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11 Best Diaper Bag Backpacks of 2021 (Mom Tested & Approved)

diaper bag backpack surrounded by the essentials

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Diaper bags are essential purchases, and it’s the kind of purchase you really want to “get right.” It will be with you for years, carrying all the baby things, then the toddler snacks, then the space clothes for your potty trained child.

Tons of parents end up buying multiple bags throughout the years, but we’ve found that the right diaper bag purchase can actually stay with you for all the years.

For many, the “right” diaper bag is a backpack. We’ll tell you why and how to choose the best diaper bag backpack for you!

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Why Choose a Backpack Style Diaper Bag?

Besides being super trendy (check out this entire Pinterest board on how to style your diaper bag backpack), backpacks are just downright practical.

Remember all the sh*t you could stuff in them when you were in school?

Well, the same logic applies here: they hold a LOT of stuff, and they are really comfortable.

In addition to being trendy and able to hold the insane amount of baby gear you need just to step out of the door, backpack style diaper bags also:

  • Totally hands free!
  • Better for your back since the weight inside them is distributed evenly
  • Full of pockets (meaning great storage)
  • Gender neutral (if you have a husband who doesn’t want to be seen with a diaper bag, a backpack can be a great alternative to buying a separate diaper bag for dad)

What Should I Look for In Diaper Bag Backpacks?

Not all diaper bag backpacks are created equally.

Here’s what’s generally important when considering the best backpack diaper bag:

  1. Overall Space: Babies and kids come with a lot of crap needed items. You know whether you tend to be a pack rat or a minimalist. It’s important your selection fit your personal needs and preferences.
  2. Pockets and Pouches: Organization is key when you need to have so many items readily available. That’s why pockets and pouches are essential. And if they have them on the outside as well as the inside, even better!
  3. Washability: Kids are messy, things spill, you’ll want to set your diaper bag down in dirty places, and we want it to last you years. The ability to either toss it in the washing machine or wipe it down is key!
  4. Weight: You’re already hauling around a kid (or more), so you don’t want to feel like you’re also carrying your home gym. Check the weight of the backpack itself before purchasing. Some are much lighter than others!
  5. Durability: While we love a good, inexpensive find, that’s actually not our recommendation when buying a diaper bag backpack. You don’t need to go full-on luxury, but remember: we want this bag to last you years, so durability is key!
  6. Stroller Straps: You want to be able to toss your diaper bag onto a stroller. You can do this with a mommy hook, but stroller straps are also a great feature.
  7. Versatility: Before having kids, I had beautiful images in my head of changing my diaper bag to match my outfit. Then I realized I never even put on makeup, let alone switching ALL THE THINGS to a new diaper bag. Spend your money wisely on one and make sure it’ll work with a variety of outfit styles.
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Large Diaper Bag Backpacks

Large diaper bag backpacks are great for moms with multiple children or just those of us who have been called “bag ladies” our entire lives.

1. Itzy Ritzy Boss Bag

This is the most recommended diaper bag backpack from moms in the Undefining Motherhood community. And online reviewers agree.

What we love:

  • Pockets galore: 17 total; 10 interior and 7 exterior pockets, including insulated bottle pockets and designated “parent pockets” for YOUR things!
  • Space: Tons of space to fit all the things
  • Rubber bottom that helps it stand up well and is easy to clean when you’ve put it on nasty surfaces
  • Zips all the way to the bottom, essential for finding that one snack that inevitably fell all the way down
  • Weight: Only 2.5lbs
  • Vegan: Want to avoid real leather? This bag is for you!
  • Stroller straps make clipping to strollers or grocery carts super easy
  • Lots of color options

What we don’t love:

  • Spot-clean only
  • It’s big, so not ideal for small-framed parents

2. Skip Hop Forma Diaper Bag Backpack

A great bag that dads are happy to carry too! It doesn’t have that baby-ish vibe that your husband or partner will hate, so getting them to carry it won’t be hard. Score.

What we love:

  • Extra wide opening
  • Oversized pockets
  • Space to fit items for 2 kids, making it one of the best diaper bag backpacks for twins
  • Padded shoulder straps
  • Includes 2 packing cubes
  • Space for laptop and other parent items

What we don’t love:

  • More function than form (it’s not as cute as some of the others)

Run snag it at your local Target here!

3. Bag Nation Diaper Bag Backpack with Shoulder Straps

This diaper bag backpack comes VERY highly recommended by Undefining Motherhood readers for a few reasons, mostly durability and the fact that dads love it.

I’m not going to lie. It isn’t the most stylish bag on the market, resembling a piece of luggage more than a purse. But if usable durability is what you want, this is perfect.

What we love:

  • Major durability
  • Excellent price
  • 100-day return policy
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Water resistant (not waterproof)
  • 14 pockets
  • Stroller straps
  • Wet sack
  • Changing pad

What we don’t love:

  • Style: no one is pretending this bag is pretty

Small Diaper Bag Backpacks

Are you more of a minimalist mama? Then a small diaper bag backpack is perfect for your absolute necessities. Here are our favorites.

1. Itzy Ritzy Chic Mini Diaper Bag Backpack

This backpack diaper bag is great for grab-and-go situations. Leave a few diapers and some wipes in it, and you’re ready to run out the door.

And good news! If you want to use this long-term, Itzy Ritzy still comes through with the pockets!

What we love:

  • 4 internal pockets, including “parent pocket” for your keys, cell phone, and wallet
  • Vegan leather (we hate that phrase, but it tells you what you’re getting)
  • Easy to wipe clean
  • Comes with a changing pad

What we don’t love:

  • Very small–really for essentials only
  • Spot clean only
  • Some reviewers say the vegan leather peels over time

2. Idaho Jones Small Baby Backpack

This super chic, gorgeous bag packs a lot of punch in terms of space for being so small. But it’s definitely made for those mamas who only like to carry the necessities. 

Packed full of unique features like a space for an ipad, a velvet-lined phone pouch to protect your other baby, and special stroller straps.

What we love:

  • Space for an iPad
  • Velvet-lined phone pouch
  • Stroller straps
  • Insulated bottle pocket
  • One elastic pocket
  • 1 year warranty!

What we don’t love:

  • Not machine washable
  • Stitching could be stronger
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Best Stylish Diaper Bag Backpacks

Let’s be real here: sometimes it’s hard to fork over a bunch of money for something that only holds baby gear. We get it–you want something cheap, functional, stylish, and durable because money doesn’t grow on trees, and babies are freaking expensive.

Fret not, girl. We got you.

1. Halo-Va Diaper Bag Backpack

I loved this bargain backpack–I received quite a few as gifts, and during the infant stage, I used this more than any other.

What we love:

  • Easy to clean
  • Wipe pouch on outside so baby wipes are ALWAYS readily available
  • Insulated bottle storage (small bottles only)
  • Cute and comes in tons of colors
  • Interior pockets that stretch to fit your needs
  • Waterproof interior (but needs to be cleaned if you get wet things in it
  • Will replace within 3 years if you have quality issues

What we don’t love:

  • Not as durable as many we list here (though they will replace for you)
  • Lacking in back support
  • Some reviewers complain of tears in the waterproof lining

2. Maman “Designer” Bag

This simple, versatile backpack is a favorite among Undefining Motherhood moms and dads. It’s also super unique.

What we love:

  • Mega durability
  • Wipes clean easily
  • Magnetic front pocket for easy access to important items
  • Matching changing pad
  • Lightweight
  • Waterproof
  • Stroller straps

What we don’t love:

  • We love most of it

3. Freshly Picked Vegan Leather Backpack

This is a gorgeous vegan leather bag (seriously, why don’t we just call it faux leather?), and mamas absolutely rave about Freshly Picked like nothing I’ve ever heard.

What we love:

  • Ten pockets
  • Magnetic front flap
  • Super stylish
  • Grab-and-go top handle
  • Convertible to crossbody or purse
  • Changing pad included
  • Metal feet on bottom so the bag itself never touches the ground

What we don’t love:

  • Lots of people report receiving the wrong size or color when ordering from Amazon

4. Monaco Vegan Leather Backpack by Luli Bebé

Basically the cadillac of diaper bags. Want a bag that looks great, holds everything, and has, like, every strap imaginable (stroller strap and messenger strap)? Look no further.

Oh, and did we mention it’s gorgeous?

What we love:

  • 9 pockets, plus additional, plus extra compartments for storage and zippered pockets for safer storage
  • Magnetic front flap
  • Quick grab top handle
  • Changing pad
  • Stroller straps
  • Messenger straps
  • Premium materials
  • 2.8 lbs

What we don’t love:

  • Price: this is a luxury backpack
  • Large for people with small-framed bodies

5. Ju-ju-be Be Right Back Bag

With 78% of reviewers giving this well-made diaper bag backpack 5 stars, and we can see why. It’s cute, unique, and has so many great features.

What we love:

  • Cell phone pocket AND mommy pocket
  • Mesh pocket for dirty/sticky items
  • 2 insulated pockets for baby bottles
  • Memory foam changing pad (baby luxury at its finest?)
  • MACHINE WASHABLE!!!!!
  • Padded, ergonomic straps
  • Reviews say it’s super durable

What we don’t love:

  • Magnetic closures may not hold up well in the wash

11. Lily Jade Ana Bag

I saved this for last because it’s the highest priced item on the list, but it is my FAVORITE diaper bag in the world! High quality, multi-functional, and simply stunning–I love it!

The Lily Jade Ana backpack diaper bag comes in both medium and large sizes, and it’s stunning. An incredibly stylish diaper bag, with a price tag to match.

It converts to a cross body, and it’s our only recommendation that’s a leather backpack diaper bag. I still carry this bag everyday. To the store, to the beach, and as a purse when my kid isn’t with me.

What we love:

  • Durability: Leather equals durability, and this bag has it. I can fill it with all Jack’s things, my laptop and charger–basically fill it to the brim. Everything holds up.
  • 2 large interior sections, so you can separate adult things and kids things, or just organize better
  • Laptop sleeve in the back
  • Side pockets are large enough to hold my own water bottles
  • Converts to crossbody bag or purse
  • Design is in the details, and EVERY detail is perfect

What we don’t love:

  • Price: But honestly, if you can swing it, it’ll last you years and is worth it
  • Buy the smaller version if you’re more minimalist or have a small body frame

What are your favorite diaper bag backpacks and why? Tell us all about them in the comments!

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When I first told my mom the title of this blog, she looked at me incredulously and said, “Why undefining? Why not redefining?”

“Because motherhood is a role that’s been defined for far too many centuries,” I say. “And often not even by mothers themselves. It’s been prescribed and defined and changed and redefined so much that I don’t understand how anyone can feel authentic in their experience of it anymore. Not to co-opt another movement that’s happening right now, but time’s up. It’s time to learn to do this authentically, not according to prescription. For years, I’ve studied the history and theory of how motherhood has been defined, prescribed, turned into an institution with a set of rules. And I’m sick of it. It’s time to put that knowledge into action.”

“It’s perfect,” she replied.

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