Best Portable Changing Pad in 2019

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If you're in a hurry and just want to find out what the best portable changing pad is, I'd recommend the Bamboo Quilted Changing Pads.

Your baby is unlikely to wait until it’s convenient to need a diaper change. Fortunately, using a portable changing pad means you can change your baby whenever you need to without sacrificing comfort or safety. If you’ve been looking for the best portable changing pad, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites here for your consideration.

In this article, I am breaking down the best portable changing pads, and in the end, I'll choose the winner.

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Why Use a Portable Changing Pad?

Portable changing pads can offer you a clean space to change your baby, no matter where you are. At the park with your older kids? In the parking lot at the grocery store? Even on a mounted changing table in a public restroom—bringing your own portable changing pad enables you to be in control of your baby’s environment.

It turns out this is more important than you might realize. Public changing tables are a breeding ground for bacteria, and may even have drug residue on them.

Not only does this product limit your baby's exposure to dangerous unknown irritants, but it also makes clean up easier. If you have an explosive diaper or an accident during a change, a simple wipe down leaves you with a clean changing pad.

What to Consider When Shopping for the Best Portable Changing Pad

You’ll want to keep the following things in mind while doing your shopping. This will help ensure you bring home the best portable changing pad for your needs:

  • Where you plan on keeping your portable changing pad: When not in use, will your changing pad have a long term storage space? Knowing if you’ll be keeping it in a diaper bag, trunk, or the bottom of a stroller can help narrow down your options.

  • The size of your baby: Will you be changing a toddler? You may need a larger changing pad if you want your little one’s entire body to be on it. Pay attention to dimensions and keep in mind you may need to replace your portable changing pad as your child grows.

  • What the changing pad is made of: Looking to stay away from plastic? You can always opt for a washable changing pad. Just remember the cleaning requirements will be greater.

  • Care guidelines: Take a look at the maintenance needs of your changing pad. Can it be machine washed? Can you use disinfectant wipes on it? This will help you keep your changing pad clean and in good shape.

  • Reusable or disposable changing pad: There are times you may want to opt for a portable disposable changing pad instead of a product you’re going to use time and again. This can help prevent cross-contamination and you’ll be set up with a fresh changing pad every time. It’s not a one-time purchase but in some circumstances may suit your needs better than a reusable changing pad. 

My Top Portable Changing Pad Picks

I have scoured the world of portable changing pads, and reviewed the top five below. I've also picked my favorite.

If you just aren’t comfortable with changing pads you can’t wash on a regular basis, you may want to consider these quilted changing pad liners. They have the benefits that come with being reusable, but can also be fully washed to ensure cleanliness.

These changing pads are made from four layers of absorbent material. The quilted design helps give them a nice cushioning that helps make changes more comfortable.

The material used in the pads is rayon sourced from bamboo and polyester. Smooth and silky, they are a great option for babies who have sensitive skin that’s easily irritated.

Another perk to using bamboo in your portable changing pad? Bamboo has antimicrobial and hypoallergenic properties. In between washes, you can be confident that your portable changing pad isn’t harboring anything that can harm your baby.

The bottom layer of these changing pads is waterproof to prevent any dampness from seeping through. This waterproof layer is breathable, vinyl-free, and made from non-toxic TPU.

When you feel it’s time for a good washing, these durable changing pads can be machine washed and dried. They wash well and maintain their shape after washing.

These bamboo changing pads are quite narrow, at just 13 inches wide. They are, however, on the longer side at 27 inches. The changing pads are equipped with elastic and velcro to help secure your pad where needed and to create a tidy unit for traveling.

PROS
  • Machine washable and dryable
  • The material is soft and comfortable
  • Multi-layer system, including a waterproof layer, helps prevent leaks
  • This is a set of three—a great budget buy that lets you rotate your pads as needed, or use in multiple locations
CONS
  • May shrink slightly with washing
  • Can’t be wiped down for a quick clean when you’re on the go

Looking for an oversized portable changing pad? This changing pad opens up to 30 inches by 19 inches and offers plenty of space for your diaper changing needs.

It folds into a compact, self-contained case that measures 6.5 inches by 10 inches. When folded, it can be as little as half an inch thick.

A velcro clasp helps keep it securely closed and makes it a great choice for cars, strollers, purses, and diaper bags. The velcro strap that secures the portable changing pad allows enough give to store travel wipes and a diaper as well. You can have everything in one easy-to-snag spot, for those inevitable emergency diaper changes.

This unit is incredibly lightweight, coming in at less than 9 ounces. The changing pad is waterproof and can be easily wiped down for cleaning. The material used is lead-free and cleans up well with soap and water or wipes. It’s not recommended for machine washing, though.

It should be noted that the way this changing pad folds up allows the interior to be in contact with the exterior. This means any contaminate the back of your pad comes into contact with during use can be transferred to the inside of your changing pad. You’ll need to plan on compensating for this by wiping down the interior before every use.

Since it can’t be thrown in the wash and the exterior is a canvas material, you may be limited in how you can address contaminants on the exterior of this changing pad.

PROS
  • Folds down into a convenient travel case
  • An external strap helps keep all your changing accessories close
  • The large surface is great for toddlers as well as young babies
  • Wipes down easily for quick cleans
CONS
  • The interior of this pad contacts with the exterior during the folding process, leaving your baby vulnerable to germs and contaminants
  • This unit shouldn’t be washed in the washing machine

If you’re looking for a portable changing pad that doubles as a changing station, this Crystal Baby product might be a good option for you. One of the best travel changing pads, this unit offers a detachable section with a zippered enclosure for your changing supplies. These mesh pockets are perfect for diapers, creams, wipes, and clothing, and allow plenty of air circulation.

The changing pad portion measures 22 inches at its widest, with wings that fold out from the center to provide your baby extra space. Without accounting for the changing supply storage, the changing pad area measures 25.5 inches long. When assembled and unfolded, the entire changing pad and changing station measure nearly 41 inches long.

This unit is made from baby-safe materials. It’s azo-dye and phthalates free and safe for your baby’s skin. It weighs just about 9 ounces and when it’s folded it’s the size of a clutch, and even equipped with a wrist loop for easy holding. An external zippered pocket is perfect for phones or small wallets if you’re looking to streamline your accessories.

This unit shouldn’t be washed in the washing machine. The interior is padded for additional comfort for your baby, but it should not be submerged in water. The waterproof side that comes into contact with the baby may be wiped down for cleaning.

Afraid this won’t suit your needs? There’s no risk with this product as the company offers a satisfaction guarantee. If you’re unhappy with your purchase you can receive a refund or exchange the product without any problems.  

PROS
  • A great all-in-one stop that has everything you need for a successful diaper change—great for changes on the go
  • It can be used virtually hands-free
  • While it can easily fit in your diaper bag, it can also take the place of your diaper bag entirely
  • Made with baby-safe materials
  • Comes with a great guarantee
  • Includes padding for extra comfort
CONS
  • Can’t be folded without the interior and exterior touching, potentially exposing your baby to contaminants
  • Cannot be machine washed
  • Might be too big for some diaper bags

Looking for the best travel changing pad? A disposable changing pad can be a great option when you’re traveling—or if you know your diaper change will be messy.

Many changing pads cannot be fully washed. Disposable pads can also be a good choice if you know you’re exposing your pad to things you don’t want to bring home.

These disposable portable changing pads are made from paper. They’re thin, so won’t offer your baby much in way of warmth or comfort, but they will give you a clean space to change your baby—wherever you are. They also take up virtually no space in your diaper bag or car.

Though made from paper, the changing pads do offer three absorbent layers and a leak-proof liner. This helps keep moisture away from your baby’s skin and makes cleanup a breeze. They’re also infused with baking soda to help absorb any odors that might come along with your diaper change.

Depending on where you’re using your disposable pad and what it’s exposed to, you may choose to use this pad multiple times before disposing of it. If, for instance, you’re changing a wet diaper in the back of your car, simply refold and your changing pad is ready for another use.

These disposable changing pads measure 18 inches by 26.75 inches. They can be used on top of public changing tables, however, they are not large enough to cover the whole table. This will leave the table accessible to your child’s touch.

PROS
  • Disposable for convenient cleanup
  • Odor-absorbing baking soda helps cut down on smells after disposal
  • Multiple absorbent layers help keep your baby dry during changes
  • Waterproof liners mean there’s no mess left behind
  • Takes up very little storage space
  • Great for traveling
CONS
  • Depending on how often you need to use these, the ongoing cost could add up
  • There are more environmentally-friendly options for portable changing pads

If you have a little one who’s prone to getting in on the diaper-changing activity, you may want to consider this clean hands changing pad. It’s specifically designed to prevent small hands from becoming dirty during changes.

This changing pad folds up into a convenient clutch and changing station. There’s padding through the shoulder and head area to provide a more comfortable changing experience for your little one.

Simply unfold your changing pad and place your child in the center. The upper portion of the pad then crosses your baby’s midsection and attaches with velcro. This creates a quick and safe barrier for your child’s hands and allows you to change your baby in peace.

Built-in toy loops are included, to help keep your baby occupied during diaper changes. Additional baby toys can be attached to these loops.

This unit is made entirely of polyester. It can be wiped down for cleaning when needed and can even be submerged and washed by hand if necessary. Avoid any exposure to bleach, though. Air dry and don’t expose it to heat, through the dryer, for example.

When folded, this changing pad measures 13 inches by 7 inches and is 3 inches thick. Unfolded, with the barrier in place, the changing pad measures 27 inches long by 13 inches wide.

With the barrier laid flat, you’ll gain extra width and have 26 inches to work with. This can be great as your baby gets older and becomes more trustworthy when it comes to keeping their hands to themselves.

PROS
  • Offers an innovative way to keep your baby’s hands clean during changes
  • Can be washed by hand when dirty
  • Can be used with toys to help keep your baby happy during changes
CONS
  • Quite bulky for a portable changing pad
  • This pad is quite narrow when using the hands’ barrier, which can limit functionality, depending on your baby’s age

Bringing Home the Best Portable Changing Pad

Choosing the best portable changing pad for you doesn’t have to be difficult. Take a good look at what you need in a portable changing pad and go from there. All of our choices are great options, but if I were only to bring one home it would be the Bamboo Quilted Changing Pads. I love that they can be machine washed and dried and that they come with multiple in a set.

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