I know, opening this article about the best baby gear for dads, you might immediately go on the defensive. "Isn't all baby gear for dads?"
And it's true, there are some companies like "Tactical Diaper Bags" and "Mission-Critical Baby Gear," that act like no self-respecting dad would ever be seen in public with a regular diaper bag!
Now, at first I was thinking this was a little sexist and/or ridiculous, but then I was reading a post from a friend about how "just because you're a mom, doesn't mean you have to lose your own identity or your fashion sense!" So, I applied this idea to "Dad-friendly" baby gear. And I understood why a man might want one of these "tactical" diaper bags. Not because he's afraid that one with flowers on it is emasculating or whatever, but because he doesn't want to lose his sense of self in the role of being a father…Maybe?? I'm still a little torn on this and whether or not it's silly, and I'm curious to get your thoughts in the comments below!
Anyway, there are tons of diaper bags, baby carriers (hiking and regular), and even strollers that come in neutral colors, messenger bag or backpack styles, and muted textures like burlap and polyester. And hey, these looks might be preferred by some moms, too!
But hey, is baby gear for dads that puts fashion over function and practicality still just as good??
What you're probably looking for in a diaper bag is:
- It isn't going to soak diapers when it rains (waterproof!)
- It's big and has enough separated compartments
- It's made of durable materials and the stitching isn't going to come apart
- They have features like insulated pockets in order to help keep baby foods and drinks at the right temperature.
So on that note, I took a quick look at "Tactical Baby Gear" to see what I thought…
For the first one, the tagline you see when you first click on the website is, "Your diaper bag isn't your child's accessory – it's YOURS." Okay, a little off-putting to me, but I kept going 😉…Only to see that on their baby carrier, "meets federal safety requirements" is one of the features…Hmm. However, it did accommodate babies up to 33 pounds, and it could do both inward- and outward-facing.
But it also didn't say anything about being waterproof, and it didn't say anything about comfort, either for you or the baby. (Keep in mind that a carrier should let your baby's legs be in an M-position because that's healthy for their hips and avoids hip dysplasia.)
However, looking at the pictures provided by Tactical Baby Gear, it did seem like they complied with this!
Overall, based on the research I've done so far, I'm pretty impressed with the quality level that seems to be present in baby gear for dads…
But again, the sticking point for me is wondering whether separate baby gear for dads is necessary.
And plus, if Mom and Dad each have their own baby carrier, their own diaper bag, and even other accessories, the cost of that will add up over time!
Again, I'm curious to know in the comments what you guys think of the necessity of all of this (especially if you guys are, well, guys)!
Also, in case you're wondering what baby gear I recommend (for both genders 😉) here is MY list!