Last week we featured a real mom dilemma from a mama to be that needed help choosing a bottle she could use while breastfeeding. We got LOTS of great feedback from real moms who have lived this dilemma. I have tried to compile their answers along with a little more in depth reviews of their choices. I have also noted another, new to the market option that was designed to be the best bottle for breastfed babies. One of the biggest concerns with bottle feeding while breastfeeding is nipple confusion. You’ll hear lots about that in this post but know that it can vary from baby to baby and sometimes trying out different models is the best option (though not ideal). Hopefully this list helps you with where to start. Do you have any bottles you love – please share!
Dr. Brown’s – the most popular choice mentioned by the real moms and the bottle that yours truly loves oh-so-much. We have the standard (review here) but the wide neck (pictured) are designed for breastfeeding mamas. Personally speaking, we introduced a bottle at about 3 weeks and never had any issues with nipple confusion. The only difference between the wide neck and standard bottles is the base of the nipple. The wide neck has all the awesome colic reducing benefits of the standards. I can’t say enough good things about my Dr. Brown’s bottles.
Avent Naturals – our #2 choice as mentioned by the real moms, the Avent Naturals is designed with a nipple to mimic the breast. Our reals moms liked this one for its wide base and touted no nipple confusion from their little ones. Other reviews of the Avent Naturals echoed our savvy moms advice. The chief compliant is that the bottles being slightly leaky (which would force tears from me when I was breastfeeding – can’t.waste.any.liquid.gold). On other compliant was the flow of the nipple being too fast. Try the premie nipple if you start in the early stages as it may help.
MAM Anti-Colic Bottles – MAM bottles tied with the Breastflow bottles based on our real mom feedback. MAM bottles have a similar venting system to Dr. Brown’s to help with colic and gas. The nipple has a wide base to mimic the breast and it is a favorite among breastfeeding moms. One of the only compliants is the cleaning (additional pieces) but otherwise, it is tough to find any negative comments.
Breastflow – The Breastflow by The First Years is unique amongst this list in that it actually has a two part nipple that is designed to mimic breastfeeding. The two part nipple allows (or forces) your little one to use the same motion that they do while breastfeeding, greatly reducing the confusion that can come with a traditional nipple. Basically, the inner nipple allows your baby to control the flow of the milk. Other reviews of the Breastflow include some as favorable as our real moms but some weren’t fans of the bottle. The biggest complaint – that milk pooled in the nipple. Secondly, some reviewers thought cleaning the additional pieces to be tedious. However, like almost all baby gear, what works for some may not work for others. This is a great option if your little one is struggling with nipple confusion or fast flowing milk from other bottles.
Other popular models mentioned by our real moms:
Medela Calma – made by the breastpump experts, the Medela Calma feeding system was mentioned by one of our moms and it relatively popular among other reviewers. The Calma nipple is interchangeable so can be used with other bottles which is handy.Not surprsingly it is designed to mimic breastfeeding and many reviewers had success with the Calma nipple. However, the negative reviews on the Calma weren’t just sort of negative but really, really negative. Many parents claim they hated it and thought it was a waste of money (nipple alone is $17). All in all the jury is still out on this one for me. Based on some of the not-so-favorable reviews it is hard for me to suggest but based on the Medela name and recommendation of our real mom it may be worth a shot if you are struggling.
Playtex VentAire – The Playtex VentAire are unique in that the shape of the bottles allows for semi upright feeding in an easier manner than the traditional bottle. These bottles are popular among breastfeeding mama’s because of their wide base and wide nipple which mimics the breast. Praised for the lack of nipple confusion the VentAire is a good choice. The biggest complaint is the bottles leaking – which obviously is a concern. Based on the other options I may start elsewhere but the Playtex is a seemingly decent option.
Not mentioned in our real mom dilemma but worth checking out:
BARE air by Bitty Lab – these are brand spanking new bottles whose presale starts tomorrow, June 19th. Basically, they are designed to be a “fake boob” – seriously, these bottles are the most similar to an actual breast than any we’ve mentioned here. The baby is able to completely control the flow (just like a natural breast) further, nipple controls the air flow to minimize gas and negative effects from air intake. This bottle looks fabulous and we will hopefully try it out in the coming weeks.