Imagine you invite your friends over for dinner. And they have a brand new baby…
You’re a little weirded out by babies. And rightly so. They’re gooey, gurgling little humans that just stare. Anyway, all of a sudden your friends calmly, and without hesitation, lay their baby onto your brand new coffee table.
You wonder what they’re up to, but keep the conversation going.
They proceed to unsap the kid’s onsie and dive into his diaper. It’s filled with mustard coloured poop running from front to back.
Ok, this has gone too far you think. They’re doing this on you bare table. What the hell are they thinking!?
Needless to say, that was the last time you invited them over for dinner. From then on, you always met them out. Moral of the story: Don’t be that person. Oh, and use a portable changing station next time. It saves friendships.
Already convinced you need a portable changing station? Then check out our top picks below…
Top 10 Portable Changing Stations of 2017
#1: MAMAN Portable Changing Pad
#2: Vito Maro Diaper Clutch
#3: Skip Hop Baby Pronto Portable Changing Station
#4: WILLCARE Diaper Changing Travel Kit
#5: Castle Kids Co Luxury All in One Portable Changing Pad
#6: Mom's Besty Luxury Baby Change Pad
#7: Crystal Baby Smile Portable Changing Pad
#8: Jj Cole Changing Clutch
#9: BRICA goPad Diaper Changer
#10: JL Childress Full Body Portable Changing Pad
But first, before we get into it…
But Do You Really Need A Portable Changing Station?
Ok, so in the scenario above, you know better. You'd never do that in a million years. But my point remains the same: You DO need a portable changing station.
- It will prevent messes,
- keep your baby off unhygienic surfaces,
- and help you make quick work of that near-toxic waste baby poop.
But not all changing stations are created equal. So we’re here to help.
ProtipCombine a portable changing station with a backpack diaper bag for a truly portable baby-poop-containment-system.
What to Look For In A Portable Changing Station
First, you need to know what they all have. Because there’s no reason comparing things that come as standard issue:
- Waterproof and padded changing mat
- Two main pockets (a couple models vary)
- Foldable design
- Carrying straps
With all of our gear guides, we scoured the internet to find the most popular products. Here’s the criteria we used to weed out the best portable changing stations:
Most portable changing stations use the same design but some features stood out in the best changing stations, like additional pockets and clear view compartments. We assessed them all and rated each product for function and finishing touches.
We considered size and weight here. No one wants to carry around a bulky change station. You’re already cleaning up poop, you don’t need any more hassle. We based this category on finding the right balance between padding for your baby, pockets for your supplies, and the overall thickness of the product.
Can’t stand the thought of your best friend seeing you pull out that change station? Then it loses huge style-points (#6 will make you cringe).
We looked at design, form, colour, patterns, and overall flare. And we didn’t just give our opinion. This rating is also based on reviews from other moms and dads from across the continent.
Don’t overpay. Just check out our price rating. We compared prices so you’ll know if the product is worth the cost.
Ok, with these things in mind, let’s look at our top picks for the best portable changing station.
The 10 Best Portable Changing Stations of 2017
This bad boy looks like computer bag. And that’s good news because no one wants to look overpacked-parent trucking around an obvious (and ginormous) diaper bag.
It even has a shoulder strap (most others don’t), folding compactly while still offering plenty of space for essentials in it’s mesh zippered pockets. It’s well padded and even has a built in mini head cushion. You can choose from stylish white and grey or black. We like the black since it’s won’t show the dirt (er, spit up). This bag also gets full points for affordability.
All the functionality of the others before it and comes with a clear, reusable wipes container and has extra integrated padding for baby’s head.
The unique triangle pattern hides scuffs, but it falls short on portability and price. It’s larger when folded up (and opened) and was the most expensive changing station reviewed. But if you have a preference for a larger change pad and want a wipes case, this may be your best option.
While this diaper change station has most of the common features (mesh and zippered pockets throughout), we didn’t like the bungee straps or floppy head pillow.
Users report diapers fall out easily and the extra padding gets in the way.
It’s the largest of the lot, and also the heaviest (but we admit we’re talking ounces here so that part’s nbd). In spite of all that, it’s decent value (one of the least expensive models). So if you don’t mind the bulk (or have a larger baby), this beast still gets the job done.
The design of this product is different than the rest. It has three internal pockets (rather than two) and a long but narrow change pad. The three pockets means it folds up much thicker, making it harder to pack. The very narrow change pad means there’s a better chance your creature might wiggle off (or spread a mess more easily).
Style-wise, this pad was plain jane. And not to mention the clips look to be really poor quality.
Ok, so probably not the best looking product. The worst part is the tacky orange logo plastered on the side. So there’s no mistaking it for anything other than a diaper change station. Ha. But in all seriousness, it does OK on other fronts. And apparently it comes with a ‘bonus’ pacifier clip. Yupie!
The Crystal Baby isn’t half a bad to look at as #6, and still offers decent functionality (good design and padding) and style. But we didn’t like the bungee straps used to hold diapers (see #4) because some users report that diapers are constantly falling out. Also this diaper change pad is the largest when folded up, so it’s not very compact.
This portable changing station is minimalistic.
It has a simple design with fewer compartments than the others. That means you gotta pack your extras separately, or just leave them at home. It’s pretty bulky for what it is and it’s price point suffers due to it’s reduced functionality.
These diaper changing stations are becoming leaner. They have few features and extras. They also seem to be getting larger (since they’re likely just going to be used as a change pad).
But, we do want to point out that this change pad looks pretty hot and so we’ve bumped up it’s style points.
Literally just a changing pad with a strap for wipes. Definitely not for those hoping to leave the diaper bag at home. But a nice, big, minimalist changing pad to add to an existing gear bag.
Remember – you don't always have to pack the kitchen sink when you're on the go.
Whether it's a quick trip or a long flight, you definitely don't need to be weighed down by bulky diaper bags.
Comment below and let us know what bag you love and why.