Having three kids, I've tried my fair share of baby changing bags, so when Eco Friendly Baby Bags offered me one of their bags to review, I was keen to give it a roadtest but wasn't expecting to discover anything particularly innovative or different. Well, I have to say, I was actually really impressed.
Due to the name, I thought that the biggest feature would be its ecological nature. Well, I've had a good look around on the website and apart from the opening paragraph - "Formally known as SBA Ventures UK Limited, Eco Friendly Bag co UK Ltd is a company which specializes in eco bags that are kind to the environment as well as affordable and effective" - I can't actually see anything to explain why they are an eco-friendly choice. The company produces a range of canvas and jute bags for gardening, shopping and storage as well as the baby changing bag I received to review, but I'd like a bit more information about why this is such a green option.
Design-wise, the bag reminds me of the type of rucksacks that you see serious backpackers carrying, with saucepans and roll-up sleeping mats and Swiss army knives and bottles of water and everything but the kitchen sink hanging off cleverly designed straps and stuffed into a multitude of interior and exterior pockets. It's got a place for everything you could possibly ever think you might need, and if you're a first-time parent, that's an awful lot of stuff ! Nappies, wetwipes, bibs, bottles, food, a change of clothes, blanket, toys and books, dummy, pushchair raincover, sunhat, nappy cream ... you name it, there's a pocket for it somewhere on the bag.
A very clever and handy bonus pocket is secretly tucked away at the bottom of the bag. With a unique (well, I've certainly never seen one like it before anyway !) spiral cross-over zip (imagine a kind of helter-skelter zip !), there's a whole separate section of the bag that you can pull down and use for storing a pooey nappy or sick-covered clothes until you get home, totally separate from the rest of the contents of the bag to avoid contamination or smells crossing over. You won't appreciate how good this is until you've experienced a child with particularly smelly projectile vomiting or an extremely toxic leaky nappy but take my word for it, it's a fabulous idea!
There is also a lightweight changing mat in one of the pockets, which is very handy but didn't impress me quite as much because it's a feature that you can find on many other models.
Another aspect that I absolutely love is the fact that the bag is fully machine-washable. One thing that you'll quickly learn when you have a baby is that they are extremely generous when it comes to sharing their bodily fluids with you and anything in the surrounding area, so your bag will quickly be splashed with various unsightly (not to mention unhygienic) stains. You only need to have a bottle of milk leak in your bag once to know how bad that can smell too, so being able to throw it in the machine is a godsend and, surprisingly, quite rare for a changing bag.
It's very lightweight and comfortable to use as well as being extremely practical. I have to say I think the light colour is maybe not the best choice for a changing bag as it shows up the stains too easily but the fact that it's machine washable makes up for this. It's got everything I would ask for in a changing bag, and a few things I'd never have thought of added in for good measure !
star rating : 4.5/5
RRP : £17.95
for more information : http://www.ecofriendlybag.co.uk/Baby-Bags/Baby-Bag-It-All or visit them on facebook : www.facebook.com/ecofriendlybag
Other reviews you may be interested in :