There’s nothing quite like the joy of preparing for a new baby. Shopping for baby clothes, putting together a list of names, picking out a pacifier…and finding a breast pump. Breast pumps might not be the most glamorous of baby products to shop for, but if you’re planning on breastfeeding your baby, finding the best breast pump for you is an absolute must.
If you’re interested in a pump, you’re definitely not alone. 85% of breastfeeding mothers in the United States use a pump regularly. A breast pump can help you boost your milk flow, relieve pain, and pass off feeding duties to your partner when you need a break. We’ll break down some of the most important factors of picking a pump and give you a closer look at some of the best breast pumps on the market.
Benefits of Pumping
So how can a breast pump help you? Here are a few things to consider:
- If you’re a working mom or you spend time away from the home, it might be tough to keep your baby on a regular feeding schedule. With a pump, you can store bottles for later use or give them to a caretaker.
- Sometimes a baby might struggle to latch or you might get sore from breastfeeding. Using a bottle can give you a well-deserved break.
- A breast pump helps you keep your baby’s intake in check. With a bottle, you’ll know exactly how much your baby is drinking each time.
- Using a breast pump can help you stimulate milk production and increase your supply. You can even store bottles of milk in the freezer in case of future shortages.
- If you struggle with engorged breasts, a pump can help ease pressure and reduce pain.
Types of Breast Pumps
Now that you know the benefits, here’s a rundown of the three key types of pumps:
- Manual breast pumps
- Single electric breast pumps
- Double electric breast pumps
Manual breast pumps
Are you looking for something simple and on the go? A manual breast pump is light, easy to carry, and fits in a handbag or purse. While it’s not the fastest option and a bit outdated, it’s definitely the most affordable. It’s the perfect choice for a mom who’s looking for something low cost and flexible.
Double electric breast pumps
If efficiency is at the top of your list, the double electric breast pump is great for saving time and energy. The double electric pumps both breasts at once and allows you to adjust the settings for suction strength and speed. Although it’s a bigger cost investment, you’ll get more milk in less time (so you can spend more time snuggling with your baby).
Single electric breast pumps
The single electric combines the efficiency of the double electric and the flexibility of the manual. Although you pump from one breast at a time, you can still manage the suction settings. The single electric offers a balance between cost, flexibility, and efficiency.
Keep in mind–there’s no ‘correct’ choice for a breast pump. The best breast pump for you is the one that suits your needs, preferences, and lifestyle.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Breast Pump
Be sure to run through these features before you start shopping:
Budget. Stick with something within your price range, but don’t sacrifice quality for the price tag. If cost is a serious concern, your healthcare may be able to help
Durability. How often are you going to use your pump? Some pumps are great for heavy usage, while others work better for occasional use.
Efficiency. If you don’t have a flexible schedule or you think you’ll be pumping on the go, consider buying a faster, more portable pump.
Power. If you’re going to be home most of the time, you might have to worry much about power. But if you don’t want to rely on an outlet, consider buying a pump that uses batteries.
Comfort. Breastfeeding isn’t always easy, especially for new moms. Keep an eye out for breast shields which are broad, comfortable, and the right fit for you.
5 Best Breast Pumps 2018
These are some of the best breast pumps on the market — but it’s only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the products that are out there. Every mother is different, and every mother has different needs.
Identify your needs so you can find a breast pump that’s right for you. You’ll save yourself (and your baby) a lot of trouble by picking the right breast pump on your first try. When shopping for breast pumps, don’t jump straight to the breast pump that your friend recommended you. What is the best breast pump for one mom might not work for another. Whether you’re picking out a pacifier or selecting something more complex like a breast pump, it makes sense to take your time and find one that’s going to be right for you and your baby.
Best Manual Breast Pump
Madela Harmony is everything that’s great about a manual pump–it’s quiet, easy to clean, and simple to use. It fits right into a purse and is discreet enough that you can use it anywhere, even if you’re away from the privacy of your home. It also comes with a breast shield which swaps out with other Madela Harmony shields. You can switch it out for a different fit to maximize your comfort. Medela makes a lot of hospital grade breast pumps. This manual pump is a good option for moms who are only spending occasional time away from baby.
Looking for a manual pump that isn’t much work? The Haakaa Silicone pump is one-piece and collects milk using its own suction — no work required. You can sit back, relax, and let this pump work its magic. Better yet, it’s made of 100% food grade silicone and is one of the most affordable manual pumps out there.
If you’re on the lookout for an affordable single electric pump, the Haoqin Micro Cube pump is the full package. It’s light and compact enough to bring with you, and it comes with a storage bottle, lid, charger, USB cable, and a bag to carry it all in. Made from 100% food-grade silicone, this pump has a stimulation massage cushion which can help produce more milk and reduce discomfort. The suction comes in three different settings so you can find the one that works best for you.
Best Double Electric Breast Pump
For an electric pump, the BelleMa is built for convenience. At only 14 ounces, this pump is easy to bring with you on the go. Although you can still hear it pump, it’s relatively quiet and easy to assemble. The BelleMa also includes a long power cord, which makes it easy to find a private and comfortable place to pump. Even though it’s double electric, it has independent controls for the right and left pump, allowing you to select different suction levels for each breast.
Best Electric Breast Pump
This is one of the best breast pumps on the market–but it comes with a pretty hefty price tag. The Spectra S2 comes loaded with all the features money can buy. As both a double and single electric pump, you can pump one breast at a time or both at once. It’s quiet, compact, and comes with a rechargeable battery built in. The suction speed and strength is easily customizable, and it’s designed to mimic the natural suction patterns of a baby. It’s close to being a hospital grade breast pump due to all of it’s features. It even comes with a nightlight and timer for your convenience.