For 30 years I have been in the business of childcare. When the children outgrew changing tables, but were still in diapers, I used a padded fold up style changing pad. When my granddaughter was born six weeks ago, I wanted to find a similar product for my daughter to add to her diaper bag. Changing babies in public restrooms made me feel uneasy, and I was on a quest to find a fold up changing pad.
This quest was much harder than I thought it would be. I found two stores that carried similar products, Toys R Us and Target, and neither of the products was like the one I used to own. I ended up buying The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit. It was available in different colors, but since the babies stroller is black and green, we purchased The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit in matching colors.
This diapering kit is quite compact, measuring 10″ by 6″ by 2 1/2″ when it is folded up. It looks like a women’s large clutch, with a Velcro closure on the front flap. There is a zipper that extends the entire length that is 4″ long, and it is lined with plastic.
When you open the The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit , there are four folds, revealing two mesh pockets and a clear smoke colored diaper wipe case, which measures 4.25″ by 8.25″. I like that the case is clear so you can see how many wipes you have remaining. We could not find a hard style diaper wipe case, they were all disposable, so having this handy tool in the design swayed our decision to purchase The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit .
The changing pad is 21″ by 24″, but the main body is circular in shape, with a small rectangular protrusion for the head to rest. There are two black mesh pockets at the bottom of the pad for storing the wipes case, diapers, and other such products. To fold it up, you fold in the mesh pockets, pull the circular sides inward and fold these over the pockets, roll it twice more and Velcro closed. There is even a handy strap which allows you to attach this to your stroller or baby carrier.
While this isn’t exactly what I was looking for, it is serving its purpose. I like that the pad is moisture-resistant and can be easily cleaned by simply wiping it down. The back of the package reads “Cushioned changing pad”, and when the product is rolled up into its compact size, it does feel cushioned. However when we unrolled it both my daughter and I were disappointed with the amount of padding it contained. Compared to the one I used for so many years, this one seemed extremely thin. It is my opinion that this is intended to be a barrier between your baby and germs, but isn’t really meant to provide the comfortable cushion I was looking for.
The front of the package reads “A sleek alternative to a bulky diaper pad!”, but from my personal experience, this does not replace a diaper bag. We pack a lot of items in the diaper bag, such as blankets, several diapers, wipes, anti-gas drops, a change of clothing, and burp cloths – there is no way all of these items would fit into The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit . I feel it is a great addition to a diaper bag, but we would never use just this. I also wish the diaper wipes case would hold more wipes than it does, we go through them fairly fast. The package says this can be used “From Birth”, but our baby is six weeks old and fills it out. I can’t see using this on a large baby.
Overall, I recommend the The First Years Deluxe Fold & Go Diapering Kit in addition to a diaper bag. It isn’t super expensive, I think I paid about $12 for it. For those babies who might have allergies, the pad is made of polyvinyl chloride, the mesh pocket and binding are made of polyester, and the straps are polypropylene.