has a place for you to store your keys and phone. There are side pockets on both sides on the outside. On the inside, you’ll find one large pocket that would be great for storing bottles, as well as plenty of open space for diapers, wipes, a small blanket, and any other small items you’d want to throw in. You can also store your laptop (15 in) in the padded pocket if you have a bottle cooler you’d rather use instead. There are 30+ color and pattern choices for this backpack which is awesome!


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This backpack is a great diaper bag alternative because it’s made of polyester, making it very durable. It has plenty of pockets, which are great for things like bottles, sippy cups, and your water bottle. You have room to store your laptop and your baby’s diapers and wipes all in the same place. It looks like a regular backpack and can be used as such after you’re out of your diapering days.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This large backpack is ideal for the mom or dad who wants to keep their things the way they are and add only the baby necessities to their already established bag. This is also great as a carry-on if you don’t want to carry a diaper bag. It’s the perfect size to have what you need without going overboard. I will note that there are 5 different sizes of this backpack. Make sure you take note of which one is selected when you order yours.





Herschel Dawson Backpack


What People Love: If you’d like to have a backpack with more pockets for storing all of your things and your baby’s things, this Herschel Dawson backpack is a great diaper bag alternative. There are 20+ color combinations for this backpack. Another great thing about this bag is that both the inside and outside of the backpack are cloth, which means you can easily throw it in the washing machine. The inside is open with one large side pocket. The pocket could be used for bottles, diapers, wipes, or its intended purpose of housing a laptop (15 in) or tablet. 


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: Much like the previous backpack, it doesn’t look anything like a traditional diaper bag. Instead, it looks like a backpack that a student would carry. As a mom, I know the importance of being able to carry a bottle or two and the outside pockets are great for that. The inside is perfect for the handful of baby things you’d want to carry with you. It would also be great as a carry-on if you plan to do any traveling and want to skip the traditional diaper bag.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This backpack is ideal for anyone who wants a backpack they can use for themselves and their baby. It’s also great if you only see yourself using it as a diaper bag for a short period of time and then you want to use it as a traditional backpack after that. I will note that there are 3 different sizes of this backpack. Make sure you take note of which one is selected when you order yours.






Canvaslife Breton Striped Waterproof Laptop Bag


What People Love: This Canvalife Breton bag is waterproof. That in and of itself is a huge win when you have kids. Next, this bag isn’t large at all. So if you want to carry the bare minimum of baby supplies, this is a great option for you. If you’re breastfeeding and don’t have a need for bottles, this is even more so a great option for you. 


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This bag is ideal for carrying things like diapers, wipes, a changing pad, a pacifier, maybe a couple of small toys, and a small bottle. I think this is a great travel bag for carry-on so you’re not trying to carry a bulky diaper bag while trying to manage your baby.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This diaper bag alternative is ideal for the minimalist mom who just wants something to hook her keys onto, slip her phone in, and have the simple baby necessities without all the extra baby stuff. This bag comes in 5 different patterns.






Carhartt Legacy Women’s Essential Tote


What People Love: This Carhartt Legacy Essential Tote bag is made of 100% polyester, which makes it very durable. It also has Rain Defender water repellent which is super important when dealing with all ages of kids. The main compartment of the tote is awesome for throwing in all the things you need. You can also sit bottles or sippy cups in the bag upright. There are also 2 small pockets inside that would be great for your phone or keys and a pacifier.


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: In terms of being an alternative to a diaper bag, this bag doesn’t have one thing-pockets. There are a couple, but nothing compared to many of the diaper bags people use on a daily basis. But, I think this is a great bag for any parent whose child is transitioning into toddlerhood and requires some things, but not ALL the baby things. Think things like a sippy cup, pull-ups, wipes, a toy or two, etc. 


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: If you’re rough and tough on the bags you carry on a regular basis, this is a great diaper bag alternative for you. If you’re outside often, this is a great bag for you also. If you want a non-diaper bag for dad, this would fit that need also.






liuliuby Crossbody Diaper Clutch


What People Love: This liuliuby diaper clutch is amazing! When you need a small bag to carry the bare minimum with you, this is 100% it. I think this is great for traveling with a baby as well. You can fit a couple of diapers, some wipes, and a few other baby essentials you’d want to have easily accessible.  There is a small, see-through plastic zippered pouch that is great for storing smaller items. This bag can be carried as a purse, a handbag, or as a wristlet. I love that it can also attach to a stroller or diaper bag. Another added convenience is the wipes pouch that can be accessed from the outside. You can also throw this bag right into the washing machine! This bag is made of 100% polyester too!


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This is a fantastic diaper bag alternative for anyone who is going to be out and about with a baby. It will allow you to have the absolute essentials with you, but not have a need for a full diaper bag, which is what makes it a fantastic option for you!


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: If you’re going to be doing any kind of traveling, or if you’re out with your baby often, this is an absolute must! It’s incredibly budget-friendly, and if you want to, you could throw it right in your regular diaper bag when you need all the baby things.






Alyssa Double Compartment Large Flapover Crossbody Bag


What People Love: Alright, so in theory, this is a crossbody purse. BUT, it is big enough that you could easily throw in some of the baby’s things without an issue. There is a zippered pouch on the backside of this bag for a pacifier or a small bottle of baby lotion. Once you open the front flap, there are two separate compartments inside. On has an open pocket and the other side has a zippered pocket. You can have a bottle or two sit upright on either side. There isn’t room for something like a blanket, but you could put a small burp cloth in this bag, along with a couple of diapers and a small pack of wipes.


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This is a fashionable diaper bag alternative. If you don’t like the bulkiness of a traditional diaper bag, and you’d prefer something much smaller, this is a great crossbody bag for you. There are also 30 color combinations to choose from! There are a LOT of pictures in the reviews if you’re wondering about what you can fit in this bag and I encourage you to check those out!


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: When you decide you don’t want to carry all the baby things, you will love this bag. It’s also awesome because when your baby grows up, you’ll have a really cute purse!






Aleah Wear Shoulder Tote Bag Purse


What People Love: How attractive is this Aleah Wear Sholder Tote bag??? I fell in love with it right away. It’s perfect for carrying all the baby things without the look of a traditional diaper bag. Inside, you’ll have plenty of room for diapers, wipes, bottles, etc. There are two open pockets and one zippered pocket inside the bag. The outside of the bag is super easy to clean and holds up to daily wear and tear. 


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: When you don’t want to look like you’re carrying baby stuff, buy this bag. No one would even suspect it’s a bag for your baby. You could easily share the space inside with your baby, carrying a few things for them, and a few things for you.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This is a great tote bag for anyone who likes an open bag with plenty of room for things. There are a couple of specific pockets to put things but otherwise, it’s a blank canvas.







Lily Queen Canvas Crossbody Tote


What People Love: The reviews rave about how awesome this Lily Canvas Crossbody Tote bag is! To start, you can choose from 7 different color options. The bottom of the bag is reinforced, which means it can easily stand up on its own. The top of the bag has a zip closure which is amazing if your bag tips over so you don’t lose all the things you have inside. There is a pocket on the outside that would be perfect for your water bottle or for a baby bottle. It is SUPER roomy inside, which would be great to put an organizer (see below), and then there is a slip pocket inside as well for something like your phone, keys, or a pacifier. You can carry this bag by the handle, as a crossbody bag, or as a shoulder bag. And this bag is super reasonably priced for the quality of the bag!


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: You can easily put an organizer in this bag and have all the conveniences you get with a traditional diaper bag, but it doesn’t look like a diaper bag at all.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: If you need more than the baby basics, you will love this tote bag.






Dasein Large Leather Handbag w/Matching Wallet


What People Love: People love that there is a matching wallet for this large leather handbag. It’s very attractive and is traditionally used as a purse. But, inside this bag, you could easily store a baby bottle, a small pack of wipes, a couple of diapers, and a couple of other must-haves, as well as the included wallet for you, your cell phone, and your keys. Inside the bag, you’ll find 1 zippered pocket, 2 open pouches, and the large main compartment. On the outside of the bag, there is a zippered pocket on the side. There are 14 different color/pattern options to choose from.


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: If you want to just carry a purse, buy this bag. This will fit your basic necessities, as well as the basic necessities for your baby or toddler.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This is a great diaper bag alternative for the fashionista momma who doesn’t want to carry a boring diaper bag, but needs the functionality that comes with a traditional diaper bag.






SMRITI Canvas Tote


What People Love: This SMRITI canvas tote bag is ADORABLE. It looks roomy and comfy, and it can certainly fit all the things. Inside this tote bag, you’ll find a large, roomy space, as well as one large zippered pocket and two smaller open pockets. The top of the bag has a zipper so you won’t have to worry about losing your things if your bag falls over. There is also a snap at the top of the bag for closure if you don’t want to use the zipper. You have 3 color options to choose from.


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This is a great option when you don’t want to carry a diaper bag because it is large and roomy and is capable of carrying everything you’ll need for your baby or toddler. When you’re finished with the baby and toddler stage, it’s an awesome and durable tote bag that could honestly even be used for a weekend trip.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This bag is ideal for someone who wants a lot of room for ALL the baby things. There is plenty of room for most of the things you’d expect to need for a baby on a regular basis, but it doesn’t look like a diaper bag.






Pursetti Zip-Top Tote Bag


What People Love: First and foremost, POCKETS! Of all the bags I’m sharing with you, this zip-top tote bag has the most pockets. There are 18 colors/patterns and two different sizes to choose from. There are 3 pockets on the front, 3 pockets on the back, and two mesh side pockets. The top of the bag is zippered to keep all your things in if your bag falls over. Inside, you’ll find 3 pockets in the front and two pockets in the back, as well as the open center part of the bag. I have personally given someone this kind of bag when they had a baby because it’s perfect if you don’t want a traditional diaper bag.


Why It’s a Great Diaper Bag Alternative: This bag is a great alternative to a diaper bag because it offers a lot of different storage options for all the baby/toddler things you might need.


Ideal Diaper Bag Alternative for: This bag is perfect for someone who likes to have a lot of organization options.







Diaper Bag Alternative Must-Haves!

Now that you’ve found your favorite bag to carry instead of a diaper bag, I HIGHLY recommend adding these 2 conveniences to your cart. 

Totebag Organizer Insert



If you like one of the bags I’ve shared with you, but you want a bit of organization on the inside of the bag, grab one of these bag organizers. You can easily move this organizer from one bag to the next, or leave it inside the car or the house. You can choose from 16 different color options, and 5 different size options, which means you’ll be able to find the right bag organizer for the bag you chose. Each size is slightly different, but in general, you can expect to find some pockets on the outside, some pockets on the inside, as well as open space and a zippered pouch. It slides easily in and out of tote bags, which makes it a great addition to your non-diaper bag purchase!



Use a Clip n’ Go Hook

These stroller clips are super convenient to use on your baby stroller for shopping bags or your diaper bag even.



One other thing I always like to recommend is this pack of hooks. They’re awesome if you’re going to be shopping or traveling. One unique thing about this hook compared to others is that the foam padding goes around the hook, which will protect the straps of whatever bag you hang on it. So, if you’re worried about not getting one of the traditional diaper bags, but want the convenience of being able to hang your bag on the stroller or grocery cart, grab a pack of these clips with your bag purchase.




FAQ About Ditching the Diaper Bag

Do I need a diaper bag?

This is truly a personal question that you’ll need to evaluate your own personal needs. Not everyone needs a diaper bag. With my first baby, I thought I needed to carry a traditional diaper bag everywhere I went, and then I quickly realized the things I used most often would fit right into my personal purse or tote bag. But, there is no rule that says you have to carry a diaper bag just because you have a baby, which makes these diaper bag alternatives a fantastic option!


What is the difference between a diaper bag and a regular bag?

There are some added benefits to buying a traditional diaper bag because they’re designed with baby stuff in mind. When you buy a traditional bag, it’s not going to have the appearance of a diaper bag, but you also don’t get the conveniences you get with a traditional diaper bag either.


What kinds of bags can you use instead of a diaper bag?

As you’ve seen in the examples above, you can use a handbag, a tote bag, a shoulder bag, a crossbody, or even a traditional purse in place of a diaper bag.


Why would you ditch the diaper bag?

Some people like to ditch the diaper bag because they realize they don’t need all the baby stuff all the time. Other people ditch the diaper bag because it’s too much to carry their own purse as well as a diaper bag, so they choose a diaper bag alternative that can do both.


How to keep your bag organized?

If you’re buying a large tote bag that doesn’t offer a lot of organization inside the bag, I highly recommend adding one of the bag organizers to your purchase.


Do you have a favorite diaper bag alternative you prefer to carry? Be sure to share it with me because I love to see the things my readers love to use!



MORE Awesome Baby Stuff!

How to Make a Minimalist Baby Registry

How to Easily Organize Baby Clothes

Do I Need a Baby Monitor?

Best Infant Travel Systems- How to Find the RIGHT One!

What to Stock Up On BEFORE Baby Arrives!



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